Melanin Friendly Games – ‘Date Warp’

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, it’s Melanin Monday here on Blerdy Otome and that means I’m spotlighting another Melanin Friendly Game! For those of you just joining the party—every Monday I spotlight games that feature black and brown characters for anyone looking for titles with just a bit more representation. As a blerd and a gamer, I am always on the lookout for representation in my games. This is largely a personal project for me—there are almost no “diverse game” tags on major game sites—so, it can be pretty difficult find games with characters of color… unless you already know where to look.

Date Warp 1

This week, I’m spotlighting the sci-fi mystery romance visual novel, Date Warpfrom Hanako Game. This was one of the first English otome games I played when I started out on my journey into otome hell and even 10 years later, this game still stands up! Date Warp follows Janet a college student who left her dorm one night to go on a blind date with one of the most popular guys on campus—and never returned. Was she kidnapped? Murdered? Solve puzzles and piece together clues to uncover the truth… but, be warned the truth might not be as straightforward as you’d hoped…

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NaNoRenO 2020 Review – ‘Dream Dilemma!’

This has turned into quite the undertaking and while I’m pretty sure I won’t get through every submission by the end of the month, I have enjoyed the games I’ve played so far. For those of you just joining the party—all month long I’ve been working my way through submissions for the annual one month game jam, NaNoRenO, which is usually held between March and April. There were over 100 submissions for NaNoRenO 2020 created by newbie devs and veterans alike, covering a wide range of genres so I highly recommend checking a few out if you have the chance.

Dream Dilemma 1

Next up on this tour of NaNoRenO games is the short fantasy visual novel, Dream Dilemma from AmesyFlo. This one’s a bit on the short side, taking roughly a half hour to get through, but it has a total of five endings that are each worth exploring. Dream Dilemma follows Jane, a seemingly ordinary girl who has been having strange dreams featuring a handsome boy. While his identity is a mystery she can’t help but feel like they’ve met somewhere before. Unbeknownst to her, there are greater powers at work and Jane and her dream boy are just the unwitting pawns in a life or death riddle game that could spell disaster for the pair should they fail…

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NaNoRenO 2020 Review – Flour Hour

It was only a matter of time before I unearthed another boys love title from among the NaNoRenO 2020 submissions. I’ve said this before, but it deserves repeating—boys love games tend to fall into one of two categories—comedy or angsty drama. There are a few exceptions, but for the most part if you take any given boys love title you can pretty much place it neatly into one of those two categories.

Sayumi101’s boys love visual novel, Flour Hour falls squarely into the latter category—even the synopsis describes it as a “light-hearted (probably unnecessarily drama-heavy) BL”. And I’m not going to lie, Flour Hour reads like an angsty, drama heavy 90’s boys love manga, touching on just about every cliche in the book and yet I couldn’t help but get invested in story and characters Sayumi and their team created.

Flour Hour 1

The game follows Yuki, a reserved baker who has taken over his ailing grandmother’s flower shop and turned it into a moderately successful bakery. Things are going well for him until a Lawyer informs him that he owes a considerable amount of money and that if he can’t pay, he will have to turn over the property. But, with the shop’s meager earnings, he isn’t sure he will be able to come up with the money in time… to add insult to injury, his ex suddenly bulldozes his way back into his life stirring up feelings Yuki thought he had long since buried.

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Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #53

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, it’s once again that special time of the week—Thrifty Thursday!

In a world where it’s all about the almighty dollar, sometimes it’s a little tough to make our pennies stretch enough to accommodate our hobbies. But, there are plenty of ways to balance your budget while still enjoying the things you love, you just have to be a little thrifty about it. So, I created Thrifty Gaming in order to spotlight some lesser known indie titles that are both entertaining an affordable.

If you’re a new follower or someone who has been following since my Nice Job Breaking It Hero days and has been gone for awhile, here’s a refresher… Thrifty Gaming, is a weekly post series where I spotlight three games/visual novels that are under $10.00. These can be mobile games, PC games, and a few times I have found some nice indie console titles too. The list used to focus on just otome games and romance visual novels, but after requests from a few readers I have since expanded to other gaming genres. I don’t include sales or limited time offers, each title has to be consistently priced at $10.00 or less without any promotions to be included in this line up.

Broke.gif

Note, these are not reviews, rather recommendations so your mileage may vary with some of these titles. This week’s post will include a brief synopsis and links to each game so you can add them to your gaming library! You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy your hobbies, so save a little bread and check this week’s thrifty gaming picks!

Continue reading “Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #53”

Crocheting While Otaku: Keepin’ It Casual

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, it’s been awhile since I last wrote about crocheting, and I’m going to be honest with you guys, I didn’t have anything to share because I just wasn’t in the mood to make anything new. I had to fulfill a custom order a few weeks ago, but aside from that I haven’t picked up a skein of yarn or my crochet hook since. I love crocheting and I find that it’s one of my more therapeutic hobbies, but sometimes I just don’t feel like creating anything. Which can seem strange in a world where just about everyone is trying to find ways to market their hobbies to the masses, I mean, Blerdy Otome is  kind of built on that same concept—I started this site as a place where I could talk about otome games and it’s kind of snowballed from there…

Blerdy Girl Crafts

I know… including a link to my Etsy store in a post about keeping hobbies just hobbies… cliche af

Granted, I do sell my crochet creations over on Etsy, but I’ve always maintained the notion that crocheting would always be a casual hobby. I mean, if I make a few bucks every now and again cool, but I’m not trying to build a crochet empire over here. Because even though there is clearly a market for crochet items, the act of crocheting has always been a personal thing for me.

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Now Playing: Games I’m Currently Playing – April

Hey Guys! Right now I’m going on 2 1/2 months at home and it has been an experience. I like not having to brave the DC metro to get to work, but I miss the face to face interactions I had with my coworkers and friends… Earlier this month my job told us to expect to be teleworking until July, so I still have a bit more time at home ahead of me. Though, one silverlining is that I’ve had a lot of extra time to power through my backlog! Yay…

I’m currently powering through the NaNoRenO 2020 submissions, but there are over 100 of them, so it’s a pretty big undertaking (and I most likely won’t get through them all). There are some really great games among this year’s submissions so I highly recommend checking a few out! When I’m not playing those I have an ever changing list of ongoing game playthroughs that I’ve been tackling….

Kitty Love Otome

Kitty Love Way to Look for Love

I’m back on the Kitty Love train. DIGIMERCE sent me a review copy of the game awhile ago and while I did play it and write a review about it… I wasn’t exactly forgiving about its many many MANY shortcomings. The first time I played it with a friend and we spent the majority of the time making fun of the characters and the grammatical errors… and while I didn’t really like the game at the time, I did enjoy the social aspect of playing an otome game with a friend.

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Melanin Friendly Games – ‘Mermaid Splash! Passion Festival’

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, it’s Melanin Monday here on Blerdy Otome and that means I’m spotlighting another Melanin Friendly Game! For those of you just joining the party—every Monday I spotlight games that feature black and brown characters for anyone looking for titles with just a bit more representation. As a blerd and a gamer, I am always on the lookout for representation in my games. This is largely a personal project for me—there are almost no “diverse game” tags on major game sites—so, it can be pretty difficult find games with characters of color… unless you already know where to look.

Mermaid Splash 1

This week, I’m spotlighting the debut visual novel, Mermaid Splash! Passion Festival, from Sofdelux Studio—made up of NomnomNami, creator of Syrup and Ultimate Sweet and DarkChibiShadow, a comic creator who also makes visual novels on the side. Mermaid Splash! is a short yuri visual novel that follows CiCi, a mermaid who wants to participate in the upcoming Passion Festival. There’s only one hitch… she doesn’t really have anything that she’s passionate in—so it’s up to you to help her hone her skills and focus on a specific hobby for the festival. You have just one month tho help CiCi get her act together and maybe you’ll help her find love in the process!

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Confessions of an Otome Gamer – Using Guides and Walkthroughs

Hey, Hey Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs! I’ve been running this site for the past five years, and it just occurred to me that I don’t really talk at length about my gaming process. Sure, I drop a passing phrase or two every now and again in my reviews, but I have yet to really sit down write about what type of gamer I am, and because I’ve been stuck at home for the past two and a half months (aside from going stir crazy) I’ve had a bit more time for self reflection… So, I thought it would be fun to write out a few of my gaming related thoughts and confessions. That way you guys get to know me a little better and I get to get some things off my chest.

Of course there’s always the chance that no one really cares and I’m just screaming into the void like everyone else on the internet. But, all this social distancing has got me in a talkative mood for once…so, let’s just see where this goes. I don’t know how often I’ll post these, but I’ll shoot for 1-2 per month, however it’ll mostly be whenever I have anything specific that I want to talk about. For my first confession—sometimes I use guide and walkthroughs to finish games. 

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NaNoRenO 2020 Review – ‘#influenced’

There is such a huge variety of titles among the annual NaNoRenO submissions, that you never truly know what is going to pique your interest. I’m just blindly picking games at random, giving priority to games that I find aesthetically pleasing—it’s shallow, I know, but when there are over 100 games to get through can you blame me for picking game with pretty art first?

So, this is how I found myself playing Pilot_Star’s kinetic novel, #influenced, which I suppose is fitting given it’s focus on the superficial world of internet influencers. With it’s chic character designs and bright coloring, #infuenced is definitely one of the better looking titles in this year’s lineup—but beneath it’s cute appearance is slow burn horror story that doubles as a surprisingly clever social commentary.

#influenced 1

The game follows Dolly Pearson, an up-and-coming influencer on the social media site Instapix. But, despite visiting all the cutest cafes and taking flawless selfies, she’s frustrated with her meager 5K follower count. Everything changes when she befriends Instapix star Vanessa, who has just made the move from New York to her town. Seeing this as her chance to make it big, Dolly asks her for a few tips and Vanessa is happy to lend her new bestie a helping hand… just so long as Dolly is willing to do whatever it takes…

While I don’t plan on spoiling the game, I feel obligated to note that, #influenced warrants a trigger warning for graphic descriptions of self-harm and suicide. 

Continue reading “NaNoRenO 2020 Review – ‘#influenced’”

Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #52

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, it’s once again that special time of the week—Thrifty Thursday!

