Trial Reviews

[R18+] [Trial Review] Bocchi Musume x Produce Keikaku.

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Click this picture to see the OP video on YouTube!

NOTE: This review does not contain any sexually explicit content, but some hyperlinks lead to example photos of fashion models in NSFW attire.

90% of R18+ otome games come in three narrative tones: somewhat serious, moderately serious and deadly serious. The most well-received and beloved titles are all serious. To name a few examples: Tsuki no Hikari Taiyou no Kage (2006), Chou no Doku Hana no Kusari (2011), Koezaru wa Akai Hana (2012), Sakuya (2013) and more recently, Yoshiwara Higanbana (2015). The bestsellers with critical acclaim are the beautiful elites who can’t even crack a smile at you even after you paid approximately $70 for their time.

So that’s why the silly, gag-filled, almost hyperactive Bocchi Musume x Produce Keikaku. (“Bocchi“, from here on out) is quite surprising. To compound my surprise, Bocchi is nothing like Kalmia8’s first title, the darker and maturer Torikago no Marriage.

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Categories: PC Visual Novel Reviews, R18+ Visual Novel Reviews, Trial Reviews, Visual Novel Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , , | 15 Comments

[R18+] [Trial Review] Yoshiwara Higanbana

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To check out the game’s OP, please click on the image.

NOTE: This review does not contain any sexually explicit content.

It’s no secret that I’ve been greatly looking forward to the trial of new adult otome game brand MariaCrown’s maiden title, Yoshiwara Higanbana. Technical difficulties meant that the trial was released on the 14th instead of the 11th of September. Honestly, that’s far from a good first impression (and if I were the creators, I’d be reeling). I remain worried about this bungle, but nevertheless eagerly downloaded the fixed, re-uploaded trial.

Anyway, the main things that attracted me to Yoshiwara Higanbana since its announcement are as follows: the darkly dramatic, tragic and mature aura, the brothel setting appearing to be utilised without any bowdlerisation and a protagonist who’s seemingly unlike the many others in the otome world. Plus I’m not gonna lie- the gorgeous art by Ranpumi really helps!

In my eyes, Yoshiwara Higanbana has the makings of a good game… However, does the trial live up to the hype?

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Categories: PC Visual Novel Reviews, R18+ Visual Novel Reviews, Trial Reviews | Tags: , , , | 18 Comments

[Trial Review] Zettai Kaikyuu Gakuen ~Eden with roses and phantasm~

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Dear Zettai Kaikyuu Gakuen (ZKG),

Congrats on being released! Though the truth is, my interest in you has been yo-yoing so much that I just don’t know what to do with you. Here’s what I think:

What is this? 19th century U.K? How can a school get away with enforcing such archaic and unabashed bigotry in 2020 and not attract any unwanted attention? 2020 isn’t far enough into the future to find this complete change of society’s perception on social classes believable. What a stupid idea for a story… Pointlessly long title, super-boring protagonist and boring love interests (The Arrogant Do-S, The Perfect Princely Gentleman, The Flirty Playboy, The Delinquent and The Poor Artsy Bullied Kid) You even have the Mysterious Principal with a Mature Attractiveness, Laidback School Nurse and the Creepily Supportive of You Female (NO HOMO) Friend as support characters!

…but then you released your generously-sized 857MB trial on May 21st, and boy, do many of my first impressions of you seem very wrong!

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Categories: PC Visual Novel Reviews, Trial Reviews | Tags: , , , , , | 6 Comments

[Double Trial Review] ALICE=ALICE and Bad Medicine -Infectious Teachers-

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With only 9 days to go until the release of ALICE=ALICE and Bad Medicine -Infectious Teachers-, Rejet has released a trial for each game on 13th May. I don’t think I spent any longer than 20 minutes per trial. It seemed like Rejet was cautious as to not give too much away. The shortness of the game makes me think that both of these games could be interpreted more as a “supplement” to their respective drama CD series rather than an established, stand-alone visual novel title such as the Black Wolves Saga duology or Ken ga Kimi. This also explains the pleasantly cheaper price when compared to your average otome game. So if you’re strapped on cash and/or would like to play something short that won’t command too many hours of your time, both of these titles are worth checking out- especially ALICE=ALICE.

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Categories: PC Visual Novel Reviews, Trial Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

[R18+] [Trial Review] ONEDARI ShareMate

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Since its release isn’t far away, I would like to share my predictions and thoughts about this game. ONEDARI ShareMate has an interesting system, where players determine which two of the four housemates Ayumi will live with. Though I can’t help but feel it’s a bit gimmicky, if executed well, the mundane premise will be made up for by the system of being able to explore the nuances of Ayumi, Guy 1 and Guy 2’s relationship towards one another. It should be interesting to see how Ayumi’s actions determines the course of the three’s relationships, which will branch in three ways- true love, “sordid affair” (i.e. cheating) or a love triangle. At its worst, it will be a borderline-nukige with a gimmick made to lure optimistic gamers like myself into playing a mediocre game. Given the shortness of the trial, ONEDARI ShareMate has left me with many doubts, which will be elaborated on further into this post.

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Categories: PC Visual Novel Reviews, R18+ Visual Novel Reviews, Trial Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , | 11 Comments

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