Furue, Yura Yura to Kagen no Shou// All routes and thoughts

Content warnings for: child abuse, violence, sexual assault, death/ideation

If you feel affected by these topics and/or fictitious stories, do not read this post nor play the game.

For safety purposes, I won’t be showing any rated CGs in my posts even if I mention rated contents.

Furue, Yura Yura to is a series of two R18+ games released by A’sRing in 2017. Each game is split by 3 different love interests from the Heian period of Japanese history.

As I said, I’m back with the second half of the series. And it didn’t even take me a month!

Furue, Yura Yura to Kagen no Shou

[From previous post about the first half of the game: Jougen no Sho]

Abe Kaguya is an orphan with a strange constitution that causes her to feel pain when she has skin to skin contact. As her condition is beyond human comprehension, her once loving adoptive parent’s relationship soured and her adoptive mother became mentally unstable, verbally and psychologically abusing Kaguya whenever she’s around. Feeling at fault, Kaguya grew into an introverted and withdrawn high schooler.

As the school term ends into the summer holidays, she is suddenly summoned into the Heian time period by an unknown actor after wishing to disappear. There she meets Abe no Seimei, a genius onmyoji, who takes her in with a prickly attitude and claims her to be a distant relative of his, piqueing the interest of many. With her position as a foreign noble of the Abe clan, she quickly becomes a target for those vying to obtain Abe no Seimei as their political ally.

The love interests

In Kagen no Shou the love interests are Fujiwara no Yasusuke (CV: Fukagawa Midori), Hayanami (CV: Asagi Yuu) and Abe no Seimei (CV: Yotsuya Cider).

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Furue, Yura Yura to Jougen no Shou// All routes and thoughts

Content warnings for: child abuse, violence, sexual assault, death/ideation

If you are easily affected by these topics and/or fictitious stories, do not read this post nor play the game.

For safety purposes, I won’t be showing any rated CGs in my posts even if I mention rated contents.

As usual, I was going through my old magazines to clean up and I never realised that Furue, Yura Yura to (literally “shiver, sway”, best translation I could muster) was actually a timeslip game… I’d only ever seen art of the heroine in traditional clothing so I was very surprised when magazine articles showed her in a sailor uniform and I had to delve deeper. Of course all I had to see was that it was a timeslip + R18 otome game and I just went all in. I hadn’t heard much about it beforehand, nor have I ever played anything from A’sRing so I figured it was worthwhile trying out.

Eh.

Abe Kaguya is an orphan with a strange constitution that causes her to feel pain when she has skin to skin contact. As her condition is beyond human comprehension, her once loving adoptive parents separated and her adoptive mother became mentally unstable, verbally and psychologically abusing Kaguya whenever she’s around. Feeling at fault, Kaguya grew into an introverted and withdrawn high schooler.

As the school term ends into the summer holidays, she is suddenly summoned into the Heian time period by an unknown actor after wishing to disappear. There she meets Abe no Seimei, a genius onmyoji, who takes her in with a prickly attitude and claims her to be a distant relative of his, piqueing the interest of many. With her position as a foreign noble of the Abe clan, she quickly becomes a target for those vying to obtain Abe no Seimei as their political ally.

In Jougen no Shou the love interests are Minamoto no Raikou (CV: Domon Netsu), Fujiwara no Yasumasa (CV: Yanesen) and Kuuya (CV: Matsutake Yatarou).

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Towa no Sakura // All Routes and Thoughts

As I said I would, I ended up finishing Towa no Sakura.

Towa no Sakura is a PS2 otome game from Otomate released in 2007, developed by Vingt-et-un Systems Corporation like the last game I played, Mermaid Prism. It was also written and directed by the same person who directed Mermaid Prism, Ayumi Takagi, who now belongs to Ichi Column so you can probably expect a few similarities…

This game was also released around the same time as Hiiro no Kakera and Kiniro no Corda 2 so it probably makes sense that this game was completely overshadowed by those, with pretty average reviews from players at the time. Read on to see what I thought. (✿╹◡╹)ノ☆

The game has a time travel and historical Japanese theme, with the cast travelling between different periods in Japanese history and the modern day. However all the historical references in this game are made up, so there’s no dating real historical figures.

