Top Critic Average
A.W. Phoenix Festival is a game that relies entirely on its dating sim part. Since the fighting is a secondary aspect of the gameplay, we do not recommend the purchase of the product to anyone who is not a fan of the anime series, which is the only target which this videogame is clearly addressed to.
Review in Italian | Read full review
Too simple for it’s own good, A.W. Phoenix Festa is a game that never truly commits to itself. That’s sort of ironic since dating and relationships are such an important part of the experience.
I have zero doubt that, given extra time and material to work with, the developers could have produced one of the best anime-inspired video games this decade. What’s here is still modestly enjoyable, though, and this title is worth supporting just to champion the notion that anime games besides the Narutos and Dragon Balls of the world deserve localisations.
Unfortunately, it’s way too light on narrative to leave much of an impact; for a game about a tournament, it lacks the sort of excitement and tension you’d expect, and even the dating sim elements pay off in thin dividends. Still, there’s enough here for a bit of breezy entertainment, and sometimes that’s all you’re looking for.
The ability the play not only through the main story but also as a different character entirely will please fans of the show. However, Asterisk War: Phoenix Festa is ultimately a very generic affair, riddled with tropes that will do little to draw in new fans to the series and will likely leave most gamers not familiar with its content confused.
If you are someone who loves the source material or just generally can dig the quirky, light, and very Japanese appeal of this kind of title, Phoenix Fiesta is worth a shot. If, however, you came for a deep JRPG or a sophisticated action game or a thrilling, edge of your seat visual novel, be aware that you will most likely come away feeling disappointed.
A.W. Phoenix Festa does a decent enough job at transferring the characters and setting of the anime to the Vita but does a terrible job of explaining those things for newcomers. The combination of dating sim and battling works well but no individual part excels.
A.W. Phoenix Festa isn't bad, as some elements are mildly amusing. The building up of the character to compete in the final tournament is a cool element, but the game lacks depth on so many levels while punishing mistakes so hard that the whole thing becomes a grind. There is not much to see, not much to do, and how often scenes repeat is grating. What is seen in the first 15 minutes is in general what the next 5 hours are going to be like, and those first 15 were not that good to begin with. The elements in here have the potential to be a really cool game, but this is more like a framework than an actual game worth buying.
A.W.: Phoenix Festa attempts to combine an action RPG with a dating sim and is actually able to pull it off. It is a short game that can be completed in just a few hours, but it has some replay value since getting different partners for the Phoenix Festa or trying to date different women can offer a different experience the second time around. There is not a great deal of challenge to it but it is a cute game that can be casually enjoyed, provided one has thick enough skin to handle repeated rejection from digital young ladies.
For as much as 'A.W. : Phoenix Festa' fails to capitalize on the potential of its strong ideas, there is something oddly compelling about the whole game that had me start up a second playthrough pretty much immediately after my first ending. I can't really recommend this to anyone but diehard fans of the series, but even then, it comes with the caveat that it's a flawed, rushed game. It's nice to see more titles like this brought over, but this is one that can safely be skipped.
The game becomes pretty repetitive after a few hours. If you’re a fan of the series then this is likely worth buying, but otherwise you might want to check the anime out first or wait for a sale.
I’ve played a lot of anime games through the years with varying degrees of enjoyment, but I don’t even think being a super fan of the Asterisk War franchise would entice me to play Phoenix Fiesta any more than I already have.