Month: March 2020

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 


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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)

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[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…


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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”

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