Miitomo Review: Nintendo’s New App Will Devour Your Soul — And All of Your Free Time!

As you should know by now – I’m no stranger to these types of apps having already reviewed countless others such as Dream Girlfriend, CocoPPAPlay, Pokecolo (Formerly Pokemini), Animal Boyfriend, and also an avid fan and long time player of LinePlay. The concept, which is essentially dressup an avatar and decorate a room,  is nothing new. But Somehow, Nintendo’s new Miitomo app manages to stand out in a very crowded marketplace. I stayed up til 2am saturday night playing this game. And stayed up until midnight lastnight playing (after also playing it 10+ hours throughout both days) – only because I knew I had to be up for work today. (otherwise I would’ve stayed up later – I cannot put this app down!)

I think what makes Miitomo so successful is the social aspect of the app. It allows you to answer questions similar to the dating site OKCupid, and read your friends’ responses. This results in some hilarious conversations. For example, the funniest one I saw was simply about cereal and had over 90 comments. I started laughing so hard that I was snorting, and I’m still smirking from it now remembering the conversation. (Trust me you just had to be there . I know cereal might not sound funny, but it was.)

For someone shy like me, Miitomo encourages me to interact with my online friends (It uses your twitter and/or facebook friends). It encourages me to reach out to new people too – both via social media and also in the game. It brings me out of my shell – from lurker – to contributor by rewarding you for having conversations with your friends and amassing new friends and followers.

Also the artificial robot voices make for some really entertaining things. One guy on my friendslist has a “greeting” when they leave the room that says “It ain’t no lie, baby, bye, bye, bye” and it is SOOOOOO funny in the robotic voices of the miis.

The third point that makes Miitomo so successful is the customization. It uses your camera to make your mii (or optionally lets you create one looking however you wish you looked, or like any fictional character you can imagine). But where’s the fun in that, the camera feature is where it’s at. It will take 20-30 images (in a matter of seconds) and let you choose which one you want – And you can tweak it a bit afterwards. I left mine alone though because it does look quite a bit like me, and it’s cute in its own way.

You can customize EVERY thing – from the way it looks, to the way it sounds – to it’s personality traits.

Once your avatar is created, you can win prizes (outfits) to dress up in by earning coin or tickets to use Miidrop – which cycles in limited time outfits. Miidrop is strangely satisfying and addicting, you drop your friends onto a giant “Plinko” style board and try to get them to land on the prize that you want to win. The fact that the items are limited and retired pretty quickly, makes it very exciting. Rather or not those items will reappear is unknown – but I can tell you that in similar games such as those linked to above, they do not – once limited items are done, they’re gone for good (though sometimes they do get recolored variations). Some items in Miitomo even let YOU select the colors you want.

I find it’s best to save your coins – because in addition to Miidrop – there’s a time limited shop that rotates in and out new items each day and if you blow all your coins playing Miidrop you might miss out on an item here (unlike Miidrop though, I’m pretty sure that these items DO rotate back into the shop.) I have a lot of Miidrop tickets because two of the Miidrop “events” ended already and the currently active ones do not appeal to me – I am just hoarding my tickets right now for when new items become available via Miidrop.

There’s an item in the store that I want today, but it’s 1,760 coins and I only have about 1,120 – so I dunno if I will get it before it poofs. Which makes me wish I hadn’t spent coins when I first joined on playing Miidrop – because now I have tons of tickets and find coins harder to come by than tickets.

But you do get coins for interacting with your friends, replying to their responses to questions, answering questions yourself, visiting or adding new friends, etc.

Honestly, I’d like to see coins instead of – or in addition to candy – being added to Miidrop.

Beyond that, the fact that it’s Nintendo makes it “Too Big to Fail” While people have likely never heard of the EXTREMELY similar apps which I mentioned at the beginning of my review, chances are, they will download Miitomo because of the name behind it “Nintendo” and the marketing budget that Nintendo can pour into promoting their new app.

A word of caution “This is the Internet” – while Nintendo is INFAMOUS for censorship and child protection — the same has NOT yet been applied to Miitomo (though I suspect soon – very soon – we will see language/word filters and other annoying things because a few people think it’s funny to swear or write sexually explicit things in the app. THIS IS WHY WE CAN’T HAVE NICE THINGS YOU GUYS. lol.) So if you are a parent, you really probably don’t want your kid playing this game right now until they “fix” this issue. There is ZERO censorship – yes you can report inappropriate responses, but by then the damage is done and your kid’s already been exposed to whatever it was that you did not want him to see. So yeah I would say Miitomo should be for users 16 and up.

So now that I’m done hyping over the game, let’s give it a proper review below.

Title: Miitomo

Genre: Dressup Game

Publisher: Nintendo

 

Platforms: IOS and Android (Both Available from Official Site): https://miitomo.com/en/

Geeky: 3/5 

Sweetie: 5/5 

Overall: 86 / 110 78% C+ “Good Game for Girls”

Concept: 10/10 As mentioned above, Miitomo is a dressup game which also lets you meet new friends and have conversations with your social network. While it does little to innovate over other similar apps, the app is addicting due to the increased social element and simplistic “nintendo charm”. New items are available every day which keeps you wanting to play to get new items to dressup in, and customization options are quite impressive.

Gameplay: 7/10 The gameplay itself is pretty minimal / simplistic. It’s more of a social network / chat app more than a game – but yet somehow, it’s SO much fun, so many funny conversations happen and it’s the MOST SOCIAL of ANY of these “dressup games”. This makes the gameplay super addictive and rewarding. However, the gameplay itself is in fact a bit thin when compared to very similar apps like Lineplay which have pets, fishing, farming, and the ability to have more than one friend in your room simultaneously and more of a “chat” based instead of “forums” based method of communication. (Although, ironically, I prefer the forum method more, as the chat is only good if you’re all on at the same time really.)

Story: 0/10 – Sorry, I know this hurts the score – but there’s no story. At all. Period – BUT that does not make this any less of an awesome app – just that for my readers specifically, story is the paramount feature they look for so I have to point this out. But really you guys should play this because it’s so fun / funny — If you’re expecting a serious game – look elsewhere. But if you want a FUN game – this is it!

Characters: 10/10 – The characters are you and your friends! You meet new people, you learn about your existing friends, and you have so many funny conversations. Also as mentioned below, the Mii is an iconic character for Nintendo that fans love.

Graphics: 8/10 The mii’s are not as detailed (or kawaii (cute)) as the other very similar apps which I mention above. However, the customization and ability to make a mii look like almost anyone, and the cute expressions and emotes and animations, make the graphics very charming. It’s also a very famillar character and icon for Nintendo which many fans have come to love. The dressup items range from strange, to ugly, to utterly adorable. Some have very smooth, almost like no texture at all, while others have a very tactile feel, like real clothing – it’s rather hit or miss. The level of detail that went into some of the outfits though is amazing considering how small the area they had to work with really is. Also Miitomo is the only dressup app that’s 3D – games like My Dream Girlfriend – actually ARE 3D – but they use an engine called Live 2D (which I love more than anything in this world) (But it makes the characters appear as if they’re 2D.) Also Miitomo is the only app where you can pinch and zoom and rotate and drag your screen to see different angles of your character. You can create really fun, cute, or funny images and share them with your friends. It’s really funny and charming. Good job Nintendo!

