I recently started playing Angelique Luminarise in English. The game was just released in May of 2021 in the Japanese Nintendo Eshop. It is not available in English. Not commercially – and not fan translated either. So how am I playing it in English?
Well it ain’t pretty, and it ain’t perfect but here’s how. Pretty simple really. The main thing you need is a smartphone with the free Google Translate app. I like to download the Japanese language pack for offline viewing too – but you don’t have to.read more
I recently shared news of the launch of Alice Closet, a new free mobile game with anime artwork by famed manga artist Arina Tanemura. Arina’s works include Full Moon Wo Sagashite, Phantom Thief Jeanne, and Time Stranger Kyoko, just to name a few popular shoujo manga by this artist.
I have been playing the game since launch and I am loving it so far. I did purchase some of the cash items admittedly, but the game is free to play and the cash items are totally optional.read more
I think Flipped In Love, Project Star, and Starry Love are all the same game – but different! The gameplay in Flipped In Love (and possibly Project Star, I haven’t gotten far enough to unlock it yet) allows you to breed rare cats that get genetic markings and stats from their parents. Obviously, that’s not the main feature in Flipped In Love. But it’s probably my favorite feature in the game.
Flipped In Love is first and foremost an anime dressup game. You unlock rare outfits and accessories and dressup your avatar to compete in fashion battles. You recruit team members, join guilds, garden, cook, and as mentioned raise cats. But the other big chunk of the game is that it’s also an anime otome dating sim game. There’s 4 guys you can date from the childhood friend to the tsundere to the childlike one to the artistic one. These 4 stereotypes are featured in multiple similar games, Flipped in Love, Project Star, and Starry Love, as well as Wannabe Challenge and Mr Love Queen’s Choice… and probably many more games.read more
One good kickstarter deserves another I guess. This is the second kickstarter I’m blogging about today, and is in some ways quite similar to the previous Ova Magica. Both kickstarters are still active at time of this posting.
This next kickstarter is titled Coral Island, and it aims to make inclusivity a big focus of its game. Bringing in characters of different races and ethnic backgrounds.
The gameplay itself looks fun. You date the townsfolk while tending the farm. You even have children and watch them grow into teens. And the other people of the village also grow older as well.read more
I spent the weekend with my Chinese Parents… video game for Nintendo Switch that is. There are many aspects of this game that I really enjoyed. It is quite addicting. I probably sunk 20 hours into the game and am on my 5th generation. I’ve sprinkled some random screenshots throughout my review. At the end of the review is our score card and final verdict along with a gallery with all the screenshots I’ve taken so far. (Gallery is having some errors, too many photos, so I will try to add it in later).read more
Today I am reviewing DAL Date A Live Spirit Pledge, a mobile game on android and IOS. Date A Live Spirit Pledge combines visual novel choice and consequence style dating simulation aspects with real-time action-rpg combat. It includes a skill-tree to customize your characters combat abilities and offers a little something for all audiences to enjoy.
Happy New Years! I thought it’d be fun to celebrate the new year by counting down the 20 best girl games released between 2000 – 2020. Before we can start the countdown we need to talk about what makes a good girl game anyways? I have talked about this before on my site, but incase you are new to my site, here’s a recap.
First let me start by saying, I target a niche audience, girls (and guys) who like a certain type of games – In general, young females prefer these types of games more than men, but there are men who play these games too, and likewise, there are girls who don’t enjoy these games and prefer more violent action games that we see a lot of young men playing. My website kinda over generalizes things, because it’s just simpler for me to focus a very small target audience.read more
I had previously played the Japanese version briefly of A3! Act, Actor, Addict, an otome simulation game that puts you in the role of a young woman looking for her father who went missing 8 years ago.
Cybrid has now released an English version of the game, which is good, because this one has almost no gameplay, and tons of reading (as most Otome and Visual novels). Which is why I only played the JP version very briefly, because I can’t read Japanese, and with little gameplay, and no story (since I couldn’t understand it) it became boring quickly. But now that it is in English, I’m enjoying it quite a bit.read more
BTS now has an official visual novel style game that puts you in the role of managing your favorite boy band. Unfortunately, it is a great concept but has poor execution. There are lots of features which sound fun, but somehow still miss the mark. Even if you love BTS, which I do, this game still feels dull and boring. But somehow it’s cute, and I still find myself playing it and hoping it will get better. I’m grateful they made this game and took time to translate the text to English. Even if it is rather mediocre at best.
