Sunday, July 23, 2017

Tsumikui ~Sen no Noroi, Sen no Inori~ for V - Review

罪喰い ~千の呪い、千の祈り~
 Game: [Tsumikui ~Thousand curses, thousand prayers~.]
Genre: Otome Game Visual Novel.
Developer/Publisher:Operetta, Dramatic Create.
Platform: PC, PS Vita.
Release date: 2017-06-29

Since I already played the demo I skipped to the point where demo ended, good riddance.
No point in sitting through the prologue again which only was relevant 
for the sake of explaining how/why to begin with.
I think my general opinion of tsumikui is mostly the same as others... meaning its a mediocre
long winded game that has the potential to be so much better but it has too many short comings.
Look I played/read many vn's this year but this probably takes the cake for being long winded
to the point I often took breaks 4~ hours a day may have been all I could take! add that some routes
took 5/6 days and sub routes 2 at most, been stuck on this for two weeks or so, 4 hours
is a fair amount of time but sometimes when I wanted to progress further i lost the energy.
This in general was so difficult to write a review of... I feel like I spend more time
writing my dislikes than being positive, there may not have been much I liked cept Shiou or Ren.
Maybe its cuz its Operetta or maybe its me... but its probably me lol buut could be the developers.
Despite the demo hitting my interest I shot myself in the foot by purchasing the full thing
because I knew about the monologues and TL;DR , I knew...

Story is about some stuff happening 1000 years ago and a curse been running till now.
The same people from back then get reincarnated, they have to deal with remembering the past
 which wasn't pretty, Kaoru was lucky to have lived a fairly normal life for 15/16 years though.
Thanks Tsukasa...
Kaoru has to kill 1000 criminals to undo the curse or else she'll die, at first some parts may not be
easy to understand but the further you get the more you'll know but honestly it tends to drag itself
out with wordy narration that goes on and on.. then suddenly I find myself looking away
after I pressed auto mode since its way longer than it should've been, poor execution? maybe.
Its the writers job to keep it interesting not bore people with unnecessary junk text. That aside
there's a lot of  talk about past self, morality and also angst, how can Kaoru find love while
having to deal with all this? don't forget the teenage hormones that run amock!
Well atleast the first route I did aka Shiou's handled this surprisingly well
but honestly Touji's was better in certain aspects even tho he's an oyaji. >_>;
Complaints aside the story is good but yeah... I just didn't enjoy sitting through TL;DR monologues.

- Interesting story that makes you want to finish it all the way even tho its meh at times.
- Art, obviously looks great- CG's move and multiple sprites.
- Voiced heroine, if you don't like it you can turn it off.

- Long and draggy.
- Music, fitting bgm in most scenes but others are average, also tracks wouldn't loop
and certain sub character voice(such as man A) are loud...
- TL;DR, they love being detailed and narration should've been toned down as it too wordy.
- The slice of life scenes made this to much like a shoujo manga...
- The battle scenes are boring due to text dumps ruining suspense of it all.

If you hadn't guessed this is a story centered otome game if you're looking for short, fun or to the
point otomege look elsewhere, I only ended up getting this because certain aspects intrigued me 
look its not bad it just gets a tad draggy and I don't got problem with monologues but I do when it is
used to further delay the story at hand that's just poor execution if you the reader
 get bored and just space out from it all and/or close the game as a result.
The heroine is a bit too accepting of certain matters but yeah what would you do if you are
told you'd die if you don't consume a 1000 criminals other than that she's mostly great?
Kaoru will speak her mind and wouldn't mind rushing the opposite way to save a friend.
Sadly she's inconsistent re:romance she says she's not interested then later she's uh I may like him also she's not exactly ''strong'' just willing but she can't do much either. So just a typical girl!
I guess feelings can change but in some routes it was irritating imo.
Scenes are still long and ruin otherwise excellent action scenes with monologues like man
idc about thoughts during battle just keep it short it ruins the moments.
basically they love to *record scratch* *freeze frame* while shit is happening
delaying the actual action and ruining the scene with pointless narration/monologue. x_x
I guess you can go figure why I dropped quinrose after two games, lol.
Uh so let's mention that while I liked that Kaoru had a female classmate to talk too
but some part just weren't interesting, in most SOL scenes I was like move on please?
They have this grand plotline but deal with it so casually half the time I am just like lol.
Take that as you will but I am done mentioning this, I think early on Tsumikui
has a typical shoujo manga feel where not much happens except they made it into an otome
in which you can go after another guy that isn't the main interest which is obviously Ren.

