I’ve written about the importance of representation in media quite a few times in the past, I even have a post series dedicated to talking about inclusion and diversity in nerd culture. Most recently, I wrote a post about diversity (or the lack there of) in otome games and after penning the post an indie developer friend of mine reached out to me about the topic. We had an awesome discussion about the depiction of people of color in visual novels and the importance of wholesome representation. She even gave me some insight into the difficulties some content creators have when crafting characters of color in their games, a perspective I hadn’t considered. I’ve seen quite a few polls and surveys floating around about the content of western otome games and visual novels, many of which have sections dedicated to gauging player interests in diverse characters.
I love that there is an open dialogue about diversity in games, especially in romance themed games since there is a noticeable disparity in the number of otome games that feature black and brown characters in major roles. However, I’ve heard through the grapevine that there are a handful of developers that have been saying that they don’t include darker skinned characters in their games because they “look bad” or aren’t as attractive as non black and brown characters. Some people have stated that it’s harder to create characters with darker complexions using the anime art style common in otome games… and hearing that is really heartbreaking. On some level, I feel like this is just a carryover of colorism, and the notion that dark skinned individuals are not as attractive as lighter skinned individuals (which is not the case at all). But, on other levels, it’s less an issue with darker characters looking bad and more a case of an artist needing more experience depicting characters of color.
There is a demand for more diverse games, heck, this past weekend someone used the search term ‘otome games black girl friendly’ to get to my site and I’m gonna be honest with you guys, it made my whole weekend! As more people start playing otome games (and romance visual novels) the demand for more inclusive characters and narratives will only rise and those who stay stuck in their ways are really limiting themselves. So, for the person that searched for black girl friendly otome games and for the folks that think “darker characters look bad” here are a few Melanin Friendly Otome Games and Visual Novels!!
Continue reading “Melanin Friendly Otome Games & Visual Novels”
Hey Hey Owlets!! As many of you guys know I’m a member of the blogging group OWLS (Otaku Warriors for Liberty and Self-Respect). We’re a group of bloggers and vloggers that hope to spread a message of acceptance and understanding through thoughtful community activism! We use our love of pop-culture and other media to discuss a wide range of topics.
Last month during our Happiness Blog Tour we looked at the things in our lives that bring us joy, from our hobbies to families and friend, and everything in between. This month we’re redefining our weaknesses in the June Vulnerable Blog Tour!
In the month of June, we will be discussing what it means to be vulnerable. To some individuals, being vulnerable could be seen as a sign of weakness, but in fact, vulnerability is actually a sign of strength. In this month’s posts, we will explore what it means to be vulnerable and how certain characters in pop culture glamorize vulnerability. When do we show our vulnerability? How do we express vulnerability? Why should we show vulnerability? These are questions that we will be discussing in our posts featuring characters that show vulnerability and/or sensitivity and what we can learn from them or even our own personal stories.
– June 2019 Vulnerable Blog Tour Prompt
I thought long and hard about what I’d write about for this month’s tour. Since this is an otome games blog, I figured I’d go with something related to that rather than the usual anime and manga topics I usually pick. Otome heroines get a pretty bad rap since they are typically seen as self insert characters with little to no agency within the context of their respective games. But, there has been a shift in recent years towards more self sufficient heroine characters, especially in English otome games where protagonists tend to have a more well defined personalities and motivations. Though, generally speaking heroines are still arguably the weakest characters despite having the most important role in otome games. So, I wanted to look at the roles otome heroines play in otome game narratives through the lens of the heroine, Ichika Hoshino in the otome game Collar x Malice.
Continue reading “OWLS June “Vulnerable” Blog Tour – Inspiring Hope and Strength in Others: Making a Case for the Vulnerability of Otome Heroines “
Hey Hey Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, its been a while since the last ‘A Beginners Guide to Otome Games’ post. I’ve been slowly working on bringing this blog back where it was before I took a break, so expect more of my post segments to start cropping back up… eventually. Since its been so long since the last post, I figured this is as good a time as any to explain what these posts are…
A Beginners Guide to Otome Games post series is a crash course on all things otome games, but in a way that’s easy to understand for newbies and folks unfamiliar with the genre. When I started playing otome games I pretty much just spent most of my time figuring things out as I went along and even then I had a lot of questions. So, I wanted to create a series of posts that answers some of the basic otome question to kind of give you guys a feel for different aspects of otome games. This series is for you guys, so at the end of each A Beginners Guide post I’ll have a poll where you, the reader, can vote on the next topic I cover! Last post, you guys voted and I listened, so for Part 3, I’m going to cover Common Character Archetypes!
