Release Date: March 20, 2021 (North America)
Developers: Shinogi Shiohara
Publishers: Moonchime Localization
Platforms: PC (Mac, Windows)
ESRB Rating: NA
STORY (From the game’s official page)
Follow the antics of a strong-headed female protagonist through her school days in I Love You!, a visual novel otome game where you could meet and date some good boys depending on the choices you make!
Take the lead in the relationship and live an unforgettable school festival with your friends, or even your future boyfriend. What fun moments will ensue? Who will you choose in the end?
ART AND MUSIC
The character design for “I Love You!” or “Suki Da!” was brought to us by Japanese Solo Indie dev, Shinogi Shiohara. You can view this artist’s other works on their pixiv page here. The overall BGMs were also pretty fun and very fitting for the quirky high school atmosphere this title was aiming for. I did a short screen-capture below, featuring the tracks I’ve enjoyed!
Unfortunately, this game is not voiced.
MAIN CHARACTERS AND ROUTES
The game has three main routes and characters. Tsuda, Onodera, and Kirishima. There’s a secret character route you can unlock (anytime) by going through Tsuda’s path. As for route orders, there aren’t any. In my gameplay, I played Kirishima first, followed by Onodera, then Tsuda, and left the secret route last.
“I Love You!” also has eight unlockable official endings. Two endings for each main character (Love and Friendship), one surprise ending (secret route), and the “Mom Ending” which gave me plenty of laughs!🤣
To unlock the ‘Friendship Endings‘, you need to at least score the same number of points on two (or three) of the main LI’s. You’ll eventually know you’re heading towards this ending when two or ALL three of the guys ask you to hang out with them the day before the school festival starts.
Kirishima is your senpai, who’s into calligraphy, and matcha puddings. I thought his personality pretty much falls into the dandere trope due to him being the shy boy he is. He’s also a very reserved individual, and it was so much fun seeing him blush time and again, most especially during the heroine’s forward antics towards this precious bean.😚 Please kabedon him twice, I beg you!
Onodera is your cute genki kohai freshman who radiates a very cool, and outgoing personality. He’s always trying to get the heroine’s attention but immediately gets flustered whenever the protagonist shoots him back with her very own rambunctiousness. 🤣 I’ve personally enjoyed most of the school festival scenes with him. On top of everything, he’s an animal-lover which is an immediate plus in my book!
Tsuda is your fun-loving, loyal classmate. He gets along pretty well with the heroine that the whole class would joke about how they act like married couples. He’s also active in sports and is currently on their school’s track team. I thought his route was totally hilarious. Especially during the scene where you get to ‘smack his ass’ twice! (laughs) 😂
SYSTEM AND LOCALIZATION
“I Love You!” is Moonchime Localization’s first otome title, and I appreciate the delicate handling and approach they did with this game’s translations. The UI was also very simple yet polished, and it outright matches the game’s cutesy high school theme.
It took me three hours to finish the entire game, including unlocking all of its endings. I admit, I had doubts at first whether I’d enjoy a highschool themed otome game (I’m probably way too old to relate haha). But because of its comedic tone, I was stupidly impressed how I’ve managed to have tons of fun playing it. This game also reminded me of my very own high school experience (living in HK), where I’m mostly the one chasing after dem cute shy boys! 😂
Story-wise, I thought it was very linear. There were no route variations, and all the stories pretty much ended the same way for every LI. I did find the humorous dialogues and quirky choices highly entertaining, at the very least. The game’s role-reversal theme was probably its highlighting factor, and the heroine, despite not having any lines, was very much apparent in every scene. I loved all the cliched tropes they used, and the three main love interests were quite charming in their own unique way.
On another note, I was a little disappointed that the secret LI didn’t have a sprite. This kind of made him look less official than he already is in the game (he didn’t have eyes in his CGs either, which was a letdown). The “harem path” (where you have all three boys ask you out before the festival starts) was an absolute kicker and probably my most favorite part of my entire gameplay. Ha!
All in all, I Love You! is a very cute, endearing otome game I would readily recommend to anyone who’s looking for a short rom-com read centering on innocent high school love with an unexpected role reversal twist. Play this when you’re having a bad day. It’ll surely cheer you up!😊