System's easy enough and not worth mentioning except you can rewind read text making
backlog jump useless, there's skip to the next unread too so yay this is surprisingly comfy!
Sadly they don't turn affection meter off for locked routes... just don't try to go for Souta
Kagerou or Ren when you can't or you'll be disappointed if you hit a roadblock.

In short... *non spoiler*
Me trying to write out my thoughts on this game.
From the demo I figured this would be a mixed bag of all things and it sorta was but not
particularly bad also I wouldn't say it was a kusoge even though at times it gets awfully close.
Tsumikui is a somewhat enjoyable otome with a decent story at the core, its fun to find out its story
which is carefully told to you in an enforced play order which was recommended by the creators.
The themes it covers made me a little uncomfortable at times, angst, hate, morality and more
like I said there's little time for fluff but that doesn't mean there is no sweet romance scenes
its just poorly paced. Honestly speaking it doesn't really stand out that much in what it tried to do
but that doesn't matter it still managed to be decent just a lot of things just could be done better
Tsumikui is an example of being too story-driven and not being able to make it all interesting
or better put make the most of its themes.
Fun character interaction? BARELY, boring internal monologues? YEP.
I partly liked how sometimes they make you think this character isn't important and then a route
later he gets his spotlight... outside of that chara such as Tsukasa despite them being great
are just there, like he's interesting but they just never use his character properly. 😢
 I am also surprised this wasn't an R18 in the PC ver because then things could get randy...
also a little scary but its fine the way it is I don't need them to put disgusting shit in badends.
Also while the CG's were beautiful they're spread out poorly in some part I wish there was one
yet nothing then suddenly near the end of the route a nice spread of them in a row. 😮
Not everyone gets the same amount either, my bae Shiou got the most.
Either way with each route I played I wanted to press on as each one I did hinted something
that's covered in the next thus somehow making it enjoyable to unravel each characters mysteries
there was almost no route that was wasteful each character played did play a part but whether or not
it was worth it in the end... saa some routes just weren't well rounded enough. coughmorihitocough

If you want a meaty otomege I'd sooner recommend Ken ga Kimi than this game atleast
its more carefully crafted and the common route actually had a point.
Here? only a few route felt truly well rounded such as Shiou not to mention, Morihito gets screwed
over in more ways than one and honestly had the worst route of all. I never liked him because
he was annoying and only truly stops his Sera obsession in his own in predicable manner. -_-
Well that ends my non-spoiler section, I honestly can't give it any higher than a 6/10
and I agree with a lot of other reviews on certain facts and  that Tsumikui isn't that great.
Definitely do not recommend unless you love Operetta's works or something and can stand
huge chunks of text monologues... going on forever and ever detailing stuff
purely to make it drag out which makes an otherwise short vn much longer than need be.

So now you ask is the vita port worth it if I played the PC ver?
Well did you really like the original and the characters, especially Kagerou.
Personally I do not think its worth 6000 yen for the exact same thing with just a bunch of 
after stories  that aren't that long to begin with and a semi-new route unless 
you really like any sort of new content for a particular vn you liked.
If you haven't played PC ver and have a vita then yes go for it if you like longer otome games
I can't gaurantee you will like it but who knows! your opinion could differ
but if you never cared for Kageriou or hate long windedness give it a definite pass. 

(This order was recommended by the writer and makes sense, Ren is locked till last so no choice).
Shiou > Touji > Kagerou > Morihito > Souta > Ren.
Kagerou finishes off the Kuga arc and Ren the concludes the whole past arc.
This probably the one and only order you can even take there's really 
not much room to order it the way you want.

Character rambles after the jump...
There be spoilers, minor or major below so tread carefully but there won't be any summaries
 as this game is too wordy I doubt anyone will ever do it... its just too much really.

