Game: My Aunt is a Witch
Genre: Adventure, Other, Puzzle
System: Nintendo Switch (Also on Steam, Consoles and Mobile)
Developers | Publishers: Graven Visual Novels | Sometimes You
Age Rating: EU 7+ | US E10+
Price: EU €9,99 | USD $9.99 | UK £8.99
Release Date: November 25th, 2020
Review code used, with many thanks to Sometimes You
Originally this game was released under the name Bewitched on Steam last year. Now after a name change to My Aunt is a Witch, this visual novel has flown on its broom-stick to the Nintendo Switch.
A Witch as An Aunt!
My Aunt is a Witch is a Visual Novel full of adventures and quests in the world of magic where you have an incredible chance to become an apprentice of a most peculiar and charismatic witch!
You play as a boy named Thomas, who has had a difficult life after his mother passed away. Thomas finds himself in a situation whereby his father has married a woman named Sophia who can’t stand her stepson. After 12-year-old Thomas’s stepmother throws him out of the house so he decides to visit his aunt. Thomas has only ever visited his Aunt once, many years ago, and all he has to show him the way to his aunts’ house is an old photo.
Not your usual Doting Aunt
Upon arriving at his Aunts’ house Thomas can see that this isn’t the usual cosy house of a doting aunt. As it turns out Aunt Alice is a witch, a real witch! She has a talking cat and all manner of magical items in a mishmash of a house. Thomas has decided to see this all as a challenge and throws himself into the world of spells, potions and magical things.
As this is a visual novel, whereby you will do a lot of reading, there is also a lot of interaction in the game. You will be tasked with collecting items to make a magic potion. To do so you will have to combine items, talk to cats and magic witches hats. Explore and examine the quirky rooms, and try not to get killed along the way. Yes, that can happen if you choose the wrong answer to a suggestion. And that’s fine: as long as you have saved you’ll start back where you died.
A Witches Quirky House to Explore
Thomas is wary and has pessimistic thoughts of things during the first half of the game, which is tied to how he was treated by his father and stepmother. You do see his progression to a more upbeat attitude in the game though. Thomas is a thoughtful boy with a vivid imagination and there are plenty of nooks and crannies in the house to explore. These are full of mysterious items for a young lad’s imagination to run riot. But not all the goings-on in the house are a part of Thomas’s imagination.
Anything can happen in Aunties House
Aunt Alice is an interesting character too, a little scatterbrained and chaotic for a witch. The game gives you the feeling that she has a few screws loose ( I mean this nicely). That, oddly enough, adds to her charm. Alice has an air of “anything can happen” and in this visual novel that’s entirely true too. Alice has her quieter moments too, such as when she is quietly analyzing the situation, and then she does not speak up until she knows what’s happening.
I don’t want to go into much detail about the story as you should experience it yourself. But I will say that My Aunt is a Witch has well-written dialogue, though there is the odd spelling mistake in the game. But it’s not enough to break the charm and atmosphere of the game while your playing.
Find and Collect the Potion Ingredients
Most of the puzzles in My Aunt is a Witch are of the search and find kind as Thomas is tasked with finding the ingredients for witches potions. You help Auntie to brew a potion in her witches cauldron and this is mostly done by following a sequence of button presses. While the puzzles are fun, there isn’t anything too difficult as long as you are observant of your surroundings.
Everything else is reading the story and moving from room to room in Aunties house. You don’t spend all your time in her house as you will visit a forest and a few other locations too. I enjoyed the story and it kept me engaged the whole way through to the end. It took around 5 hours to complete the game. Be warned, it does end on a cliffhanger. Maybe the developers are planning on making a second game, to continue the storyline. I would definitely be up for playing a second game if they do decide to develop the story!
Visuals and Controls
I love the visuals in My Aunt is a Witch, it’s got a kind of oldie worldly look to the game that matches the story perfectly. With lots of colour and beautifully drawn scenes throughout the game. The sound effects are brilliant and add so much to the game and storyline. As does the music, which goes quieter when it needs to be to and rises to a more dramatic theme at particular times in the story.
The game is fully controlled with the joy-cons and they work fine. I had a few hiccups with some of the icons you use to save and such. It’s never explained in the game what some of the little icons at the top of the screen are. After playing the game for a while I did get used to what each icon does. However, a little explanation at the start of the game would have been helpful. It also might have stopped the irritation I started to feel if I pressed the icon that repeats the dialogue over again.
My Aunt is a Witch is a very entertaining, and thoroughly fun visual novel. A story of a young boy who finds some adventure and magic in his world to replace an unfortunate turn to his life.
Visual novels are not really my go-to genre, My Aunt is a Witch is the second visual novel I have reviewed for LadiesGamers. And I must say if there where more VN’s like this one on the Nintendo Switch I’d be making a few purchases on the eShop! As for fans of this genre, I can recommend My Aunt is a Witch to add to your collection.
Final Verdict: Two Thumbs Up.