Nintendo Switch: The Men of Yoshiwara~Kikuya~ Kagerou Review

What system hasn’t D3 ported this game to yet? While booting up my Switch for some Xenoblade 2 time I noticed there was an otome game in the sidebar. And since I hadn’t played this game in its entirety, I decided to get it.

So many moons ago, probably the time I lost everything on the site, I reviewed Kagerou. For the first playthrough on the Switch I decided to play Kagerou again.

The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly

Okay, D3. Have a seat. We need to talk.

You have ported this game from android/apple to PS Vita to PC to Switch. You are clearly making good money off this game. FIX THE TRANSLATION ALREADY. HIRE A GODDAMN EDITOR AND FIX ALL THOSE PATHETIC GRAMMAR MISTAKES AND AWKWARD TRANSLATIONS!!!!!!

It is EMBARRASSING to be exposed as a player of these games when they’re unprofessional. If you’re going to port it everywhere, fix it. Get someone to go through and make the dialogue natural. Fix the instances where you put “you” instead or “your”. Or even “your” instead of “you’re”.

 

Simple things like that! Let alone the awkwardly worded phrases that make tender moments cringe-worthy.

And not even just that! Look at this interface.

LOOK AT IT

What the hell?! Why is Iroha’s second season just floating after the rest of the character stories? Why is there not a second season for any of the other guys? Did they just port over a few of the stories and then stop without playing mind to the other men? IS THIS AN INCOMPLETE GAME?

And what the HELL does “a mysterious youth with a riddle in his head, loves spending all day with Iroha” even MEAN

WHY

W H YYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY

The Heroine

You are Misao Hidetomi, daughter of a merchant. You are humble and innocent. Basically, not a horrible heroine to play avatar to, but not really anything special either. She doesn’t have a personality outside of “good girl”. Particularly in Kagerou’s route, since she spends the last part of it out of commission.

If you enjoy easy heroines to self-insert into, you will be fine with her. If you prefer your heroines to have a distinct personality, this is not your game.

Kagerou

The martial arts literally plays no part in the plot whatsoever. It’s only mentioned a couple of times as well. He is never seen doing it or practicing it.

Ah, Kagerou. I found him adorable.

Initially, I picked him because Misao mentions that he is the same age as her, 16. I am amazed she wasn’t aged up to 18, especially considering that this is a game about a girl who falls in love with a man who works in a brothel!

He’s your typical sharp-tongued man with a heart of gold. He gets embarrassed easily. He is stubborn and rather than having his freedom bought, he wants to leave on his own terms. Those terms being that his mentor/”elder brother”, Kagura, gets his freedom too.

He likes studying and learning. He’s smart as a tack and wasted as a courtesan. Because he is not confined to the brothel as a trainee, you get to meet him outside the brothel during the daylight hours.

Something I found both sweet and sad is the fact that he’s still a trainee, so he’s not officially a courtesan yet. Several of the men know he’s fallen in love with Misao, so before he takes on his first official client, they want him to lose his virginity to Misao and enjoy the sweetness of a love coupling.  JUST BREAK MY HEART, WHY DON’T YA?

For those who are veterans of otome games, this does have one of the “I am a man” scenes complete with the usual squick accompanied by it. For reference, usually the youngest male has a scene with the heroine where he aggressively forces kisses and/or sexual contact on her to prove how “manly” he is because he feels like his age keeps the heroine from seeing her as a valid love interest. This is especially common with heroines like Misao who are just too innocent to process their emotions and the male misinterprets as lack of desire.

Kagerou does make up for his faults and he is very gentle and loving once he learns how to process his own feelings and is scolded by the other men for acting the way he does.

I’m okay with it in this game. You have two teenagers trying to handle their feelings, emotional and physical.

The Plot

The only bone I have to pick with the plot is the ending.

First, for the last act, after you have a sweet coupling scene, the heroine passes out.

Most of the scenes in the final act involve her drifting in and out of consciousness.

In the beginning of the route, you meet Kagerou’s sister. She has married a wealthy man on the mainland and wants to buy her brother’s freedom. He refuses (because he wants Kagura freed as well) and I had a feeling she would come in as a deus ex machina because she rarely enters the narrative after that.

They mention in one line that she has a chronic childhood illness and it is never mentioned or referred to ever again. That just PISSES ME OFF.

The Side Stories

They’re short. One has a CG, the other doesn’t. Nothing really special or comment worthy.

The Art

The art is lovely. I love the fine lines and the dreamy and light aspect they convey. I seem to remember the cell phone game using that “live 2D” technology and that tech is not activated for the Switch version.

Final Thoughts

Bad translation, nice art, plot that falls apart… but I did like Kagerou and watching him mature into a good hero, so I’m going to throw this game a bone and give it three hearts instead of two.

  

Notable Screens

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