Oh gosh, is it really this time of year again? It really feels as though 2018 has flown by! I’ve finished a grand total of 26 games this year, although most weren’t released in 2018 and not all were otoge so let’s try our best with this Otome Awards?
Favourite Otome Game (not released in 2018)
2nd Place: Haitaka no Psychidelica
Even though romance is not the primary focus of this game, the overall story of this otome game is gripping enough to more than make up for it. This game also features Jed aka one of the best and most proactive heroines that I’ve come across; she’s voiced too! This is an absolute must-play for any visual novel fan.
1st Place: Collar x Malice
This game has everything: an engaging story, good romance, interesting characters, a great heroine, pretty artwork & wonderful voice acting. I’m just sad that it took me so long to play this since I’d rank it easily as one of my favourite otome games and definitely one of Otomate’s best.
Favourite Non-Otome Game
2nd Place: Luckydog1
Even though this is a BL game, I think that this is probably a good “introduction” to the genre since there’s not too much romance and a decent story to enjoy too. There’s some well-known voice actors in here and the characters are interesting – particularly the protagonist Gian whom is hilarious!
1st Place: Amatsutsumi
Since I played this fairly recently I haven’t had a chance to review this yet but I was so impressed by how well-paced and interesting the overall story was. The heroines are all very likable and quirky which was nice too. It’s hard to write a lot on this without including any spoilers so just go and play this, haha.
2nd Place: Enkan no Memoria ~Kakera Tomoshi~
I was expecting this to game to be an interesting tale about a girl searching for the lost memories of her childhood but instead we ended up with a muddled mess of a story featuring cannibalism and rape as main plot points. Gross. There were also major consistency issues with the artwork and the whole thing just felt very low-budget. I’m still annoyed that I bought a shop set…
1st Place: Koroshiya to Strawberry
While I’d still hesitate to call this the “worst” game I played this year, it certainly was the most “disappointing”. Don’t be fooled by the pretty promo art – Kazuki Yone didn’t actually do any of the CGs for the game itself. The story was also highly underwhelming and failed to capitalize on the interesting setting of a cafe for assassins. And don’t even get me started on the random sci-fi plot randomly thrown in at the end! Honestly, Broccoli should probably just stick to idols or ports if they can’t be bothered to put effort into their other games.
Koroshiya to Strawberry
Ephemeral ~Fantasy on Dark~
Kurenai no Homura Sanada Ninpou Chou
Piofiore no Banshou
1st Place: Jakou no Lyla ~Allure of Musk~ European Night
1st Place: “Fault” – Mao (from Piofiore no Banshou)
All three ending songs from this game are amazing but this one (which was actually for the bad endings) was my overall favourite! Mao’s vocals are too good!
1st Place: CharadeManiacs
Honestly, the OST for this game is pretty much faultless – the BGM really fit the mood of the game and the tracks are enjoyable enough that I still like to listen to them quite regularly. “Starting Over” would be my pick from the bunch.
Favourite “Idol” Songs
Festive! – MaM (Ensemble Stars!)
Eccentric Party Night – Eccentric Five (Ensemble Stars!)
Hikari – Marginal#4 (Pythagoras Productions)
Dakara Onegai Dakara. – A’ (Dear Vocalist)
Go Fly Away – Amamiya Henri (Ikemen Live)
Daitan Futeki ni Koi Shitai! – Just 4U (Readyyy! Project)
Pendulum – Maten Rocket (Readyyy! Project)
Shining Magic – Ray GlanZ (Readyyy! Project)
DIAMOND FUSION – Trigger (Idolish7)
1st Place: Secret Gravity – Sasaki Natsume (Ensemble Stars)
Special Award for Most Time
1st Place: Diabolik Lovers Series
(Yes, the fact that the original game is the only non-limited edition is annoying…)
I feel like since this series played a considerable part of my year that it should be represented in these awards. I literally sat and calculated (because I’m sad) that I’ve spent just over 70 hours this year playing 4 of the games (well, not all of More Blood). That isn’t even counting the amount of time spent listening to the CDs, shopping for more stuff (I have a lot of CDs that should be arriving at some point), writing posts and generally just thinking about the series. It’s definitely been a bit of a roller coaster and honestly the gulf in quality between More Blood & Dark Fate is ridiculous but this series (or maybe just Azusa) has wormed its way into my heart. I still almost feel ashamed for liking this series so much but I’ve worried too much about what people think this past year so I don’t care anymore~
Favourite 2018 Otome Game
2nd Place: Collar x Malice ~Unlimited~
Otomate have a bad habit of releasing “meh” fandiscs but this was overall a great addition to the series – the after stories were all adorable and the Adonis side story really added a lot of depth to the “villains” of the original game! If you liked the original then this is an absolute must-play!
