Once upon a time (yesterday), Mallory sat down to play Hatoful Boyfriend.
Eight hours later, she emerged from the one of the most heartfelt, rollicking, disturbing, enthralling, and just plain delightful experiences of her life.
Remember when I was talking about unreliable narrators, and that I hated when people got lazy about it? Hatoful Boyfriend is the perfect fucking example of the best way to go about this.
This game is fucking brilliant.
The creators behind this game are fucking geniuses.
There was never a moment during my game play that I was not thinking, “This is probably the best thing that could ever–wait, no this! Right here! The best thing that could ever–WAIT, NO THIS! OMFG! THIS IS HAPPENING AND IS THE BEST–HOW DID THIS JUST POSSIBLY GET BETTER?!?!?!?!!”
One of the best things I think I did for my experience, for which I am extremely thankful for, is by not reading up on anything except the knowledge that this was a dating simulation game where you play a human teenage girl going to an all Pigeon academy.
I have fulled admitted to playing some dating simulation games, and it is generally well-known that many don’t really consider these games as…well, games. They are a rather simpler version of the RPG text adventure games. And I mean simple. They are more like the choose-your-own-adventure novels, except the answers you choose decide the fate of your love life. And sometimes the answers you choose from in one grouping are “Yes!” “Undoubtedly, yes!” and “Why wouldn’t I?”, wherein one of those answers gives you more love points while another gives you none. Most of the time, one wonders why one didn’t just go read a good book instead.
Full disclosure: I used to write RPG quizzes as a teenager. To be fair, it was a lot of fun. I once had one quiz where you could choose “…” as an answer every time. It was probably my most well-written and most loved RPG quiz in history, and I dearly wish I could find it to share.
The fact of the matter is, Hatoful Boyfriend was a bajillion times more enjoyable having known what it is like to work through the ever-popular dating sim games.
“Why is Hatoful Boyfriend so enjoyable?” you ask, eyebrow raised, head tilted to the right, ready to zone out and think of what you want to eat for supper while I gush more about this fantastical wizardry.
Without giving away too much of the game, here are some images to let you know that Hatoful Boyfriend is not your typical dating simulation:
That being said, this game is not what you think it is. It is so much more. And all you need to do is watch the best video in all the land to describe what the game is about and pay $10 to get your own copy.
My very important advice: Don’t look anything up, and just keep playing, even if you’ve already finished one dating path. Keep. Playing.
Overall, Hatoful Boyfriend is within my top ten favorite games. I one day hope to shake the hand of a person that worked on the masterpiece. Last post, I said I wished to make my own perfect dating sim, but I doubt I could ever reach their potential. I will be striving for second best.
In case anyone was wondering, Hatoful Boyfriend has just become the best dating sim of my entire life. 1,000,000 out of 10, def. recommend
— Miss Mallory (@TOTOKITTY) September 6, 2014
When I wasn’t playing Hatoful Boyfriend in a fit of glee, I watched Noragami. I’m a little over halfway through the first season, but I am liking it. It’s fresh.
I don’t know why, but I am finding certain aspects of the anime I watch these past couple of years to be important. It has become not only more difficult to watch Monster Of The Month anime, but I find myself easily bored watching shows that elongate plots with filler or find it important to have me watching scantily clad women instead of allowing the story to carry the show.
For instance, people kept telling me to watch Kill La Kill because “strong female characters”, but the plot wasn’t at all engaging — it was a woman in little to nothing fighting (fun fact: just because a woman is fighting and is wearing little to nothing while she does so doesn’t mean it is considered a feminist/strong female piece). Okami-san is far more intriguing as a fighting character. And despite my typical feels about boobs-to-please-the-male-crowd or one-man-the-rest-are-women-who-want-the-man in anime, I really enjoyed Princess Jellyfish, Ouran High School Host Club, Elfen Lied, and even the particularly sensual Rin: Daughters of Mnemosyne. Maybe they just had more substance. I like a variety of anime, from Angel Beats! and Eden of the East and Fruits Basket to Samurai Champloo and Wolf’s Rain and even Spice and Wolf. (I figure the “oldies” of Cowboy Bebop, Outlaw Star, Trigun, etc. don’t really need to be mentioned because anyone who says they don’t like them are obviously lying.)
I’m also a complete hypocrite. I am unfathomably in love with Sailor Moon, and I used to be a complete sucker for Inuyasha. And I have a thing for South Korean dramedies (which are all basically the same, but I can’t stop/won’t stop), soooooooo… yeah.
Speaking of, if you haven’t been watching the newer Sailor Moon Crystal, you’re making a huge mistake. My gods, this last episode was just perfect. You should go rectify your mistake right now as Sailor Jupiter made her appearance, and the next episode is one of my most favorite acts within the manga: Tuxedo Mask.
I’ve gotten off-track, but I mean to say that I like a show that will give me more than a thin plot. I like things that surprise me, show things in a new light, have developing characters, and can even make fun of itself. And there is nothing like a good script that doesn’t patronize the audience. Noragami seems to have a lot of these aspects, and has caught my attention as Psycho-Pass did. I’m just paranoid it will turn into Sword Art Online. It’ll be a while before I can relax from that one.
This month won’t allow too much free time, however. It will be dedicated to packing, getting rid of shit, helping with more renovations in the bathroom, and the countdown to my official decision on what I’ll be doing when I leave the country. I’ve, unfortunately, come back to debating on whether I’ll continue applying for a job in New Zealand or just leave to see what happens — and what I’ll end up taking or leaving behind since I don’t seem to have a plan.
But, then again, my plans are typically more fun when last minute. I just need to remember what my goal is, and be open to the means in order to achieve it. Even if that means I just go without any thought at all.
….I’m still open to the ‘Marry a Millionaire’ option, in case people were wondering. If you’d like to recommend me, make sure to tell them I like to bake cookies while singing. Some people may not like that and it could be considered a deal breaker.