Check out the full review below.
Name: BTS World
Genre: Visual Novel / Otome Game / Dating Sim / Manager Sim
The game has only been out for about 2 weeks at this point, so hopefully they can keep adding new updates to make the game more exciting. The first chapter is especially dull. It needs a better introduction to the game, because no one is going to stick around to keep playing when the first dozen or more missions are so lackluster. I keep playing to see the cute boys, but you could just watch BTS youtube videos and get the same effect lol.
Geeky: 2/5 – Gameplay is bad, story is boring, but yet, it is definitely geeky, only geeky girls (and guys?) who love BTS will play this game.
Sweetie: 5/5 – The game is cute, with each member being featured in their own chapters and putting you in the middle of their story – even though that story really isn’t good at all. I like being able to pretend to text/chat with BTS, and watch their cute reactions. Who is your favorite BTS member? I like Jimin and Jin. They are so cute.
Gameplay: 4/10 – I want to rate this higher… but I just can’t… It has so many features, collecting cards like in Love Live, visual novel/otome story like idea factory games, dressup minigames like love nikki, chatting/phoning like Mystic Messenger…. yet… somehow… even though it draws inspiration from all of these amazing popular games that I love… it somehow… feels flat to me… The features are there… but they lack heart if that makes any sense?
Also one thing that drives me crazy is we can’t take screenshots, and can’t share our cards / brag about rares, etc on social media; that kills a lot of the fun for me.
Story: 3/10 – The story is bad… really bad… Almost can’t force myself to keep playing the game because the story is so slow, boring, dull, just blah…. You guys know I don’t like giving spoilers when I review a game, I like to let you discover the stories for yourselves… I should add I’m not very far in the game yet? Maybe about half way through? Maybe it will get better?
To give you a “highlight” of the story “concept” BTS World takes place in an alternate universe where BTS has never met. You receive a strange message on your phone telling you that you have won a free ticket to a BTS concert, but when you arrive, it’s only a single member, who is waiting to sign a contract which you somehow mysteriously have been carrying around.
Surprise, you’re BTS’ manager. Only you have any memory of who BTS is in the “Real World”. Here in this alternate universe, you work at Big Hit and have been tasked with recruiting talent for a new boy band who will eventually become what we know as BTS.
You do this by progressing through a visual novel style game, although there are few choices along the way.
The game assumes alot about you as the player. It assumes you already know who BTS is, and that you have in depth intimate knowledge about each of the members of BTS. The game doesn’t really provide you any of this information, because why would you be playing this game unless you love BTS right? (that’s their thinking not mine, I personally “like” BTS, but I’m not really knowledgeable about every single member).
I think the story could be improved by assuming less. Giving the characters more… character? I want to learn/know more about each member of BTS while I’m playing… but I feel like it doesn’t really tell me much… which leaves me feeling uninterested…
The games first several missions are literally like “OMG it’s xyz Member, what’s he doing here? Oh he signed my contract, and teased me because I’m freaking out again. I’m a really bad manager. I will do my best to help BTS”
I rather it assume that the player only has minimal knowledge – or better yet even, no knowledge, of BTS. I rather see the members introduced doing things they enjoy/love, like what’s their favorite food, what other hobbies do they have aside from kpop, like maybe playing video games, playing basketball, reading, volunteering with animals, I dunno, whatever BTS does in their spare time.
I feel like that would add some… heart… or humanity… or something to this game…. Give me a reason to care about the characters….
The target audience of this game, the millions of ARMYs are probably perfectly happy with this game, as evidenced by the 4.8 rating on Google…. I don’t consider myself an ARMY… but I do consider myself a fan of BTS – as evidenced here the last month or two that I’ve been sharing my listening habits with you readers, you can see I constantly list BTS (among also other KPop artists).
But even though I’m a fan, I couldn’t tell you too much; hell I can’t even name every member honestly – sorry, I’m not like die-hard… I’m just kinda a casual fan… but I would like to play this game too… but it just… frustrates me that I feel detached from the story and characters because the game does nothing to introduce them, tell me about them, let me “get to know them”.
Which leads us to…
Characters: 7/10 – I’m rating this highly – I am taking points away for the lack of character “development” – but the characters are actual BTS members and they have made videos and pictures etc just for this game, which is really cute, where they speak right to you as a manager. And you can see cute clips and introductions and it’s very cute. I love the cute boys. That’s the only thing saving this game. lol.
