2017 in review!

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Apologies for the late post (as per usual haha).

As 2017 has drawn to a close it’s nice to reflect back on the year, bad parts perhaps excluded. I did finish more games this year (15) but unfortunately most of them were either older, fandiscs or ports so my otome awards will be smaller than I’d hoped. That being said, shall we get started?

Fluffiest After-story

Honourable Mention: Izumo Shion (KLAP~Kind Love and Punish~Fun Party)

Winner: Henryk (Mojuu-tachi to Ohime-sama~In Blossom~)


Henryk had the most romantic route of the original game and he stays at absolute max affection for the entirety of the fandisc. His after-story may be light on story but absolutely delivers on comedy and cute scenes, therefore making it the fluffiest thing I’ve read in 2017. 10/10 would recommend.


Fluffiest Manga Series

Winner: Danna-san wa Onee-san

dannasan onee

Staring life as a pixiv comic by author “mako”, this manga tells the story of office worker Haru and her adorable house-husband Luigi. The series itself is mostly a romantic-comedy but the two leads honestly have such a wonderful relationship. The comedy is good and the cute scenes will make you smile! Plus Luigi is honestly 100% husband material. Volume 2 is out in Feburary and I would highly recommend this series to anyone looking for something lighter to read.

Best Openings

Honourable Mentions

Usotsuki Shangri-la


Hana Oboro


Yuukyuu no Tierblade~Fragments of Memory~


Shiro to Kuro no Alice


Winner: Black Wolves Saga -Weiβ und Schwarz-


The “good game spoiled by terrible programming” Award

Dishonourable Mention: Tokyo Yamanote Boys Main Disc for V (fix your skip speed please rejet)

Winner: Rearpheles~Red of Another~

rear pheles cover

While technically released in 2015, this game deserves to be mentioned because it made me scream in frustration as it really could’ve been a good game if only the mini-game wasn’t so badly planned and programmed. With poor level design, long loading times, glitches galore (even after you install the 1GB patch) and really horrendous 3D character models this is a failure on more than one part and really would’ve worked better as a simple visual novel as the story & characters weren’t that bad.

The “music was good but everything else is kinda disappointing” Award

2nd Place: Marginal#4 Road to Galaxy

mg4 rtg cover

Given that the original “Idol of Supernova!” game was a pure otome game, one could be forgiven for thinking that this would be one too. Unfortunately, this isn’t and is really a mobile rhythm game packaged up and sold at full price. In fact, a most mobile idol games have longer stories than this too! While I did enjoy the interactions between the characters, the music is hands-down the best thing about this release (the ending song “Pierrot” is my favourite from this year) so you’re honestly better off going and buying some of the CDs~

1st Place: Corpse†Heart

corpse heart

This was one of rejet’s new music + drama CD releases this year and I’ve listened to all but the final volume (because it hasn’t arrived yet) and honestly, with the sole exception of the 5th volume, the drama part of the CD isn’t exactly good with the story being really underwhelming and rushed. On the plus side, the music really is great!

Kusoge of the Year

Winner: Utsusemi no Meguri


While I hesitate to write any game off as kusoge, this game was released in basically an unplayable state with multiple crashes and continuous freezes. Unlike Rearpheles above, the story really wasn’t worth the hassle either, with most of the routes being downright dull. The only route of “good” quality was Tomokage but even he can’t save this pile of trash. With Matatabi moving to PC games, I wonder if their programming will improve…

Top Upcoming Games for 2018

7th Place: Cendrillon palikA


Official Site

While there isn’t too much info released about this game; the fairytale setting immediately appealed to me, the story snippets in the PV sounded interesting enough and the character designs by Suzushiro Karin are pretty nice. The voice cast is also good (yay Hanae Natsuki) and it’s nice to see Otomate giving newer voice actors a chance since this will be Uchida Yuuma’s first game with them! Seasoned scenario writer Sasaki Maro, who has worked on games such as Trigger Kiss, Yuukyuu no Tierblade and the Klap FD (although she managed to write both my favourite and least favourite after stories haha) is in charge which gives me hope for, at the very least, some fun character interactions. The weasel/otter mascot thingy is adorable too!