Music: 3/10 Is there music in this game? I really can’t remember lol. all I can remember are the funny mii voices. I will maybe adjust this if there actually is music in the game – I’m at work right now so obviously can’t check — If there is music though, it’s not very memorable since I’ve spent 20+ hours playing this game, and last logged in (with sound at least) less than 6 hours ago, and can’t remember if there’s music or not – that’s not a good sign or indication of an awesome music track – when I can remember music from games which I played 25+ years ago LOL.

Voice Acting: 10/10 – The robot voice acting — OMG it’s so funny – it’s not “good” by any means – but my god, it makes the game so much more fun — And I LOVE the amount of customization you can do with the voice and how different everyone’s mii’s sound. It just adds that extra layer of goodness!

Customization: 10/10 I’ve said it a couple times but the customization in Miitomo is awesome, from how you look, to voices, and even personality traits.

Social / Community: 10/10 I’ve made some new friends and had lots of fun – Miitomo is different from every other dressup game out there because you are rewarded for chatting with your friends, and it is set up in a very intuitive and engaging way which facilitates discussion. You can learn a lot more about your friends, and have funny conversations. Highly recommend it!

Replay Value: 10/10 – I can’t put this game down!!! — And I bet neither will you once you start to play! You have got to experience this game.

Overall: 86 / 110 78% C+ “Good Game for Girls”

Note: If we don’t take into account the lack of story, it then becomes 86/100 or 86% B “Very Good Game for Girls” which more accurately reflects my own personal enjoyment of this app. 

PS. Add me if you play Miitomo! You can scan my QR code below — OR follow me on twitter @Xenokitten and send me a note that you play Miitomo and I’ll follow you back so we can play!

Add Me on Miitomo #MiitomoAddMe
Add Me on Miitomo #MiitomoAddMe

Miitomo Review: Nintendo’s New App Will Devour Your Soul — And All of Your Free Time! was originally published on Geeky Sweetie

Advertisements

Pokemini is Closing – Join Pokecolo – Guide for English Users

It was not that long ago, that I reviewed Pokemini here, a cute anime dressup game that I’ve been playing for almost 2 years. – It all comes to an end next week as Pokemini will be shutting down. They are encouraging everyone to join Pokecolo – however, there’s one small problem … Pokemini was in English and Pokecolo is in Japanese! Pokecolo also has all kinds of “new” (to Players of Pokemini) features and can be confusing when you first start.

I’m new myself and I do not speak (or read) Japanese. This is just a quick rough guide that I’ve learned the last 2 or 3 days since joining – hope it proves helpful.

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

First, lets take a look at the “main menu” – you’ll be using this a lot! to access it you simply tap on your mini.

Clockwise from top – Cook, Trade, dressup and decorate, travel, shop, fashion show, your profile

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

The other screen that you’ll most frequently use is the shopping screen. The easiest way I’ve found to get there is to simply hit the back button in top left corner while viewing any of the active gacha.

Left to Right: Top Row: Gacha, Clothes, VIP, Stickers
Left to Right 2nd Row: Scratch Card, Dressup, Room, Planet
Left to Right 3rd Row: Pets, Seeds, “Old Man” shop, Gumball Tickets
Left to Right Bottom Row: VIP Room, Market, and Cotton Candy (Duplicate Exchange)

See comments for details #pokecolo #dressup #dressupgame #free #game #Japapnese #ios #android #kawaii

A photo posted by jenilee (@xenokitten) on Mar 29, 2016 at 6:33pm PDT

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

So as you can imagine, the core of the game is not all that different from Pokemini. You create a character (Good news, there’s lots more options for you to pick from upon starting out).

More choices for starters in #pokecolo compared to #pokemini

A photo posted by jenilee (@xenokitten) on Mar 27, 2016 at 12:13pm PDT

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

You have a planet and room to decorate – But wait there’s more!! – Not only do you have one planet, but now you have THREE – these include a fishing / aquarium building mini game, and some type of minigame in which you give hearts and flowers and write messages to other players. You access these other planets by hitting the right arrow while viewing your home planet. Which brings you to this screen like so:

#pokecolo three planets

A photo posted by jenilee (@xenokitten) on Mar 29, 2016 at 7:36pm PDT

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

My planet so far newb to #pokecolo

A photo posted by jenilee (@xenokitten) on Mar 27, 2016 at 2:24pm PDT

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

My room so far newb to #pokecolo

A photo posted by jenilee (@xenokitten) on Mar 27, 2016 at 2:25pm PDT

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

So I dunno if any of you had trouble, but it took me the longest time to figure out how to place my items in my room, planet, or even how to dress myself. Here’s how to do it! Click on your avatar. Then click on the suitcase – Then click on either the dress, or the planet with paintbrush (must be on your planet for icon to appear) – If you go inside your room, then repeat these steps, click on your mini, then the suitcase then the icon that used to be the planet with paintbrush is now a table with a teddybear – clicking that takes you to the menu to place the items in your room!

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

Alright, so we’ll start by talking about the fishing mini game – You are given a pole and some free bait upon your first visit. you can level up to get better fishing gear. To fish you have to keep the fish in the middle of the white circle. once you catch a fish you can add him to your aquarium (red left button), do something I haven’t figured out/unlocked yet (grey button to right), or beneath both of those, exchange the fish/let it go for fish points – which I’m assuming can be used to get new items later on. Your tank is limited on how much room it can hold. You can add more fish above this limit by spending donuts. Also while viewing your tank you can sell/release fish and/or click a fish to create bait from it every few minutes. Fishing costs 1 heart, as you level, you gain more hearts. Hearts also replenish over time. As you level your fishing you unlock new planets to fish on with new fish and new challenges.

#pokecolo vs #pokemini – you can even go fishing and build an aquarium in #pokecolo

A photo posted by jenilee (@xenokitten) on Mar 27, 2016 at 2:22pm PDT

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

#pokecolo vs #pokemini – you can even go fishing and build an aquarium in #pokecolo

A photo posted by jenilee (@xenokitten) on Mar 27, 2016 at 2:22pm PDT

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

That about covers the fishy-wishies so let’s take a look at the message in the bottle island. The objective here is to write short messages like twitter tweets and reply to other users’ messages that wash up on your island. If you really like what a mini has to say, try leaving them a heart or flower. The flowers will grow on their island, and I believe the hearts are used to send different styles of bottles. Big tip: You can leave FREE flowers – look for flowers with a text next to the donut symbol instead of a number. Also as far as I can tell leaving hearts is always free. Tap the ink bottle with feather to write your own message. Tap the bottles floating by and hit the black downward arrow inside a message to reply to that user.

Here are some screenshots to help explain the above points better.

#pokecolo message in a bottle island

A photo posted by jenilee (@xenokitten) on Mar 29, 2016 at 7:47pm PDT

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

The other new feature are the cute pets which you can get – AND the pets have their own Gacha! So you can dressup your pets. You can have multiple pets as well.

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

You can also get your fortune told and test your compatibility with other users which I think may have some game complications such as increasing/decreasing donuts earned, energy refill rates, etc. To get here, click the horoscope sign of yourself or a mini you are visiting.

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

Some other features unique to Pokecolo include an “Old Man” shop with items coming in and out of stock at different times throughout the day. A scratch card mechanism that lets you get free or cheap limited time items. A trading system that lets you exchange your items with other players and bookmark items that you want via a wish list feature. A cotton candy machine that lets you combine duplicate items to create something new. and a market place which I haven’t used or figured out the details of just yet not to be confused with the trade function.

