So recently I’ve been having a strong bout of childhood nostalgia. Maybe it has something to do with my graduation date looming menacingly on the horizon…or maybe it’s my inner adult trying desperately to win against my dogged reluctance to admit I am an adult (if that makes sense?)
Nothing hits me in the childhood like Pokemon…as you can no doubt tell I LOVE Pokemon. Pokemon Crystal was my first game ever. I still remember unwrapping my brand new Electric Purple Gameboy Color, bright and early on that rainy Christmas morning, that seems like a lifetime ago. I’m grinning as I write this, it was such a momentous occasion back then, definitely on par with opening a PS4/ Xbox One. Then I remember turning to the slightly smaller box, the excitement and anticipation raised to a fever pitch as my small shaking fingers unwrapped the game that sparked my love of games: Pokemon Crystal.
Unlike most of my peers, I didn’t start my Pokemon journey in Kanto, no I started in Johto. It wasn’t until a few years later that I discovered Red, Blue, and Yellow version. But in that moment I didn’t care that there was a First generation, I was too busy falling in love with the beauty and splendor that was Johto.
Like all full-time students I am confident enough to say that I know the value of the dollar. Sometimes money just doesn’t stretch the entire 30-31 days, in any given month. Between rent, food, bills, food, metro fare, food, books, tuition, and did I mention FOOD!? money seems to disappear at an alarming rate…
But my pitiful part-time retail slave paycheck still allows me some pleasures…and by pleasures I mean paying for the company of sexy 2D pixel men…
I must have an impulse problem or something…cus I bought both Nameless and Dandelion at the same time…It cost me $50 all together and to be honest after playing Jisoo’s Route in Dandelion…I dunno how to feel…
So this semester the professors have turned it up to 11 with the amount of work they want! One professor has assigned THREE papers within a week of each other and they are all due sometime at the end of the month!
Yeah I feel ya Bro!
I mean come on, can I finish the first paper BEFORE you give me another one?!? And that’s just one class! I’m taking four (for grad school that’s a lot).
Then there is work..Let’s not get started on the personal hell that place is, but it pays the rent and supports my habit…so that is an inevitability…
So where am I going with this?
Nowhere really…I just wanted to rant! But I suppose if I had to come up with something on the pop fly, it would be that:
I may be slow about posting for a little bit, at least until I get my assignments started. In the event that I do post something there is a strong possibility that I will be procrastinating on some paper or another or clearing out my drafts.
This has been sitting in my Drafts for a while now…I thought some time would give me a little perspective…
So I just finished playing DMMd, and I got Koujaku’s Good End on the first try! Yay me! But to be honest this route was kind of dull for me. I usually go for the tsundere types and ignore the childhood friend/brother types, but Koujaku was just too good looking to pass up. And boy is he the mother of all childhood friends! Koujaku is Aoba’s flirty/womanizing childhood friend with just enough of a troubled past to warrant him having his own route.
Koujaku is the resident hairdresser of the Old District and leader of the local Rib team, Benishigure. As stated above he and Aoba are childhood friends, but sometime before the plot, Koujaku and his mother moved away from Midorijima to the Mainland. When he returned (alone) he and Aoba continued their friendship as if no time had passed. Because of his skill, Koujaku is the man women love and men want to be. He has amassed a large number of female fans who, throw themselves at him every chance they get.
**Disclaimer: I don’t own these images, they belong to Nitro+chiral…and this goes without saying, but there will be minor SPOILERS under the cut… Also, there is a NSFW image in this post (it’s rather tame by BL standards, though) you have been warned*
Koujaku Specific Common Route Events
The girl in pink is about to implode…
When we first meet Koujaku, he entertaining his adoring fangirls, after having diffused a misguided, jealous boyfriend. Aoba happens by catching Koujaku’s full attention, this incurs some ire from the gathered girls who fight to keep his attention. But sorry ladies, this is the wrong game for you…The two friends shoot the breeze for a while, when one of the girls tries to touch Aoba’s long beautiful blue hair. (A BIG no no!) Koujaku grabs the lady’s hand just before she can touch him and diffuses the situation with a few sweet words. The men part ways promising to see each other later. Aoba runs off to his next fateful encounter of the day.