Possible spoilers beyond here

 Kuga Shiou
CV: Tachibana Shinnosuke.
What better way to start with the route of someone who's after your life!
 Shiou appears to be normal but also a bit two faced, still he's surprisingly nice later.
 I also find him really attractive though... oh boy they got me and I am not even one route in.
The kuga fam is a bit antagonistic though, Shiou claims he exists to kill her...
yeah how is romance gonna work out with this one? I certainly was interested to find out.
 Its one of those, dude dislikes the heroine at first but then they interact and he falls for her.😊
Totally liked how after their first encounter which was rather violent btw, after that Shiou basically
stalked Kaoru after school when she went out with a friend at a cafe, there he was all like what's up!
He was kind enough to wait till her friend was out of the picture before attacking Kaoru...
Either way man Kaoru sure had balls to talk back to him and even try to fight him on her own
this just made it twice as interesting as most routes in this game and why its one of the better ones.
Motoko came back just in time... which stopped their fight sigh how convenient
but its weird to see Shiou act so different what is he really like? well he doesn't seem so bad.
Oh and he continues to stalk, hilarious as it was it also gave them time to talk about stuff.
Well bottomline is Shiou became interested in his ''target'' cue shenanigans, they got along
but overall it felt pretty selfcontained, I don't know but if I had to be honest their relationship
 was weird from start to finish some parts were cute, I just have some mixed feelings!
Motoko encourages Kaoru to pursue Shiou and so Motoko an Kaoru go on a double date, they
each went their own way which lead to hilarious scene in Shiou route, sadly Motoko's was almost
the target of a pedo taxi driver? good thing Kaoru noticed, Shiou's speech to him
was on point but a little harsh oh well that's one less criminal, I guess.
 That aside Atleast our heroine was self aware with herself and could notice that she was acting weird
and may be falling for him, IIRC story focused on the kamiki thing from a different perspective.
This CG sums up how I felt about this route over half of the time... 😅
Don't judge a book by its cover because Shiou certainly wasn't the weirdo I expected him to be.
For what's worth the plot here was decent and Shiou grew on me and I also was really surprised
by how badass Kaoru turned out to be at that one point hue who the damnsel in distress now!
Shiou's the only one that acknowledged her for who she is unlike the others so far.
All in all it was an enjoyable first route! he got real sweet and randy near the end which made up for
everything before, if I had to complain bout anything it would the conclusion being a bit eh.
Also Shiou's whole I can't contain myself anymore thing was adorable... and the romance they got was so sweet it felt like stuffing yourself with cotton candy only to realize ohhh this is enough stop I can't.
Plus I loved how Morihito got cucked by Shiou, he deserved it fully since he's stuck in the past
too bad Kaoru literally had to beg Morihito to let her have her way, I hated this.
Shiou's literally the worst boy at first but turned out to be the best. (atleast for now?)
His after story had more lovely bickering over if they're going to the beach or not
which was cute, its really typical lovers stuff also that CG on the right below was hella fine.😂👌
I really enjoyed the route despite some draggy bits but it can't all be fun also I wouldn't
understand why anyone would hate Shiou the way the two grew to like each other was perfection.
Romance ★★★★☆ (The way they acknowledged each other...)
Plot ★★★☆☆(An anticlimactic conclusion to a great route but what did I expect anyway.)
Enjoyment overall ★★★★☆
Kuga Touji.
CV: Takemoto Eiji.
Daddy...! wait why is this a thing?!
Combat butler, old enough to be a father he serves Shiou-sama
 and let's just say Touji is very serious about his duty as a butler.
I already know Touji's really nice and cares a lot for Shiou like he's his dad or something
even though he is not, Touji wouldn't mind dying to make Shiou and Kaoru happy.😢
He doesn't have a full route its more like a side story branching from Shiou
and it shares a lot of common parts as well basically while being around Shiou... Kaoru basically
checkes out his oyaji and here I am like gurl why you do this?! go find someone your age FFS!
There wasn't much new dialogue from the early choices either & not sure
what I should've expected out of this to begin with also its not like I dislike Touji as a character
infact I think he's likeable, this route was really just focused on him and his past
basically all the things that couldn't be told in Shiou's route, i'm pretty sure
you were curious where Touji got his awesome powers at one point right?
Just saying I still dislike the idea of a 15/16 year old going after some oyaji who looks like
he's in his mid 40/50's honestly speaking I mostly saw him as a father figure since he's so caring 
for everyone else in the kuga family but the romance even if sincere was a little off-putting to me.
In all honesty the age difference here is way too big especially for modern setting game, these 
types are a hit or miss I know some people are into this but when the age gap is well over 20 years
then I am like no thank you, atleast they tried to handle it well except them getting... a kid.
Well that aside its nice they actually give this supportive oyaji character a decent side story...
It started out rather slow then the grim truth behind Touji slowly came to light.
Also don't get me wrong I do want to see this oyaji be happy since in the previous route
his fate was quite unfortunate the route itself didn't make it much better it was quite sad. 😢
The beginning was too peaceful like Touji and Kagerou swear to protect Kaoru
when they go out or else Morihito wouldn't let Kaoru have her way with the both of them, lmao.
They chill at Touji's place, he made risotto and Kaoro tried to massage Touji, all's nice lol.
They also go to a planetarium... Kagerou's snoozes through that all very relaxing but not exciting
well okay its a sub route I shouldn't complain right? /shrug.
It wasn't all that bad though since I felt after that snoozefest the rest of the route was handled better
and it picked up even if it wasn't all that happy, it was handled surprisingly mature and realistic.
Atleast Morhito was shown to be more understanding while still being more of the same
too bad he met a pitiful end protecting the one who he cares for the most.
Sadly ending wasn't truly happy but there was still a sense of peace, all things considered this is fine
butI disliked the fact that they you know became actual lovers with everything that came with it
since considering their age gap I still think its wrong, especially considering modern setting. /puke.
Its totally a crime but the world in this game doesn't seem to care so why should I?
That aside I liked how grim this route was in the end, its perhaps the best written one(partially)
and in the end I did get a little sad about it all, I am glad there's a serious route like this
but at the same time it also sorta felt like another bad end that branched from Shiou's.
 Romance ★★☆☆☆ (I guess it's all up to tastes...)
Plot ★★★★☆(A surprisingly realistic conclusion.)
Enjoyment overall ★★★☆☆ (Hah, I can't say I disliked it despite you know age gap.)

