Released for English audiences in Early 2016, this is another yuri visual novel that takes place in a religious school.
(Spoilers in this review)
Also Known As: Sacrament Sheep, Sacrament no Juunikyuu Midareru Kohitsuji to Tenazuku Ookami, サクラメントの十二宮 乱れる仔ひつじと手懐く狼
Length: Short (
Lewdness: 3/3 (Kissing, Frequent Nudity, Audible Cues)
Price: 9.99 USD on DenpaSoft
The two main characters within this visual novel are Mokose Alissa and Suou Hitsuji. Both girls are rather simple and can be reduced down to a few character tropes at best. Alissa is a religious and naive girl who knows nothing about the outside world while Hitsuji is a shy, insecure girl who sucks at communication and is clingy for Alissa. Despite Hitsuji being both a shy wallflower and a possessive lover (both of which are among my least favorite archetypes), Hitsuji is decently likeable. Same with Alissa. But in the end, they’re not particularly well-written characters who are just acceptable.
Despite my opening statement regarding its unoriginal premises, Sacrament Sheep does feature a unique feature which provides mixed results. Players can actually switch between seeing things from Alissa’s perspective and Hitsuji’s perspective in real time. However, some instances are locked into a specific girl’s point-of-view. Furthermore, the story may follow a different route depending on the perspective players are using.
In theory, this is a good idea. It might be interesting to see how the two girls interpret the same event differently, for instance. However, making the best use of seeing both girls’ thoughts proves to be tedious since you’re stuck switching back and forth and progressing through the visual novel slowly. That’s because there’s no way to properly rewind (players can only view the log showing what characters have said or thought). Therefore, players are forced to reload from a previous save point if they accidentally miss switching between perspectives at a particular instance.
Furthermore, the fact that the story is sensitive to the perspective players are using only artificially lengthens the game. Players will only end up with the normal end if they are not careful with the perspective they’re using at a certain point of the game (I recommend playing Sacrament Sheep however you like the first time. Then restart and see things only from Hitsuji’s point-of-view. It should make getting the one decision point in the game be much easier).
A minor plus for the game is that it’s an indirect prequel to Ne no Kami – The Two Princess Knights of Kyoto. You get to see Alissa and Hitsuji pop up in Ne no Kami and the main protagonist in Ne no Kami makes a voice cameo appearance as well. It should be noted that players can enjoy either game without having played the other.
Unfortunately, the story for Sacrament Sheep barey has a pulse. The two girls fall in love at first sight and start making out within five minutes of meeting each other. This introduction, along with the fact that the girls are engaging in intimate and erotic activities in their bedrooms, lets players know exactly what sort of visual novel they have gotten themselves into: a fluffy visual novel with copious amounts of sex.
There is no plot to speak of, essentially: Alissa walks around being a beloved idol within the school while Hitsuji gets upset that other girls seem interested in her. Alissa tries to alleviate Hitsuji’s fears. Other characters warn Hitsuji that getting intimately involved with Alissa will have consequences. The two girls then get it on during the weekends. That’s about it.
Everything is shallow and not explored beyond a superficial level. The only aspect that’s remotely elaborated on is how Hitsuji’s relationship with Alissa will consquences. But it only boils down to people being jealous of Hitsuji. A whole lot of potential drama that’s entirely pretense because only one person finds out and she just helps the two be happy while warning them. Why bother pretending like this is going to be a big deal?
There are a few plotlines that can be developed further because apparently this was a starting point for Kuro Irodoru Yomiji, who published Sacrament Sheep. More projects and a continuation of this story is planned but Fenrir Vier claims that all of this is currently in development. So maybe we’ll get see to the implied relationship between Saginomiya, the one character who finds out about Hitsuji and Alissa, and the student council president. Maybe the fact that Alissa is a zodiac holder (of Aries, which is ironic since Hitsuji apparently means sheep in Japan) and is supposed to help bring happiness to all will actually be relevant and not just be a roundabout way of saying that she’s popular among other students. After all, Ne no Kami is all about Hitsuji’s childhood friend, Len, who talks to Hitsuji over the phone. The possibility is there!
The UI and menu and config settings are pink, inviting, and intuitive. One complaint is that the Skip Text configurations do not work. Holding down CTRL will cause players to skip through all text regardless of the setting, so use carefully.
At least the art is pretty. The characters do look cute and the background graphics look rather polished. The music is the typical soft piano and/or violin music. In other words, the Typical Triple Theat is being utilized: yuri story set in a religious school with classical music. At least it’s not a Catholic school (the specifics of their religion may be explored in a further game).
As for the yuri, there are four love scenes spread across this 2 hour long visual novel. Alissa and Hitsuji do end up going all the way with some mosaic censorship covering up the scenes, as expected. Blood from breaking hymens, juices, squirting – players get it all. These intimate scenes are quite mild, which makes sense since both girls are rather inexperienced and both girls end having to learn about “love-making” from other sources. There’s also realistic sounds and enthusiastic moans for those who are interested. Personally, I was more of a fan of the tender kisses the girls shared. Yet I found myself wishing they could do more than just kiss on the weekdays and get intimate on the weekends. The limitations inherent to being students in a strict religious school that doesn’t permit outings (from what I’ve gathered) is quite stifling.
A light and fluffy visual novel that is unable to establish an original or fleshed-out setting. Concepts that are introduced as part of the premises only serve to create superificial drama. The unique feature promoted in this visual novel is clumsy and provides mixed results.
I would recommend not playing this visual novel and playing Ne no Kami instead. You learn all that you would learn about Hitsuji and Alissa in Ne no Kami even though they’re just side characters who make brief camero appearances (their characterization in Sacrament Sheep is actually that poor). While Ne no Kami also features a significant amount of hanky-panky, each scene actually feels meaningful and indicative of character development which cannot be said of these two girls in heat in Sacrament Sheep. The artstyle in Ne no Kami is also stellar and doesn’t lose to taat of its “prequel.” Finally, the perspective feature introduced in Sacrament Sheep is seemingly perfected in Ne no Kami since it isn’t reliant on player input.