In a world where it’s all about the almighty dollar, sometimes it’s a little tough to make our pennies stretch enough to accommodate our hobbies. But, there are plenty of ways to balance your budget while still enjoying the things you love, you just have to be a little thrifty about it. So, I created Thrifty Gaming in order to spotlight some lesser known indie titles that are both entertaining an affordable.

If you’re a new follower or someone who has been following since my Nice Job Breaking It Hero days and has been gone for awhile, here’s a refresher… Thrifty Gaming, is a weekly post series where I spotlight three games/visual novels that are under $10.00. These can be mobile games, PC games, and a few times I have found some nice indie console titles too. The list used to focus on just otome games and romance visual novels, but after requests from a few readers I have since expanded to other gaming genres. I don’t include sales or limited time offers, each title has to be consistently priced at $10.00 or less without any promotions to be included in this line up.

Broke.gif

Note, these are not reviews, rather recommendations so your mileage may vary with some of these titles. This week’s post will include a brief synopsis and links to each game so you can add them to your gaming library! You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy your hobbies, so save a little bread and check this week’s thrifty gaming picks!

Continue reading “Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #52”

Now This is a Story All About How… I Got Hit with a DMCA Notice from Funimation

So, this incident happened a little while ago but I needed some time to cool off before I wrote about it, because at the time I was PISSED! Time has softened my anger so that now I look back on the whole thing with some degree of amusement, don’t get me wrong, I am still pretty frustrated about the whole situation, but not enough to wage a one woman crusade against FUNimation. I’ve put away my pitchfork and doused my torch, and after a bit of self reflection I think I’m finally ready to talk about what happened…

For the past few years I have been running an online shop on Etsy where I sell crochet items. I have a few original creations, but the bulk of my merchandise consists of anime inspired amigurumi dolls. For those of you unfamiliar with crochet or yarn crafting in general, amigurumi is a Japanese term used to describe the art of knitting or crocheting small stuffed toys. The term amigurumi (編みぐるみ) literally means knit or crochet stuffed toy and these can be anything from stuffed animals to dolls and I’ve even seen a lot of people who make cute food plushies. There really is no limit to what you can make with amigurumi, so it really allows the crafter the freedom to let their imaginations soar.

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NaNoRenO 2020 Review – Red-Handed Robin

I’m switching gears a bit from the last NaNoRenO 2020 title and I have to admit I was really looking forward to this release. Mystery, romance, adventure—HitOrMissy’s Red-Handed Robin has everything I love in my visual novels! This is the team’s second game release following Fetch Quest, their submission for NaNoRenO 2019 (which is still on my must play list).

This time around the team brings us a good ol’ fashion crime fiction adventure following Robin, a career thief and her loyal bodyguard, Jay as they attempt to flee the country on the brand new luxury train, the Whirlwind Express. With the spoils of her last heist close at hand, Robin is ready to make a clean break… that is until she runs into her childhood friend turned detective… What’s a gal to do? Can Robin lie her way to freedom or will her cover be blown by the handsome detective? Red-Handed Robin is a two part release, and as of right now only part one is available, so the game does end in a bit of a cliffhanger. But, there is still plenty to explore in this fun first installment.

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Melanin Friendly Games – ‘Arcade Spirits’

It’s Monday and with it comes another Melanin Friendly game! For those of you just joining the party—every Monday here on Blerdy Otome I spotlight games that feature black and brown characters for anyone looking for titles with a bit more representation. It started as something I did just for myself, since growing up as a nerdy Black kid in the south, I didn’t really get too many characters that looked like me in the games I played. Things are so much different now, and I want to celebrate each and every “Melanin Friendly” game I find!

Arcade Spirits Characters.jpg

Main Cast L to R: Ashley, Gavin, Naomi, Percy, Queenbee, and Teo

This week, I’m spotlighting Arcade Spirits, an 80’s themed romance visual novel developed by Fiction Factory Games. Set in an alternate timeline where the 1983 video game crash never happened, you play as a new hire at the Funplex game arcade. It’s your job to keep the peace in one of the most popular arcades in the city, while trying to figure out your next step in life. At Funplex, you’ll meet a whole host of unique characters and maybe even find a little romance along the way.

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Blerdy Otome Monthly Recap – April 2020

Hey Hey Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs~ 2020 marks the beginning of a new decade and yet, I don’t think anyone would have anticipated the absolute sh*t show this year has turned into. It’s been one thing after another since January and now many of us are just waiting for things to settle down.

With the stay at home orders in place in the DMV, I’m spending a lot more time at home, which has given me more opportunities to write. Nothing like a pandemic to get the creative juices flowing… I think this is the most active I have been in a long time and I’m having fun coming up with new content and checking out other blogs. Since there’s so much more content now, it’s finally time for me to revive my recap posts. If you’ve been following me for awhile, you probably remember my old Last Week Today post. This is the same concept, just much more condensed—doing a weekly recap was just a bit overwhelming, but I think this format will be much easier to manage each month. So let’s get this show on the road and look back at the month of April here on Blerdy Otome!

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Heartstopper Volume 1 by Alice Oseman – Graphic Novel Review

When I was faced with the prospect of weeks/months stuck inside my one bedroom apartment, I began stockpiling things to keep me entertained while I waited out the pandemic raging outside. Among my early purchases were several volumes of manga, some games, and print copies of Alice Oseman’s ongoing webcomic series, Heartstopper. I’d been seeing snippets of this series on Tumblr for ages, but I wasn’t quite ready to commit to another ongoing (see: D.N. Angel is the Reason I have Commitment Issues with Ongoing Series). But, with an overabundance of free time on my hand, I figured now was as good a time as any to give the series a try, so I plunked down and ordered not one, but, all three of the available print volumes from Amazon. The series is also available online over on Tapas, but I think there is just something special about holding a physical book in your hands… and I will readily admit that Heartstopper was more than worth the investment!

Boy meets boy. Boys become friends. Boys fall in love. An LGBTQ+ graphic novel about life, love, and everything that happens in between – for fans of The Art of Being NormalHolly Bourne and Love, Simon.

Charlie and Nick are at the same school, but they’ve never met … until one day when they’re made to sit together. They quickly become friends, and soon Charlie is falling hard for Nick, even though he doesn’t think he has a chance.

But love works in surprising ways, and Nick is more interested in Charlie than either of them realized.

Heartstopper is about love, friendship, loyalty and mental illness. It encompasses all the small stories of Nick and Charlie’s lives that together make up something larger, which speaks to all of us.

Continue reading “Heartstopper Volume 1 by Alice Oseman – Graphic Novel Review”

Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #51

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, it’s once again that special time of the week—Thrifty Thursday!

In a world where it’s all about the almighty dollar, sometimes it’s a little tough to make our pennies stretch enough to accommodate our hobbies. But, there are plenty of ways to balance your budget while still enjoying the things you love, you just have to be a little thrifty about it. So, I created Thrifty Gaming in order to spotlight some lesser known indie titles that are both entertaining an affordable.

If you’re a new follower or someone who has been following since my Nice Job Breaking It Hero days and has been gone for awhile, here’s a refresher… Thrifty Gaming, is a weekly post series where I spotlight three games/visual novels that are under $10.00. These can be mobile games, PC games, and a few times I have found some nice indie console titles too. The list used to focus on just otome games and romance visual novels, but after requests from a few readers I have since expanded to other gaming genres. I don’t include sales or limited time offers, each title has to be consistently priced at $10.00 or less without any promotions to be included in this line up.

Broke.gif

Note, these are not reviews, rather recommendations so your mileage may vary with some of these titles. This week’s post will include a brief synopsis and links to each game so you can add them to your gaming library! You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy your hobbies, so save a little bread and check this week’s thrifty gaming picks!

Continue reading “Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #51”

Guilty Parade Demo Review – A Quirky Wartime Visual Novel

“One war. Two sides…” This perfectly encapsulates the premise of Nozori Games’s interactive visual novel. Guilty Parade.  Experience two sides of a military conflict, by stepping into the shoes of two very different protagonists on either side of the barricades. On one side is Nemo—an amnesiac young man who is taken in by the Commander of an unusual squadron of soldiers. Though he doesn’t remember much about his past, he is thrust headfirst into their cause as he and his new comrades attempt to investigate a mysterious crime. On the other side is Lien—a child of war, desperate to avenge the death of his mothers at the hand of the black apostates. There are always two sides to every conflict and Guilty Parade gives players a chance to experience both as you navigate the complexities of war through the eyes of two characters right there on the front lines.

Guilty Parade is definitely one of the more unusual demos I have played in quite some time. It features an eclectic cast of quirky characters that you’d expect to see in a comedic anime—not a post apocalyptic wartime visual novel, and yet strangely enough… it works. Guilty Parade‘s unique cast is by far it’s most distinguishing features, giving what normally would have been a grisly story a sense of levity. Though, despite it’s eccentricities, Guilty Parade is a wartime story, and it takes great pains to depict the pros and cons of military conflict.

Game Details 

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My Favorite Boys Love Anime (so far)

It’s no secret that I’m a huge BL fan with a few years of experience with the genre under my belt. So, I’m always amazed to see how much the genre has grown over the years. Newer series have started moving away from the sex heavy stories towards more realistic depictions of same sex relationships, opening up the genre to more general audiences.

And with greater mass appeal comes more anime adaptations of popular BL series. However, Boys Love anime tend to do poorly, mostly due to low production value, but every so often a true gem of a series will crop up that redeems the genre. So, that got me thinking about some of the some of my favorite BL anime adaptations, and thus this list was born! So, whether your a fan of BL media, or just an anime fan looking for something new to dive into,  there are some pretty fun titles for you to check out!

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Melanin Friendly Games – ‘Errant Kingdom’

I’m re-purposing my Melanin Friendly Games Black History Month project as a weekly game spotlight segment where I hype up visual novels and games that feature Black and Brown characters in prominent roles. As a black woman gamer, representation in the media I love is important and I want to celebrate the games that make the extra effort to include a bit of color in their lineup.

And today’s Melanin Friendly Game pick is…

Errant Kingdom is a queer, high fantasy visual novel and the sophomore title from Lunaris Games, the developers behind the episodic supernatural fantasy, When the Night Comes. I loved their first game, for it’s immersive supernatural fantasy story and for the inclusion of so many well written Black and Brown characters, both in the main cast and the supporting cast! While they’re relatively new on the indie scene, they have made a name for themselves with their engaging stories and characters and their phenomenal social media presence.