(Skips NON-Koujaku relevant Common Route Plot Events)
Aoba blacks out and wakes up in a strange place, he realizes he has been dragged into Rhyme. He gets his ass handed to him for awhile before a particularly intense headache awakens his inner badass! He orders a barrage of SUPER EFFECTIVE attacks before blacking out again. He wakes up in front of the junk shop sore and confused, before passing out again. Somehow he gets home and we are treated to the sexiest CG ever….
Aoba thinks he hears a sound (creeper mode Koujaku) outside his window as he drifts off to sleep, but he dismisses it. A few hours later Aoba is awoken by Beni, Koujaku’s snarky Allmate. (I love Beni!) He goes downstairs to find Koujaku making good on his earlier promise to stop by, they eat and return to Aoba’s room. Now as I said in my First Thoughts post, sexy men smoking is just plain sexy…Koujaku lights up on the balcony and Aoba remarks that he only smokes when he visits. He wonders if it’s because Aoba’s place is the only place he feels at home. The pair talk and Koujaku remarks that Aoba’s long beautiful blue hair needs a cut, but Aoba reminds him that he cuts his own hair. Apparently he has magical glowing sensitive pain feeling hair, so he usually lets it grow long. Because of this, Koujaku thought he was a little girl when they first met. The conversation drifts to the drive by Rhyme battle Aoba experienced, and Koujaku warns him to be careful before leaving.
(Again Skips Non-Koujaku related Plot)
We next meet Noiz (the mystery Rhyme drive by) who has broken into Aoba’s room in order to challenge him to another match. He informs Aoba that he actually won the earlier match, surprised Aoba experiences a heroic BSOD. Here you are give a choice, if you choose “hear a sound on the stairs” Koujaku comes to your aid. They have a pissing contest until Clear and Tae-san interrupt.
Tae-san don’t play!
The group head downstairs for tea and doughnuts…yeah…doughnuts…After a few awkward doughnut eating scenes later, Koujaku and Aoba discuss the mysterious Rib team disappearances and Mizuki’s (leader of the Dry Juice Rib team and another friend of Aoba) weird behavior. Everyone leaves and the plot keeps on truckin’.
Here are some highlights:
Noiz kisses Aoba
Koujaku and Noiz continue their pissing match
Aoba finds that Dry Juice has been erased
Aoba gets another weird game download
Tae-san gets kidnapped
Aoba gets kidnapped, almost raped….and then let go?!
Rescue mission to save Mizuki
Aoba accidentally breaks Mizuki
After the failed mission Aoba blacks out again, waking up safe and sound in his room. He goes downstairs to find Tae-san and the rest of the gang downstairs (without the doughnuts this time). Tae-san then introduces the plot. She reveals that she used to work for Toue, the evil corporation that owns Midorijima, as researcher. She was tasked with discovering how to repair inactive brain function and the effects of various drugs on the brain. She thought her research would be used for the good of humanity, but surprise surprise Toue had other plans. They wanted to create an army of brainless zombies to help them take over the world! *que Pinky and the Brain theme music* Upset Tae quit her job and settled in the Old District to live out her life in peace, but Toue wanted her back. So they had Morphine kidnap her, she also reveals that the missing Ribsters were used in failed Toue brain experiments.To round out her exposition dump, Tae reveals that Aoba has a mysterious power called Scrap, that allows him to control persuade people with his voice. He’d actually used it on Mizuki, but because he was unaware of his power he broke Mizuki’s will. *que ‘With great power comes great responsibility’ speech* The final revelation of the night is that Aoba used to be a ruthless bad boy….oh and a Rhyme user, but an accident in Rhyme landed him in the hospital. His Scrap consciousness took over and he hurt a nurse, he then fell into a coma. when he woke up he’d completely forgotten about Rhyme.