Towa no Sakura…Everytime I look for the game it always brings up Yuukyuu no Tierblade because of the reading of the first two kanji

For as long as anyone can remember, a tall sakura tree called the Eternal Sakura, had stood in the park near Tokizawa Narumi’s home. Like every other year, the sakura blooms are a spectacle the town looks forward to.

Narumi is a second year high schooler. She likes to spend her time with her paranormally-obsessed bestfriend Satou Yuka and classmate Hino Suguru (CV: Iwata Mitsuo), the latter has had a crush on Narumi for a year but no courage to confess. Narumi is one of the smartest people in her grade, second only to Kaminomura Souma (CV: Narita Ken), who she recognises as her rival. She becomes aquainted with the part-time school doctor Shikimori Akito (CV: Matsukazu Masaya) and her younger brother Hayato’s (CV: Sasanuma Akira) best friend Mizuki Yui (CV: Iwanaga Tetsuya) after running into them around town.

After Yuka hears of a rumour that ghosts appear near the Eternal Sakura on the full moon, she ropes in Narumi and Suguru to go sakura viewing that night in hopes of satisfying her curiosity. Suguru has plans but promises he would definitely show up later, not wanting to miss a chance to spend time with Narumi.

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What’s that romance game? // From the perspective of Japanese female targeted games

Just like how history repeats itself, the same things keep coming up in fandoms. The hill that I will absolutely die on is the one which is the prevention of non-English fandom terms being seized and repurposed for use in the English fandom.

In this post I’ll be talking specifically about something that almost every post on this blog is about, romance games. Specifically focusing on Japanese romance games for women.

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Mermaid Prism// All Routes and Thoughts

Content warnings for: incest, teacher student relationship, violence

If you are easily affected by these topics and/or fictitious stories, do not read this post nor play the game.

All comments on this blog are moderated, so depending on the contents I may choose not to publish them. You have been warned. 

Moving on, a few weeks ago I was overcome with existential dread and wondered what would become of games that have disappeared off the face of the planet due to platform/companies closing down etc. It’s sad that there was an entire generation of games that were hidden behind the terrible Japan-only flip phone technology of the early 2000’s that would never see the light of day anymore after they got phased out by the introduction of smart phones. This lead me down a search for incredibly old games that I didn’t even know existed…like Mermaid Prism.

Mermaid Prism PS2 box cover

Can you tell what era this is from? Heh. This is the original box art, not the Simple Series one.

Mermaid Prism was first released in 2006 by D3P, developed by Vingt-et-un Systems Corporation for the Playstation 2. It was rereleased again as part of D3P’s budget PS2 game series “The Simple 2000 Series” in 2007, which is how I found out about it. I vaguely remembered seeing ads for the otome games in this series in really old B’slog so I dug it up. Unfortunately this line of games is infamous for being low quality and not worthwhile, but I was morbidly curious about how that would translate into an otome game. I didn’t realise that it was a rerelease at the time however, which lead to slightly better results than what I would expect if this was developed purely for the Simple 2000 Series line of games.

The original website has been long nuked off the face of this planet so only the Simple 2000 Series version of the site is still up, which lacks a lot of information. Wiki though, does have a simple one liner description, “uses Andersen’s The Little Mermaid as a motif and the cycle of reincarnation (samsara) as a theme”.

Isekai x Mermaids x Cliche Tropes

Mermaid Prism

Hayami Rui is your normal high school student who is part of the school’s small swim team but performs below average. After an incident where she nearly drowned, she has had recurring dreams of someone calling out to her below the water, which frightens her. The game starts during her summer school holidays, where she attends a swim camp with her club, partaking in activities like training and tests of courage. On the test of courage, she is paired with her classmate, the popular Yukigusa Jun (CV: Morikubo Shoutarou). When they reach the school pool, all of a sudden both Rui and Jun are enveloped in a strange light and they both wake up in a strange underwater world as mermaids. At the same time, Rui’s younger brother Hayami Guren (CV: Yusa Kouji), Rui’s childhood friend Rozenlight Meguru (CV: Onosaka Masaya) and homeroom teacher Aoi Haruka (CV: Chiba Isshin) are also transported into the strange world.