#pokecolo add items to your wish list and trade with other users

A photo posted by jenilee (@xenokitten) on Mar 29, 2016 at 7:44pm PDT

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

Other than that, it plays a lot like Pokemini – You add friends to your list (the pink button next to the green visit planet button will let you type up a friend request). You visit their planets, water their trees, slap their boards, and harvest their fruit. You cook to restore energy. You complete quests and level up. And most of all earn donuts to play the Gacha to get items to decorate your room, planet, and avatar.

#pokecolo #screenshot

A photo posted by jenilee (@xenokitten) on Mar 27, 2016 at 12:14pm PDT

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

These boots were made for walking – I can’t remember which is which, but each pair of shoes allows you to visit a different type of user: friends, recent visitors, and random users..

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

One last note that may help you for completing quests. New quests are marked with the word “new” and completed quests have a small red chat bubble that appears over the quest giver’s head in the quest log (Q) on right hand of screen. You need to turn the quests in by clicking that red bubble. here is an example of a regular quest, a completed but not turned in quest, and a new quest to illustrate the points above:

Click the small red bubbles above quest givers’ heads seen here on second quest green frame middle screen – click red bubble left above head to turn in quests. These bubbles appear when you meet the conditions to complete the quests.

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

Pokemini is Closing – Join Pokecolo – Guide for English Users was originally published on Geeky Sweetie

CocoPPaPlay Dressup Game Review

EDIT: Check Out My New Updated CocoPPaPlay Review for 2018 – A lot of improvements have happened since this first review below. Click here to read the updated review of CocoPPAPlay for 2018.

Review from 2016 below:

(The following review uses screenshots that I personally took while playing CocoPPaPlay. I wish I could give credit to all of the models which appear and the players who spent time creating their models – however, I did not make a note of the players’ names while taking my screenshots. I’m sorry. I started a new character, so I didn’t have many cute items to use for my own photos. Thanks for understanding! If you happen to recognize your character and either want credit, or for some reason don’t want me using their photo for my review, just leave me a comment below.)

I post a lot of photos of this game, and other games, on my Instagram account – check it out if you want to see more! But please note, I also post other non-gaming and more personal photos as well so only subscribe if you’re okay with that kinda stuff in your feed as well ^-^. Link: https://www.instagram.com/Xenokitten/

Title: CocoPPaPlay (the Android version is called Star Girl Fashion but it is the same game).

Genre: Dressup Game

Platform: Mobile (IOS / Android)

Grab it on IOS: https://itunes.apple.com…

Or Here for Android: (For some reason, it’s called “Star Girl Fashion” here, but same game, even same icon that the Itunes version uses) You can pick it up here: https://play.google.com/…

Geeky: 1/5 geeky

Sweetie: 4/5 sweetiesweetiesweetiesweetie

Overall: 70 / 100 70% C- Good Game for Girls

Concept: 7/10 The concept of CocoPPaPlay is simple – play “gacha” machines or enter monthly events to win new outfits. Outfits consist of different layers, such as eyes(facial expresion), hair, clothes, shoes, hand accessories (purses, stuffed toys, swords, etc), hats, glasses, pets, backgrounds, and other items – This allows you to really fine-tune and make unique avatars. Similar to games like Pokemini (which I reviewed here) or Line Play (review coming soon). However, in my opinion, CocoPPaPlay has less robust features than these two games and operates on more of a pay-to-win model than either of the above games.

Gameplay: 7/10 I covered the basics above: There are a number of “lottery” style games (gacha machines) where you’re awarded an item for your outfit by paying or using a gacha ticket. Gacha tickets only work in a few gacha. Once a week you can use in-game currency (the free kind that you earn by playing) to play one Gacha. This resets on Sundays, so each Sunday, you could, in theory, get a free “paid” item. The problem however, is that it’s insanely expensive. You earn this free currency by “cheering” for people’s “fashion shows”. The problem is, the gacha cost 20,000 of this free currency and you only get 5 to 10 of the currency for each cheer you do. You’d have to cheer 2,000 – 4,000 times to get enough points to get a free item each week – this is insanely time consuming.

To give you an idea, I played it very heavily this past weekend, logging in about once an hour and using up all of my “energy” cheering – which took about 15-20 minutes each hour. I did this each hour from about 9am – 11pm each day Saturday and Sunday – and only earned around 8,000 “smile points” (the in-game, free currency). You’d have to keep this pace up for 4-5 days, without missing a day or hour/wasting your free energy refills, etc. – I also had some free “energy drinks” and since I started a new character (didn’t feel like digging out my ipad to transfer my data), I leveled up many, many, many times from level 1 to 24 within the 2 days, and each time you level up, your energy also refills – so I cheered lots and lots – but obviously, not even close to the amount needed to get to 20,000 smile points!!

I work (as I’m sure a lot of my readers do) so I can’t log in Monday-Friday. So realistically I can only play on weekends – which means I’ll probably take 2-3 weeks to reach the 20,000 smile points necessary. Other games, like Moe can Change and Animal Boyfriend (which I reviewed here) let you play EVERY gacha for free completely free one time – so you always have nice items! I don’t like that CocoPPaPlay forces you to feel like you HAVE to spend money – I spent money willingly one time in Moe can change to get a hairstyle I wanted – but I have thousands of cute clothes for free. Every game should let you get free stuff – Line Play’s gacha’s only cost one to three thousand gems  not 20,000!! Making it much easier to earn tickets on the Gacha. I just feel that CocoPPaPlay is greedy in this regard.

Also, let it be known, that they don’t even make their own graphics, they use some type of “free to use” avatar system called “Selphie” which is used by A TON of other games (sadly none in English). There used to be a game called Tinier Me which was in English however, it went out of business some years ago. The “Japanese Tinier Me” still exists as “AtGames” and their “free items” are MUCH nicer than those in CocoPPaPlay which only puts like the worst garbage items in their “shops” For example, in the Japanese Tinier Me (or AtGames) you can get very nice high quality eyes for free/or in game currency. While in CocoPPaPlay you only get “closed eyes” like “n_n” and “^-^” and “x_x” etc for free. I only have 2 models on my new account right now because I’m still trying to win a face for my third model in the Gachas. And that’s another thing, although at level 10 you can dressup 3 characters at once, you can only use an item in your inventory once and can’t reuse it on another model unless you “unequip” it first. Just more evidence of wanting you to pay to play – they could have a default face that you could use/start with but nope.

Okay so I’m done ranting about the pay-to-win gamestyle – let’s move on to some other things now. There are numerous events – most recently they had an Easter event – but basically every event is the same – there will be multiple “quest givers” who request items from you – these items you can earn for free by cheering – you get “lucky tickets” in exchange (and sometimes other items like exclusive limited outfits, energy drinks, etc) – The lucky tickets can be used to try to play the lucky event gacha to win outfits/energy drinks, and/or used to raise your charm level for the event – I recommend trying to max your charm (similar to the events in Dream Girlfriend (which I reviewed here) having high charm lets you get event points and rewards much quicker! Therefore its best to max it out asap). To illustrate, I ranked in the top 5,000 (which is pretty low but in the scheme of things, with 40 million players according to their itunes profile, not bad) within just 2 days of playing, on a brand new account, at the very end of an event. So it’s fairly easy to rank – I think maybe a lot of that “40 million” is inactive or like me, hadn’t logged in in a long time, etc. Either way, it seems most don’t go for the event items, and/or don’t make good use of the charm boost, etc.

There’s also a club feature. You can at any level, any time, and for free, create (or join) a club. You can get bonuses in the events above by having club members where certain items or do certain tasks so clubs are really useful, you can also use them to chat and make friends which gives the game a nice social touch.