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NaNoRenO 2020 Review – Dear Devere

This is such a different type of game from the ones I usually review on this site, I tend to focus on more interactive visual novels and otome games, and occasionally I dabble into the world of platformers and adventure games. So when Katy133 emailed me about her newest visual novel, Dear Devere, I will admit that I was at a bit of a loss, since it wasn’t my usual jam. I’d be more inclined to label Dear Devere as interactive fiction or a kinetic novel than a visual novel, since you don’t really influence the story by making choices or anything like that. Rather, the story unfolds through a series of letters written by two strangers.

Dear Devere

Set in 1935 Dear Devere follows Angela Bard—a quiet, solitary woman living in the Scottish isles. After a disagreement with a woman in her town, Angela decides to write a letter venting her frustrations, which she leaves under a rock at the edge of the nearby forest. She is of course surprised to discover that someone has replied to her letter—the mysterious Mr. Devere. Who is this Mr. Devere? And how is it that he’s come across Angela’s letters? The truth is something wholly unexpected and yet, worth finding out.

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NaNoRenO 2020 Review – Demon Kiss

I’m committing myself to playing through these NaNoRenO 2020 game releases and next up is Demon Kissa short indie boys love visual novel from Foleso. This is my first experience with this dev, but the art looked nice so I figured I could give it a go. The game follows Felix Wright, an IT guy, who’d much rather stay at home and play his favorite MMORPG with his online friends. Fed up with his antisocial attitude, his bubbly bestie manages to convince him to be her plus one for a Halloween house party. But what should have been a night full of watered down booze and awkward socializing turns into a night of horror when a hunky demon lord gate crashes!

Demon Kiss 1.png


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Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #50

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, it’s once again that special time of the week—Thrifty Thursday! This is the 50th Thrifty Gaming post!! What a milestone! *throws confetti*

In a world where it’s all about the almighty dollar, sometimes it’s a little tough to make our pennies stretch enough to accommodate our hobbies. But, there are plenty of ways to balance your budget while still enjoying the things you love, you just have to be a little thrifty about it. So, I created Thrifty Gaming in order to spotlight some lesser known indie titles that are both entertaining an affordable.

If you’re a new follower or someone who has been following since my Nice Job Breaking It Hero days and has been gone for awhile, here’s a refresher… Thrifty Gaming, is a weekly post series where I spotlight three games/visual novels that are under $10.00. These can be mobile games, PC games, and a few times I have found some nice indie console titles too. The list used to focus on just otome games and romance visual novels, but after requests from a few readers I have since expanded to other gaming genres. I don’t include sales or limited time offers, each title has to be consistently priced at $10.00 or less without any promotions to be included in this line up.

Broke.gif

Note, these are not reviews, rather recommendations so your mileage may vary with some of these titles. This week’s post will include a brief synopsis and links to each game so you can add them to your gaming library! You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy your hobbies, so save a little bread and check this week’s thrifty gaming picks!

Continue reading “Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #50”

Full Service 18+ BL Game Review – Find Your “Happy Ending”

Black Monkey Pro is the gift that just keeps on giving. After their disbandment back in 2015, I thought I was done with the company and their… unique boys love game offerings. But, lo in 2017, a kind reader informed me that BMP had risen from the ashes and re-branded themselves as Herculion, retaining many of the original staff. But, the cherry on top of this delightful revelation is that they were already hard at work on their “first” boys love visual novel, Full Service. Given my less than enthusiastic opinion of BMP’s previous titles, I was wary of anything remotely related to the BMP brand, but I played the first demo for the game and I was genuinely surprised by how much I enjoyed it—I found that I was genuinely looking forward to the official release!

Full Service 1.png

Full Service follows Tomoki Nakamoto,  a workaholic looking for a little excitement in his life. One day, he gets invited to visit the local spa, where he meets a group of hunky masseurs who are more than happy to help him relieve a little excess stress. Suddenly his mundane life is about to get much more exciting.

*There are some uncensored NSFW images towards the end of this review*

Game Details

  • Available for Windows, Mac, Linux, Steam
  • Cost: $39.99
  • 7 pursuable characters (male)
  • Gameplay Length: 60+ hours (15 hrs per route)
  • Partial Voice Acting (English and Japanese)

Continue reading “Full Service 18+ BL Game Review – Find Your “Happy Ending””

NaNoRenO 2020 Review – Enamored Risks

The annual one month game jam, NaNoRenO 2020+ has come and gone bringing with it over 100 new game titles from a wide range of genres from veteran game devs and newbies alike. NaNoRenO is a treasure trove for indie gems and throughout the next month or so I’ll be reviewing quite a few of them. Since these games tend to be on the shorter side, rather than writing the usual long-form reviews, these will be mini reviews.

First up is Enamored Risks developed by Crystal Game Works, the team behind the josei romance visual novel, That Which Binds Us and the supernatural romance, Memories on the Shoreline. This is the third game I’ve played from the team, and I think they’ve finally hit their stride, Enamored Risks is a much more grounded title, than their earlier offerings (at least the ones I tried). The game follows Alex, a recently emancipated nursing student, struggling to find herself now that she is free from her overbearing parents. One day she overhears some classmates discussing a mysterious urban exploration social media account full of photos of ruined buildings, rooftop views, and rooms trapped in time, desperate add a bit of excitement to her life, Alex decides to a little exploring of her own. Along the way she meets three urban explorer who help her uncover sides of herself she never imagined existed.

Enamored Risk 1

Continue reading “NaNoRenO 2020 Review – Enamored Risks”

F#@k, Marry, Kill Otome Edition – Star Crossed Myth

Here I am once again using all of my years of otome related experience to ask the hard hitting questions others are afraid to ask! This is quality stuff right here, carefully crafted after not one, but two glasses of really good red wine and an afternoon of playing OZMAFIA.

This is the post that no one asked for, but I felt compelled to write down. I could have easily used this time to tackle my neglected backlog or catching up on game requests, but I felt that a Fuck, Marry, Kill post was exactly what the world needed right now. For those of you that didn’t play this game as a kid, the basic premise is this:

One person poses three names of people known to someone else (either people known in their personal lives or of celebrities). The other person then has to decide which of the three they would kiss (or fuck, in more mature versions of the game… like this one), which one they would marry, and which one they would kill.

-Da Rulez

I’m cutting the middle man and just using the love interest lineup from otome games to answer three sacred, age old questions— Which otome guy would I fuck? Which otome guy would I marry? Which otome guy would I kill? The first game on the chopping block is Star Crossed Myth… because I’ve played all the routes.

Continue reading “F#@k, Marry, Kill Otome Edition – Star Crossed Myth”

Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #49

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, it’s once again that special time of the week—Thrifty Thursday!

In a world where it’s all about the almighty dollar, sometimes it’s a little tough to make our pennies stretch enough to accommodate our hobbies. But, there are plenty of ways to balance your budget while still enjoying the things you love, you just have to be a little thrifty about it. So, I created Thrifty Gaming in order to spotlight some lesser known indie titles that are both entertaining an affordable.

If you’re a new follower or someone who has been following since my Nice Job Breaking It Hero days and has been gone for awhile, here’s a refresher… Thrifty Gaming, is a weekly post series where I spotlight three games/visual novels that are under $10.00. These can be mobile games, PC games, and a few times I have found some nice indie console titles too. The list used to focus on just otome games and romance visual novels, but after requests from a few readers I have since expanded to other gaming genres. I don’t include sales or limited time offers, each title has to be consistently priced at $10.00 or less without any promotions to be included in this line up.

Broke.gif

Note, these are not reviews, rather recommendations so your mileage may vary with some of these titles. This week’s post will include a brief synopsis and links to each game so you can add them to your gaming library! You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy your hobbies, so save a little bread and check this week’s thrifty gaming picks!

Continue reading “Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #49”

I Wanna Give Myself a Chance to Believe in Myself Again: How Shizuo Never Gives Up Hope in ‘I’ll Give It My All… Tomorrow’ – April 2020 “Hope” OWLS Blog Tour

Hey Hey Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, its been awhile since I last participated in an OWLS Blog Tour. We all started this year full of hope, but the recent COVID-19 pandemic has put many of us in a tight spot. Many have already succumbed to the virus and those that haven’t are facing economic hardships brought on by stay at home orders and mandatory social distancing. It’s hard not to feel discouraged, when the impacts of the virus is such an ever present part of our lives. Whether you have been personally affected by the pandemic or know someone affected by COVID-19, it’s important that we keep moving forward. So, it’s only fitting that in the wake of the current pandemic, that the April 2020 Blog Tour topic should be Hope.

We are in the midst of a pandemic which has led people to live in fear and anxiety over the coronavirus. For this month, rather than seeing the dark side of the situation we are living in, we will be exploring anime and other pop culture mediums that bring hope for humanity and why they have such a positive impact on us.

-OWLS April 2020 “Hope” Blog Tour Prompt

Continue reading “I Wanna Give Myself a Chance to Believe in Myself Again: How Shizuo Never Gives Up Hope in ‘I’ll Give It My All… Tomorrow’ – April 2020 “Hope” OWLS Blog Tour”

Up Until The End – Game Review

I got this request months ago and while I’d like to say that the reason it took so long to review this game was because I was busy with real life obligations that wouldn’t be entirely true. The truth is, at first glance Up Until the End just didn’t grab my attention—the premise was definitely unique, but the art really didn’t do it for me, so I pushed it further and further down my list. I am not proud to admit that I judged this game before even playing it, but I am human and while reviewers strive to be impartial, it’s not exactly an easy thing to do.

So, with the prospect of being stuck at home indefinitely due to COVID-19, I decided to revisit Letitia Lambrechts debut visual novel, Up Until the End and I will admit that I owe her an apology for waiting so long to play this game. It’s not perfect, but, I may have been too hasty in judging Up Until the End, it is a rather enjoyable and inventive story that is worth the playthrough!

This was supposed to be an ordinary day, in an ordinary life. But it isn’t.
You were in the town library, reading a good book when…You don’t really remember. You know you passed out. When you wake up, you are surrounded by flames !

Will you get out of danger? Will you create bonds with your companions? And maybe, will you find love on the way?