In this strange world called Seibensfarde (I’m guessing the spelling for this) exists three dominating species: humans, mermaids and demons, all with contentious relationships with eachother. Mermaids in particular are able to create a special magical drug called Soma that can give them different abilities such as turning them into humans.

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Kimi wa Yukima ni Koinegau // Remaining routes and final thoughts

Happy new year everyone!

My only goal for the end of last year was to finish Kimiyuki so I didn’t have to carry this burden in to 2022 which I achieved…but then didn’t realize I’d then have to write up this post in 2022 so I ended up bringing it with me anyway. Welp, what a start to the year.

I made it no real secret that I was massively not enjoying the game so read on for barebones summary and thoughts.

The fullcomp variation of the title screen is mildly confusing

Summary from my Kunitaka post:

KimiYuki is set in the middle of the reign of the shogun Tokugawa Yoshimune. Suzuno is a girl living in a small country-side village, ostracised by the villages to a small dwelling on the snowy mountains due to her ability to see peoples emotions as ‘threads’. Wherever she sees black threads, a disaster always occurs, so the villagers believed that she was bringing about the disasters rather than foreseeing them. One day, Takamura Tomonari and Toujou Kunitaka (CV: Maeno Tomoaki) show up to her village claiming to belong to the Oniwaban with a summons from the shogun. The Oniwaban are a group of agents working in undercover operations for the shogun, whose existence is a secret to the general populace and since they revealed themselves to Suzuno, the only choices she had were to obey or die, so she agreed to leave her home with them.

Takamura Tomonari (CV: Kobayashi Yuusuke): Cold to others, but oddly kind to Suzuno for no apparent reason.

Yoichi (CV: Yamashita Seiichirou): Glutton who dislikes annoying things and doesn’t know how to sugarcoat his words to save his life.

Kuga Genjuurou (CV: Satou Takuya): Stick in the mud with no idea how emotions work.

Kinji (CV: Namikawa Daisuke): Famous kabuki actor that is also a trickster.

Outarou (CV: Saitou Souma): Fun-loving kid who is good at reading people.

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Kimi wa Yukima ni Koinegau // Toujou Kunitaka Route and Initial Thoughts

After I finished Shinigami to Shoujo, I put up a twitter poll asking what people wanted me to play next, and by play I mean enable me. By far, the winner was Kimiyuki so here I am…

At least it’s not an artistic disaster like the last Otomate game I played

To be honest I don’t particularly have any expectations heading into this game other than being decent since I heard a lot of players found it enjoyable, but I literally went from nightmare (TokiApo) to wonderful classical literature (Shinigami to Shoujo) so there’s no way anything could compare anymore. Keeping that in mind…

Kimi wa Yukima ni Koinegau (KimiYuki) is an otome game that was produced by Iwai Yuki of the Japanese comedian duo Haraichi, belonging to the talent agency Watanabe Entertainment. The game boasts of a fantastical sad romance set in the Tokugawa period of Japanese history. Why is a comedian writing a sad romance? Beats me.

The title uses ye olde Japanese and translates loosely to ‘you wish strongly in the break of the snow’…Clearly I’m not the most creative writer but it simply means that ‘you’ are making a strong wish in a space that snow has not fallen/has thawed. Despite the title using this kind of olde Japanese, the game surprisingly doesn’t even try to keep that kind of tone and it read surprisingly like a modern day game.

Toujou Kunitaka

As mentioned, KimiYuki is set in the middle of the reign of the shogun Tokugawa Yoshimune. Suzuno is a girl living in a small country-side village, ostracised by the villages to a small dwelling on the snowy mountains due to her ability to see peoples emotions as ‘threads’. Wherever she sees black threads, a disaster always occurs, so the villagers believed that she was bringing about the disasters rather than foreseeing them. One day, Takamura Tomonari (CV: Kobayashi Yuusuke) and Toujou Kunitaka (CV: Maeno Tomoaki) show up to her village claiming to belong to the Oniwaban with a summons from the shogun. The Oniwaban are a group of agents working in undercover operations for the shogun, whose existence is a secret to the general populace and since they revealed themselves to Suzuno, the only choices she had were to obey or die, so she agreed to leave her home with them.