Graphics: 8/10 – Sometimes… the graphics look very cheesy in the novel (main gameplay parts), because they are so stiff. I’m used to Live2D where the characters move fluidly… But… in other sections, even some high level cards, there is real video clips, and BTS is so cute, who couldn’t love the Graphics, really?
Voice: 10/10 – BTS provides voice clips for the game too. You can hear BTS talking to you :).
Music: 10/10 – What BTS game wouldn’t have good music? duh lol.
Replay Value: 2/10 – I’m not sure… it’s only been out for 2 weeks – will they have time-limited cards, special events, etc? I hope so, otherwise once you complete the story (which isn’t even that good in the first place) I see no reason to keep playing the game.
My Score: 51/80 64% D “Average Game For Girls” – Yeah, I’d say this game is really just Average. Much better games out there… but if you love BTS – and know a lot about BTS – like I know Millions of ARMYs do – then you will probably super love this game. For me, it’s just kinda cute/amusing but ultimately not a very good game at all, despite that I like BTS quite a bit, but my lack of intimate knowledge of the band and its members ultimately hurts my enjoyment of this game. Your mileage may vary, especially if you’re a BTS super fan. lol.
I had downloaded this game, Mr. Love Queen’s Choice, months ago, and forgot all about it, until I saw someone on instagram sharing a video stream of the game, and I was like wow that game looks fun. Then I saw it was by Elex, makers of Love Nikki Dressup Queen, and I was like, I need to play this game. Since then, I’ve sunk probably 20 hours into the game and am really enjoying it so far.
Release Date: I think I must have used Qoo App, because I am already playing the game, and it says Pre-register on the play store. Or maybe I got into beta? I am not sure, anyways, yes I am playing the game currently. You can check Qoo App, which is probably how I got it. And yes I’m playing it in English.
Overall: 65/80 81% B- “Very Good Game For Girls”
Geeky: 3/5 – Basically just a card collecting game, but with a twist, you manage a TV studio and produce various korean tv shows and commercials. The cards have different skills such as if they’re good at drama or news or gourmet cooking shows, as well as stats for things such as affinity, decision, creativity, and other skills that you would expect an idol to need to have to be successful. Some cards are more rare than others. You can also level the cards up. But nothing too complex here, definitely a casual game.
Sweetie: 5/5 – there are otome aspects, sometimes the guys will call you, and it is partially voiced in English. The artwork is beautiful, the voice acting is pretty good, and the whole Kdrama Producer thing really speaks to anyone who loves simulation games.
Overview: 10/10 Mr Love Queen’s Choice lets you run a TV studio and recruit idols, as mentioned, with various specialties and stats. The main draw of the game is collecting idols, progressing through the story, and dating the idols. I think it is a unique concept, there’s a lot of idol producer games, but not too many that take a TV Studio theme.
Gameplay: 10/10 Gameplay is pretty simple, and if you’ve played Love Nikki you will be instantly familiar with the user interface as it seems to just be reskinned and given a new theme. No, this one is not a dressup game, but the way you progress through various levels, and the achievement system and basic interface are very similar. I give full marks to Gameplay because I’m really enjoying the simulation aspects of this game, casting idols based on their strengths as to who will perform best at various assignments. You also can experience otome game elements by choosing how to respond to various parts of the story. I am not sure how much consequence your choices carry – if any at all. But it is a nice touch.
Story: 10/10 – Actually for a mobile game, I’m really enjoying the story. First of all, yes I love korean dramas, and the thought of a game that lets you simulate your own Kdrama production studio, is a huge draw, but that’s not the only thing the story offers. You are daughter of a famous Producer who has passed away and left the studio to you, but it is struggling to stay afloat. As you struggle to step out of your Father’s shadow, and take the company to new heights, you also have recurring dreams about an accident that happened when you were a child. You narrowly escaped death and now your thoughts turn to trying to remember the face of the man who saved you all those years ago. As you’re occupied in your thoughts one day, you find yourself again in a similar situation and rescued by a mysterious man. Could it be the same man from your past? And why do these men keep appearing around you? One such man tells you that you are an Evolver, and that you do not know it yet, but you will soon awaken to your true powers. Leaving you (both as the character and the person playing the game) completely confused as to what he meant. Strange things also begin happening around town – could this be related to your supposed powers? The story offers a lot of mystery, intrigue, romance, and suspense. I have not fast forwarded or skipped a single screen.
