Lesbian Visual Novel Review: Love Ribbon
Written by Jin0uga, edited by Otaku Apologist
Love Ribbon, developed and published by Razzart Visual. Released in January 27th, 2017. Available on Steam for $9.99. Available for PC Windows, Mac, and Linux. Download the free R18+ patch from Razzart’s website to unlock the hentai scenes. No voice acting. Uncensored genitals. Read our review of Wolf Tails from the same developer.
Media themed around incest has a big audience. There’s just something about forbidden love that gets people rock hard. Razzart Visual proves again to be the shining beacon in the western indie hentai gaming scene. Their newest title provides incest-thirsty fans with solid plot, relatable characters, and steamy incestous lesbian sex.
We follow Iris, a girl who is finally taking steps towards her independence. She’s living alone in her own apartment. On the day she decides to check out her new school, Iris has a chance encounter with a mysterious girl. It’s not love at first sight, but it’s certainly close. Iris tries to get a name from the attractive girl, but unfortunately fails to say anything coherent. Annoyed, the stranger leaves, leaving Iris to stew in her lack of game.
Not being one to let small things get her down, she leaves the school grounds and goes back to her apartment. As she tries to get settled in, she receives a distressing call from her father. He explains that Iris has a long-lost sister coming to stay with her, a girl by the name of Zoey. Elated by the revelation that she has a younger sister, Iris is excited to meet her. When the long-lost sister finally arrives, Iris discovers that Zoey is the very same girl she encountered outside the school. Though she is surprised, she is fully ready and eager to form a bond with Zoey. Unfortunately, the dark haired girl wants little to do with her. So begins a rocky, tumultuous relationship between the siblings.
The story does a great job at tackling and breaking down a taboo premise. This situation may never have happened in real life, but Love Ribbon tries to show how a scenario like this would play out. People may download this game just to see two hot chicks eat each other out, but I’m fully confident they’d get sucked into the story as it progresses. Plot developments might feel trite, but how the characters react and adapt to the events is worth reading.
Character motivations and personalities are also well-written. Iris and Zoey can come off as stereotypical, but give them time. They grow as the story progresses. The sisters start off unsure about each other, but each obstacle they overcome strengthens their relationship.
There is an interesting moral dilemma in this situation. Incest is banned by law in virtually every country because of the massive social problems it brings, but if two people had no idea they were siblings grew to love each other romantically, is it still a crime against nature? Does it damage anything other than the consistency of public morality if two blood-related finger each others’ pussies? The ethicality of giving your sister mind-blowing orgasms should be debated more. I found it interesting how the writer tried to break the subject down and humanize the characters.
The art is soft, with a comforting feel to it. This style is almost typical of romantic visual novels aimed at girls. There are no harsh edges or lines. Everything is easy on the eyes, as if carved from clouds. This artstyle enhances each girl’s femininity, like Zoey’s bouncy hair, and the curves of the girls’ bodies in the drab school uniforms. The character sprite art and CGs are drawn in the same style. Transitions between scenes are seamless.
The characters only wear two outfits: The school uniform, and their regular clothes. We rarely see Iris in anything other than her uniform, but Zoey regularly rocks her punk leather jacket and denim bottoms. The outfits are also detailed, and easily convey each girl’s personality. For example, Iris is always sporting a white ribbon in her hair, which goes well with her slightly naïve personality. Zoey on the other hand wears a good amount of accessories.
The backgrounds are extremely detailed. There are some backdrops that are absolutely beautiful to look at, like the park, or the home of Iris and Zoey. The latter looks lived-in and homely. Their rooms are also decorated in a way that stand out from each other, embodying the traits of each girl. The pink, hot mess that is Iris’s room, and Zoey’s sparsely decorated one.
The colour palette is a mix of pastel colours and bright colours. Pastel colours are mostly used in CGs and sprites, while brighter ones are used for backgrounds to make objects pop. The shadows aren’t very noticeable but do well to draw attention to certain body parts, also giving outfits a velvety look.
SOUND EFFECTS AND VOICE ACTING (SFX)
Love Ribbon has no voice acting. The sound effects are minimal. There’s a sound for small actions like knocking doors. It seems the budget went to other areas of the game. While I would have liked to hear more sound effects for immersion, the large variety and creativity in the music more than makes up for it.
Razzart Visual’s titles have always had great soundtracks, and Love Ribbon is no different. As the game starts and the title menu fades, we’re treated to a calming, heartfelt piano track. The girls are dressed entirely in white, hands linked, the sound of the piano creates a gentle romantic atmosphere that sets the mood for a budding romance.
One song I really liked, played during scenes shortly after Iris and Zoey’s first meeting. This song has a cool, jazzy vibe that caught me off guard. It sounds like something played in a hidden, but comfy bar people spend time in, surrounded by dim lights and good company. The trumpet comes to the forefront of the song, strong, but not overbearing. Accompanying the sooth dulcet tones of the trumpet is a number of percussion instruments, like the drums. This track is short, but one of the most memorable. I listened to it on loop more times than necessary.
During tense, ominous moments, we get a track that’s heavy on the drums, with some added spice in the form of bass guitars. It’s very simple compared to the other songs in the visual novel, but it creates an atmosphere. This song is immediately contrasted by the next scene, where a plain, acoustic song is played. The guitar sounds almost dreamlike. It made me feel as awed as Iris was.
Hentai scenes get a seductive song, a purely acoustic track with a Spanish guitar that sounds like something straight from an erotic movie. I was impressed at the huge variety of tracks in this game. If there is one thing that can make or break a visual novel, it’s the soundtrack. Indie creators should spend more of their budget on it, because shitty songs can really ruin any atmosphere they’re trying to create.
Love Ribbon is a visual novel. Click the text-box to ‘turn’ the page. Not all the in-game choices affect which ending you’ll get. As with most visual novels, it is highly recommended that you save the game often, so you won’t need to start over from the beginning after your first playthrough.
As I said in another review of a Razzart title, the writer is a certified expert at writing sex scenes. The descriptions are awesome. Even an eunuch could read it and get a boner so big he’d need hours of masturbation to calm down. Hentai scenes have little fluff, but they are deliciously intimate and intense. Despite being a yuri visual novel, the game is a dick tease. There is plenty of teasing and lesbian sex to keep your genitals throbbing.
Surprisingly, the visual novel also contains animated CGs. When Iris and Zoey finally succumb to their desires after a fair bit of drama, they do as lesbians do and go about fingering each other’s dripping vaginas. The animation of Zoey’s slender fingers diving in and out of her sister’s pussy is erotic as hell.
The number of hentai scenes surprised me. There isn’t much exploration of fetishes other than Iris getting a rim job, but the combination of animation and sexy descriptions is lethal for your dick. Use lube to avoid burn marks and hand cramps.
Despite the gratuitous sex, the hentai feels intimate. Iris and Zoey might be sisters, but holy shit, their chemistry with each other is off the charts. They could stare at each other and the air between them would explode. Add to the fact that they clearly love each other, the sex feels like a reaffirmation of their feelings and not just thrown in there for the sake of it. Sure, you will bust a nut while reading, but watching them grow closer over the course of the story, and finally taking that leap, is very satisfying. Physically and emotionally.
Love Ribbon does a remarkable job at keeping things realistic while delivering a pornographic adult story of a carnal relationship between two sisters. It’s a drama- fueled tale of two babes who fall in love and try to come to terms with it. If you liked the studio’s previous release Wolf Tails, then Love Ribbon will keep your tissue spending budget sky-high.
Get Razzart Visual’s newest yuri-themed game at Steam. Download Love Ribbon, and slap the bitches for free.