There’s a farming minigame, but it’s pretty lame, you sheer sheep. I dunno, I don’t find it that fun, you earn “wool points” and outfits when you discover a new sheep. You discover new sheep by spending wool points to improve your farm and buy new equipment to care for your sheep.

You also can take on quests from NPCs within the game, which when you complete, will add new items to their shops, and unlock new cities to explore, and grant you some free outfits. When a city “levels up” they have a sale with half priced items – but I never buy them – because I’m hoarding all my Smile Points to use in the “weekly free gacha”.

As a “bonus”, there’s another app by the makers of CocoPPaPlay, where you can customize your cellphone, with new icons, background images, wallpapers, lock screens, etc. This other app works best on android – because sadly, apple has a lot of bloatware that you cannot delete or modify – for example, the camera, you can’t change the icon for it on apple, the only work around is to download a 3rd party camera app, and hide your other icon in a folder somewhere. Email is another example, for example, you have to download Gmail, and hide the default mail app. You also can’t change the phone or text icons at all on the apple iphone. But it still makes your phone about 90% cuter – though it also makes your phone a little slower, as it adds an extra step whenever you click on one of the new icons it is only a shortcut to the actual program so you get prompted if you want to open the “page” with the following application. (At least on Iphone.) This other app also acts as a social media site, and if you link up your CocoPPa account to your CocoPPa Play account your avatar is carried over to both apps and appears on your social media wall – you earn some free items in both apps for linking, and can more easily login/retrieve your account by having both apps active.

That about covers it for gameplay. There’s really not much to do – but the limited event items and limited gacha items can be enough to keep you playing (for awhile until you get so frustrated by how long it takes to get a free spin on the Gacha.)

Customization – 10/10 – going on 2 years (they’re having a 2nd anniversary event right now) – the number of items available is incredible, and many items have already retired, rising the demand (unfortunately there’s no trading system (which exists by the way in the Japanese Tinier me lol)) – you get “bragging rights” if you have a super rare/old/obscure item equipped and well, I see this game being around 2-3 years from now, so even if you start playing today, in 2-3 years you too will have those rare items everyone else wants and be admired. I like games like this where they retire items fairly quickly. Pokemini is another example of really time sensitive items. That to me really increases my drive to play these games.

Story: 2/10 – There’s really not much, if any, story – I think there was some type of story presented at the beginning, but it’s so bare bones I forgot it quickly. It’s mostly fetch quests and cheering and there’s also quite a few typos or improper grammar and awkward sentences thrown about in the game.

Characters: 6/10 – Characters get high marks for cuteness – but really have no purpose or substance, other than serving as mascots.

Graphics: 10/10 This game is super cute, the mascot girl who guides you through the story and quests is adorable, and the sheep mascot is also cute and he helps run your club. Your avatar and the items are very nicely drawn and large. a Good variety of items (though most are paid items) and different poses, and the ability to layer many items to create your avatar make this game very very appealing for anyone who loves cute things.

Music: 5/10 – Music is standard mobile type music. It’s cute and catchy, but ultimately only consists of 3 or 4 different tracks which means the more you play it, the more it starts to annoy the heck out of you lol.

Cuteness – 10/10 – to balance out all the negative things I have to say about this game, added this lil bonus in here –  the main reason to play this game is because it’s so cute.

Replay Value: 8/10 – It gets repetitive, is super time consuming, and annoyingly “expensive” – but in the end, the lure of those time sensitive items keeps you wanting to press on to replay and get new items. It’s a very item-centric game.

Overall: 70 / 100 70% C- Good Game for Girls

CocoPPaPlay Dressup Game Review was originally published on GeekySweetie.com – Geeky & Kawaii Anime, Tech, Toys, & Game Reviews & News

Dark Cloud 2 – Dark Chronicle – Retro JRPG Videogame Review for PS2

A day later than promised, but here is my review for Dark Cloud 2. Dark Cloud 2 improves upon Dark Cloud 1 in almost every way.

(By the way, I reviewed Dark Cloud 1 yesterday, which you can read here.)

You may want to read the review for Dark Cloud 1 first to get the fullest understanding of the Gameplay mechanics, as a lot of those same mechanics are carried over to Dark Cloud 2.

Dark Cloud 2, like its predecessor is an Action-RPG with real-time combat and unique weapon leveling system, procedurally generated dungeons and world and city building gameplay elements.

Title: Dark Cloud 2 (also sometimes referred to by the Japanese title, Dark Chronicle).

Platform: PS2

Genre: Action-RPG

Publisher: Level 5

Where to Buy: Playstation Store has Dark Cloud 2 (digital version) for $14.99. Amazon has the physical disc with prices ranging from $32 to $92 at time of this review, depending on the game’s condition. http://www.amazon.com/Dark-Cloud-2… Amazon also has the digital version, the same as the Playstation Store, for $14.99 – accessible from the same amazon link above.

Geeky: 5/5 geekygeekygeekygeekygeeky

Sweetie: 5/5 sweetiesweetiesweetiesweetiesweetie

Overall: 77/90 86% B “Very Good Game For Girls”

Concept: 10/10 The concept of Dark Cloud 2 is very similar to that in Dark Cloud 1. It’s a Dungeon Crawler with randomly generated dungeons and real-time combat. There’s also multiple quick time events. The city and world building elements return in Dark Cloud 2. The weapon system, and the non-leveling characters also return. The game is enhanced with new features such as fishing and character customization through a unique costume system. Combat is improved, and the game is given a much needed makeover with adorable anime style cel-shaded artwork that looks like it came out of a painting or storybook. The Soundtrack is almost double the size of the original, and has some truly amazing tracks. It also adds voice acting to the game which helps highlight key events and scenes. Yep, in every single way, this game is much better than the original – which was already pretty darn great!

Gameplay: 10/10 Dark Cloud 2 takes everything that made Dark Cloud 1 so great, and then adds in some new features as I mentioned above, an improved combat system, a new fishing “minigame”, ability to customize your characters with different costumes, etc. But at the core, it’s still the Dark Cloud that we all know and love from the first game. You crawl through multiple procedurally generated dungeons, in which you will find artifacts called Geostones which when taken back to town, allow you to place objects, people, houses, even landscaping elements into your city. As you add more to your city, you will begin to recruit new npcs which will open new shops, give you new quests, and make your city come to life. The weapon system also makes a return in Dark Cloud 2. In the Dark Cloud series your characters do not level up or have any stats or abilities. Instead, it is their equipment which levels up during combat and can be refined back in town to add attributes and abilities directly into the Equipment. Also as in Dark Cloud 1, If you over-use the equipment and forget to repair it though you will permanently lose the items, which sucks for rare or high powered gear. However, this element of “risk” definitely makes Gameplay more fun and challenging.

Story: 6/10 Dark Cloud 2’s story is a significant improvement over the bare bones story of Dark Cloud 1. But to me it’s still just not “great”. I still think story is a weak point for this series overall. Dark Cloud 2’s story focuses on Time Travel. A Princess from the future is sent 100 years back in time to try to save her kingdom. To do so, she joins forces with our hero, who is able to also Time Travel (to the future). Using their powers combined they can freely go to the past, present, or future. As you make changes in your town, things begin to change in the future also. It’s a unique and fun concept. As the story progresses you travel between the past, present, and future re-writing certain events to prevent a terrible war from taking place while seeking help from the moon people. I just felt overall, the story lacked a lot of heart or emotion which prevents me from being able to score it higher. I enjoy the time travel concept, but just never felt as immersed or connected to the story as I have in many other JRPG.