Characters: 5/10 – I’m giving 5 out of 10 here. I do like the characters, and I appreciate they have a strong tie to the story, but there just aren’t enough characters to collect for an idol simulation game. I hope they continue to add new characters in the future!
Music: 5/10 – Kinda average, I don’t have strong feelings either way. I usually play mobile games on silent while other people are watching movies or something else anyways.
Voice Acting: 7/10 – I do like that they have voice acting in the game. It is in English, and some of the actors are really good… But some of them are not as good… I’d say overall though the acting is better than expected for a mobile game.
Graphics: 10/10 – I love the artwork of this game.
Please note – I did not realize this when I played, but on your first 10 play gacha, you get UNLIMITED REROLLS by pushing the YELLOW BUTTON on the left. Once you are happy with your cards press the PINK button on the right. I didn’t know, I pushed the pink button and I only had one SSR. I have been thinking about starting over (and still might) but I think I had some pre-registration bonuses and other things I don’t want to lose by restarting the game. So definitely do not push the Pink button until you have the cards you want.
Collecting and dressing girls is the main appeal of the game. But what do you do once you have a team of idol girls? You can plan their schedule – like a true sim game. You can have them practice, give interviews, or other activities to promote their stats.
The stats also can be increased in a final-fantasy-style skill tree system where you spend skill points to unlock stat-bonuses like +20 vocals, +30 dance, +20 vitality, etc. Depending what “path” you take in the skill tree your girls will develop in different ways.
You have one main girl, and several other backup idols. The main girl is the one to gain from this skill tree system.
Performing a live show is quite different from other mobile idol games. It’s more almost like an RPG battle. You tap a girl’s face below the stage and then tap a “skill” along the left such as vocal, dance, etc. Then a colored bar will appear on the screen, try to time it right and tap the screen when the needle on the bar is in the white color. White will give you the highest bonus. Purple the least, and yellow a medium boost. You can also “link” your girls’ actions to perform together in one attack. On the right hand side of the screen are some other bubbles. i think, but could be wrong since I do not read Japanese, but think that you are competing against other idols, and as you perform these skills you can defeat the idols to the right hand side. But if you miss, you will notice your own idols on the left dropping off the screen. Once all the idols either on left or right are gone, the performance ends.
The artwork in the game is very kawaii, and SSR and higher cards have movie animations, both when retrieving from the Gacha and also when performing a live show. All of the idols are animated with Live 2D which brings the characters to life on your screen. Many of the cards have “multiple characters” on one card, and when performing a live show, or meeting the idols out in town, you may see special scenes featuring the characters all together.
The voice acting and music is also top notch as you would expect from an idol game.
Replay value is high due to limited time events that offer rewards such as gacha tickets and gems.
My only complaint is a lot of the gacha are for paid gems only. However, the gems are fairly cheap, you can get a few hundred gems for under $10 – I haven’t bought any yet.
Will we see Idol [email protected] Shiny Colors get an English release? Probably not. They tried years ago to release some Idol [email protected] games in English and it flopped – however, they wanted $65 for a mobile game – And worst of all, after it flopped, they pulled it down and even if you had paid for it you could no longer play it!!! I wish they would try again but with some of their “FREE” mobile games, either Shiny Colors, Theater Days, or Cinderella Girls. — But my hope is slim… However there are 2 things that give me a little bit of hope. 1.) They seem to understand that there may be English speaking players playing Shiny Colors, when the visual novel aspects come up and the choices appear, they show in English an emoji and English words that say “Perfect” “Good” “Normal” so even if you can’t read the choices you can pick the best response still. And when purchasing diamonds, the currency is shown in US Dollars, not in Yen, which is odd. I’ve literally never seen that ever before in any Japanese games. Which is a nice touch so I don’t have to try to convert it, if I ever decide to buy diamonds. And 2.) I have hope because we are getting more and more and more English idol games, with the upcoming Revue Starlight Re LIVE, or last year’s Bang Dream Girl’s Band Party and Utapri, or the ever popular Love Live School Idol Festival, we continue to receive more and more games in this genre, but we have yet to receive any of the free Idol [email protected] games… Shiny Colors is only a few weeks old in Japan, maybe in a year or two we could hope to see an English release? But it is still fairly easy to play even in Japanese. But it would be nice to be able to enjoy the story! I’d be more likely to buy paid gems if the game was in English.