Kuga Kagerou
CV: Yukishiro Ayano.
Nuuu my baby?! how can they do this? who thought this was okay?!
 Kagerou is the shota homunculus and like a younger bro to Shiou.
The original PC ending in Touji's route was like wait what?! uh why is this happening!
Atleast he got a route in the vita port that centered more on him however
the majority the route still followed Touji's part, including the boring planetarium scenes.
Yes there were new events for Kagerou but it went by faster than it should've, sigh
 no this was not a completely new route it just fills in the gaps about him.
I was put off by new line of dialogue but the next one is old... it was like that throughout the route
and it felt like a massive cut and paste just with Kagerou's romance event replacing Touji's only near
the end things took a drastic turn really, I enjoyed finding out more about Kagerou but that it.
While Kagerou is a cutie that PC ending felt like a cliff hanger and this should've been in the PC version
to begin with not to mention it also felt abrupt and I just was like wait what really? nuuu my baby!
Kagerou fell for Kaoru but things couldn't be since she's in a *sigh* relationship with Touji now
and he disappeared, saying he joined the stars always watching over her. As for the vita port route
I don't remember much about it except Kagerou being horny and there being drama about
how it can never be because i'm just an experiment and that they met when Kaoru was young.
Kagerou went by Kuro back then but shit happened, Kaoru traumatized and  Kagerou made
Kaoru who was still a child forget about Kuro-chan his past-self or sth since when
they made a pinky swear she accidentally ate him? yeah apparently he can never really die.
Overall I don't know how I should feel about the route itself, I like Kagerou yes... but
I didn't really like the parts where he pushed her down and came on to Kaoru and tease her.
I am not sure but idk if operetta's pulling shit out of their ass while covering details about Kagerou
while also making him a horny brat, him being an old fart in a child body makes it worse. -_-
Despite most of the Kuga's routes being grim and someone of them always died this also had like
the best end for the kuga family like they had to have something to sell this version, lol.
Honestly I'd take Shiou any day over Kagerou...
TL;DR of the ending Morihito and Ren died protecting each other at the hand of Senya's.
 The brothers held each other in their arms as they drew their last breath(how gay).
Shiou finished off Senya fulfilling the contract he made with Ren(yeah he planned it) and
when all's over they all have a tea party while Kaoru and Kagerou ichaicha in the background.
If only it was much more like this instead of him being a randy dandy shota. -_-
That aside the scenes the two had were childishly playful I guess it was partly cute but him
constantly pushing her down was so off-putting it almost never reached mature levels
except for when Kagerou started telling her of his condition and the past.
I guess my favorite scene was when he brought a mini planetarium to Kaoru... it was the sweetest
scene in the whole route, I didn't enjoy the rest of their relationship it felt too playful
and his after story was just more of the same, stuff I can't stand.
Honestly that cliff hanger end in Touji's route was false advertisement I did not expect
him to be a horny pedo in the body of a child, oh god please no.
 PS: Loli-jiji are you serious? wtf kind of word is that?! I know he's an old fart in the body of a child but please.
I thought Touji would be the victim of ji-ji jokes but haha who would've thought
the shota was a horny old fart, ugh this made everything so unsettling. 
Oh please get a room you two...
 Romance ★★☆☆☆(I could barely stomach their playful relationship.)
Plot ★★★☆☆(...I liked the plot resolution at the end but that's it.)
Enjoyment overall ★★☆☆☆ (Can I make my distaste any more obvious?)


