Just a quick review on these 2 Android games before I forget… text-based mobile game, available on both Android and iOS. Short games, pretty OK to pass some time.
Both games have the same gameplay, which is akin to a tabletop RPG crossed with choose-your-own-adventure books. That is to say, when you start the game you pick which attributes/skills your character will have, and as you pick different options in the game those attributes will increase/decrease or you’ll gain a new skill. Purely text-based (the free versions have ads), and thankfully well-written.
The implementation of the skill system was pretty good too. For example, if your attributes in magic is pretty high the option to solve a problem with magic will be available to you at the appropriate moment in the scenario. Vice versa, if your attributes in magic is low the option will be greyed out and you can’t select it. You can check your stats anytime.
Unfortunately, the game doesn’t offer a save functionality… if you pick an option and wish you had picked something else, well, you need to start again from the beginning. Also, to me both game felt incomplete… because you don’t really get an ending. Basically you reach a certain point in the overall story, and if you want to continue ‘reading’ you need to get the next chapter.
I wouldn’t call this an otome game because… well, it really isn’t.
Choice of Romance was the first game I tried, and I finished 2 sessions at around half an hour each. Fantasy setting with a bit of magic and court politics etc although you wouldn’t see much of it as the main theme of the game was “which target do I want to woo”. As the eldest child of a poor noble family you got an unexpected chance to do a proper debut in the capital city, ie., advertise yourself as being available for marriage and hopefully land a worthy (read: rich) partner.
You can choose the main character to be male or female (and whether you want to woo male or female), although from what I could tell it didn’t change the storyline. I picked female (with male targets) for my first playthrough and male (with female targets) for my second playthrough. From what I could tell, the scenarios were identical; ‘he’ got replaced with ‘she’ (and vice versa), Carlos became Carlotta etc. The available options are: a middle-aged rich merchant who wants to join the ranks of nobility (remember you’re a noble, even if a poor one), a penniless but good looking actor/actress (so no help there with regards to your family’s financial situation), and the king/queen (who’s already married so you’d be a lover/consort at best). …the options weren’t that interesting to me, so I stopped playing after 2 playthroughs, both time getting the king/queen.
There’s a second episode of the game (which I think you have to purchase) which will continue where this game finished and will carry over your stats (if you choose to save it). However the second game starts with the assumption that you ended the first game hooking up with the king/queen… and since the title is “Choice of Intrigue” I’m guessing it will dwell more on court politics… I’ll pass.
This one was better then Choice of Romance, IMHO, and longer in terms of playing time. In this one the choices you make actually alters the storyline, which means the game offers more replay value. The theme was ‘survival’, since you’re a vampire in the 1800s New Orleans. My knowledge of the Civil War is sketchy at best, so I can’t comment on that aspect of the story. The story seemed to be quite focused on vampire politics too; the romance is there (if you choose to pursue it), but it didn’t feel like it was central to the story… your survival as the main character seemed to be the overarching theme.
The story started at your introduction to the vampire society and followed through until the end (or the start?) of the Civil War. And due to the theme… I suspect some of the options would end in your death. I was actually rather amused since the vampire society and political structure seemed to take on the one outlined in Vampire: The Masquerade, sans the clans and bloodlines.
I played once and managed to survive alone until the end, although I tried to pursue romance early in the story (it ended badly). In the second half I got another chance to pursue another romance but turned it down since the failure of the first one was rather daunting. Again, at the end you can choose to save and continue the story once the second chapter is out.
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Other than that… I’ll disappear again for a while. Trying to find a new place to live and it’s been very tiring… I don’t have any energy left to play games ;_; Am also gathering a list of otome games and artbooks I want to sell/get rid of… except that some of them have been lost somewhere in the mess that is my room ;_;