English Otome Games


#1

I've been looking for some good otome games, lately. Seeing as COG is a litgame hub, I figured this forum would be a good place to pass around recommendations!

When I say otome game, I'm talking specifically about visual novels that have a bit of romance in them. (: Its hard to find good ones that have been translated into English, or were originally written in it. If anyone has any good suggestions, I'd love to hear them! I've run into a bit of a rut lately.

I'll give out some of my own recs!

  1. I love the games made by Cyanide Tea. They're all free (although they take donations!), and they're amazing quality. All of their games have diverse characters, and all of their stories are relateable. Nothing feels cliched. My favorite is Taarradhin-- that game made me cry!

  2. MoaCube's visual novels, of course. So far all they have is Cinders, which is one of the most beautiful games I've ever played. They're coming out with a new one called Solstice (I've played the demo and its amazing).

  3. Pangodango's Lovely Little Thieves is an awesome blend of funny and creepy. Its like you're the star of a teen horror flick, and I love it. Haunted houses are totally my thing, and all the characters are totally hiding something.

  4. Spirit Parade from Lettuce Waltz looks sososo promising. The main character is a girl who can no longer walk because of polio. She's so cool-- I'm honestly more in love with her than any of the LI's haha. And I love the concept of falling into the spirit world.

The last two aren't out yet but I've played the demos and they're amazing! I think both games are due to come out late Spring.

(If there's already a topic like this out there, just direct me to that one and I'll delete this!)


Games With Good Romance?!?!?
#2

I love all of the ones you just mentioned! (Except for Love Little Thieves, which I haven't tried.) Cinders and Cyanide Tea especially! Taarradhin is definitely their best as far as story and quality, but Nachtigal's sort of my favorite for shallow-ish reasons (Luca and it was my first of theirs.)

This is a demo of a great game: Seven Kingdoms

The descriptions in the link but basically it's this game really heavily involved with intrigue and politics and much better than I thought it would be. I thought that "courtship" would be central, but tbh it's easy to forget about the matchmaking with all of the content. The characters are so much fun to interact with. Tons of romance options and two hidden options! There are stats that track rivalry, respect, friendship, and romance. I can't endorse this one enough. It's the release I'm looking forward to the most.

There's also Lucky Rabbit Reflex. A complete, commercial game with a free demo. You've probably already played it, but it's really great and addictive. It's a stats raiser, though and idk, that might not be your thing.

Essence! After Seven Kingdoms, it's the game I'm looking forward to the most. Although, I think this'll be free when it's done (Seven Kingdoms will be commercial.) It's post-apocalyptic with a really likeable and I think unique protagonist named Alice. She's a robot with a human soul and her hair is amazing! The side characters are funny and engaging. The creator of Essence is also really receptive to feedback and good about replying to comments (as far as I've seen).

Oh and Ascension: Echoes in the dark is a free game with a character whose appearance can be customized. You can choose races. It's not finished yet, but the demo has been released. And it's great. It's been influenced by Dragon Age and it shows. There's even some hints of exploration where you can wander around and interact with NPCs. And it's free.

And I guess lastly for me would be Magical Diary which is a magic school game so yay! I'd probably like this more if you could choose which Hall you lived in but you can customize your characters looks! So big yay there. It was the first VN I ever played so maybe my opinion's colored (I remember liking it but being weirded out by the focus on dating; I still kinda am by some VNs). Also it may have given me too high expectations of diversity in casts (so surprised by all the VNs that are just white guys as options, that I've seen at least). It's also on Steam, which can be cheaper if it's on sale.

I can't believe I almost forgot A Troll's Fairy Tale. Awesome story, awesome protagonist. There are I think three routes, but I've only seen the two good ones. And those two are very, very good. Routes are pretty linear but eh, it's very story focused. Super enjoyable and free.

(Sorry for the long response)

You can find a lot of WIP otomes on Lemmasoft forums. They're not all otomes, but most will have GxB, BxB, GxG, etc in their title so you know who the protagonist is. Also, most are free.