-Synopsis

Game Details

  • Available for Windows, Mac, Linux 
  • Price: Pay What You Want
  • 1 optional pursuable male character
  • 15 Unique Endings
  • Gameplay Length: 2-5 hours

Continue reading “Up Until The End – Game Review”

Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #48

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, it’s once again that special time of the week—Thrifty Thursday!

In a world where it’s all about the almighty dollar, sometimes it’s a little tough to make our pennies stretch enough to accommodate our hobbies. But, there are plenty of ways to balance your budget while still enjoying the things you love, you just have to be a little thrifty about it. So, I created Thrifty Gaming in order to spotlight some lesser known indie titles that are both entertaining an affordable.

If you’re a new follower or someone who has been following since my Nice Job Breaking It Hero days and has been gone for awhile, here’s a refresher… Thrifty Gaming, is a weekly post series where I spotlight three games/visual novels that are under $10.00. These can be mobile games, PC games, and a few times I have found some nice indie console titles too. The list used to focus on just otome games and romance visual novels, but after requests from a few readers I have since expanded to other gaming genres. I don’t include sales or limited time offers, each title has to be consistently priced at $10.00 or less without any promotions to be included in this line up.

Broke.gif

Note, these are not reviews, rather recommendations so your mileage may vary with some of these titles. This week’s post will include a brief synopsis and links to each game so you can add them to your gaming library! You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy your hobbies, so save a little bread and check this week’s thrifty gaming picks!

Continue reading “Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #48”

5 Games Like Code Realize

It’s been a long time since I popped out one of these Games Like posts. Part of me wants to say the delay was brought on by real life obligations, but really I had a hard time thinking of games like Code Realize. I ran the twitter poll back in October, but this post has been sitting in my drafts these past few months because I wanted to pick games that really did Code Realize justice (and fingers crossed that I actually did that).

Last time I wrote a list of 5 Games Like Collar x Malice and this time around I’m bringing you guys a list of 5 games like Code Realize. For those of you unfamiliar with the game, Code Realize is a steampunk fantasy, featuring a cast of characters based on famous literary and historical figures. Code Realize was developed by Otomate for the PS Vita in 2014 and later released internationally in 2015. In the wake of the fall of the PS Vita, Code Realize has made the move to the Nintendo Switch. The game follows Cardia—a young woman whose body produces a deadly poison that melts anything she touches—spends her days in an abandoned mansion to protect others from her affliction. Labeled as a monster by the locals, Cardia resigns herself to a life of loneliness until Royal Guards break into the mansion and attempt to capture her. She is saved by infamous gentleman thief Arsène Lupin, who promises to help her find her father, the only person who might be able to remove the poison coursing through her veins.

Code Realize has been universally praised by otome fans for it’s immersive story and well developed characters. It’s definitely a stand out among otome game titles, managing to balance romance and good, solid storytelling. So if you’ve played Code Realize and you’re looking for something similar to dive into, here are five game titles that are sure to hit the spot! I tried to go with games that have the same feel as Code Realize and not so much a play by play clone of the game. So, they’re not exactly the same, but, they definitely capture the spirit of the game.

Continue reading “5 Games Like Code Realize”

Now Playing: Games I’m Currently Playing – February/March

Hey! It’s been a while since I wrote anything here on the old blog, but I got really into crocheting again… so I took a break to make a few dolls (which you can see on my Instagram).

So, we’re going on a little over a month of social distancing and we’ve all been digging deep to keep ourselves occupied while we wait out the COVID-19 pandemic. The extra time at home has given me a chance to dive back into some of my more neglected hobbies and my streaming watch list is at an all time low. Though, my backlog remains pretty much unchanged. In fact, I think it’s grown quite a bit since all of this started—probably because of all the “Stay At Home” game sales and deals… and if there is one thing I’m weak to, it’s sales. I’m still kind of playing the field with my games, but, there are a few that I’ve gotten pretty far into… so, here are the games I’ve been playing recently.

Afterparty

Afterparty

After finishing Pokemon Sword, I found myself in need of something to fill my gaming void, so I did what any red blooded gamer would do—I started browsing the Nintendo eShop. I love me some indie games, and the Switch has quite a few titles to choose from, but out of all of them, Night School Studio’s Afterparty really stood out from the rest. It’s an adventure game that follows two recently deceased best friends, Milo and Lola, who find themselves the newest residents of Hell. Not up for spending an eternity in Hell, the pair discover that there is a get out of Hell free card—You just have to out drink the prince of Hell, Satan and he’ll send you back to Earth!

Continue reading “Now Playing: Games I’m Currently Playing – February/March”

Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #47

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, it’s once again that special time of the week—Thrifty Thursday!

In a world where it’s all about the almighty dollar, sometimes it’s a little tough to make our pennies stretch enough to accommodate our hobbies. But, there are plenty of ways to balance your budget while still enjoying the things you love, you just have to be a little thrifty about it. So, I created Thrifty Gaming in order to spotlight some lesser known indie titles that are both entertaining an affordable.

If you’re a new follower or someone who has been following since my Nice Job Breaking It Hero days and has been gone for awhile, here’s a refresher… Thrifty Gaming, is a weekly post series where I spotlight three games/visual novels that are under $10.00. These can be mobile games, PC games, and a few times I have found some nice indie console titles too. The list used to focus on just otome games and romance visual novels, but after requests from a few readers I have since expanded to other gaming genres. I don’t include sales or limited time offers, each title has to be consistently priced at $10.00 or less without any promotions to be included in this line up.

Broke.gif

Note, these are not reviews, rather recommendations so your mileage may vary with some of these titles. This week’s post will include a brief synopsis and links to each game so you can add them to your gaming library! You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy your hobbies, so save a little bread and check this week’s thrifty gaming picks!

Continue reading “Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #47”

Self-Care in a Time of Social Distancing – How I’ve Been Taking Care of My Mental Health from Home

Hey hey Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs! I hope you all are doing well wherever you are in the world during the current COVID-19 pandemic. These are some troubling times and while we weather this storm, it’s important that we all remain safe! Many countries have already enacted stay-at-home mandates, and I myself have been working from home for these past three weeks, so it’s been a quite the task keeping myself busy in this new age of social distancing. I’m mostly an introvert, so I’m welcoming the extra time at home, but I know many are finding this change to their daily routine isolating, so it’s definitely important that we continue to take care of our mental health by practicing self-care.

Self – Care

/ˌselfˈker/

noun

      • the practice of taking an active role in protecting one’s own well-being and happiness, in particular during periods of stress.

During the hustle and bustle of everyday life, it’s easy to forget to take a step back and put yourself first, especially when you’re busy taking care of other things. The COVID-19 pandemic has put a lot of us in a pretty tight spot and while I know things are hard for many, it’s important to help one another and maintain a positive outlook for the future. Trust me, I know how hard it is to stay positive in the wake of what seems like an overwhelming situation—I have experience multiple job losses, financial difficulties, and there was a point not too long ago that I was close to being without a roof over my head. Things do get better! This COVID-19 pandemic is just a small setback and together we can get through this! I don’t often share stuff like this here, but in this time of fear and uncertainty it is important to do things that elevate your mental health by doing things that make you happy and improve your mood. So, I wanted to share some of the things I’ve been doing to keep myself uplifted and centered at home during the current pandemic.

Continue reading “Self-Care in a Time of Social Distancing – How I’ve Been Taking Care of My Mental Health from Home”

My Burning Heart BL Game Review – A Steamy Arabian Nights Fantasy

My Burning Heart is a story set in a 1001 Nights world.

Our protagonist, Adnan, gets sold as a slave and, instead of being sent to work in the fields, as he expected, he ends up in a Sultan’s harem… Although they try to trick him with good words and promises of being well fed and no physical punishments, he decides to comply with the Sultan’s orders… but only while he plans his escape from the palace.

-Synopsis

As a Black gamer I tend to shy away from games that depict slavery, for obvious reasons—it makes me uncomfortable. Especially when slavery is depicted in romance themed games, since there is a degree of power imbalance that undermines any perceived notion of consent, because lets be real for a second—slaves cannot defy the whims of their masters, and as such are subject to whatever treatment their masters see fit. I take particular offense to games that tend to sexualize the relationship between a master and a slave, because by definition these relationships are inherently non consensual, since slaves don’t have the agency to reject the advances of their masters.

My Burning Heart Rashid 2

So, I find myself in a bit of a dilemma with Ertal Games’s Arabian nights themed visual novel, My Burning Heart—its very premise is built on the dubious consent of a slave/master relationship—the protagonist, Adnan, is brought to the palace of the sultan to be his new harem slave. Despite the benevolence of his master, Adnan plots to escape his comfortable life in the palace, but in order to do so he will need to give himself over to the Sultan. *internal scream*

Game Details 


Continue reading “My Burning Heart BL Game Review – A Steamy Arabian Nights Fantasy”

Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #46

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, it’s once again that special time of the week—Thrifty Thursday!

In a world where it’s all about the almighty dollar, sometimes it’s a little tough to make our pennies stretch enough to accommodate our hobbies. But, there are plenty of ways to balance your budget while still enjoying the things you love, you just have to be a little thrifty about it. So, I created Thrifty Gaming in order to spotlight some lesser known indie titles that are both entertaining an affordable.

If you’re a new follower or someone who has been following since my Nice Job Breaking It Hero days and has been gone for awhile, here’s a refresher… Thrifty Gaming, is a weekly post series where I spotlight three games/visual novels that are under $10.00. These can be mobile games, PC games, and a few times I have found some nice indie console titles too. The list used to focus on just otome games and romance visual novels, but after requests from a few readers I have since expanded to other gaming genres. I don’t include sales or limited time offers, each title has to be consistently priced at $10.00 or less without any promotions to be included in this line up.

Broke.gif

Note, these are not reviews, rather recommendations so your mileage may vary with some of these titles. This week’s post will include a brief synopsis and links to each game so you can add them to your gaming library! You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy your hobbies, so save a little bread and check this week’s thrifty gaming picks!

Continue reading “Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #46”

Behind Story – BL Manhwa Review

Like many of you, I’ve spent quite a bit of time confined to my apartment, waiting for the COVID-19 pandemic to blow over. And while the bulk of my time spent teleworking during the week, I do need a bit of a break from the monotony of my computer screen. So I’ve taken to buying manga on Amazon and in the two weeks I’ve been social distancing I’ve amassed quite a few new titles. Of course, most of these are boys love  (which seems to be pretty much all I buy now), which given my not so secret fujoshi tendencies shouldn’t be a surprise (especially if you follow my Insta).

