Review: Yu Escape / Monday

Valentine’s Day is here and if you’re a regular to my blog, you know that means it’s time for another shameful game review. You’d think that picking out “adult” games to review would be a fairly easy task. After all, Steam is flooded with an endless amount of cheap, lewd titles these days. I suppose that if i wanted to, I could easily just grab a short visual novel every year and throw together a review. But, I really want to try to present games that offer something unique and different. I think I’ve managed that with this year’s pick; Yu Escape / Monday.

Yu Escape / Monday is a short indie game that was released in 2020 and was originally intended to be the first title in an ongoing series. However, considering it is now 2024 and there’s no “Yu Escape / Tuesday”, I think it’s safe to say that plans for a series has all but fizzled out. The game focuses on the character of Yu – a somewhat sad and timid young man who is constantly tormented by his sadistic girlfriend, Shi. Shi designs escape rooms for a living and often uses Yu as a guinea pig for her new designs. The game begins on a random Monday morning when Yu wakes up and realizes he’s locked in the bedroom. An extremely hungry Yu quickly realizes that if he wants any chance to escape the room and gain access to the kitchen (where both breakfast and his girlfriend await), he must solve various puzzles in order to escape.

The game itself available for free on Steam, but it’s important to note that there is a cheap add-on pack that adds some additional content. This DLC content is essentially an optional scavenger hunt that is integrated into the main game. For the full experience, I do recommend obtaining the DLC so can play the game as it was originally intended.

The gameplay is actually quite simple. The player controls Yu as he navigates around a small bedroom, inspecting various objects and collecting clues. The gameplay itself is very procedural. For example, there might be a book laying on a table with a password written in it. The password can be used to unlock a safe with contains a key, the key unlocks a cabinet which contains another clue, etc. The ultimate goal is unlock the door that leads to the kitchen. Once the player makes it to the kitchen they meet Shi and they are rewarded with “breakfast”.

Many of the puzzles required to proceed can actually be a bit tricky at times so the developers have included a HELP button that provides hints if the player gets stuck. Personally, I was able to complete the main objective without having to use the HELP button. But I will admit, I was tempted more than a few times. More than once I found myself stuck, unable to decipher what I was supposed to do next. But ultimately, I would figure out how to proceed. In this regard, the developers are quite clever. There’s some pretty good puzzles to be found in this little game.

Players who purchase the optional DLC also have an added objective; find and collect a number of lewd stamps that are scattered about and hidden throughout the room. Sometimes the stamps are hiding in plain sight. Other times they are only available if the player manages to figure out or stumble across some rather obscure clues. Personally, I found the stamp collecting activity to be just as entertaining as the main game.

I’ll cut right to chase and admit that this game is both short and simple. But, I was actually surprised by how entertaining the scavenger hunt gameplay turned out to be. In some ways it reminded me of the old 1980’s style PC games that I used to play in the school computer lab back in the 6th or 7th grade. With this in mind, it almost makes the adult additions to the game seem like more of an afterthought than a focus.

In the end, you have exactly what this game advertises itself to be – a quirky, sexy, escape room simulator with a naughty reward at the end. Admittedly, this is not going to be everyone’s cup of tea. But, it’s free so you’ve lost nothing if you decide to give this game a try.

Version Reviewed: PC

Difficulty: Medium  –  The challenge in this game comes in the form of brain teasers and mental puzzles. Some are easy, some are a bit tricky. The game offers a hint guide for players that get stuck. The real challenge in the game comes from the optional DLC. The DLC content involves finding and collecting hidden items scattered throughout the game and several of these can only be found in early parts of the game, making them impossible to collect unless the player is particularly crafty.

Multiplayer:  No.

Story: The story is simple and silly. But also unique enough to be interesting.

Originality: Scavenger hunt games are nothing new, but it’s been a quite a while since I’ve seen one. Combine this with the sexy content and you have a game that’s quite different from anything I’ve seen.

Soundtrack: The main theme is an earworm and it’s literally the first thing you hear when you start the game. The soundtrack is simple, but it’s catchy and fun.

Fun: I’m actually surprised at how fun this little game turned out to be. I’m quite disappointed that there’s not a second chapter. I found the clue hunt very entertaining and it left me wanting more.

Graphics: The graphics are simple but colorful. The game has a visual charm to it even if it’s not particularly breathtaking to look at.

Playcontrol: The game is playable either with your PC keyboard or with a controller. I played using a controller and encountered no issues. The keyboard controls are simple and also offered no problem. But I do feel like the game just feels a little more natural when played with a controller.

Downloadable Content: YES – Optional DLC that adds a collectable mini game.

Mature Content: Suggestive themes, adult situations, and pornographic nudity.

Value: The base game is available for free. The DLC is priced just under $5.00. If you find the game entertaining, the DLC is probably worth the price being asked by the developer.

Overall score (1-100): 75 – Truthfully, there’s not much to this game. It’s short and simple but that’s the way it’s supposed to be. Too often I find myself involved with complex games that take up weeks of my time. Sometimes it’s nice to have a little something you can blow through in an hour or two. Also, it’s free to play. You can’t really beat that.

Original System: PC

Available today on: PC  – (Updated as of Early Winter 2023)

Best Experience: PC    –   (Updated as of Early Winter 2023)

Old Game Hermit

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