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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. 

I know this isn’t especially groundbreaking or all that unusual, plenty of people use guides and walkthroughs to complete games, just look at all the blogs and websites dedicated to them. But, I always felt like there was this stigma associated with using guide, that using one somehow took away a little of the shine of achieving a happy ending—since technically I didn’t really have to work for it. With a guide someone else did all the hard work of playing a game and noting the reactions to each choice. They spend hours playing and replaying a game and documenting each outcome, meanwhile all you have to do is make sure you follow instructions and make the right choices when the time comes. It takes a lot of the guesswork out playing otome games, since you already know that you’re picking the option that will give you your desired ending. And some games actually require you full clear a game before you can unlock the “True” ending and it can get pretty repetitive, especially when you’re trying to get those one off random bad endings. So, I’m not gonna lie, the benefit of significantly cutting down your playthrough time is very tempting… especially as a reviewer.

Otome games take a long time to get through with some like OZMAFIA boasting a 60+ hour gameplay time and with the sheer number of indie games being released, sometimes, I just don’t have time to sit and guess my way through a game. Time is of the essence and getting tripped up by an especially difficult route can be enough to force me to rage quit. And don’t get me started on LIFE SIMULATORS…there is nothing more frustrating than playing through a life simulator otome game, where you spend 85% of your time grinding stats AND trying to choose the answers that you think will net you the most affection points only to get the “Let’s Just Be Friends” ending.

Flip Table

Bruh, I’m still not over getting friendzoned by Benito in Backstage Pass and I played that game three years ago! So for those types of games I am quick to find a guide, because, heaven help me if I have to relive the repetitive stats grinding of the same route in a life sim twice in a row. But, for more standard otome games and visual novels, during my first playthrough I kind of let the chips fall where they may. It’s my way of feeling out the game and the characters without the pressure of getting a “Good” ending and that seems to work for me. I get to enjoy what I’m playing, which I will admit can be hard to do when you’re worried about getting a review out early, like I was when I first started out. I’ve since mellowed out a bit, so I’m not really in a rush to complete most games. Now, as a rule of thumb, I tend to use guides and walkthroughs when I’m shooting for a full clear of a game or for ANY game that requires any degree of stats raising.

I’m not ashamed to admit that I use guide, they’re super helpful and folks work really hard to make them, hell, a few developers have even taken to releasing their own playthrough guides and if that isn’t an endorsement to use guides every now and again… I don’t know what is…

Sites for Game Walkthroughs

Otome Kitten has some great walkthroughs for most of the major otome releases and her guides are super easy to follow, even including save points for folks looking to unlock every ending in a route. And if you’re a mobile otome fan, Blah-Bidy-Blah has a pretty expansive catalog of walkthroughs for F2P games to shift through.


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6 replies »

  1. Honestly, I have 0 shame in using guides – it’s literally the first thing I research sometimes even (to see how long/how many options the game has)
    I swear the first time I played Tokimeki memorial for a good few hours and NO ONE met me in the church was such a gut-punch that if anything, put me OFF the game.
    And even Mystic Messenger I used a guide for because I was NOT gonna play through another week again!

    I think the whole stigma of having to play the game is kinda an old stigma now. I’ve seen some indie management visual novels that give you the option to lower difficulty/cut out the managment all together just to experience the story with no repercussions!

    Seriously, if ANYONE is criticising people for using guides and walkthroughs, they need to find something better to do – like play more otoges!

    Liked by 2 people

    • God, going through MysMes without a guide is insane! That was 11 days of no sleep and I would have flipped a table if I didn’t get my happy ending with Zen!

      Trends change definitely, I remember there being a stigma surrounding guides a few years ago. But, now most players regularly use guides. I wanted to ease myself into these confessions.

      Like

  2. Great post and thankyou for the shout out beautiful! ❤
    I honestly am very obsessive-compulsive when it comes to visual novels and as annoying as having to go through repetitively every single route just to get all endings, there's always this nagging voice at the back of my head telling me to do it, like I have to… need to! lmao its crazy! but its personally very satisfying to complete the game to a hundred percent after all that hardwork, & even more satisfying to be able help other gamers weed out the bad ends they don't wanna come across. ^_^

    I have to admit that there are some visual novels that I myself use a guide too. Games like Deathmark where a single mistake or choosing the wrong partner to investigate greatly affects the games' outcome (not to mention redoing all the investigations etc) and ofc Mystic Messenger! LOL (don't wanna go back another week just cause i missed Jumin's calls lmao)

    Liked by 1 person

    • awww thank you and of course I had to shout out your site! I love your reviews and your guides are lifesavers!!

      I appreciate all your hard work! I really admire gamers like you who full clear games, you guys are the real MVPs!

      Some games you just can’t go into without a guide. Mystic Messenger is hell without a guide, there are just so many moving pieces it’s so easy to miss something.

      Liked by 1 person

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