While I definitely snagged some interesting stuff, the one that I was most interested in starting was the manhwa, Behind Story by Narae Ahn. Now, some backstory—Amazon has been suggesting this to me for WEEKS and while I like manhwa, I kind of find their stories a bit on the soap opera side when it comes to drama. And BL manhwa tends to really crank that shit up with their angsty drama and penchant for tragedy, and… I really need to be in the mood for that. So, I kinda dragged my feet a bit. It’s just 3 volumes long so it’s not as big of an investment as say a longer running shounen or shojo series and it was on sale when I got it, so I figured I could do worse.

Behind Story Manhwa (1).jpg

Behind Story is the debut title of Narae Ahn, so it is a bit rough in places, but despite some flaws I actually really enjoyed reading this story. It’s more on the shounen-ai side of things, with very little in the way of actual sex, BUT, it does deal with some intense themes like: non-consentual sex, drugs, and abuse. There are a few characters that have been the victims of sexual assault and while most boys love media tends to sexualize rape, Narae Ahn makes it very clear from the get go that this is not meant to be taken lightly! These are traumatic experiences and they are handled (for the most part) in a realistic way.

Where to Read: Lezhin (Digital) | Netcomics (Digital) | Amazon (Print)

Continue reading “Behind Story – BL Manhwa Review”

[Bite- Sized Review] The Charming Empire was kind of DULL

Hey guys! I know I’ve been kind of silent lately (I’ve been making the best of my extended time at home), but this past weekend I finally got around to playing The Charming Empire and let’s just say it left much to be desired. I’m, no stranger to Dogenzaka Labs and their rather… interesting otome game localizations. I played both Men of Yoshiwara games, and while I find them entertaining, they have many, many flaws. I’ve also played a few of their mobile releases, which are best enjoyed after a few glasses of wine…

For those of you that don’t know, Dogenzaka Labs has been the main localizing company for most of D3 Publisher’s English otome releases and I’m gonna be real with you guys they’re all pretty basic. The Men of Yoshiwara is by and large the best of the bunch, and over the years has garnered quite the fanbase in the west, however, they’re not what I’d call top tier otome. They’re entertaining, sure, but there’s just a little something missing that keeps them from being truly “great”.

Charming Epire 1

Most Dogenzaka Labs games deliver a very surface level otome gaming experience, with characters and stories that while enjoyable, are largely forgettable. If you look at their games on Steam, aside from Yoshiwara, you’ll find that most have pretty mixed reviews from fans. Most fans know to set the bar fairly low before diving into another one of their games, so, I didn’t go into Charming Empire expecting this to be on par with any of the Otomate/Idea Factory releases. However, I was still pleasantly surprised by how completely underwhelming this game was as a whole.

Game Details

  • Available for Steam, Nintendo Switch
  • Price: $29.99 USD
  • 5 pursuable male characters
  • Gameplay Length: 2-10 hours
  • Full Japanese Voice Acting

Continue reading “[Bite- Sized Review] The Charming Empire was kind of DULL”

Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #45

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, it’s once again that special time of the week—Thrifty Thursday!

In a world where it’s all about the almighty dollar, sometimes it’s a little tough to make our pennies stretch enough to accommodate our hobbies. But, there are plenty of ways to balance your budget while still enjoying the things you love, you just have to be a little thrifty about it. So, I created Thrifty Gaming in order to spotlight some lesser known indie titles that are both entertaining an affordable.

If you’re a new follower or someone who has been following since my Nice Job Breaking It Hero days and has been gone for awhile, here’s a refresher… Thrifty Gaming, is a weekly post series where I spotlight three games/visual novels that are under $10.00. These can be mobile games, PC games, and a few times I have found some nice indie console titles too. The list used to focus on just otome games and romance visual novels, but after requests from a few readers I have since expanded to other gaming genres. I don’t include sales or limited time offers, each title has to be consistently priced at $10.00 or less without any promotions to be included in this line up.

Broke.gif

Note, these are not reviews, rather recommendations so your mileage may vary with some of these titles. This week’s post will include a brief synopsis and links to each game so you can add them to your gaming library! You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy your hobbies, so save a little bread and check this week’s thrifty gaming picks!

Continue reading “Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #45”

Where To Go To Get Your Fujoshi Gaming Fix

My Black Monkey Pro game reviews have been getting an awful lot of views lately, which I find rather amusing considering the amount of pure unabashed vitriol I spew in my reviews for their… delightful boys love offerings. It’s no secret that I  wasn’t really a fan of their shallow smut filled games, and I wasn’t all that sad to see the company disband back in 2015. They’ve since re-branded themselves under the name Herculion and recently released their first official title, Full Service, which looks to be an improvement on their previous BMP formula.

While I wasn’t really a fan of Sleepover or the Bacchikoi series, I do acknowledge that there is a market for BL games that sacrifice their stories for the instant gratification of sweet sweet smut. I’d be lying if I said my inner fujoshi didn’t enjoy hanky panky with my boys love, but where BMP kind of had the monopoly on the English language Boys Love gaming scene back in the day, today there are quite a few game publishers and indie developers that have stepped up to fill the void… and they’re worth checking out!

Continue reading “Where To Go To Get Your Fujoshi Gaming Fix”

Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #44

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, it’s been a while, but it’s once again that special time of the week—Thrifty Thursday!

In a world where it’s all about the almighty dollar, sometimes it’s a little tough to make our pennies stretch enough to accommodate our hobbies. But, there are plenty of ways to balance your budget while still enjoying the things you love, you just have to be a little thrifty about it. So, I created Thrifty Gaming in order to spotlight some lesser known indie titles that are both entertaining an affordable.

If you’re a new follower or someone who has been following since my Nice Job Breaking It Hero days and has been gone for awhile, here’s a refresher… Thrifty Gaming, is a weekly post series where I spotlight three games/visual novels that are under $10.00. These can be mobile games, PC games, and a few times I have found some nice indie console titles too. The list used to focus on just otome games and romance visual novels, but after requests from a few readers I have since expanded to other gaming genres. I don’t include sales or limited time offers, each title has to be consistently priced at $10.00 or less without any promotions to be included in this line up.

Broke.gif

Note, these are not reviews, rather recommendations so your mileage may vary with some of these titles. This week’s post will include a brief synopsis and links to each game so you can add them to your gaming library! You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy your hobbies, so save a little bread and check this week’s thrifty gaming picks!

Continue reading “Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #44”

5 Games That Have Had The Biggest Impact On My Life (So Far…)

A little while ago Lizzo from Soulcial Dreamers included me in one of those Twitter tags that are always making the rounds. I usually ignore most of these, because the Twitter notifications for these can get into the triple digits… and they’re a pain to clear out. But, Lizzo’s prompt really spoke to me:

 

This one asked about the five games that had the biggest impact on my life and I really had to stop and think about that for a moment. I’m not really what you’d call a “hardcore gamer”, most would consider me a casual gamer at best and I’ve even had some folks call my gamer status into question because I tend to favor story based visual novels and otome games over other genres. But, I do love video games and over the years there have been a few titles that have shaped who I am, games that to this day I still have fond memories of and love going back and playing again and again.

But, the Twitter prompt didn’t give us the chance expand on our choices, so I figured why not bang out a post and do just that…


Continue reading “5 Games That Have Had The Biggest Impact On My Life (So Far…)”

Otome Fans React to the Diabolik Lovers Anime

Back in January I announced that I was working on a collaboration with a few otome fans I know, where we collectively review anime adaptations of otome games. It took a bit longer than I anticipated, but here is the very first Otome Fans React post! If you missed the announcement post, or are new here this new series is meant to be an ongoing monthly collaboration review that gives otome fans the chance to share their thoughts on otome game anime adaptations. Each month we will select an otome game anime adaptation to watch and review. Each participant will submit a short review about the anime series and each one will be compiled into one post here on Blerdy Otome with links to each contributor so you guys can check out their other great content. After talking among ourselves we all decided to cover Diabolik Lovers for our debut anime! If you have not yet had the pleasure of checking out this “delightful” series here’s a brief synopsis:

At the behest of her father, Yui Komori goes to live in a secluded mansion, home to the six Sakamaki brothers—Shuu, Reiji, Ayato, Kanato, Laito, and Subaru—a family of vampires. Though at first the siblings are confused as to why the girl has arrived, they soon realize that she is to be their new “sacrificial bride,” not to mention their other, more carnal intentions for her. After meeting the brothers, Yui quickly begins to question why her father would have sent her here and why she feels a strange, new pain in her chest. With each brother more sadistic than the last, Yui’s life as a captive takes a harrowing turn in her new home. As her days turn into endless nights, and each brother vows to make her his own, Yui falls deeper and deeper into madness and ecstasy.

MAL Synopsis

Diabolik Lovers

Diabolik Lovers is a vampire romance otome game series developed by Japanese game developer Rejet. The series follows Yui Komori, a normal high school student who finds herself the unwitting house guest of a group of sadistic vampire brothers. The game series spans seven games, the most recent—Diabolik Lovers: Chaos Lineage—was released for Nintendo Switch in 2019. Diabolik Lovers has also been adapted into various other media including: manga, Drama CDs, fanbooks, and three successful stage plays. While the game series has never been officially localized for an English speaking audience, the series is immensely popular with Western otome fans thanks in part to the 12 episode anime series released in 2013.

The Diabolik Lovers anime is notoriously bad, even by otome game anime adaptation standards, but it was popular enough to warrant an OVA and a second series, Diabolik Lovers More, Blood. It’s super low budget and trashy… and the perfect pick for our first Otome Fans React! The roster for this post includes: Hazel from Archi-AnimeRuby from Otomates Podcast , Pseudofaux from the Press X to Fall in Love Podcast, and my otome buddy, April.

Alright! Let’s delve into the “madness and ecstasy” of season 1 of the Diabolik Lovers anime!!

