I usually review Japanese otome games, but I’m starting to move out into domestically produced otome as well. I don’t know why it’s taken me this long (probably because there’s just so many games out there now hahaha) but now I’m going to start reviewing more of the indie side of gaming.
So I’ve started with “Gangsters in Love” from the American Voltage side to start.
And from those, I picked Aurora.
One, because a female would be pretty fun to read. Two, because she’s the only one that doesn’t look like a troll. (Okay, so Irving is also pretty good looking… so is Ash. Okay, 3/5 isn’t too bad at all.)
She reminds me of Rihanna, somehow. IDK why I got that vibe exactly, but in my head she’s RiRi.
Aurora, or Rory (I
kinda really hate that nickname) is a flirtatious, tough-as-nails, no-nonsense, “YOLO” bitch. I adore her. They call her the best hustler around or something like that, whatever, like real gangsters would do that. But the point is, she’s slick and smooth and not afraid to get her hands dirty.
So, the story isn’t entirely finished with the first “season”. I kinda heard about this going in, but I expected a full arc at least. We do get one, and we don’t. The romance is a bit rushed, but that’s because you basically have to fit the plot and the initial romance into a mere six chapters. That’s not a lot of room to breathe. The fact that so much is accomplished despite this gets brownie points from me, however.
I’m also pretty surprised at well, how “raunchy” some parts are. Basically, from a cell phone produced otome game, I’ve expected a certain level of heat and language. This has her making orgasm or BJ shots for the heroine, having underwear sprites, cursing, and quite a few steamy scenes. Not explicit, but more explicit that what I’ve come to expect (if you’ve played the early SWD games like Magic Sword, think the good endings that usually end with a love scene for an idea of how explicit it is). I suppose this is also me being used to the Japanese side of romance, which are usually very conservative hahaha
The basic plot is thus:
Your parents ran off with over half of the gang’s fortune, so they took you as collateral and to find out where your parents went. All you really know is they are on an extended honeymoon. You also didn’t know about this side of your parents. The gang isn’t the only one after you, so they’re protecting you from the other gangs.
You pick a “protector” as your romantic partner.
In Aurora’s side, she wants to enter a black market poker tournament and win back the money she lost. However, because she’s screwed over so many in the past, she’s pretty much banned from everything. But you, dear heroine, have a near photographic memory and quite a talent at this whole gambling thing, so you’re going to learn poker and enter the tournament in her place.
That’s the entirety of the first season. You don’t actually enter the tournament or find your parents, or anything like that. The first season is you learning how to play poker to enter the tournament.
I was a little disappointed in the romance, but this is something I think is almost exclusive to me: to put it shortly, I grew up surrounded by alcoholics, so when I read or see characters drinking a lot, I start feeling super uncomfortable. They don’t ever drink enough to get blackout drunk, but reading Aurora drinking constantly in practically every chapter (she even has a minibar in her room) and a scene where she pulled out alcohol she hid in a vase made me feel really uneasy. And that’s something that probably would only bother me and no one else. So whenever we have this sweet romance scene, it’s usually after Aurora’s been drinking, and it’s hard for me to be excited when I’m still feeling uneasy.
Because of Aurora’s flirty and forward nature, she’s really good at sweeping the heroine off her feet. There are a lot of swoon-worthy moments with her. The last CG is very too. Whoo~ //fans self// The only other complaint I have is I didn’t feel there was friendship much between them. Of course, considering the shortness of the piece, it would be very difficult to include the friendship aspect of the relationship. Hopefully in the later seasons, since their relationship is established, we’ll get more scenes of how their friendship will develop. I believe this friendship aspect of the relationship is very important.
Instead of the usual endings (because there isn’t one), we get POV scenes depending on how high your affection is by the end. I mean, it is something, but eh. The normal ending POV is about how adorable MC is and the passionate one is about how much she wants to sex MC.
I don’t think I’ve ever read a POV route that I liked. They usually aren’t as detailed and feel like a tacked on way to squeeze extra money out of people. The only real amusing route would be if you have a kuudere/quiet archetype and their POV is like a constant stream of thoughts they’re not saying.
In summation, I will say I enjoyed this. I wish it was longer, but I still enjoyed what little was there. I also don’t know if I can recommend it outside of a sale price, because it is rather expensive and a lot shorter than the Japanese side of things. The only other thing it has going for it is that you can be romanced by a female. Oh, and the two CGs are A++.
My heart scale is defined as follows – 5 hearts = a story everyone will fall in love with, regardless of preferences; 4 hearts = a well-done story that people who love the concept will adore, and people who don’t may end up liking it; 3 hearts = if you like this type of story or this type of hero, then you will enjoy this, but those who do not like either of those things will probably not; 2 hearts = it had potential, it squandered it; 1 heart = just a waste of time from the get-go; 0 hearts = why was this made?