*Also, if there is something in this post that you think should be expanded or needs more clarification, please let me know and I will update this post accordingly!
Continue reading “A Beginners Guide to Otome Games: Part 3 – Common Character Archetypes”
In an effort to give you guys more of an active role on the content on this blog, I’ll run polls for certain posts. A few weeks ago I gave you guys the chance to vote on the game for this week’s post. You guys got to choose from four games (Steam Prison, Bad Apple Wars, 7’scarlet, and OZMAFIA) and 33% of you guys picked Steam Prison.
In the last post I wrote a list of 5 Otome Games Like London Detective Mysteria and this week I’m bringing you guys a list of 5 otome games like Steam Prison. For those of you unfamiliar with the game, Steam Prison is a steampunk otome game developed by HuneX. This is the second English language otome localization from video game publisher, MangaGamer. Steam Prison follows Cyrus Tistella, a young woman from a well to do family, who is accused of murdering her parents. As a result she finds herself stripped of her titles and taken from her comfortable life in the affluent Heights and sent to the underground prison known only as the Depths, where the worst criminals are sent to atone for their crimes. With life as she knows it changed for ever, Cyrus must learn to navigate this new hostile environment, where every day is a struggle for survival. While Steam Prison is an otome, it does deal with some complex themes that add a bit of realism to the game’s fantasy setting. Delve into the complex relationship between those living in the Depths and those living in the Heights, as you interact with various characters and explore unique locales.
So, if you’re like me and you’re looking for games similar to Steam Prison, here are five game titles that are sure to hit the spot! I tried to go with games that have the same feel as Steam Prison 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 Steam Prison.
Continue reading “5 Otome Games Like Steam Prison”
Steam Prison is the newest otome game localization from MangaGamer, following their release of Poni-Patchet’s OZMAFIA in 2016 and the R18 otome, Fashioning Little Miss Lonesome. There is always a lot of hype surrounding new otome localizations, but, Steam Prison was the first big otome release of 2019, not associated with Idea Factory. Steam Prison, was originally released in 2016 by HuneX for PC as both an all-ages 17+ release (the MangaGamer release of the 17+ version). A Vita port was released in 2017, that added an extra route for the MC’s partner, Finn.
In the game you play as an 18 year old police officer named, Cyrus Tistella, living in the raised utopian city known as the Heights. Everything is coming up roses for our heroine, with a new promotion and her upcoming marriage into the high ranking Evans family. Things take a turn for the worst, when Cyrus is accused of murdering her parents. Unable to prove her innocence, Cyrus is banished to the Depths a place where the most brutal criminals are sent to atone for their crimes. But, when she arrives, Cyrus finds that the Depths is not the primitive wasteland she once believed it to be, she soon learns that all is not as it seems as the things she once held to be true start to fall apart.
- Genre: Steampunk, Fantasy, Romance
- Available for PC (Widows, Mac, Linux) |Steam
- Gameplay Lengh: 5-7 hours first play through/ 25-30 hours Total
- Cost: $39.99
- 5 male romance options
- Suggested Play Order: Eltcreed → Ulrik → Adage → Ines → Yune → Grand Ending
- Similar Games: Code Realize, Cinderella Phenomenon, and Confines of the Crown
Continue reading “Steam Prison Review – A Deep and Immersive Steampunk Romance”
It’s no secret that I’m not a huge fan of free to play otome games, but the premise of an otome game set amidst a zombie apocalypse was so bizarre I found myself putting aside my biases about freemium mobile games. Dangerous Fellows is a 2018 mobile otome game published by Korean game developer Lucy Dream. Dangerous Fellows is the first Lucy Dream title that has been made available in English, their second title, Mystic Code was released in May 2019.
A sudden outbreak of an unknown virus has destroyed the entire world.
Most of the people has turned into horrendous, blood-seeking zombies……….
As I was trying to escape from a deadly attack by the zombie,
I was miraculously saved by some strangers-five attractive fellows.
They’ve been concealing themselves safely in a school building with other survivors.
……But, is this place really safe for us?
Can we all survive from this bizarre catastrophe?
Find out the shocking ending of a romance thriller
that you’ve never experienced before!
–Synopsis (Game Site)
- Genre: Supernatural, Horror, Romance
- Available for Android and IOS
- 25 Chapters and 7 Endings
- 5 character endings, 1 normal, and 1 alternate ending
- 5 Male Love interests
- Suggested Play Order: Normal Ending ⇒ Ethan ⇒ Harry ⇒ Zion ⇒ Eugene ⇒ Lawrence ⇒ Alternate Ending
- Free (optional micro-transactions)
Continue reading “Dangerous Fellows Review – Nothing Says Romance Like A Zombie Apocalypse”
Hey Hey Heroes, Travelers, and Wandering NPCs, I’m back with another Behind the Games post!