Kunitaka is the kind big brother type of char who looks after everyone.

For those who don’t want spoilers and just want thoughts, skip ahead with the button below.

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Tsubasa no Oka no Hime// all other routes and final thoughts

After I managed to push myself through wrinkly old man route, everyone else was a breeze because of how the game is set up so I decided to put everything together. The bulk of explanation was already done in Christopher’s post, so refer to that post for intro information.

Tsubasa no Oka no Hime

For safety purposes, I won’t be showing any rated CGs in my posts even if I mention rated contents.

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Tsubasa no Oka no Hime // Christopher Route and Initial Thoughts

So recently I started cleaning up all my old otome game magazines and found some stuff from the early 2010s which was promoting a rated otome game called Tsubasa no Oka no Hime: A Red and Blue Moon ~finite loop~. I mean I had heard of the title before but didn’t really know anything about it until I read the articles and…my interest was piqued.

After the aesthetic disaster of Tokeijikake no Apocalypse I needed something to soothe my eyes.

For safety purposes, I won’t be showing any rated CGs in my posts even if I mention rated contents.

Tsubasa no Oka no Hime

Tsubasa no Oka no Hime roughly translates to “the princess of Tsubasa hill” or if you take into account the 姫王 part, it’s more like “the ruler of Tsubasa hill”. Aside from the first and last names of most characters, the rest doesn’t have any official english names so bear with my terrible romanisation.

The game is set in a fantastical version of what appears to be England named Bridea. At the edge of the edge of Bridea lies the town Wingfield, where humans, spirits and fairies live together in harmony. The only thing that can threaten the peace are demonic dogs, which answer to the King of the Dark Night. In the distant past, the female ruler of Wingfield had always protected its citizens from King of the Dark Night with her shield and sword. On the night of the red and blue moon that comes once every 19 years, the fight between the ruler and the King of the Dark Night is especially intense, requiring human knights and magicians to aid. The Wingfield manor where the ruler resides is past an old stone entrace in the middle of the town and surrounded in shamrocks.

NGL the opening movie looks really cool even if Engrish and early 2010’s Jrock

The game begins with the arrival of Christopher Luckenbooth (CV coughSatouTakuyacough), a butler in training, arriving in Wingfield from the capital of Bridea, Londern. Having been sent to the ruler of Wingfield to complete his training in order to become a fully certified butler, Christopher intends to serve the current ruler Vivian Nochnlea Meabh Newgrange Wingfield (I made up the spelling since only the Vivian and Wingfield part are confirmed). Being a huge fan of the picturebook series detailing Wingfield, he was full of curiosity as to what the real thing is like. As he completes his training at Wingfield, Vivian’s 19th birthday draws near, marking the beginning of the town-wide festival of Fenikiacs celebrating the year’s bountiful harvest. However he never expected the residents of the mansion he was serving in to be all such colourful characters… starting with the head butler Edric (CV coughYusaKoujicough), head maid Petunia (CV Aoba Ringo), the lazy old butler Dowth (CV coughShimakaYuucough), resident wolf spirit Hakkaku (CV coughShiraishiMinorucough) and cook Tees (CV coughNaritaKencough).

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Analysis//Otome game sales number crunching part 2

Something I’ve always been thinking about is the state of the otome game market, since there has been quite a number of happenings since my last post. Luckily recently I came across some better sales data than those detailed in my last post about the state of the Japanese otome game market, so why not take the chance to deep dive again!

As a disclaimer, I don’t belong in the relevant field of study so all I have is just a lot of curiosity and excessive years of higher education so take all my findings with a grain of salt.

Is it that time of the year again

This time I’ll be using the Media Create game sales data from the consumer years of 2017 to 2020. For those not familiar with Media Create (MC), they’re a research and analysis company that focuses on digital entertainment in Japan. For the average gamer, they are probably most well-known for providing console game sales data to the public. A source of pride for the company is that Nintendo apparently cites their data in their conferences so that might speak to its trustworthiness.

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