Victorious Childhood Friend
The common route ends with the group deciding to storm the citadel Platinum Jail and take down Toue for good. If you made the right choices during the Common Route, you will find yourself in Koujaku’s Route.
Welcome to Koujaku’s Route, please keep your hands and feet inside the ride at all times…
Oh yeah, romantic piggyback ride….check
Let me start off by saying that Koujaku’s version of the Platinum Jail is gorgeous! It’s a mix of modern and traditional Japanese architecture, even Aoba and Koujaku are momentarily dazzled by it. And then the plot rears its ugly head again, soon after entering the Platinum Jail, Aoba and Koujaku run into some women and Koujaku’s latent womanizing nature rears its ugly head. At this point I almost stopped playing! Koujaku is like that friend that invites you to a party and then ditches you right after you get there (dick move). He drops Aoba like a sack of potatoes to go party with the girls, much to Aoba’s (and my own) disgust. Aoba decides to explore on his own for a while before turning in for the night. Koujaku slinks in some time after midnight, with no information and a half assed apology. Aoba is not amused to say the least.
As if the skull necklace wasn’t enough…
This continues for the next few nights, so our shunned cutie decides to follow Koujaku like a jealous ex. Angry Aoba follows him to a members only club, unable to enter he decides to abort the mission. But as luck would have it a completely not suspicious man in a blue kimono offers to help him get into the club. This fox eyed man who Aoba dubs ‘A helpful stranger’ gives him a members card and wishes him luck finding his friend. Now that he’s alone in the rave like atmosphere of the club, Aoba feels light headed, he gets sick and passes out. The doped up clubbers laugh and step on our poor incapacitated Aoba. I half expected the guy in the blue kimono to show up, but lo, our hero is saved by none other than Koujaku. Relieved Aoba promptly vomits on Koujaku’s beautiful kimono….and I silently cheer, as he has been a complete jerk to Aoba the entire trip. Embarrassed Aoba apologizes, but Koujaku is having none of it. He holds Aoba to his bosom and wipes away the vomit, his long fingers lingering on his soft lips….I jest…I jest…He wipes Aoba up and carries him princess style out of the club. During the walk home, Aoba does his best impression of a human backpack and the friends reminisce about old times. Aoba misses a really good opportunity to question him about his suspicious activities and goes to sleep….He wakes up sometime later to find Koujaku washing his Kimono in the bathroom. Both Aoba and I were not ready for the sheer sexiness that is a half naked Koujaku…But that isn’t what catches his eye, oh no, it is the giant tattoo that takes up a large portion of his back, and the multiple scars that blemish his perfect skin. He wonders when he got them, as he didn’t have them when they were kids. He figures they must have happened after he left the island, which further reminds him that there is a side of Koujaku he doesn’t know. He silently hopes that one day Koujaku will notice him reveal his secrets.
Is it hot in here?
Aoba confides in Koujaku that he cant trust him, and Koujaku though disappointed, agrees that he is right to feel that way and leaves. Aoba has a dream about his childhood which prompts him to forgive Koujaku, but when he knocks on his door no one answers, his anger renewed Aoba returns to the club to tell him off. But instead of Koujaku he meets blue kimono dude, who chats him up for a bit, Ren informs Aoba that Beni is near and they continue their search. The weather taking a hint from the plot decides it’s time to rain. Aoba runs home to dry off, soon after Koujaku returns in a jealous rage demanding to know what’s going on between Aoba and blue kimono. Koujaku channels his inner rapist, forcing himself on Aoba, who argues with his inner Scrap persona not to hurt Koujaku.
I felt kind of awkward watching this scene unfold….