Kamiki Morihito.
CV: Ono Yuuki.
Do not want... atleast not like this.
I already figured he's this tragic character with an undying love for Sera that transcends time
but he is so annoying in his ways that I just can't help but be meh about him from start to finish.
At first he seems to be the main character but in fact he most definitely is not...
Morihito is also the victim of poor writing as this route was the most boring/disappointing of all.
Storywise everything about this route is incomplete and facts mentioned here are
covered in more detail elsewhere, which is mostly Souta's route but everything else's lacklustre.
I really wanted to like him but alas... I knew from the first route I did I would never like him that much.
Either way everything Morihito does seems to be for her sake and his family the kamiki been trying
so hard for years to stop the curse, he's not that bad and after the demo ended he explains everything
Ren left out in fact Morihito isn't so grumpy as he first seemed, imo Morihito was a bit comical.
Early on I liked the part of him getting in the same bath as Kaoru for the typical ur my future wife
reason Kaoru got all embarassed but they did have a nice talk, you get the picture.
I just found his character extremely sufficating and I didn't really want to do this route.😓
Atleast Kaoru is firm in telling him to stop seeing her as someone she's not! sadly Morihito
is thick headed and as seen in Shiou's route he's a total asshat-rant start: and a whiny bitch
when he finds out she's chosen another man over him! causing his head to go further down
the gutter that is the past, doing whatever to realize his ideal future with his self-proclaimed waifu.
This ruined his character almost permanently like come on he's too obsessed with the past.
Why didn't you choose me?! why must it be another man reeeeee! ( ಠ益ಠ) cuz i'm not Sera u bitch.
Accurate representation of Morihito in Shiou's route.
 - end rant.
Okay my first impressions on Morihito weren't all that good Shiou's route didn't make it better
that aside somehow he's still likeable and some scenes he had with Kaoru were cute but the route
as a whole? no just no its almost devoid of substance even the climax at the end felt lackluster to me.
The way the route played out was rather generic, he slowly start to see Kaoru as a girl and not Sera
okay this is good since he never really does so outside of his own... but its just predictable.
So then Kaoru wants to go back to school again to meet her friends but has to freaking beg
Morihito... he let's her go if Ren goes with her but yeah its so annoying how overprotective he is.
Later they reached the same level and Morihito became really sweet but there wasn't much interest
going on, except the patissier mini arc of some chef who kidnaps his customers
and stopping him but like this is in the common part so... lol.
OK Kaoru trying to make sweets was cute but what else... is there? well then.
It also went into the past but like I said above its not the whole thing what theY did reveal was:
Hana, Morihito's sister was jealous of her brother's relationship with Sera-hime she had a huge brocon.
Hana was so heartbroken that their relationship shattered into tiny pieces well other than that
Shiou came to say hi, making things rather dramatic and increased our couples bond x9000.
Atleast Morihito started to accept Kaoru as herself and the scenes they had are cute but as a whole
the route felt predictable, Morihito turned out to be a sweet and gentle soul despite
how he was depicted in Shiou's route. Morihito's route and his character in general
was mostly boring to me and not even the final conflict with Senya was exciting, I am sorry but I
couldn't be emotionally invested in it all, Morihito gets so shafted in terms of writing its not even funny.
Also it was painfully long not to mention cheesy thus it took me another 4-5 freaking days to
complete, its too long for what little content there was, they were really stretching it out 
so when I reached the credits oh boy was I glad I was done!
His after story was literally the typical oh god just fuck already... its not even worth mentioning otherwise.
Romance ★★★☆☆(Its believable, some parts be cute but its so suffocating.)
Plot ★★☆☆☆(Despite some past reveals it was just boring overall.)
Enjoyment overall ★☆☆☆☆ (Maybe its just me.. but I couldn't give a damn.)