Characters: 5/10 Here we have fewer playable characters, down to 2 from 6 in the original game. Also both characters are human looking in appearance and no where near as creative looking as in Dark Cloud 1 (a cat girl, moon person, etc). I just felt the characters themselves also, just like in Dark Cloud 1 were rather flat and didn’t engage me right away. I think maybe it’s the way they interact with other characters and overall a lack of character development that really hurt both games in this series.

Graphics: 8/10 The graphics are a tremendous step up from those in the first game. Gone are the grainy textures and poor lighting. Also gone is the more realistic art style. Instead we have adorable anime inspired cel-shaded artwork. I did deduct 2 points because the characters facial expressions and animations felt stiff as is often a problem with 3d games especially from this time period. Overall I feel Dark Cloud 2 is adorable, and beautiful to look at. Dark Cloud 1 looked more like a PS1 game, while Dark Cloud 2, clearly took full advantage of the PS2 Hardware. It’s not as beautiful and fluid as say, Dawn of Mana, which is another PS2 game that utilizes similar cel-shaded art styles, but it’s very attractive in it’s own right, and the added touch of being able to customize the characters with various costumes really made the game’s art stand out even more.

Music: 10/10 The soundtrack to Dark Cloud 2 has nearly 80 unique tracks (up from the 40-ish tracks in the original game.). Some of these tracks are amazing. It is really a hidden gem among retro JRPG soundtracks. The game is relatively obscure, but I’d rank Dark Cloud 2’s music right up there with other great JRPG such as Final Fantasy or Chrono Trigger.

Voice Acting: 10/10 No expense was spared in localizing this game. Although I’m not really a fan of dubbed voice overs, most of the ones in Dark Cloud 2 are fairly decent. And it’s nice to have Voice Acting added to help highlight key scenes in the story. The game featured almost every high profile voice actor of the 90s.

Replay Value: 8/10 Still a linear (and not great) story, but with a plethora of new gameplay additions, enhanced combat, and already addictive and unique world/city building elements, the randomness of the dungeons, and great music score – this is a game that you will definitely want to replay.

Overall: 77/90 86% B “Very Good Game For Girls”

Dark Cloud 2 – Dark Chronicle – Retro JRPG Videogame Review for PS2 was originally published on GeekySweetie.com – Geeky & Kawaii Anime, Tech, Toys, & Game Reviews & News

Top 10 Subscription Boxes for Geek Girls

Subscription boxes are taking over the internet. If you’ve never heard of such a thing, you must be living under a rock. The basic premise is you subscribe by paying a monthly fee and you get a box full of monthly goods delivered to your doorstep (or digitally in the case of a few subscription services out there). You don’t get to choose the items inside, so it’s like Christmas, or a birthday, opening a box and being surprised every month. How exciting! Of course, you run the risk of not liking what’s inside either though so it’s a gamble. They have boxes for everything from beauty products, to cat toys, dog treats, and yes, even anime and gamer and geeky boxes too.

This post has been modified but not “updated” to introduce new boxes, or remove boxes which may no longer be available on the market – since its original publication in December 2015. When I initially wrote this post, it was based on “second hand” research, such as watching box opening videos, reading reviews, looking at photos, visiting the websites, etc. However, over the course of 2016, I have personally tried and purchased several of these subscriptions. To see some of the boxes I’ve reviewed look here: http://geekysweetie.com/category/review/subscription-box-review/

I would also like to take a moment to give a “shout out” to Boxychan since I did not know about it in my original post below. It is my favorite anime subscription box. I’m currently signed up with their 9 month program at $28 a month. You can read my Boxychan review here http://geekysweetie.com/boxychan-anime-box-june-unboxing-photos-review-monthly-subscription-box-anime-manga-fans/:

And one final shout out to Pusheen Box – I signed up in Spring and am still signed up and expecting the summer box to ship at any time. You can see my Spring Pusheen box review here: http://geekysweetie.com/pusheen-box-spring-pusheen-box-box-opening-review/.

Regardless of the “Top 10” nature of the boxes below, Pusheen Box, and Boxychan are my favorite subscriptions. I’m also signed up to Humble Bundle Monthly which you’ll see in the Top ten list below. Those are my current 3 subscriptions of this nature. Very happy with those ones. I’ve also reviewed and subscribed or been gifted other boxes from this list below but am not a current subscriber to them. Have had to unsubscribe in some cases due to some varying degrees of quality issues, counterfeit items or just “too expensive” When a box on this list has been reviewed, I try to make an effort to go back to this list to add additional comments and point you towards my full review. Enjoy the original post below. And leave me a comment about which subscription boxes you enjoy!

This post will feature the top 10 subscription services for geeky girl gamers and otaku anime fans. Let’s dig in.

10 Humble Bundle Monthly

This is a new subscription service, in only it’s 3rd month currently. However, it’s from a reputable company that features bundle games regularly on their site. The new Humble Monthly features a plethora of games delivered digitally (usually through Steam) each month and focuses on more AAA titles and games which have never appeared in bundles on their site before. The subscription service costs $12 a month and you can sign up at https://www.humblebundle.com/monthly or view their past bundles.

Unlike any of the other boxes on our list, this one is all digital. It also does not give you any preview or theme or indication of what the next bundle will contain so you go into it completely blind. But for 12 dollars a month it’s a pretty good deal. I haven’t been too thrilled with the contents yet myself; but it does broaden my gaming horizons some, by giving me AAA title games which I would absolutely not buy for myself such as Saint’s Row and Payday. I just wish they’d have more diversity like some AAA visual novels or AAA roleplaying games. Everything has been action / stealth / shooter etc. I know that’s what most gamers want to see, but out of 6 games in each box, can’t they throw a girl a bone here by making 1 or 2 of them each month more “girly”? UPDATE: This post was originally published in December 2015 – since then, there have been a few RPGs, such as Talos Principle which made me pretty happy -Im still subscribed to it – but most months don’t see much that tickle my fancy. However, Talos Principle had been on my wishlist since it first came out – and that game alone paid for several months worth of this subscription – so not a bad deal.

9 Loot Crate

Everyone knows of Loot Crate, the subscription service with geeks in mind. The subscription box costs $13.95 a month and includes things like funko pops, tshirts, toys, posters, and more, from various pop culture references such as dr who, marvel, nintendo, minecraft, and more. Sign up here: https://www.lootcrate.com/crates/lootcrate/plans 

8 Anime Crate

From the makers of Loot Crate, comes Anime Crate, a new subscription box focusing on providing merchandise from Anime series. For some reason, it costs a lot more money than loot crate at $24.95 a month. It also unfortunately seems to focus primarily on mainstream shonen titles such as naruto, dragon ball z, and bleach. None of which appeal to me. It is a relatively new box; so perhaps future themes will throw in some shoujo items. You can view past crates or sign up here: https://www.lootcrate.com/crates/anime/plans

The nice thing about all the boxes from Loot Crate is they give you a “monthly theme” so you can decide to sign up, and/or cancel if there’s a theme you really want to check out. It says each crate has over $60 of goods, and they give away a  “Mega Crate” each month with usually $500-$800 worth of goods such as gaming consoles and more. Of course with hundreds of thousands of subscribers, your chances of winning the Mega Crate is pretty low; but it does add a bit of excitement to the mix.

