Hatoful Boyfriend Spreads Its Wings

“So the joke is it’s a dating simulator, but all the romance options are pigeons?” they’ll ask, bewildered. “Yes. Only it’s not really a joke. In fact, it got remade for a western audience because of how popular it was.” you can now reply, smiling a little too wide.

The world’s most popular pigeon dating simulator Hatoful Boyfriend is now out in a form that doesn’t require fan translation patches, if that’s your sort of thing. If you’re somehow uninitiated, it’s the tale of the only human student (you!) going to “St. PigeoNation’s Institute, a school for talented birds.” You’ll chat with and, presumably, up the other fine feathered students in search of true love.

Rock, Pigeon, Shotgun’s previous coverage of the game has mostly come from Mr. Meer, who was introduced to the original release in 2011. Of that time he now says “it depressed me even though it was about pigeons kissing.” I can empathise. You can grab a demo of that version here, from creator Hato Moa.

Porters Mediatonic and publishers Devolver Digital have put in more effort than needed for what could have been a simple publicity stunt. It’s got a new ending, another scenario and “updated visuals” – whatever that means for a game that is mostly drawn classrooms with superimposed pictures of birds. You can watch a dreadfully unfunny launch trailer or you go grab it on Steam or GOG. Why don’t you just stop pretending you’re here for any reason other than the inevitable pun thread and get to it?


  1. InnerPartisan says:

    I have to be honest here – I don’t think this game will ever take off.

    • lowprices says:

      Those sort of puns won’t fly around here.

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      Earl-Grey says:

      I don’t really know about this.
      My significant other already looks down on me for my love of anime.
      I don’t want to be pigeonholed as some weird otaku.

      • Ravenholme says:

        My significant other played it, and enjoyed one of the routes so much she can’t play any of the others. I might see if the remake will spur her to continue with it.

    • Vurogj says:

      Shameful admission here, that trailer gave me the ‘orn. I, tho’ logical in other respects, do have a weakness for this type of game.

    • JFS says:

      I strongly disagree. Judging from the article, I’d even go as far and say that the bird is actually the word!

    • Rizlar says:

      Hope it reflects the serious side of teen romance too. I dated a pigeon in high school and he got me up the dove.

    • BarneyL says:

      It wood rock if this is successful, perhaps RPS should have collared the devs for an interview.
      I’d dove to see a sequel to this.

    • Mags says:

      Well, it’s not for me, but I’ll ask my local pigeon fancier.

  2. grrrz says:

    I might have been interested it if it was from a bird’s eye pov.
    but a little birdy told me it would never happen in this sort of game.

  3. DrollRemark says:

    The walkthroughs of this are genuinely amazing, this game is something else.

  4. Phasma Felis says:

    Let me remind everyone that you can read Angie Gallant’s legendary Let’s Play here. You should probably not read it if you want to avoid spoilers, and in all other cases you should read it immediately, because it will make you die of funny.

    • Ravenholme says:

      This, so much.

    • DrollRemark says:

      Why are you reading this reply? You should have clicked on the link above and started reading Angie’s LP immediately.

      Shut up. No, shush. Go, do it now.

    • Nixitur says:

      Don’t forget the continuation of the pigeon dating.
      But do read the first part (on QT3) before reading this one. Just trust me on this.

  5. LaytonsTopHat says:


  6. zero signal says:

    Find out what it sounds like
    when the doves cry.

  7. BLACKOUT-MK2 says:

    I can’t help but feel rather happy this exists.

  8. Sidewinder says:

    Not all of us are here for stupid pun threads. Some of us are here because we delight in the bizarre. Among us, your own John Walker, if link to rockpapershotgun.com is to be believed and somewhat liberally interpreted. But even you, Mr Barrett, can (if you look for it) see the (possibly accidental) artistry here: sure, it’s one of those things that’s so out-of-nowhere-(unless-there’s-a-subtext-of-the-culture-I’m-not-aware-of-which-is-entirely-possible) that it seems like it only exists to provoke reactions and give teenagers who are weird even by the standards of Japan something to masturbate to, but is there not something to be said for a society that can create an artistic statement reflecting the self-baffling nature of its own culture, a generator of multinational bwuh?s, and a symbol of cultural tolerance all in a single high school bestiality simulator?

    Bonus points: figure out what there is to be said for that society.
    Double bonus points: figure out how many puns I used in the above post.

  9. Heliocentric says:

    Oh, your games romantic interests are made of meat, how victuanormative.

  10. JamesTheNumberless says:

    They’ve pulled off a coo with this one

    • arccos says:

      There are so many pun threads, we should dove tail them together.