CV: Miyazawa Shinichi.
Kaoru's adoptive father... who has a surprisingly cute side to him? he really cares for Kaoru
too bad he sorta falls into the background after Kaoru regains some of her memories but they
do meet from time to time, he's really happy she's OK, Tsukasa tells her
she can always come back home if she wants to since its still her home no matter what.
I like him a lot but sadly he doesn't have much of a presence, Tsukasa's a true sub character, lol.
Too my own disappointment his ending is just an event after Kaoru and Morihito get hitched
and she returns home for a little to relax... it was cute but I am so disappoint that's just literally it.
Tsukasa deserves more... he already appeared so little but I guess its better than nothing.
In the ending Tsukasa asked: Morihito or me? who do you prefer, Kaoru naturally said Tsukasa
because with Morihito she'd get excited and with Tsukasa she can be at ease.
This is literally a family ending, nothing more nothing less no romance
but that doesn't matter because he's her adoptive father, it just wouldn't feel right if it did.
Honestly Tsukasa is one of my favorite character, I wish I had a father like that.😭😭😭
I feel Tsukasa is one of the most underdeveloped/underused characters in the story
but everytime he does appear it is a relief how short it may have been.
I wish I could talk more about him but there's really not much to write. 
 Honestly I feel like his character is wasted and operetta never knew what to do with him
and he's apparently a badass samurai but he never really comes into play in the story.
Which sucks because such a great father/mom figure.
 Romance ☆☆☆☆☆
Plot ☆☆☆☆☆
Enjoyment overall ★★★☆☆ (This was nothing but an additional scene, enjoyable none-the-less.)

Tai Souta.
 CV: Enoki Jun'ya.
Normally he's just a friend and classmate... he's nice, cute and a bit of a siscon with his sister
Motoko and like Tsukasa his existance in most routes is almost of no importance
to the point I wondered what the hell Souta would bring to the table.
This whole route is like the true version of Morihito's other than Morihito getting screwed over!
His sister Motoko is very cute its nice to have a girl around that isn't a bitch
but from Shiou's route her taste in men is a little worrisome but that not my problem.
His route is shared with Morihito and shares common aspects, I guess the branch point was
when Kaoru had to beg Morihito to let her go back to school sadly due to it being linked
it flew by twice as fast so if anything this is more like a side dish
Honestly I didn't know what to expect of his route... basically its another fuck you to Morihito
idgasf about your feels or kindness I will go out with who I want, screw the past.
I dunno this route felt mostly normal and Souta was like this pure classmate asdgfdjhkv.
Souta definitely liked Kaoru but ugh she had to be dense... making it awkward.
The route was too relaxing once again it almost felt like I was playing a typical highschool
otome game then Shiou shows up and poor Souta finds out about stuff and comes back for her
seeing how he can't just runaway and let her be killed... even if she told him to run.
Its funny how Souta could hold its own, turns out he's not such a typical boy.
Souta gets introduced to all da sheit after he recovers and finds out about Kamiki and that Souta
is a reincarnation of Morihito's sister Hana, his twin sister Motoko didn't inherite anything
nope no powers, it all went into Souta at birth or whatever I found the revelations in this route to
be more interesting than Morihito's route all together also yep Souta's was Morihito's siste- err brother. \o/
In the past Hana was jealous of  Sera and Morihito's relationship, Souta doesn't remember
anything bout that but Morihito sees that Kaoru likes Souta so he allows a pact of sorts since
its his fault his sister was so heartbroken back then, this route filled in some gaps
that Morihito's didn't cover and well imo it was better in everyway
but the transition was awkward and came out of nowhere.
Their bonding was nice because they both do not remember everything and
Souta's such a sweetheart in supporting Kaoru when it gets troublesome
awkwardness aside they were really cute together but there was little drama.
Honestly Ren was an ass in this route, also cause misunderstanding on Souta side.
The conflict with Senya was more complete here honestly it felt like the true version
with Souta here and it was revealed Senya's a a major scumbag for
making Sera do all the crap she did in the past, Souta proved
 to be reliable and he'll protect her and in turn Kaoru him. *w*
The ending felt happier than Morihito's... is this another jab at him? sadly Souta and Kaoru
have no real goal, they graduated but... other than that they just travel from place to place. -_-
The bad end was a load of drama and Souta's self-sacrifice solved everything so Kaoru could live a long life. 😢
The after story was cute, they go out and eat at this restaurant but Kaoru drinks too much
alcohol? and gets all sleepy so he carries her home and watches over her while she sleeps.