7 Level Up

Another box from the makers of Loot Crate, this one focuses on clothing. They have both men and women’s clothing in sizes ranging from Extra Small to 5-XL. Yay for body diversity. This “box” works a bit differently, with lots of options to choose from. My favorite is the accessories box which is definitely the most girly of them, with things like purses, scarves, wallets, totes, and jewelry all with a geeky theme. That one runs $14.99 a month. There’s a box for tshirts, at just $8.99 a month! That’s a great deal on geeky apparel. They also have a premium tshirt box for $14.99 a month which is a bit more “stylish” (form fitting, or with cuffs, collars, etc) (more dressy). They even have a box for geeky socks for just under $5 a month. If you can’t decide which box you want, they offer a bundle with 2 socks and a premium tshirt each month for just over $20. You can check out all the different clothing bundles here: https://www.lootcrate.com/level_up 

Loot Crate also offers pet boxes for geeky items for your pets. I didn’t include it in my top 10 list because not all of my readers have pets, but it’s worth checking out if you’re a pet lover.

6 Nerd Block

Nerd Block is probably the 2nd most widely known subscription service (right after Loot Crate). Like Loot Crate, Nerd Block offers many different types of boxes including Classic, Arcade, Scifi, Horror, Comic, Boys JR, and Girls JR. Nerd Block calls itself “Toy Subscription Boxes for Geeks”

Like Loot Crate they also give away one special box each month, called the Big Boss Block, which includes things like video game consoles and more expensive items. But like Loot Crate, since they have hundreds of thousands of subscribers, your chances are slim to none to get this special box.

Also like Loot Crate, they offer a preview each month so you can decide to sign up or cancel before the next box comes out. For example, at time of writing, the next box is a mortal kombat, portal, and street fighter themed box.

Their boxes cost $19.99 a month, and focus more on toys than the other boxes. Each box also includes one Tshirt. For any mommy bloggers out there, the JR boxes have “child safe toys” for kids aged 6 and up.

You can view all of their boxes and sign up here https://www.nerdblock.com/

5 Kawaii Crate

Kawaii Crate features Japanese goods such as plushies, toys, snacks, and more. The crates also sometimes include anime DVDs, Manga, or Magazines. The really cool thing about Kawaii Crate is if you don’t like what’s inside, send it back and get a full refund!! I don’t know of any other crates that let you do that. It is pricey at $40 a month making it less affordable than the Loot Crate anime box. You can sign up at http://kawaiicrate.com/pages/subscriptions

4 Betoyo Bento

This box features some really super nice high quality collectibles, dolls, and figurines, for just $38 a month. UPDATE: The price has dropped to just $28 a month making this box almost too good to pass up. The next box will feature a sailor moon item. Oh how I wish I could sign up!! lol. It’s all toys/figures and there are some really good ones too. You can check it out here: http://www.betoyo.com/Their blog appears out of date, but they are very active on Facebook – so it is still an active box subscription site. UPDATE: Along with the new pricing, they’ve updated their website.

3 Anime Bento

Anime Bento is another toy/figure/plushie box. They also sometimes include tshirts and let you choose from sizes small to 2XL (although unlike Level Up it appears you cannot choose men or women’s clothing, which fits differently obviously). However, the items they include are very cute and high quality, I even see Nendoroids on their list of past items. You can learn more and sign up at https://animebento.cratejoy.com/subscribe/20362213_Anime+Bento

2 Omakase

Omakase is a bimonthly subscription box with a different anime series as the theme each month. It is a brand new box, and their second (current) theme is Naruto (yuck). Their first theme was Kill la Kill. Each box has EXCLUSIVE items that are made specifically for Omakase and not available anywhere else. I will very likely subscribe if/when they have a series I like. Since it is bimonthly, you only pay every other month, but unfortunately on the other hand, you only get a box once every other month too. It’s $35 each time. In addition to the cute toys, figures, etc, you get ad free anime streaming (coming in January). Therefore, this box could potentially rival Crunchyroll and steal some subscribers – I say potentially, because, Crunchyroll has deals with tv networks in Japan to bring us anime in as little as 3 hours after it airs on Japanese television. It remains to be seen, how many series, or how timely, the new Omakase anime streaming service will be. However, for just a fraction more than the highest crunchyroll plan, you’d also get a box of neat items every other month. They also promise “exclusive anime content” whatever that is (maybe behind the scenes, interviews with voice actors, etc) I could see that being a bit threat to crunchy if Omakase can keep up with the speed, selection, and volume of anime to be of equal value. You can learn more or sign up at https://www.viewster.com/omakase/

Sadly Omakase is no longer around. With that in mind, I’d like to recommend a new subscription box that I discovered called Yume Twins.

2. Yume Twins – Yume Twins is a super cute, mostly plushy based subscription box. It’s a new box developed by the folks behind Tokyotreat, a Japanese snackbox subscription service. This one is unique in that it is all kawaii shoujo (girly) stuff, mostly around popular anime franchises such as studio ghibli, sailor moon, and sanrio. It costs $23.99 and ships straight from Tokyo to your doorstep. All of the products are licensed, non-counterfeit and it features expensive items like Alpacasoo and exclusive kawaii plushies each month. Check them out over at https://yumetwins.com/

1 Kawaii Box

Kawaii Box is my pick for the best subscription box for geeky girls because all of the items inside are kawaii, girly, and adorable and all of the items are imported from Japan and South Korea making them 100% unavailable in any US store. It includes things like toys, plushies, accessories, beauty items, stationary, and more. It costs just $18.95 a month and includes 10-12 kawaii items in each box. Check them out at http://kawaiibox.com

Edit to Add: i also just discovered DokiDoki – a monthly subscription box by Japan Crate with cute anime themed items including plushies, toys, bentos, stationary, and more from series such as Studio Ghibli Films, Totoro, Sailor Moon, Madoka Magika, Sanrio, Hello Kitty, Animal Crossing and more. It costs $30 a month and ships the first week of each month. You can find it here: http://japancrate.com/dokidoki In addition to all of this, they also give away one Suteki Crate which contains awesome items such as imported region-free nds systems with cute designs and colors. Adorable!

Edit regarding DokiDoki on 6/6/2016 – I ordered the June DokiDoki Crate and did a brief review. I really would not recommend this crate. You can read my review here. http://geekysweetie.com/doki-doki-june-box-opening-subscription-crate-review/

Edit: 5/2016: I also discovered Geek Fuel – and we have a special offer for our readers for $3 off their subscription. Geekfuel is a geek and gamer subscription box, though geared more towards “western” geeks (starwars, dr who, etc) as opposed to “anime geeks and otakus” It’s still an awesome box and you should check it out 🙂 The offer is good on any subscription plan. Learn more and sign up at geekfuel.com or use our link for your special discount: http://fbuy.me/dT0MG

Also I joined the Pusheen Box. I did a Box Opening Review here. Pusheen is a famous character from the internet. He is a cute fat grey striped cat (who reminds me a lot of my own cat). I love this character. This is a quarterly box so that helps cut down costs since you only pay once every 3 months. I recommend this box if you like Pusheen as it has Exclusive officially liscensed pusheen merchandise. Learn more at PusheenBox.com

Do you subscribe to any of these services, or know of other geeky, gamer, anime or kawaii subscription services? Leave us a comment below. ❤

Top 10 Subscription Boxes for Geek Girls was originally published on GeekySweetie.com – Geeky & Kawaii Anime, Tech, Toys, & Game Reviews & News

My Elephant Japanese Kigurumi Costume for a Halloween Party at Work Today

Halloween 2015 | Elephant | Kigurumi | Costume

Halloween 2015 | Elephant | Kigurumi | Costume

Halloween 2015 | Elephant | Kigurumi | Costume

Halloween 2015 | Elephant | Kigurumi | Costume

Halloween 2014 | Black Cat | Kigurumi | Costume | Kigurumi Shop | Sazac

Halloween 2014 | Black Cat | Kigurumi | Costume | Kigurumi Shop | Sazac

Happy Halloween everybody! It is cold here in Northwestern PA (though not as bad as it has been the past few years). I’m nice and warm in a cute and comfy, cozy Kigurumi. What is a Kigurumi? It’s a type of costume made popular in Japanese street fashion and cosplay that is similar to a baby onesie without the feet and with a hood that often has an animal or anime face.

