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Game Info:

Sanator: Scarlet Scarf
Developed by: Ignis Sanat
Published by: Ignis Sanat
Release date: June 6, 2019
Available on: Linux, macOS, Windows
Genre: Visual Novel
Number of players: Single-player
ESRB Rating: Not rated
Price: $9.99

Thank you Ignis Sanat for sending us a review code!

This is quite an interesting game to play amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. Sanator: Scarlet begins six days before an epidemic hits the midlevel town of Reustadt. Your character, Sanator Richard Murdock is part of a holy order that specializes in spiritual warfare. The epidemic that’s coming is not physical, or biological. The gruesome deaths of the villagers are caused by a spiritual being. The Sanator must find out the source and how to drive it away.

Like most visual novels, the story is text driven. There are a few choices that you can make that influence which ending you will receive. The main choices are dependent on how Richard chooses to interact with a peasant woman who is not obeying the quarantine. Should he drive her away or show pity on her?

Highlights:

Strong Points: Interesting story with multiple endings/routes; good music and artwork
Weak Points: Only two hours long
Moral Warnings: Lots of blood and gore; references to rape and physical abuse; a god named Sleeper; mystical creatures and spiritual possession; language (d*mn, b*stard); alcoholic references

It’s a good idea to save your progress before committing to a choice but it’s not necessary. The six days/chapters before the epidemic hits provide the backstory and don’t have to be revisited. The option to skip previously read text really speeds up the amount of time needed for replays. Seeing all four endings and a teaser for a sequel took me a little over to two hours.

Sanator: Scarlet Scarf is pretty well polished and I like the unique art style. A lot of blood is shown, but some of the other forms of physical abuse and rape are left to the imagination. There is no voice acting, but there is some language (d*mn, b*stard). The background music is well done. A DLC soundtrack is available for $3.99 on Steam.

Sanator: Scarlet Scarf
Score Breakdown:
Higher is better
(10/10 is perfect)

Game Score - 84%
Gameplay - 15/20
Graphics - 9/10
Sound - 8/10
Stability - 5/5
Controls - 5/5

Morality Score - 55%
Violence – 2.5/10
Language - 7/10
Sexual Content - 8/10
Occult/Supernatural - 0/10
Cultural/Moral/Ethical - 10/10

Without giving too much away, the story revolves around revenge and spiritual warfare. Richard has the option to allow himself to be possessed in order to trap the spiritual being tormenting the town. Though the Sanators remind me of monks with crow masks, the deity worshipped in this game goes by Sleeper. The plague maiden that this story is inspired by has Norse roots.

If you enjoy visual novels and want to try something different than high school-themed ones, Sanator: Scarlet Scarf is worth looking into. Just don’t expect it to keep you occupied for too long. It won’t get your mind off of the pandemic either. It hits a little too close to home at the moment. The normal price is $9.99, but there have been 50% sales and for that price it’s worth checking out if you don’t mind the blood and dark themes.

About the Author

Cheryl Gress

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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