Romance ★★★☆☆(Dunno just real typical stuff, most normal imo.)
Plot ★★★☆☆(More like it filled in all the holes that's Morihito's route.)
Enjoyment overall ★★★☆☆ (Well it was much better than Morihito by far other than that, meh.)

Nagami Ren.
CV: Akabane Kenji.
 Oh boy I have finally made it to the true route of the game! it only took me like what? almost two weeks, lol. 
This route is locked and it becomes obvious real quick he's the canon love interest
but uh he detests Morihito his brother for taking the person he loved.
Ren here is the victim of everyones bullshit but he'll finally get his happy ending
after not only being cucked 1000 years ago but also in one of his other reincarnations.
 Well Ren is the mysterious silver haired princely boy who appears to be on Kaoru's side
and is her retainer of sorts to help her get rid of the curse, Ren's really kind to her
and doesn't just see Kaoru as sera's reincarnation, Ren truly cares for Kaoru.
but if it wasn't obvious from previous routes Ren can be an asshole who sometimes
manipulates sheit and not giving two fucks about lots of things I especially
 loved his behavior in one of Shiou's bad ends but at that point Ren was like whatever.
Early on in the route Kaoru gets a cough... and fever so they end up going to the hospital the next
day to see if its nothing sirius, pretty sure Kaoru's temperature also fluctuates cuz of Ren. 😅
Turns out one of the doctors there is suspicious and they gonna act on it but she can't do it
cuz morality and they weren't doing much wrong? then Shiou shows up to finish her job
idk but the way they portrait his actions wasn't that antagonistic but helpful.
There was also this kid called Aki who stole some bread, he ran away and Kaoru
settles the situation by paying for him, due to his troubled situation he swears to not do it again
that not the end of it but in short the situation with his father and Aki was quite sad.
 Overall the relationship with Kaoru and Ren was sweet and gentle, cute even dunno it all felt natural.
Sorry Shiou but the bias for Ren is stronk in more ways than one also smol past Ren.👌
The route also was or felt longer than others due to it going for that true end effect which means
it tried to do a little of everything while going into things not yet told all while promoting the canon ship.
For some reason I got teary eyed during the ending when they all were enjoying the sakura trees
 maybe its because the fun banter or just that I was finally done with it all.
His after story was comical, they had a typical husband and wife banter and Ren
got mad for her choosing some dude in a game so Kaoru voices an apology out of him, lol.
Ren's definitely not prince perfect that's for certain but that makes him great
and honestly he deserves to be happy with Kaoru after all the crap he went through.
On another note I don't get to hear Ren's seiyuu a lot but he did an amazing job
Akabane Kenji is most definitely under-rated.
Romance ★★★★☆(They had the most natural out of all.)
Plot ★★★★☆(Ayy dat true ending effect...)
Enjoyment overall ★★★★☆ (I am glad I am done with this game, now lol.)

NnnnnnnnnnnnghShiou best boyhnnnnnnnnnnnnnnng
Spoilers end here, kthnx bye!

Fav route:
Ren > Shiou > Souta > Touji/Kagerou > Morihito.
While I found Touji's route to be well written its not much more than a side story
and it being satisfying or not isn't the point, it only existed to flesh out Touji which was great
Kagerou's is tied to Touji because in a sense its the exact same thing except different focus
but I only enjoyed figuring out his past+ the conclusion.
Honestly Shiou's route was more satisfying overall and no age gap woes!
Morihito while he's sweet the route was very generic and I just couldn't stomach the cheese
and the relationship just felt forced to me unlike Ren's whom's route was much
more well rounded and everything makes sense to the point you'd understand why Ren is the hero.
Souta's turned out to be a lot better than I had ever expected it to be but its too typical.
In the end I liked Morihito and Kagerou the least... but honestly I can't
see the last three as romantic interests at all, Kagerou didn't really need a route tbh.

Fav character:
Shiou > Ren > Tsukasa > Souta > Touji  > Morihito > Kagerou.
At the end of the day its Shiou, Ren and Tsukasa for me...
you may think why is Tsukasa so high up? he barely appears! that is exactly why
he's underdeveloped and deserved more, every moment of screen time he had was a blessing.
The oyaji is pretty high up too...and as a support I like him but other than that lol nope.
This is nothing but a personal ranking of who I like more.