I have lots of Kigurumi. Cats, tigers, my little ponies, bears, mice, domukun, care bears, etc. But today, I’m wearing my elephant costume. Last year, I wore my black cat costume from Sazac. This was my very first Kigurumi and it’s now at least 6 years old and has lived through being washed multiple times. I used to have a cat that looked just like it and it was fun posing with her for pictures lol. I got the cat kigurumi from a place called Kigurumi Shop online. I highly highly recommend them and the Sazac brand!!! http://kigurumi-shop.com/

But Sazac, although they might have been the first, or most well known designer of Kigurumi, they are not alone in the market. Today’s elephant Kigurumi came from a local discount store called Gabriel Brothers. The brand just says Animal Onesie. And they’re sold usually around this time of year in the women’s lingerie and underwear department.

The fit of this “counterfeit” costume is NOT as comfy as the Sazac costumes. The legs are oddly short, like maybe they’re capris but I’m short so Capris pants almost always fit me like regular pants (almost) – but the elastic around the leg is tight and itchy. — The Sazac costume is much more loose around the legs. Though I do like that this counterfit one is a lot less baggy in the crotch area since it’s designed specifically for women, where as the Sazac brand are unisex costumes.

Although the fit is a bit different, the costume is still made of the same fleecey comfy soft and THICK fabric that the Sazac costumes are made from. It’s VERY cuddley.

It’s also incredibly cute! Although I am aware it looks like a certain male body appendage is sticking out of my head hahaha…. It’s amusing, and funny. and I feel cute and happy wearing it. I love Halloween and I love Kigurumi. I’d recommend buying from the Kigurumi Shop; but if you’re lucky, due to increased popularity in the United States, you just may be able to find one at a store near you! The ones from Sazac are pricey, but really last a long time and fit a lot better and are comfier than the cheapie ones. But the cheapie ones are still cute and make great halloween costumes (or pajamas!).

ch_client = “xenokitten”;
ch_width = 300;
ch_height = 250;
ch_type = “mpu”;
ch_sid = “Chitika Default”;
ch_color_site_link = “#164675”;
ch_color_title = “#164675”;
ch_color_border = “#B0C9EB”;
ch_color_text = “#333333”;
ch_color_bg = “#FFFFFF”;

http://scripts.chitika.net/eminimalls/amm.js

Check out some of these other zany Japanese and Korean Costumes from around the web:

English: Several "dollers", or "...

English: Several “dollers”, or “animegao” cosplayers, were at the 2008 Kyoto International Manga Summit. This one agreed to pose for a picture. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

splash mascots. Korean Amusement park.

splash mascots. Korean Amusement park. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

My Elephant Japanese Kigurumi Costume for a Halloween Party at Work Today was originally published on Geeky Sweetie

Catherine PS3 Xbox 360 Visual Novel RPG Review

My copy of Catherine Love is Over for the PS3
My copy of Catherine Love is Over for the PS3
the Tshirt from Love is Over
the Tshirt from Love is Over
The Pillow Case from the Special Love is Over Limited Edition of Catherine for PS3
The Pillow Case from the Special Love is Over Limited Edition of Catherine for PS3
The pizza box which contains all the other goodies and the game itself. Love is Over Catherine Atlus PS3.
The pizza box which contains all the other goodies and the game itself. Love is Over Catherine Atlus PS3.
Box Opening Catherine PS3 Love is Over Edition
Box Opening Catherine PS3 Love is Over Edition
Box Opening Catherine Love is Over Edition Atlus PS3
Box Opening Catherine Love is Over Edition Atlus PS3

Screenshots:

catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim

Title: Catherine

Genre: Action-RPG with Platformer and Visual Novel Elements

Publisher: Atlus

Release Date: July 2011

Platforms: PS3, Xbox 360

Where to Buy: Amazon: 360 Click here; and for PS4 Click here

There is a special Love is Over edition that included a pillow case, men’s boxers, a pizza box, tshirt, and some other goodies. I have this version and took some pictures when I got it a few years ago at release.
There’s also special box art for the 360 version, but I don’t have that, it is however, available, as well as the Love is Over edition, via the Amazon links above. The standard edition of the game costs about $12. And for PS3 you can also get the digital version. The limited edition will cost about $95.

Geeky: geekygeekygeekygeeky

Sweetie:

Concept 10/10: The concept of Catherine is quite unique. The gameplay is a bit like Qbert in a way while in Vincent’s nightmares. You see, Vince is having bad dreams because he is worried about being caught cheating on his long-time girlfriend, Katherine with a K, with his hot new heartthrob, Catherine with a C. He’s so scared of being caught that every night he sees strange demons trying to eat him in his sleep. He must climb an endless tower, where the screen moves from the bottom up, while avoiding monsters and obstacles, and racing against a clock to make it to the exit of each dream.  When not dreaming, Vince meets with the girls and his other friends in a local bar where the gameplay is very similar to a visual novel. You watch numerous cutscenes and choose the “correct” answer to get different endings ultimately within the game. There are numerous endings, including, good, bad, and true endings for each girl, and good, and true endings for Vince being single as well. So it’s a total of 8 different endings. The entire game is cel-shaded, in a way that’s never been done, before or since, at least not in any game that ever found it’s way to this side of the world. It’s so beautiful. It’s like watching an interactive anime. (actually school days may be similar now that I think about it; but Catherine’s art is higher quality.)

I covered a lot of the other aspects of the game which I’m reviewing below here in the concept above, but I feel like all of these elements make Catherine, what it is, and are what make it such a unique and awesome gaming experience and therefore, they’re all part of the “concept” of the game.

Gameplay 10/10: As mentioned above, the gameplay is really two fold. In his waking hours, Vincent interacts with the girls and his friends in visual novel fashion. When Vince returns home and falls asleep, the gameplay switches into a sort of Qbert style, climbing and jumping from blocks, which fall, as the screen moves and you race against the clock, grabbing power ups, and avoiding monsters and obstacles along the way. There’s also a number of interesting minigames and sidequests available back in the bar as well.

There are numerous difficulty settings in the game, including one hidden “Very Easy” mode which you can access by holding down select on the main screen until you hear a ding sound go off. You can then select Easy mode which will now become Very Easy. In this mode, more powerups appear, and the nightmare modes are all the same as easy. You can also climb 3 blocks at a time with special power drinks. This allows you to play the game more like a visual novel, by (practically) skipping all the puzzles in the game. I think this version is great for your second, third, etc playthrough, but kinda kills the fun of the game if this is your first playthrough. Part of the fun of the game is the difficult puzzles which await you in Vincent’s dreams. If you want a challenge, you can also decide to play the game on Nightmare mode. Different achievements are also available for different difficulty levels. But the story is the same regardless, so if you ONLY want to see the different stories/endings and enjoy the game in a relaxing way, feel free to pick an easier difficulty setting.