Continue reading “Otome Fans React to the Diabolik Lovers Anime”

A Little Tough Love: 5 Kuudere Otome Guys

If you’re just joining the party, this is the fourth post in my Character Archetype series, where I spotlight five otome LIs from each of the major character archetypes. These posts are a complement to my Beginners Guide to Otome Games posts, particularly the one on Common Character Archetypes in Otome Games. There I give a very general rundown of the most common character archetypes that appear in otome games with a few examples of characters that fit each trope.

Last time around I covered one of the character archetypes that I’ve recently come to appreciate more, the super sweet, Genki characters. Which you can check out by clicking the link: ‘It’s All In a Smile: 5 Otome Game Genki Guys’. This time around I’m covering the cold-blooded kuudere character types, some of my absolute favorite otome love interests.

The Basics: What Are Kuudere?

Kuudere is a term derived from the terms “kuu” which comes from the Japanese pronunciation of the English word “cool” (クール), and “dere dere” (デレデレ), which means “lovey dovey”. These characters are usually cold or distant at first, but this is only a self-defense mechanism used to protect themselves from getting hurt. While they can be blunt and very direct in their manner of speaking they can be very caring and affectionate once you melt through their frosty exterior.

Lance Nameless-kuudere.png

Kuudere types are very similar to Tsundere and Dandere characters, as all three display cool or indifferent behavior towards others. However kuudere characters tend to remain rather cool and composed with brief moments of warmth, while tsundere characters constantly switch between personalities and a dandere character’s coolness stems mostly from their shyness.

Continue reading “A Little Tough Love: 5 Kuudere Otome Guys”

Melanin Friendly Games – ‘One Thousand and One Days’

Hey Hey! I took an unexpected break this past weekend, I took a blogging break to enjoy my new Switch and do some adulting. I wanna get back into the swing of things with another Melanin Friendly Game pick. This time around I’m covering a game that I’ve covered before, but I don’t see many people talking about, which is a shame because it’s really quite impressive.

For today’s pick I’m covering Asif G.’s episodic Arabian Nights inspired fantasy visual novel, One Thousand and One Days. The game borrows heavily from ancient Persian mythology and Islamic lore AND features an all ethnic cast that draw inspiration from Middle Eastern, North African, and Mongolian cultures. Like Nusantara, this game focuses on a culture and region you don’t see explored very often in games—sure you get otome games that borrow the aesthetic of Arabian cultures, but you don’t see any one taking the time to really go in depth. One Thousand and One Days, does that and more while also weaving an intriguing fantasy adventure that will keep you captivated through each new chapter.

Continue reading “Melanin Friendly Games – ‘One Thousand and One Days’”

Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #43

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, I’m a bit late, but it’s once again that special time of the week—Thrifty Thursday!

In a world where it’s all about the almighty dollar, sometimes it’s a little tough to make our pennies stretch enough to accommodate our hobbies. But, there are plenty of ways to balance your budget while still enjoying the things you love, you just have to be a little thrifty about it. So, I created Thrifty Gaming in order to spotlight some lesser known indie titles that are both entertaining an affordable.

If you’re a new follower or someone who has been following since my Nice Job Breaking It Hero days and has been gone for awhile, here’s a refresher… Thrifty Gaming, is a weekly post series where I spotlight three games/visual novels that are under $10.00. These can be mobile games, PC games, and a few times I have found some nice indie console titles too. The list used to focus on just otome games and romance visual novels, but after requests from a few readers I have since expanded to other gaming genres. I don’t include sales or limited time offers, each title has to be consistently priced at $10.00 or less without any promotions to be included in this line up.

Broke.gif

Note, these are not reviews, rather recommendations so your mileage may vary with some of these titles. This week’s post will include a brief synopsis and links to each game so you can add them to your gaming library! You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy your hobbies, so save a little bread and check this week’s thrifty gaming picks!

Continue reading “Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #43”

Melanin Friendly Games – ‘PAIRS’

Thanks to my mom I’m a casual Trekkie, and I have fond memories of watching a handful of episodes with her during marathons when I was younger. I’ve even gone on to watch through the original series on Netflix and Next Generation whenever I can catch a marathon. There is just something about exploring new worlds and interacting with alien life and learning about their cultures that I find fascinating. And Star Trek was one of the first sci-fi series (that I know of) to embrace diversity in a time where seeing folks from different racial and ethnic backgrounds just wasn’t a thing. Nichelle Nichols’s portrayal of Uhura on the original series was and still is one of the most culturally significant Black roles ever! Fast-forward today and it’s not uncommon to see a few characters of color woven in to most mainstream series. Just look at Star Trek: Discovery, Sonequa Martin-Green stars as Michael Burnham, the first Black female lead in Star Trek series—which is absolutely monumental!

So, when I came across the 2017 NaNoRenO title, PAIRS—a sci-fi romance that not only embraces diversity, but also had not one but TWO Black female leads… I knew I had add it to my game library. PAIRS follows two unique couples—Carmelita and Ricardo, two heroes in training and James, Kitten Pink (Noiya), a human baker and an alien warrior princess— in the midst of an ongoing alien war between Earth and the invading Naian people.

Continue reading “Melanin Friendly Games – ‘PAIRS’”

Melanin Friendly Games – ‘Magical Warrior Diamond Heart’

One of my first experiences with Japanese culture and anime came from watching Sailor Moon after school. Though the American dub of the series was HEAVILY edited, I was enamored with the series and tuned in every day to see Serena (yes, I know Usagi) and the rest of the Sailor Scouts kicking ass and protecting their city from evil… and Tuxedo Mask, he was like my first anime crush! I can STILL remember singing the opening theme at the top of my lungs much to the annoyance of my mom and brothers, but watching Sailor Moon sparked a love affair with anime and the magical girl genre that has lasted years…

I love me some Sailor Moon, but there weren’t exactly any Black sailor scouts (except for Pluto… I’m gonna go ahead and claim her for the culture), not that that stopped me from wanting to be a sailor scout. But, looking back, I would have loved to have seen someone that looked like me fighting along side the rest of the sailor scouts. So when I came across Xeregha Lopez’s magical girl yuri/otome visual novel, Magical Warrior Diamond Heart it set my little magical girl heart all a flutter!!

Continue reading “Melanin Friendly Games – ‘Magical Warrior Diamond Heart’”

Melanin Friendly Games – ‘A Troll’s Fairy Tale’

Hey Hey!! Day 2 of my “mostly” month long shoutout to melanin friendly games!! It’s Black History Month, so for the remainder of the month, I want to write mini reviews spotlighting games that feature Black and Brown characters in prominent roles! As a Black woman and gamer, I am always on the lookout for games that feature characters that look like me and even more so, stories from creators of color. Because there is just something beautiful about creators of color telling their own stories!

And today’s Melanin Friendly Game pick has both! 

Y’all may know S-morishita for her delightful webcomic series Catch Me! Fight Me! Love Me!, but did you know she also released a game too?! S-morishita is a triple threat- Artist, Writer, and Game Developer! Back in 2013, she released the fantasy romance visual novel, A Troll’s Fairy Tale, for the one month Game Jam, NaNoRenO. The game follows a 24 year old troll, named Acacia, who despite not being a beautiful dainty princess, wants to have her own fairytale romance just like the ones she’s heard about in stories. But, can a troll really have her own happily ever after? Join Acacia on her quest for the perfect fairytale romance and find out!

Continue reading “Melanin Friendly Games – ‘A Troll’s Fairy Tale’”

Melanin Friendly Games – ‘Nusantara: Legend of the Winged Ones’

It’s Black History Month, and while I’m a week late to the party, I wanted to do something special to celebrate and what better way to do that than to flood your timelines and readers with Melanin Friendly games?! Diversity in games has certainly gotten better over the years, and as a Black woman and a gamer, I really appreciate seeing more and more developers including narratives that focus on characters that look like me. I’ve written about representation in games before, focusing mostly on indie games and visual novels, since they tend to have more inclusive casts of characters and narratives. I wrote a post last year spotlighting a list of visual novels and otome games that featured Black and Brown characters in prominent roles and I want to kind of expand on that. Every day I’ll write mini reviews of games that I’ve found that have characters of color at the forefront.

First up is the fantasy romance visual novel, Nusantara – Legend of the Winged Ones from indie developer, Sweet Chiel. The game follows Tamara, a young woman who is transported from the present day into the past—a world of myths and legends. Embark on a journey into the unknown, as you are thrust into the ongoing conflict between the Sakma, a race of winged people and their enemies, the ruthless Komodo.

Continue reading “Melanin Friendly Games – ‘Nusantara: Legend of the Winged Ones’”

Making Stuff Pretty!

Hey Hey!! I know I’ve been slow with updates this week, I’ve recently taken on more responsibility at work which has kind of put me behind with my hobbies. So, I’m taking this time to make some aesthetic changes to the site, the first of which was a new logo:

White, Red and Orange Badge Recess Food Festival Logo

Isn’t wonderfully simple?! Yeah, I’m trying this out for a bit to see if I like it, so def let me know what you think.

I’ll also be playing around with some of the pages and the menu, so expect some things to move around or change completely between now and Sunday. I’ll also take this weekend to actually play some games so everything should be back to normal come Monday!

Thank you guys for being patient while I get my stuff taken care of!! You all are the real MVPs!!

-Naja B.

White, Red and Orange Badge Recess Food Festival Logo

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Someone Thinks I’m Pretty Neat – Real Neat Blog Award – Part I

Hey guys! I’m back with yet another blog award/tag post, this time around, I was nominated for the Real Neat Blog Award by Megan from A Geeky Gal! I love her blog, while a lot of blogs tend to have a very specific topic, A Geeky Girl covers a wide range of geeky topics, but with a personal flair you don’t see too often in many blogs. While I love all of her content, I especially love her Mental Health in the Geek Community series of posts. They’re a little bit of everything, from self help guides to personal anecdotes, each one is a unique journey that shouldn’t be missed. I want to thank Megan for nominating me for this award and I want to apologize for taking so long to write up my response (I’ve been sitting on this since December).

Neat Blog Award.jpg

The Rules:

  • Display the Award Logo.
  • Thank the blogger who nominated you and post a link to their blog.
  • Answer the questions of the one who nominated you.
  • Nominate 7-10 bloggers.
  • Ask them seven questions.

Continue reading “Someone Thinks I’m Pretty Neat – Real Neat Blog Award – Part I”

Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #42

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, I’m a bit late, but it’s once again that special time of the week—Thrifty Thursday!

