Game Review: Sisters Royale: Five Sisters Under Fire (Xbox One)

Earlier in the year developer Alfa Systems released the vertical arcade styled shoot-em-up Sisters Royale: Five Sisters Under Fire onto the Nintendo Switch and now the game has made its way to the Xbox One. Although we have already taken a look at the Nintendo Switch version (of which you can read here) we will today be taking a ‘quick look’ at the recently released Xbox One version of the game and seeing if it offers anything different to its Nintendo Switch counterpart. So let’s begin!

Title: Sisters Royale: Five Sisters Under Fire
Publisher: Chorus Worldwide Games
Developer: Alfa System
Platform: Xbox One
Resolution: 1920 x 1080
Audio: Japanese
Subtitles: English (White)
Local Players: 1
Online Players: N/A [Online Leaderboards]
Install: YES (503 MB)

Our View:

Sisters Royale: Five Sisters Under Fire is your typical vertical arcade styled shoot-em-up that is overshadowed by a relatively bland, but amusing story, that sees five sisters fight amongst themselves to see who will secure a date with the love interest Yashin. Despite this, almost comically bad, story line a much deeper origin story does exist within the game; a story which illustrates that these five sisters were actually summoned to protect the land from an evil demon lord known as Seytan.

Story line aside, as the story can be completely disabled from the in-game options menu, the game features five playable characters, with each being one of the sisters fighting for Yashin’s affection, and five stages; with each stage playing out in your traditional vertical shooter fashion. In this case with your chosen character appearing at the bottom of the screen and enemies appearing, and firing at you,  from different directions. Regardless of character chosen each character will have a Shoot, Summon and Bomb attack with bombs being replenished depending on how well you perform during each stage.

Each stage is also tailored around a different sister, with each sister acting as a boss for that stage, and as such some minor differences in each stage are noticeable. For instance one stage will see ice on the ground that will make your character difficult to move, while another features wind mills that will force your character in a different direction. This variety in each stage offers an additional challenge to what is already a challenging experience; but thankfully the unlimited continues means that regardless of skill you will easily be able to finish the campaign.

Regardless of the character chosen the stage order will always remain the same so while replay ability is guaranteed – especially those attempting to earn a high score and share it online – some may find the experience tedious and repetitive. Stages that have the same character as your chosen character will also still appear and these stages will see you fight against your ‘conscience’ to highlight that you are fighting against your inner feelings. Regardless of how cool this may sound it plays in the exact same manner as the rest of the game and once again just becomes another stage to beat.

Completing the game once is only required to see the story, but the story – and its dialogue – will change depending on the character being used; especially for the final ending sequences. The dialogue segments between each stage also offer a nice perspective on who these characters are, and their personality, but in reality it just adds some additional weight to a rather baron game. These dialogue segments appear before and each stage and during the build-up to the boss fight and while they may seem interesting at first they do not really add any value other than extending the game time – as the text displayed is mostly just babble and banter between the characters on screen.

Outside of the main story, which as mentioned can be adjusted to play with or without story sequences, there isn’t anything else of interest in the game other than an online leader board, tutorial and option screen. It is a bare game and even the availability of downloadable content, of which adds an additional character and her related story, do nothing to further extend the game time or entice new players to the genre.

Speaking of which, new players unfamiliar with the genre will be disappointed to know that a tutorial screen does not automatically appear in game and instead has to be accessed from within the game menus. The game is pretty straight forward so it is not a ‘big issue’, but informing people on how to play – especially on first time startup – should be a given; especially as the game mechanics of restoring bombs or using summon attacks are not made abundantly clear at the start.

Compared to its Nintendo Switch counterpart Sisters Royale: Five Sisters Under Fire plays and operates in the exact same manner and even the visuals look the same. The only benefit on the Xbox One version is the added challenge of earning Xbox Achievements as these will help further extend the run-time of the game, as achievements are earned for completing the story with each character, on each difficulty, and sub-quests on each stage.

Bizarrely though upon first time startup the game does request permissions to your Xbox profile so that achievements can be earned and scores shared online, but failing to accept this request will result in the game quitting back to the dashboard. I’m told this is common amongst Windows Store games using Xbox systems, such as those included as part of Game Pass Ultimate; but it is the first time I have seen it appear on an Xbox One system. Naturally this was concerning; but there is nothing to worry about.

As the Nintendo Switch does not feature an achievement system these achievements are not implemented into that version of the game; but in this instance the achievements on the Xbox One version really helps to heighten the experience and the games overall playtime.

Of course those that do not like achievements, and would simply focus on the game, then the issue of repetitive game content still remains. The only challenge here is to get that higher score and share it with the world.

Sisters Royale: Five Sisters Under Fire is your typical vertical shooter that will appeal to fans of the genre; but it offers very little other than a single play through and is only extended by the inclusion of Xbox Achievements. Put simply it is a short burst of fun that could have been better; and the only notable highlight is the impressive character design and artwork each one of the five sisters.

Score: review-stars-2

Sisters Royale: Five Sisters Under Fire is now available for the Xbox One, and is available digitally from the Xbox Store. Sisters Royale: Five Sisters Under Fire is also available for the Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4.

About Scott Emsen
Scott is the Founder and Executive Editor of AnimeBlurayUK but in the past he has worked at ZOMGPlay, Rice Digital and Funstock and was once a Community Moderator for the Nokia N-Gage forums. Based in the UK, he loves anything related to Games & Anime and in In his spare time you'll mostly find him playing on one of his many gaming consoles; namely the PS Vita, PS4 or Xbox One.

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