Every Hue of You Review – Emotional Damage

Imagine living in a world where you have to keep your emotions in check. And I don’t mean hiding your feelings of love or sadness or fear just because you don’t want the wrong people to take advantage of them. I mean living in a world where expressing these emotions too much, or not expressing them enough, could result in a natural disaster so dangerous that people could die. This is Twyla’s world in the unique and philosophical visual novel Every Hue of You, developed and published by Cactus Jam Games.

With Twyla’s mother having recently passed, her jewelry shop, The Twilight Jeweller is left in Twyla’s hands—for better or for worse. Twyla isn’t the Jeweler her mother used to be, but of course, she has to try. If not for herself, then to keep the spirit of her mom alive. Still, despite all of Twyla’s efforts, her products aren’t up to par like her mom’s were. One day, an angry customer comes in demanding a refund, and when Twyla explains that this isn’t possible, he breaks the ring before insulting her and storming off. Twyla finds herself down and closes her shop for a week, festering in these feelings, but then a hooded man stops by.

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One of my many finished jewelry pieces.

The man is a Tracer, someone in charge of tracking whenever someone’s Paeos, or emotional energy, is out of control. Paeos can take on many forms depending on how strong said emotion is, and that can lead to disaster. Twyla’s Paeos has caused a heavy rainstorm that doesn’t want to go away, and this Tracer, who we learn is named Lao, is here to help her stop it.

As Twyla has taken on the role of a Jeweler, she’s tasked with making a variety of jewelry pieces for her customers, from rings to bracelets to necklaces. It just so happens that through making these pieces, she finds out she’s a conduit–someone who can take the emotions someone is feeling, and enchant their jewelry with it. It’s with this newfound ability that she decides she’s going to help others regulate their emotions while trying to get her own under control.

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Jaz, the absolute sweetest character in this game!

Every Hue of You has a linear storyline with six total chapters, and in each of them, you’ll get to meet a cast of wonderfully unique and truly diverse characters. As with many visual novels, how well-written the characters are is a big factor, and this game nails it. From a cheerful, moth-loving streamer to an optimistic and theatrical teacher, there are plenty of people to meet. Despite how they might first come across, they each have complex emotions, and it’s up to you to bring them out. And there’s also Twyla herself. It isn’t always easy playing as a set character, because some of them are annoying or obnoxious in ways you can’t even describe, but I’m happy to say that Twyla is a gem.

The story itself is an engaging one. Set in a world with fantastical themes and unique elements, how could it not be? I do have to say, though, that since Every Hue of You has magical themes, there are a lot of terms to be learned and remembered. There is a glossary that you can refer to whenever you need to, thankfully, but the amount of new terms and world-building information quickly became overwhelming, and it was hard to keep up.

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One of many gorgeous CGs.

There aren’t many settings to choose from in Every Hue of You apart from the basics, like volume and text speed. In fact, I feel there are a few of the basics missing. There’s no save mechanic, which was surprising. Seeing as the story is so linear, I can see how there wouldn’t be much need for them, but the option is always nice. There’s also no skip button, which I feel is always a necessity in any visual novel. It was a bit disappointing to see a lack of one. All of this being said, there isn’t much replayability in Every Hue of You. I could see where one specific option might have ended in a different outcome, but as I tried clicking through one of the chapters to pick said option, the game crashed on me three times so I didn’t get to find out.

Segwaying into dialogue and choices, overall, the dialogue is such a joy to read. There are so many important messages to be remembered. This is where I have to say that if you’re solely expecting a cute, happy visual novel with friendship and romance bars to keep track of, you’re not going to get that in Every Hue of You. Instead, you’ll get an abundance of emotions. You’ll witness exhausting feelings of inferiority or overwhelming feelings of grief and guilt, and see how they might consume one’s very being. You’ll explore philosophical ideas of stoicism and the importance of avoiding stigmas. Explaining this the way I am now, I can’t do justice to the dialogue and how emotional it might make you feel.

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The choices you make change the outcome of the jewelry design.

As for your choices, when trying to figure out a client’s emotion, there will be different dialogue options for you to choose from. They’re used to move the story along, so they aren’t choices that seem to matter in the end; you’ll seemingly reach the same conclusion no matter what you choose.

The art in Every Hue of You is quite beautiful. There are some “cutscenes” that play out through a series of artwork. Kind of like a mini comic book. The CGs are gorgeous but sadly, there’s nowhere to view them after they’re unlocked. The music is nice to listen to as well. Every Hue of You does a good job at keeping the music and staggered sound effects appropriate to the current happenings of the story.

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Use the diagram to find the correct emotion.

There are also a few “mini-games” of sorts in Every Hue of You to keep you engaged. When making a customer’s jewelry, Twyla will have some inner thoughts which you can choose responses for. Depending on those responses, the jewelry’s design will look different, which is a fun touch. After figuring out the emotion the customer wants to be enchanted, you’ll compare different symbols to a Paeos diagram and choose which one matches what the customer is searching for. Lastly, there’s a little memory pattern game to do. Even if you get any of these answers wrong, you can keep trying until you get them right, so there’s no risk.

Every Hue of You is a fantastic visual novel with pretty art, memorable characters, and life lessons to remember. You may get overwhelmed by the amount of information thrown at you, but getting through that makes this unique story worth it.

Inanna played Every Hue of You on PC with a review code.

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