6th Place: Koroshiya to Strawberry


Official Site

I think a lot of people (myself included) were pretty shocked when Broccoli announced such a promising-looking game earlier in the year. With gorgeous character designs and artwork provided by Kazuki Yone and an interesting story premise involving members of the underworld; this game has the potential to be one of the best releases of next year but broccoli’s track record really isn’t that great in regards to more serious stories. However, the voice cast is good enough for me to pre-order (more Hanae Natsuki + yay for Tamaru Atsushi getting more work) so I’ve been eyeing up the animate set – hopefully they release samples soon!

5th Place: Charade Maniacs

charade maniacs

Official Twitter (there’s no official site yet)

This is another game with little information released since they spent months on revealing the voice actors for each character one at a time, although the majority of them were quite easy to guess since we all know voice actors tend to get “pigeon-holed” into certain roles… (The voice cast is still great though!) Anyway, the premise of trying to find a traitor within the group sounds interesting (the “villain as love interest” trope is one of my favourites) and the characters all sound likeable. The main scenario of the game will be handled by Amemiya Uta who has worked on the Psychidelica series, Kenka Bancho Otome & Hyakka Hyakurou, amongst others so the writing should at least be decent. More lovely artwork by Teita never goes amiss either, let’s just hope she’s not just credited with “character design” like with the last Norn9 game. With 9 potential routes though, I’m worried that the routes will be very short or some of the characters might not even get routes at all! Just give me routes for Kyouya, Takumi and Souta please – are we all ready for another tragic character voiced by  Matsuoka Yoshitsugu?

4th Place: Dance With Devils My Carol


Official Site

A lot of the fandiscs I played in 2017 weren’t *that* great but I will be buying this solely for my enduring love of Shiki, even though his individual bonus is from amiami (a shop I never use). The stellaworth + animate sets look promising though despite the really terrible LE cover~ Maybe this’ll convince me to finish the original…

3rd Place: Majestic☆Majolical


Official Site

I don’t normally buy many PC games (especially since it’ll probably be ported to vita like 9 months later like the Taishou Alice FD) and the fact that it’s separated into 3 parts is slightly off-putting. However, the voice cast for this game is pretty stellar with 5/6 main characters being voiced by voice actors I utterly adore. The heroine also seems decent and the artwork by Hakuseki is pretty nice. The story sounds okay if nothing particularly special and is written by Hiyo, probably best known for her work on games under the “Sugar Beans” brand; this is her first outright all-ages game though so it’ll be interesting to see if her writing style has changed. Anyway, the individual games are cheap and the guys seem pretty moe so sign me up! I’ve already pre-ordered the animate set of volume 1 so currently praying that it’s at least fun~

2nd Place: Piofiore no Banshou


Official Site

This was the one announcement from Otomate Party 2017 that really caught my eye; while there’s been mafia-themed otome games in the past (Ozmafia & Arcana Famiglia) neither of them are particularly great games, however I have faith in this game! The early 20th century setting is really appealing and the character designs + artwork so far by Riri is gorgeous. The only mild reservation I have is that the scenario writer is Kazura Ringo who’s last work Oumagatoki was really not received well.

1st Place: Fortissimo


Official Site

This game has been announced since Otomate Party 2015 & in the time between that and the game’s current release date, not one but five novels for the series will have been released (volumes 3-7). Since the game has been stuck in development hell for so long I really am expecting a good game, especially as the aforementioned novels are enjoyable. The “LINK System” reminds me of the messaging systems in mobile games like Yumecast so should be a lot of fun too! I’m looking forward to this so much that I even bought the brocon vita port so that I can learn about Fuuto, even though he doesn’t have a route in the game (and the fact the pre-order bonus is a brocon clear file made me worry about the connections between the games). I’m just hoping that we finally get a great idol otome game~


It was really hard to get that list down to seven titles so overall there’s definitely a lot to look forward to in 2018! It’ll be interesting to see if PS4 becomes a viable platform and with D3P attempting a Nintendo Switch port maybe we’ll end up on something else entirely by the start of 2019. Mobile games show no signs of slowing down so expect there to be many more of them over the next 12 months. English-speaking fans can also look forward to a decent haul of games, with the Psychidelica series being (imo) some of the best games Otomate has made to date. One thing, however, will never change and that is the fact that we’re bound to be treated to some top-tier ikemen over the course of 2018~


Happy New Year & Here’s To A Great 2018!


About Zettai Renai

Hello! ヾ(^-^)ノ Sometimes I write about Visual Novels. I particularly like cutesy/fluffy stories~ I also am eternally suffering in Enstars hell(˶′◡‵˶)
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