For those of you just joining the party, Behind the Games is a segment where I interview the folks ‘behind the games’ I review. The series is meant to act as a complement to the reviews, giving you guys a chance to get to know the developers that spend so much time carefully crafting the games you enjoy. For each interview I send the Devs five questions (and one random bonus question), to kind of flesh out who they are, while also getting a bit of insight into their inspirations for their games. It’s completely voluntary and meant to be a fun way to get you guys acquainted with content creators.
Last time around I spoke with Ertal from the BL games developer, Ertal Games, so if you missed that, I definitely recommend checking that post out too! This time around, I had the chance to chat with Chu-3, the person behind the otome game developer, RoseVeRte Games!
RoseVeRte Games started out as a small circle of independent developers and has since become a one person operation helmed by Chu-3. The team got their start back in 2010 with the otome game Duplicity and has since grown to to produce a number of wonderful game titles. RoseVeRte specializes in romance themed visual novels, that are known for their imaginative settings and unique characters. Their most recent Eroolia series has achieved great success, and currently consists of three games: How to Take Off Your Mask (2015), How To Fool A Liar King (2017), and How To Sing Open Your Heart (2019). But, enough from me, let’s turn things over to Chu-3…
Continue reading “Behind the Games: RoseVeRte Games”
When the Night Comes is an episodic supernatural fantasy otome game from indie team, Lunaris Games. I’ve played my fair share of supernatural otome games, each promising a fresh take on an already over-saturated genre, but, When the Night Comes is truly something special.
Each new chapter builds on the momentum of its predecessor drawing you into the complex world of magic and mystery. In the game, you are a hunter that has been called to the quiet town of Lunaris to assist with an ongoing investigation into a series of grisly murders. But, there’s more to this case than your superiors are letting on, delve into the world of Witches, Vampires, Demons, and Lycans to slowly uncover the secrets of the town. The closer you get to the truth the more dangerous things become, forcing you to rely on the very creatures you’ve been tasked with hunting. But, with more sinister forces at work, you will need all the help you can get and maybe you’ll discover a little romance along the way.
- Genre: Supernatural, Fantasy, Romance, 18+
- Available for PC (Widows, Mac, Linux)
- 6 Chapters (ongoing)
- Gameplay Lengh: 2-3 hours per chapter
- Cost: Free
- Male, Female, and Poly Romance Options
- Similar Games: Changeling, Spirit Parade, and Love Ritual
Continue reading “When the Night Comes Review – A Devilishly Addictive Supernatural Mystery”
I ran a poll over on Twitter asking for help choosing a game for a post and SURPRISE, this is it! You guys got to choose between two game titles, Bad Apple Wars and London Detective Mysteria and 60% of you guys picked the latter. Thanks to everyone who participated!!
Last week I wrote a list of 5 Otome Games Like Hakuoki and this week I’m bringing you guys a list of 5 games like London Detective Mysteria. For those of you unfamiliar with the game, London Detective Mysteria is a Victorian-era otome game developed by Karin Entertainment and the first localized otome game title from XSeed. Originally published as Eikoku Tantei Mysteria: The Crown, London Detective Mysteria follows Lady Emily Whiteley, heir to House Whiteley, upon her debut into high society, she receives a letter from the Queen of England inviting her to attend a famous detective finishing school, Harrington Academy. Explore London and investigate a series of mysteries, while interacting with characters inspired by famous historical and fictional figures, like, famed detective Sherlock Holmes, infamous serial killer Jack the Ripper, master thief Jean Lupin and more…
So, if you’ve finished London Detective Mysteria and are looking for something to satisfy your inner super sleuth, I have five games just for you. Each of these games captures a little bit of the magic of London Detective Mysteria whether you’re solving cases or romancing hot ikemen versions of historical figures, these titles are a must play.
Continue reading “5 Otome Games Like London Detective Mysteria”
It’s been awhile since I last played a Voltage game, before the switch from the standalone apps to the Love 365 portal app. One of the first games introduced in the new Love 365 app was Rose in Embers a Cinderella-esque historical romance set in the Taisho Era. I checked out the prologue a long time ago, but never got around to playing any of the routes until now. At the time of its release only two guys had been released: Kyosuke Takatsukasa and Takahisa Togo. Since I usually don’t care much for the suave alpha male types, I went with Takahisa as my first choice pick. I mean come on a man in uniform, what’s not to love?!
Continue reading “Rose in the Embers – Takahisa Togo Main Story Review”