Aoba commands Koujaku to stop with his Scrap, promptly punching him for extra measures. Koujaku snaps out of it before any more damage can be done, but further pisses me and poor Aoba off by NOT explaining himself. I mean come on, at the very least you could apologize, but no, he doesn’t say anything! At this point I thought I’d made the wrong choices at some point and I was hurtling towards one of the bad endings I’d heard so much about, but nope, this is still the good route. Aoba leaves the house to clear his head and runs into blue kimono, again…but this time the creep invites him home with him. Broken, Aoba agrees (bad idea…very bad idea).
This is where the route takes a turn for the ridiculous! Aoba willingly goes in this stranger’s house surprised at the tattoos hanging on the wall, one is an exact copy of the tattoo on Koujaku’s back, but for some reason Aoba can’t quite place it….really…I find that hard to believe…He then drinks the tea Ryuuhou (blue kimono) offers him, no questions asked. So it’s no surprise when Aoba looses consciousness and wakes up strapped to a table. He reveals that he wants to tattoo Aoba and that he knows about his power, but before he can go any further Koujaku comes to save him. Ryuuhou messes with Koujaku until he looses control, forcing Aoba to stop him with his power. Ryuuhou pulls a Megatron, just as the members of Benishigure burst in. The pair escape to their makeshift headquarters to formulate a plan.
Koujaku and Aoba rekindle their relationship, when Koujaku finally reveals some of his secrets. He is the bastard son of a yakuza boss on the mainland. When he left the island as a child he lived with his father who hired Ryuuhou to tattoo him. In the good end you learn that the tattoo is slowly consuming Koujaku and that when he looses control of his emotions the tattoo takes over. It is also revealed that he killed his mother during one of his rages and returned to the island soon after. Ryuuhou it seems was working with Toue and the tattoo is all a part of their mind control zombie project. Yep…mind control tattoos…Koujaku and Aoba storm Toue only to find Ryuuhou waiting, Koujaku hulks out and kills him, but instead of reverting back he loses himself. Aoba uses his Scrap to save him and everyone lives happily ever after…I’m so serious….
How could anyone say no to that face?
Some time later everyone returns to their normal lives, Aoba admits that he and Koujaku haven’t talked much recently, when who shows up but the man himself. Koujaku asks if he can come over to talk later, to which Aoba agrees. Koujaku admits that he cares for Aoba as more than a friends and asks Aoba if he returns his feelings…..
Koujaku the horn dog appears and that can only mean one thing….
I think Koujaku’s reached his limit already…
But then this takes it to another level….
Yes Koujaku, the manly man, Koujaku gets so excited finally consummating his relationship with Aoba that he gets a nose bleed….Aoba and I had the exact same reaction….I laughed for a good ten minutes….After a particularly passionate and awkward love making session, Koujaku has a request for Aoba. He wants to cut his hair…He claims it has been his lifelong dream! In the epilogue we see the two alone at Koujaku’s place, Aoba sporting a much shorter do…
His whole route just fell flat for me. I didn’t really feel the love between him and Aoba, friends with benefits maybe, but becoming lovers at the end was a stretch.
I didn’t feel anything from him, he seemed like one big tease from the start. Sure he cares about Aoba, but I never got the feeling that it was more than just a platonic kind of relationship. They already had an established relationship, so there wasn’t a huge build up like with the other characters. They were just besties who evolved into lovers because the plot demanded it, not because there was some huge revelation in their relationship. The entire route was about growth from a childhood FRIENDSHIP to an adult FRIENDSHIP (key word friendship).
The entire conflict with Toue was kind of put on the back burner for a majority of this route, and at one point I completely forgot that they were the big bad. During the second half it’s Koujaku and Aoba’s relationship that provides most of the conflict.Koujaku doesn’t want to involve Aoba in his dark past, and then to make matters worse Aoba uses the Power of Love to free Koujaku from his inner demons… All in all despite the complaints I liked this route, but it is not my favorite.
Blerdy Otome is an otome games and visual novel review site that runs on Black Girl Magic and Dreams. While I mostly focus on romance themed games, I’ve been known to cover a wide range of nerdy and otaku themed topics.
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