In a world where it’s all about the almighty dollar, sometimes it’s a little tough to make our pennies stretch enough to accommodate our hobbies. But, there are plenty of ways to balance your budget while still enjoying the things you love, you just have to be a little thrifty about it. So, I created Thrifty Gaming in order to spotlight some lesser known indie titles that are both entertaining an affordable.

If you’re a new follower or someone who has been following since my Nice Job Breaking It Hero days and has been gone for awhile, here’s a refresher… Thrifty Gaming, is a weekly post series where I spotlight three games/visual novels that are under $10.00. These can be mobile games, PC games, and a few times I have found some nice indie console titles too. The list used to focus on just otome games and romance visual novels, but after requests from a few readers I have since expanded to other gaming genres. I don’t include sales or limited time offers, each title has to be consistently priced at $10.00 or less without any promotions to be included in this line up.

Broke.gif

Note, these are not reviews, rather recommendations so your mileage may vary with some of these titles. This week’s post will include a brief synopsis and links to each game so you can add them to your gaming library! You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy your hobbies, so save a little bread and check this week’s thrifty gaming picks!

Continue reading “Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #42”

Betcha Can’t Read Just One: Reading FanFics is a Slippery Slope

Y’all ever hear that old Lays potato chip slogan, ‘Betcha can’t eat just one’? It was well before my time but, I find that it pretty accurately sums up my relationship with Fanfiction. No matter how hard I try, I can never seem to read just one.

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It always starts the same way: I find a really good fic—usually KuroTsuki… but BakuDeku is growing on me too—I get really engrossed in the story. Like Sam I Am in Green Eggs and Ham, I read that fic all over the place—on the train to and from work, at my desk during my lunch break, between tasks, curled up in bed, hell, I even read while walking to the station in the morning. I binge the hell outta that fic! And then, like most good things, the fic ends and I’m left with this gaping void in my daily routine.

Continue reading “Betcha Can’t Read Just One: Reading FanFics is a Slippery Slope”

10 Indie Games You Should Be Playing

Each year we get tons of new indie game releases, from thought provoking art pieces to RPG simulators to immersive visual novels, there’s no end to the wealth of new titles being released. Despite the rise in popularity of indie games, there are still some people that aren’t ready to give these low budget gems a chance. I’ve personally been burned in the past by subpar indie games, so I can understand the hesitance, but there are way too many great indie games out there to ignore.

Indie games can be a bit hit or miss—their lower budgets and smaller development teams usually mean fewer assets and simpler gameplayand I can understand not wanting settle for less when you’re used to the quality of bigger budget commercial releases. But, even with the overabundance of mediocre indie titles there are quite a few gems that are just as good, if not better than some of the bigger budget game releases on the market.

These games blow everything else out of the water and if you’re one of those people not playing indie games because you’re worried about quality… here are a few indie titles I think you should check out!

Continue reading “10 Indie Games You Should Be Playing”

Announcing A New Collaboration Project – Otome Fans React!!

Hey Hey Guys and Gals, I just wanted to write up a short announcement post about an upcoming project that I am super excited about and I’m finally ready to talk about it officially. I mentioned in my 2020 resolution post that I had two upcoming projects in the works and while the Otome Debates posts are still in the brainstorming phase. However, I’ve been working on another “super secret” project and after talking with my fellow collaborators, we’re ready for the big reveal!! You may even remember seeing my super vague tweet a little while ago, saying that I was working with five individuals— Tomey from Otome Sweetheart, Hazel from Archi-Anime, Voca from Otome Heaven, and Ruby and Pseudofaux from the Otomates Podcast on an “exciting project”…

Secrets Below

Continue reading “Announcing A New Collaboration Project – Otome Fans React!!”

Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #41

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, I’m a bit late, but it’s once again that special time of the week—Thrifty Thursday!

In a world where it’s all about the almighty dollar, sometimes it’s a little tough to make our pennies stretch enough to accommodate our hobbies. But, there are plenty of ways to balance your budget while still enjoying the things you love, you just have to be a little thrifty about it. So, I created Thrifty Gaming in order to spotlight some lesser known indie titles that are both entertaining an affordable.

If you’re a new follower or someone who has been following since my Nice Job Breaking It Hero days and has been gone for awhile, here’s a refresher… Thrifty Gaming, is a weekly post series where I spotlight three games/visual novels that are under $10.00. These can be mobile games, PC games, and a few times I have found some nice indie console titles too. The list used to focus on just otome games and romance visual novels, but after requests from a few readers I have since expanded to other gaming genres. I don’t include sales or limited time offers, each title has to be consistently priced at $10.00 or less without any promotions to be included in this line up.

Broke.gif

Note, these are not reviews, rather recommendations so your mileage may vary with some of these titles. This week’s post will include a brief synopsis and links to each game so you can add them to your gaming library! You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy your hobbies, so save a little bread and check this week’s thrifty gaming picks!

Continue reading “Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #41”

Side Characters Shouldn’t Be This Cute – Non-Dateable Otome Guys I Wish Had A Route

Otome games are filled with beautiful boys, it’s a part of that fantasy to romance your own personal harem of super mega hot guys… But, have you ever come across a really hot guy in an otome game only to discover that he isn’t one of the main love interests?! You know what I mean, that really really ridiculously good looking side character that makes you wanna renounce LI bae and run off into the sunset with this no-name Joe. It’s unfair to have a good looking side character, because no matter how much they make your heart flutter, he will forever just be a beautiful gem sparkling in the background.

Meanwhile elevated extras like Demento from Period Cube get half-assed excuses for routes, while a perfectly attractive and approachable side character is right there, just out of reach! So, that got me thinking… a dangerous pasttime… I know~ about some of my favorite unobtainable otome side characters. The boys that deserve so much more love, but alas, are just out of reach. Sometimes we’ll get lucky and they’ll get a route in one of the ports or fandiscs, like Finn from Steam Prison who didn’t have a route in the original PC release but got one in the Vita port or Sannan who was recently elevated from tragic antagonist/ally to bona fide love interest in Hakuoki Kyoto Winds/Edo Blossoms. 

But, for the purpose of this list, I’m just gonna stick to main games and not FDs, spin-offs, or sequels. And if any of these guys do have a route somewhere else, definitely let me know… cus, I need to see my boys in the spotlight for once!!


Continue reading “Side Characters Shouldn’t Be This Cute – Non-Dateable Otome Guys I Wish Had A Route”

[First Thoughts] Seiyuu Danshi – BL Game Review

I think a disclaimer is in order with this game, since I’ve only really finished one route in Seiyuu Danshi, so this isn’t a “full game review” in the traditional sense. However, I kind of feel like I got a pretty good sense of the game as a whole after my first playthrough and I’d like to share my “experience”.

A large part of the gameplay is dedicated to the stats raising, but with elements of a life simulator thrown in, giving players full control of the game’s protagonist, Haato as he navigates his career as a voice actor and his relationships—both platonic and romantic—with the game’s colorful and expansive cast of characters.

When I initially played the demo for Meyaoi Games’s boys love stats raiser Seiyuu Danshi back in 2016, I was excited for all the interesting features, stats raising included. It was a fresh idea at the time and at least in the limited time frame of the demo, the stats raising wasn’t too overbearing and felt much more casual than I expected going in. So, when the final version of the game was released I was eager to see the fruits of the developers’ labors and I’m not gonna lie, Seiyuu Danshi is a pretty impressive game.

Game Details

  • Available for Windows, Mac, Linux 
  • Price: $32.99 USD
  • 5 pursuable male characters (and 2 Secret Characters)
  • Gameplay Length: 60+ hours
  • Partial Voice Acting

Continue reading “[First Thoughts] Seiyuu Danshi – BL Game Review”

Visions for A Better Tomorrow – January 2020 “Visions” OWLS Blog Tour

It’s a new year and with it comes the promise of a new beginning for many looking to put the hardships of last year behind them. Like many, I see the new year as a chance to start fresh, both online and in my personal life. 2019 ended on a high note with me finally securing a full time job, giving me a much more positive outlook for the new year. There will of course be some ups and downs, but I’m definitely optimistic about what 2020 has in store for me moving forward.

So, when the lovely Lyn revealed that the theme for our first Blog Tour of 2020 would be visions, I was eager to put my own personal spin on the topic. Initially, I intended to write about the anime series revisions (which explains the feature image), and while I’ll probably plug the series at some point in this post, I felt that a more personal post was necessary this time around.

Happy New Year! Since it is a new year, it’s a new you! This month we will be talking about various pop culture mediums that focus on envisioning “the future.” What type of future do we want for ourselves, our communities, and the world? Also, we will be sharing our goals and plans for the new year. Once again, happy new year!

-OWLS January 2020 “Visions” Blog Tour Prompt

OWLS has grown and changed considerably since it’s inception back in 2017, I remember being approached by the President of OWLS Katrina Sade to join the group that at the time had a very simple goal, “to create a safe space for people to be free being who they are”. We didn’t have a huge platform back then, it was just a small group of bloggers from the aniblogging community who wanted to make a small difference in the world.

Continue reading “Visions for A Better Tomorrow – January 2020 “Visions” OWLS Blog Tour”

Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #40

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs it’s that special time of the week—Thrifty Thursday!

In a world where it’s all about the almighty dollar, sometimes it’s a little tough to make our pennies stretch enough to accommodate our hobbies. But, there are plenty of ways to balance your budget while still enjoying the things you love, you just have to be a little thrifty about it. So, I created Thrifty Gaming in order to spotlight some lesser known indie titles that are both entertaining an affordable.

If you’re a new follower or someone who has been following since my Nice Job Breaking It Hero days and has been gone for awhile, here’s a refresher… Thrifty Gaming, is a weekly post series where I spotlight three games/visual novels that are under $10.00. These can be mobile games, PC games, and a few times I have found some nice indie console titles too. The list used to focus on just otome games and romance visual novels, but after requests from a few readers I have since expanded to other gaming genres. I don’t include sales or limited time offers, each title has to be consistently priced at $10.00 or less without any promotions to be included in this line up.

Broke.gif

Note, these are not reviews, rather recommendations so your mileage may vary with some of these titles. This week’s post will include a brief synopsis and links to each game so you can add them to your gaming library! You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy your hobbies, so save a little bread and check this week’s thrifty gaming picks!