1st Place: Piofiore no Banshou
I had high expectations of this game and they were more than met in this intriguing tale of a power struggle in a small Italian town. The setting was especially well-developed and there were little touches with the language and historical events that showed how much effort was put into developing this game. The characters are all pretty likable, with Dante & Yang standing out as particularly well-developed/unique. Here’s hoping for a sequel or port with extra content in 2019!
Top Upcoming Games for 2019
2nd Place: Diabolik Lovers Chaos Lineage
Although I haven’t actually played Lost Eden yet (I’ll probably play it mid-January or something) I’m still looking forward to this one. I mean, they’re totally resetting everything by giving everyone amnesia but I’m just going to treat this release in the same way as the two “fandisc-type” games (Vandead Carnival, Lunatic Parade) and just enjoy the character interactions since the groups have potential to be quite fun. I doubt this will be the best game of 2019 but I’ll probably enjoy it nonetheless.
1st Place: Variable Barricade
Oh man, this game has been stuck in development hell for so long that you actually feel kinda bad for the team working on this. There’s been questions over the platform it’s going to release on and everything but I still have faith in this game! The characters all seem pretty fun and the artwork is gorgeous as ever. I’m tempted to get the Stellaworth set too, hmm…
Okay, looking at that “list” it may seem that I’m not excited for much next year. I think that there’s just been so little released about most of 2018’s Otomate Party Announcements that I couldn’t justify putting them on this list even though I’m interested in many of them ( Olympia Soiree, Gensou Kissa Enchante & Lover Pretend especially). There’s also the ports of Zettai Kaikyuu Gakuen & Harukanaru Toki no Naka De 6 that I’ve already ordered, as well as the switch port of Hanayaka Nari, Waga Ichizoku since I never got around to playing the vita versions.
Outside of Otoge, I’m looking forward to the ports of Summer Pockets, Kizuna Kirameku Koi Iroha & Omega Vampire. I have a feeling that I’ll probably end up picking up Soi Kano on switch too. I’m of course looking forward to Kingdom Hearts 3 too even though I won’t be reviewing that one, haha.
My main resolution for 2019 is to improve my time management skills so that I can finally chip away at my backlog. Given that it currently stands at over 80 games across 4 systems something needs to be done. I hope to finish at least 2 games every month and I’d be over the moon if I manage to get it to under 50 games by this time next year! To achieve this I’m not going to be pre-ordering any new games that I don’t want a LE/Shop Set for so that should help a /little/.
Oh well, that’s enough for this year’s post. I’m wishing everyone a Happy New Year & hope that 2019 blesses you with some fun games & memories~
Wow, you had a really good year, Amy! I feel you so much on the backlog though haha. I got through only 1 full game on mine and everything else was a new addition to the log and it never ends. Happy New Year ^^
Happy (belated) New Year to you too c:
It might look like I got through quite a few games but the backlog still grew too much for my liking, aha ^_^;;;;;;
OH wow. That Diabolik Lovers collection. O_O Hats off to you. 😀
Glad you liked Lucky Dog! It’s been on my to-play list for who knows how long lol.
Haha, thank you?
Oh yeah it was surprisingly fun, I’m hoping that the new sequel will eventually get ported too
Happy (belated) New Year!
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