Dress To Play: Cute Witches Makes The Cast Of Hocus Pocus Look Adorable – A Review

I have a small confession to make. I love playing dress up.

Of course, I mean the virtual kind of dress up. I’ve always been enamored by Princess Maker, the super popular line of princess simulators that were only released in Japan. Princess Debut on the Nintendo DS is one of my favorite titles on the system. I’m not even kidding.

It’s with this deep seated love of dress up games that I was pleased to find one on the Nintendo eShop. Dress to Play: Cute Witches is a game that promises “thousands of combinations to create thousands of different little witches.” This already sounds like my kind of game.

And what luck! The game was on sale this week as part of the same promotion that has the excellent Guild01 titles on sale. As an aside, you really need to play Crimson Shroud and Liberation Maiden.

Anyway, I gave Nintendo and the publishers at EnjoyUp Games my $1.99, and I jumped into the magical world of Dress To Play: Cute Witches. Unfortunately, the magic turned out to be a case of high school students in masks tricking the FBI into opening an investigation into the occult. It was a waste of money that only ended up wasting everybody’s time.

Before we get to that, however, let’s jump into how this game works. First of all, you’re given a “witch” to customize and dress up as you see fit. The dress up menu is strangely similar to the Mii creation menu except for the addition of, well, clothes.

When you first start out, there’s an insanely appalling lack of clothing options. I could dress my witch up in a sailor outfit straight out of a Japanese anime and a couple of cat ears. There might even be a bow. The point is that there’s not much in the way of customization options at the start.

To unlock more clothing options, you must go into the challenge mode. The challenge mode is like a shmup without the shooting. You direct our lovely witch through an obstacle-laden sky full of cute creatures and copyright infringements. While you’re avoiding these obstacles, you must also collect stars that float past in the sky.

Of course, this isn’t as easy as it sounds. The enemy patterns can get pretty erratic, and it actually does feel like a hardcore shmup at times. Unfortunately, the controls are just kind of terrible. You can move with the Circle pad, d-pad or face buttons. All three options are terrible, and movement feels sluggish. This leads to a number of cheap hits as you’re often too slow to avoid oncoming obstacles.

Thankfully, the game is pretty forgiving with this section. No doubt as a result of trying to appeal to much younger gamers. The health bar is a fuel gauge because witches apparently sport diesel engines on brooms now. The fuel gauge drains slowly over the course of gameplay, but each hit helps to make it drain faster. You can collect hearts to restore a bit of the fuel gauge, but you will fail. In all honesty, you will fail a lot.

This is where Dress To Play: Cute Witches ceases to be a cute little diversion and just becomes an annoyance. The game expects you to play this mode a countless number of times. Each clothing item is tied to challenges that you must complete in the challenge mode. One such challenge is playing challenge mode for three hours. Another is collecting 150 stars in one run.

Look, I love dress up games, and I love unlocking outfits. I would rather unlock new outfits by wooing over princes and finding true love though.. Sure, that’s not exactly what witches do, but maybe she can just apparate into a clothing store and steal all the cute clothes next time.* It would save her, and by extension me, a lot of time.

*The DV Cast does not endorse theft or apparition. Save the latter for when you’re a seventh year.

About theallgamer

Zachary Walton is a tech journalist by day, and professional brony by night. On the weekends, he, rather graciously mind you, engages with a couple of goofs to talk about the whacky world of video games for a few hours. You'll love him, you'll hate him; but most importantly, you'll cherish the time you have with him.

3 thoughts on “Dress To Play: Cute Witches Makes The Cast Of Hocus Pocus Look Adorable – A Review

  1. Excellent review, Zach! You’re securing the DVCast as firmly on the cutting edge of gaming’s future. Also, it’s just awesome that you actually followed through on the podcast’s promise… though I am waiting for that dramatic reading!

    Additionally, what do you think your favorite “dress up” systems have been in non-dress-up games? (World of Warcraft jumps to mind for me, along with other loot-heavy RPGs.)

    • Thanks to mods, I was a dress up fiend in Oblivion. I think I still have a folder somewhere on my PC full of screenshots of my characters in various outfits. It was probably the most fun I had in that game.

      As for non-modded dress up systems, I would probably have to say loot heavy RPGs like Torchlight. I can spend minutes just looking at my in game character in Torchlight 2 after getting new armor pieces that change her appearance.

  2. Yep. The coolness of loot and its customizing properties can be one of the most important factors in if I’ll like an RPG or not. So the idea of a game stripping out the whole “combat/story” thing doesn’t sound wholly unappealing… just maybe not Cute Witches.

Say something, will ya!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s