Continue reading “Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #40”

Bite-Sized Review – Nightshade

Where to Get the Game: Steam

A little while ago I went on a recovery mission into my backlog and I “rescued” a few titles from the depths. One of those titles was Nightshade. When this game was originally released I didn’t have the money to purchase it, so a friend of mine from an otome group I’m in gifted it to me on Steam. Even then, I didn’t immediately play the game, and I have to wonder that if I had played it back then when the entire otome games community was hyped as hell for this game, maybe, just maybe my opinion might have been different. But, I didn’t and I’m gonna be upfront with you guys, I did not enjoy this game and the only reason I even finished the game was out of a moral obligation to the friend who bought it for me the game.

I went in expecting Nightshade to be this epic historical fantasy on par with the much beloved otome darling Hakuoki, but what I got was a bland and largely forgettable gaming experience. Everything was just so meh, it just didn’t WOW me the way I thought it would. The premise was okay, the characters were okay, and the story itself was just… you guessed it, okay. It just didn’t stand out at all. Everything was just so predictable and unoriginal, HELL if you’re looking for a better game with shinobi, I highly recommend the mobile game Destiny Ninja it has its moments, but at least it’s FUN. Nightshade just played it too safe.

Continue reading “Bite-Sized Review – Nightshade”

Sunshine Blogger Challenge Part I

I’m super late with this and despite it being the middle of Winter, it’s a temperate 65ºF here on the East coast, which I suppose is the perfect time to unload these neglected Sunshine Blogger Award ChallengesBetter late than never, right?

This is the one of two Sunshine Blogger posts I’ve gotten, but rather than banging them out in one go I’ll spread them out a bit and post the second one next week. I wanna thank Carla over at Pop Culture Literary for tagging me in this challenge (and sorry for dragging my feet in getting this done). If you guys haven’t heard of Carla or her amazing site, I highly recommend giving it a look, ASAP! Carla covers a wide range of topics within the pop culture sphere from animated shows to films to books to comics, and even Japanese media, if you can think of it she’s probably got a post on it. And they’re not just your run of the mill reviews, Carla writes some great analysis pieces that give a in depth look at a series and it’s influence on the fandom and pop culture as a whole. Seriously, you have to check her stuff out, you won’t be disappointed!

As part of the Sunshine Blogger Award Challenge, Carla came up with 11 questions for me to answer, which I have done below the cut.

Continue reading “Sunshine Blogger Challenge Part I”

Haikyuu to the Top is Finally Here! – Thoughts on Episode 1 “Introductions”

Haikyuu-To-the-Top-Visual.jpgWe’ve been waiting almost four years for this new season and after watching episode 1 – Introductions, I can honestly say it was worth the wait! The series is back and in full form, the cast is back and everyone gets their fair share of screentime. I missed my Haikyu!! boys so it was nice to kind of get reacquainted with everyone. The first half of the episode was just so nostalgic, everything was just so spot on, from Kageyama and Hinata having one of their usual pissing contests right off the bat to the third years just being so over the younger team member’s shenanigans to Tsukki being so smug about surpassing 190 cm. All my old Haikyu!! just came flooding back full force and this is just the first episode!

Continue reading “Haikyuu to the Top is Finally Here! – Thoughts on Episode 1 “Introductions””

Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #39

Hey there Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs it’s 2020 and how about we start the year off right with some thrifty game buys!! It’s been awhile since the last one of these, but I definitely want to keep this going, because I know what it’s like to be ballin’ on a budget and it’s even harder when there are all these great games out there just begging to be bought. So, I created Thrifty Gaming in order to spotlight some lesser known indie titles that are both entertaining an affordable.

If you’re a new follower or someone who has been following since my Nice Job Breaking It Hero days who’s been gone for awhile, here’s a refresher… Thrifty Gaming, is a weekly post series where I spotlight three games/visual novels that are under $10.00. These can be mobile games, PC games, and a few times I have found some nice indie console titles too. The list used to focus on just otome games and romance visual novels, but after requests from a few readers I have since expanded to other gaming genres. I don’t include sales or limited time offers, each title has to be consistently priced at $10.00 or less without any promotions to be included in this line up. 

Broke.gif

Note, these are not reviews, rather recommendations so your mileage may vary with some of these titles. This week’s post will include a brief synopsis and links to each game so you can add them to your gaming library! You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy your hobbies, so save a little bread and check this week’s thrifty gaming picks!

Continue reading “Thrifty Gaming: Games That Won’t Blow Your Budget #39”

10 Reasons You Should Be Watching Haikyu!!

Haikyu!! is based on the ongoing Weekly Shounen Jump manga series by Haruichi Furudate. It’s one of the most popular sports series and the anime was recently voted the Sports Anime of the Decade over on Funimation… which is huge since Haikyu!! beat out the likes of Free and Yuri!! On Ice. The series follows the members of the Karasuno High Volleyball Club as they attempt to rebuild their team and win Nationals. It sounds like the premise of just about every other sports anime under the sun, but there is just something special about Haikyu!! that get’s your blood pumping! From the intense volleyball matches to the dynamic cast of characters to it’s compelling character drama, Haikyu!! is hands down one of my favorite anime series of all time!

Haikyu.jpg

I blame Kat Sade for my Haikyu!! obsession, because without her I would have never discovered this amazing series! This series single-handedly got me interested in the sports anime genre, I binge watch the entire series every couple of months and no matter how many time I watch this series I find my self falling even more in love with the characters and the music… and just everything! Like many in the Haikyu fandom I am eager for the premiere of the LOOOOOOOOONG awaited 4th season, Haikyu: To the Top on January 10th.

There are still a few days left before season 4 starts, which is plenty of time to catch up on the series. But, if you’re still on the fence about Haikyu!! here are 10 Reasons You Should Be Watching Haikyu!!

Continue reading “10 Reasons You Should Be Watching Haikyu!!”

Love Brings You Home – Arata Yuki Main Story Review

With all the flashier titles in their catalog, Love Calls You Home is one of their underrated gems. It doesn’t come with all the gimmicks and angst of some of their more popular Otome Romance titles, so it’s pretty easy to overlook this unassuming slice-of-life romance. An overworked young woman finds herself in close quarters with a handsome and supportive guy, and while the circumstances for their cohabitation differ by route, the romance between the MC and her chosen love interest remains largely grounded in reality. The only “gimmick” is that a majority of the guys are secretly famous or have lucrative careers. I kind of got the impression that this was what Voltage was going for with their older title, Serendipity Next Door, which has a similar premise.

Currently, four out of the five love interests are available—Taiyo, Arata, Liam, and Hazuki. Because, I’m biased towards kuudere and tsundere, I picked Arata’s route as my first conquest of the game.

Also, because folks (myself included) are fussy about spoilers. Here’s your one and only spoiler warning. This review will have minor spoilers for Arata’s route and Love Brings You Home.

Continue reading “Love Brings You Home – Arata Yuki Main Story Review”

It’s All In a Smile: 5 Otome Game Genki Guys

These posts are a complement to my Beginners Guide to Otome Games posts, particularly the one on Common Character Archetypes in Otome GamesThere I give a very general rundown of the most common character archetypes that appear in otome games with a few examples of characters that fit each trope. But, I kinda wanted to do individual posts on each archetype and now here we are with the second post in this series. Last time around I covered one of my favorite character archetype, the hot and cold, Tsundere. Which you can check out by clicking the link: ‘I Won’t Say I’m In Love: 5 Otome Game Tsundere’.

This time around I’m covering a character archetype that I initially didn’t really care all that much for, but has since become one of my new favs—the genki character archetype.

The Basics: What Are Genki Characters?

Genki (元気) means healthy/energetic in Japanese and these types of characters are a seeming well of good-natured playfulness and joy.  These lively, animated, and bombastic guys are always the life of the party, quick to laugh and ever optimistic. You’re bound to have a good time when you’re with a genki guy! Beneath their upbeat personality these characters tend to hide deep traumas and dark pasts, however these rarely affect their cheerful attitudes as they’d much rather look on the bright side of life. Also, most genki guys tend to have red hair to match their fiery personalities.

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This is where it always starts with genki characters

These types of guys are much more approachable than the other love interests and are usually the easiest for the Heroine to befriend. There’s a very thin line between friendship and romance in routes/stories featuring genki characters, since they tend to be friendly with everyone. Genki characters can be prone to pulling practical jokes and are often the token jokesters of the group (or the butt of jokes) and have been known to rope the Heroine into their hijinks.


Continue reading “It’s All In a Smile: 5 Otome Game Genki Guys”

I Finally Finished My First Route in Code Realize ~ Guardians of Rebirth~

I’ve been playing Code Realize ~ Guardians of Rebirth ~ off and on for the past five or so years and despite the overwhelming love for the game I could just never seem to make much headway with it. So in 2019 I made a bit of an unofficial resolution to finish at least one route before the end of the year and at long last I was able to complete my playthrough of Impey’s route! Took me five long years, but I can finally say I’ve at the very least played Code Realize and I’m not gonna lie, I have some mixed feelings about it. This won’t be so much a review as some thoughts I’ve had about the game over the years—and after five years I’ve amassed quite a few.

84 Years.gif

Code Realize was one of the first major otome game releases to make its way stateside. Developed by Otomate for the PS Vita in 2014, Code Realize is a steampunk fantasy, featuring a cast of characters based on famous literary and historical figures. The game follows Cardia—a young woman whose body produces a deadly poison that melts anything she touches—spends her days in an abandoned mansion to protect others from her affliction. Labeled as a monster by the locals, Cardia resigns herself to a life of loneliness until Royal Guards break into the mansion and attempt to capture her. She is saved by infamous gentleman thief Arsène Lupin, who promises to help her find her father, the only person who might be able to remove the poison coursing through her veins.

Game Details

  • Genre: Fantasy, Mystery, Action, Romance
  • Available for PS Vita | Nintendo Switch (Feb 2020)
  • Full Voiced
  • Gameplay Lengh: 30-35 hours
  • Cost: $39.99
  • 5 male romance options
  • Similar Games: Steam Prison, London Detective Mysteria

Spoiler Warning

Continue reading “I Finally Finished My First Route in Code Realize ~ Guardians of Rebirth~”

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