Final Thoughts
I can understand why Shiou is everyones best boi because he truly is.
Boy was this long and dreary but I guess it was okay...? it has some nice ideas
 but it just doesn't deliver em all add to the fact it could've no.. should've been much shorter
as should this review be but a messy game makes for an even messier review lol.
The story was solid but with most routes it still turned out to be the mixed bag
which I feared it would be and in the end I can't help but be meh about it in general.
 Well atleast it had some meat too it much in fact to the point some parts could be seen as stretching it
and in no way was this short took me like 5/6 days before I reached the end of the first route, there
you have it and honestly four/five hours was all I could take, I felt like I was drowning in text.
All that made me want to look forward to something lighter next, oh god yes, YES please.😅
 TL;DR is pretty bad, I could barely hold my attention to some parts and totally not interested
in wordy narration when there's fighting going on Tierblade is still the best in that. Moving on
the game takes its time to reveal everything slowly too slow in fact that entire routes such as
Morihito is poorly done and be an uninteresting pile of cheese in general maybe its
because I never liked him to begin with but honestly it just wasn't interesting.
I just hate the wordiness that drags on scenes forever, the execution is clearly flawed... its almost on
the same level as quinrose, look I am not the only one complaining about this if you thought I was
and no its not because my japanese is crap or anything its the writing in general
I cannot stress enough this game is too long for its own good the pacing has issues
and at times so little happens before it picked up, it may have a bittersweet story in its core
but when I got there I mostly was yeah right, its 1000 years too late, pun intended.
I found this old reddit thread and I agree that some vn's just have so much junk text
and in others so much happens in 30 minutes that you're just like awww right let's go! or wait wut
Comparing all this to the last otomege I read... which was just right.

Most complains aside there's a lot of things to be discovered about their past lives and again
I recommend to play in the order of Shiou > Touji > Kagero > Morihito > Souta > Ren.
When I look back I only really liked Shiou's route as a whole, Ren and Souta was great as well.
Atleast the bonding of character and eventual romance in most routes felt right
but I just never really liked Kagerou or Morihito, some thing just never clicked I guess.
Kaoru's character... is okay but she's too pure/dense and accepting but struggles with
the morality of killing people even if they're criminals, however she can be badass push come to
shove! Kaoru just doesn't get to shine all that much in some routes, she was at her best in Shiou and Ren.
I did like how some routes do not have perfect happy ends if anything it kept things fresh but
there are so many things that could've been handled better from under developed side characters
to plot threads... in the end Tsumikui is what it is and it just never reached full potential.
Also near the end of a route there would be a string of fluff, bonding and cg's while
the middle part was pretty bland. Honestly I find this bad because that's just baiting
the reader to sit through mediocre writing to get the juicy stuff.
I can't recommend this game its a meaty otome game with a somewhat okay story
but if you hate long and dreary stories steer away! not much banter either
but if there was it was gold too bad not much of it which is a shame, its mostly 2serious.
I never felt attached to the heroine or in sync with her nor was I drawn into it all
this may as well have been the general writing's fault if you're thinking of getting this
please keep in mind that its not short, I dunno its hard to recommend
to anyone that doesn't mind a VN being really long and for better or worse taking its time.
I just regret falling for its premise, the demo showed so much potential... ah I have been played.
What to rate it... if I just look at Ren and Shiou maybe Souta route its an 8  but if 
I were to be honest its a 6 as a whole, so uhm 6,5 sounds about right ,which is a 7 in vndb terms.

Characters ★★★☆☆(Everyone has good points but like Tsukasa was so underdeveloped
and could've been way more interesting but just wasn't its like they gave up a few.)
Art  ★★★★★(No complaints, its beautiful.)
Scenario/plot. ★★★☆☆(Solid but it could've been better.)
Music★★★☆☆ (Some of it was good and some was average.)
System  ★★★☆☆(Comfy... just don't go for characters routes when they're locked.)
Enjoyment overall ★★☆☆☆(I believe I made my points more than clear haven't I?)

I don't think I will buy another Operetta game... I know Koezaru's apparently pretty good tho i'd have
to see it for myself, if anything that's the only other game of theirs i'd play but not anytime soon.
Well I guess Kenka Bancho Otome FD is next on the list, I thought about hiiro no kakera port
but honestly not in the mood for more TL;DR and teenage angst maybe if I had nothing
better to read and or do, lol.

1 comment:

  1. Yeah this is a mixed bag with many issues, other reviews are right on point too.
    I also can't hold my attention when the narration goes on for too long
    and that reddit thread's got good points, sometimes vn's are just too long for their own good.