Graphics: 10/10 The majority of the graphics are all real-time 3d cell shaded anime style. I think there may be some anime cutscenes mixed in too; but the cell shaded 3d models are so good that it’s hard to tell sometimes which ones are 3d and which ones are 2d (if any). The graphics are truly unique and a sight to behold. They are vibrant, colorful, and look like a real anime. I’ve never seen a game with this style before. Check out these screenshots below as you continue to read the review.

Story: 10/10 Vince has a long time girlfriend, Katherine. Katherine wants Vince to get married, but Vince is too immature for such a big commitment. While struggling with both his feelings of love and feelings of fear, Vince meets Catherine, a girl who walks into his life unexpectedly and begins to have a week long affair with her. Tormented by feelings of guilt towards his longtime girlfriend, Katherine, Vincent begins to have nightmares each and every single night in which demons are chasing him. What unfolds next is a deadly love triangle. Can Vincent keep his affair a secret? Can he make the girls happy? And can he keep his own conscious from eating away at him?

Characters: 10/10 One of the really cool things about Catherine’s story is that it does not try to impose a “right” way to play onto you. None of the characters are perfect, not Vince, nor Catherine, nor Katherine. They all have flaws, they’re all equally to blame for any relationship problems within the course of the game; but they all have endearing qualities as well. Vince himself is feeling pressured to marry his long time girlfriend Katherine. Vince doesn’t really want to get married, but he realizes that if he doesn’t marry her, she will break up with him. Katherine is a VERY strong woman, and perhaps more woman than Vince can handle. She is very demanding in the relationship and she isn’t above lying or manipulating Vince to play on his emotions to make him more sympathetic to her and try to rush him into a marriage that he isn’t even sure he wants. Around this same time, Vince suddenly meets Catherine, a girl who only wants a no-strings-attached sexual relationship. She makes Vince feel alive, and young, and free, and all of the qualities that Katherine lacks, Catherine has in spades. However, when it comes to love, and a real lasting relationship, Catherine is too immature; she’s like Vince; she isn’t ready for all of that, and as the game progresses, Vince realizes that Katherine’s stability and commitment to him is something unique and special that Catherine can never offer him. (and for good reason too, but I won’t spoil that). There are basically, 3 routes you can take. Go back and beg Katherine for forgiveness, turn your back on her and continue down the path of sin and lust with Catherine, or tell both girls to go F*** themselves and realize your own dreams and ambitions which is perhaps the best feeling of all. However, the game never makes you feel like one ending or choice is better than the others. They both have pluses and minuses. They aren’t “right or wrong” they’re just different choices. That’s all. I also really like the artwork for the characters, Vince’s hair style is so cute. I want to play with it. It looks fluffy! lol. And both of the girls are ridiculously beautiful. Catherine is so cute, youthful, sexy, flirty, etc; while Katherine exudes maturity, calmness, intelligence, and a sort of refined elegance which is also sexy in it’s own right.

Music: 10/10 The music in this game is composed by Shoji Meguro and is often compared to the soundtracks of Persona 3 and Persona 4. Atlus USA released a version of this soundtrack with their Love is Over limited edition release (pictured above). You can listen to the soundtrack on youtube below:

Or you can pick the soundtrack online on sites like Amazon.com It’s out of print though and as of this writing goes for about $80. Here’s a link where you can check the current prices. http://www.amazon.com/CATHERINE-ORIGINAL-SOUDTRACK-MUSIC-O-S-T/dp/B004GN9AW6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1445396054&sr=8-1&keywords=catherine+ost

This is the full soundtrack which is DIFFERENT from the one that Atlus USA included in their special edition. The soundtrack included in Love is Over, only has 11 songs, which are the levels in Vince’s nightmares. It does not include the cutscene music and other tracks. However, the link above, via Amazon will include all of these awesome tracks for you.

catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim

Voice Acting: 7/10 My review is for the English dub voice cast. I thought they were fairly good actually for a dub. There were times where I felt they were overacting a tad. But it wasn’t distracting. Catherine has a cute, peppy sugary sweet voice; while Katherine is more quiet and refined, both of which fit their characters perfectly. Vince has kinda a dopey goofy voice, which I guess fits his character. I haven’t watched the japanese voice actors on youtube. I dunno if they are better, my guess would be yes. lol. It’s not that I hate the english cast though. I find it to be better than the Persona dub (which isn’t horrible either). (It may even have some of the same actors. I don’t follow the English voice acting “scene” so I wouldn’t know.) Their performances are all very convincing. Vince has a goofy scream sometimes, but it’s supposed to convey his fear (of himself/his conscious/his actions) and I think it does convey a lot of stress and emotion.

Replay Value: 10/10 The 7 different endings force you to play multiple times to see the entire story. You can skip cutscenes you’ve seen already, and you can also use the cheat above to get a “Very Easy” gameplay mode to make your multiple replays fast and as pain free as possible so you can just enjoy the story. The endings and the plot are very different, not just small differences, but very unique. This makes it a very rewarding game on multiple playthroughs. If you like achievements there are different ones which are specific to different difficulty settings which you will have to play to unlock them all.

Overall: 86/90 96%  A “Excellent Game For Girls” 

In fact, the Mature rating, horror, gore, and sexual themes, make it a great game for guys too 🙂 Maybe a good way to introduce your guy friends to anime or visual novels.

catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim
catherine | PS3 | Xbox 360 | RPG | Atlus | Atlus USA | Platform | Platformer | Multiple Endings | Love | Sim | Simulation | Dating | Cheating | Romance | Nightmare | Visual Novel | Dating Sim

Catherine PS3 Xbox 360 Visual Novel RPG Review was originally published on Geeky Sweetie

WTF is a Mechanical Rocking Horse – It’s Awesome That’s What it Is

So my new “life goal” (ok not really) is to lose enough weight to get under 154 lbs which is the maximum weight limit for a toy by a company called UFREE which makes something called Large Mechanical Rocking Horses.

How did I come across this? I just encountered a video clip here: https://www.facebook.com/ponycyclenz/videos/1081942061815988/ of a mother, father, and baby, all riding various sizes/shapes of these Mechanical Rocking Horses, bouncing down the street…. And it is totally adorable… and looks like great exercise too.

You can buy one too from Amazon here: http://www.amazon.com/UFREE-Mechanical-Rocking-Bounce-Children/dp/B00D3CHKKA

Apparently, UFREE isnt the only company making these. Another popular search term and / or Brand name is “Pony Cycle” (which is where that video above is from).

Mechanical Rocking Horse for Adults

Mechanical Rocking Horse for Adults

Making Fitness Fun again, Getting weird looks all over town, Being 30+ years old and riding a “bouncing stuffed animal” What could go wrong? LOL….

I really really want one. In fact, if another company offered one that could support my 200 lb ass I’d buy it right now lol.

Of course losing weight, I could also buy lolita fashion, etc… but we all know I’m too lazy to actually exercise. I was 120 lbs and a size 6 in college but that was 10+ years ago lol.

I do want to lose weight though, so any motivation, even a stuffed, bouncing, ridiculously cute horse would only be a good thing.

ch_client = “xenokitten”;
ch_width = 728;
ch_height = 90;
ch_type = “mpu”;
ch_sid = “Chitika Default”;
ch_color_site_link = “#164675”;
ch_backfill = 1;ch_color_title = “#164675”;
ch_color_border = “#B0C9EB”;
ch_color_text = “#333333”;
ch_color_bg = “#FFFFFF”;

http://scripts.chitika.net/eminimalls/amm.js

WTF is a Mechanical Rocking Horse – It’s Awesome That’s What it Is was originally published on Geeky Sweetie