Overall Score 70/80 88% B+ “Very Good Game For Girls”
Geeky: 5/5 – collect virtual waifus. very geeky. And simulation aspects set this game apart from other idol games.
Sweetie: 5/5 – the girls are adorable
Gameplay: 10/10 – finally a true simulation game, similar to Princess Maker or Tokimeki Memorial, you schedule your idol’s activities and watch their stats grow. I enjoy this much more than just a tappy tap rhythm game. Your girls develop in different ways based on your choices and I love that.
Story: 0/10 – I can’t read Japanese so this may not be a “fair score” but until an English version exists I can’t judge the storyline.
Characters: 10/10 – cute, gorgeous artwork, huge diversity of girls.
Artwork: 10/10 – cute, live 2D, SSR and higher cards have full movie animation sequences.
Voice Acting: 10/10 – all of the girls sound so cute.
Music: 10/10 – of course a game about idols is going to have catchy and cute music.
Replay Value: 10/10 – Lots of events, they give a lot of SR tickets and free Gems and the fact that this is a simulation game also adds replay value because the girls change based on decisions you make.
Overall Score 70/80 88% B+ “Very Good Game For Girls”
Overview: 10/10 Helix Waltz is very similar to Love Nikki Dressup Queen or Romance Diary with a few differences. It has a slightly more detailed / less “cutesy” artstyle, and more focus on story. In fact, before getting the meat of the game, you must go through a very lengthy tutorial, that for a mobile/casual gamer will probably take more than a few days to complete. In this tutorial you learn a lot about the story and setting of Helix Waltz. This is where we see the majority of the differences that set Helix Waltz apart from other similar Dressup Games.
Story: 10/10 Helix Waltz puts you in role of a young orphan adopted by a (former) noble lady, and being groomed for a life of royalty. A strange visitor also enlists your help as a spy amongst the noble court. Your job is to chat with other nobles, gather intel as a spy, and impress them with your fashion to work your way back as a noble family. There is definitely more backstory than found in most dressup games, and that story is tied to the gameplay too.
Gameplay: 9/10 Like Love Nikki Dressup Queen and Romance Diary, you compete in Fashion Battles with NPCs to advance through various story stages. You collect various items which you layer and equip together to create unique looks. Each level requires certain styles or colors of clothing to get the best score possible. Such as equipping a dress, or tops and bottoms, along with shoes, stockings, jewelry, necklaces, rings, bracelets, hairstyles, makeup, and so on.
Unlike Love Nikki Dressup Queen or Romance Diary, the majority of the game is focused on navigating through the story and playing against NPCs. Until you reach at least level 19 when you finally complete the lengthy tutorial. Playing 2-3 hours a day, it will still take a few days to complete all of the tutorial missions to get to the free play mode. I have yet to complete the tutorial so I’m not sure if Helix Waltz allows you to compete against other human players as well.
Also unlike Love Nikki Dressup Queen, but similar to Romance Diary, Helix Waltz focuses more on Otome aspects, but not so much on romance. Instead it has a very interesting story of intrigue and deceit. At the waltzes, you can search for specific NPCs or you can wander about and bump into random NPCs, you can select various things to chat about and choose your responses which will affect the NPC’s moods and overall opinion of you. You can also challenge the NPCs to a fashion battle, or you can eavesdrop on NPCs to gain valuable intel.
I enjoyed the unique approach in both story and gameplay to focus more on infiltrating the noble court and gathering intel. I didn’t enjoy the linear nature of the game in the early levels and lengthy tutorial.
Artwork: 4/5 – The artwork is very detailed, but to me it isn’t as cute as similar games like Love Nikki Dressup Queen or Romance Diary. This may just be down to personal tastes. I’m sure some of my readers prefer the art style of Helix Waltz over the other games as well.
Music: 4/5 – The classical music fits the game’s theme very well. You also have the option to change the music later in the game.
Geeky: 2/5 – Although the aspects of infiltration and espionage add a new exciting twist to the traditional gameplay and story mechanics of most dressup games, this game is still for casual female gamers and not likely to appeal to a wider audience.
Sweetie: 4/5 – Helix Waltz loses a point for slightly less appealing artwork (compared to similar dressup games). Otherwise, those who enjoy dressup games, and a good story, with strong female lead, are sure to enjoy Helix Waltz.
Overall Score: 43/50 86% B “Very Good Game For Girls”