#3

Try Speakeasy Tonight if you have an iPhone. It's a game with a great heroine, interesting men to romance, and it's set in the American 1920s. The fashion is also on point if you care about that kind of thing.


#4

RE: Alistair. Decent art, cute story, very short. It's good, however nothing to write home about overall. It's completely free though, so I'd say it's worth your time.

Katawa Shoujo. I'll say it straight up, this is an eroge. There's sexual content, in other words, but it's pretty vanilla and only accounts for a small part of the game. If you don't want any of that I would advise you to endure or skip through it, because otherwise you would be missing out on the amazing art and story (just allow yourself to become invested and it will grab you by the feels and never let go), as well as the huge amount of content. I would generally expect to pay 20-30$ for a game like this, but oddly enough, it's freeware. The premise is sure to raise eyebrows, but it's handled well.

That's all the good free stuff I can think of off the top of my head. As far as I know, they're both written by English speakers.


#5

To add some more: the Heileen games are romance-heavy and have an interesting heroine; there are also lesbian options (more so in the later games.) They're indie games available for free on the web.
EDIT: Sorry, this is no longer true, these games are now on Steam and so are no longer being offered free by the author.

And speaking of lesbian dating games, Embric of Wulfhammer Castle is awesome (fun for anyone who isn't offended by such content too
EDIT: to clarify - especially in the Deluxe edition, there is some racy/adult art in the cut-scenes
since it balances the relationship scenes with a lot of exploring a hilarious parody of adventuring towns.) It's also a free indie game, with a bunch of the action in 8-bit between graphics.


#6

Winter Wolves has several such games, some of which are essentially visual novels and some of which explore RPG elements more heavily. Edit: None of them (to my knowledge) are free, but they're generally rather well written. 2nd Edit: Ah, Sashira already mentioned Heileen, which are by Winter Wolves.


#7

Try The Visual Nove Database. They've got an entire list of visual novels, Japanese and English and this also includes otome games as well.


#8

Embric of Wulfhammer's Castle is my lifeblood thank you so much for mentioning it!

I second most of the games already mentioned, especially Katawa Shoujo (even if it lacks many lesbians). That game was a breath of amazing fresh air holy cow. Realistically depicted characters with disabilities, very little in the way of "gamey" conventions in the story, and the characters really do feel like real people. And it was made by people on 4Chan. Who would have ever expected?

The Winter Wolves games are all pretty darn good, too, although they aren't all as uniform as some other studios, so while you like one, you might dislike others. My personal faves are Loren the Amazon Princess and Heileen 3: Sea Maidens. Bonus points because most of the games by that studio have gay options by default!

I also recommend The Royal Trap by Hanako Games! [Thanks Owlet for correcting me.] It's wonderful! It's commercial, but worth it, and there's only one true lesbian path (which matters to me, but might not be a problem for you!), but I still really loved the game. The diversity of the plotlines was excellent, and it deals with some pretty touchy subjects in a good way (most of the time). IIRC it had 17 possible endings, with three guys and two girls (although one is clearly a platonic relationship).


#9

Prepare yourself. I've got a list ready smile

  • Cheritz's "Dandelion" or "Nameless". I'd recommend "Nameless", but if you want the most out of your experience, playing "Dandelion" will net you a few laughs in "Nameless" (hint: Easter eggs, Easter eggs everwhere)
  • "The Royal Trap" by Hanako Games (@Spacelesbian, Sakevisual makes games like Backstage Pass)
  • "Hatoful Boyfriend" (don't let the pigeons deceive you. I swear this game is good)
  • "X-Note" and "Area-X" by Zeiva are definitely worth playing.
  • "Hakuoki: Demon of The Fleeting Blossom" is a PSP game, but it's worth the money (assuming you have a PSP)
  • Pacthesis has lots of free online flash dating sims for girls. I think she went on a hiatus a year or so ago, so don't expect much more. That said, her art is not as polished as the commercial ones I listed above.
  • If you've got an iPhone or an Android, I'd recommend "Scarlet Fate". It's one of the few Otomate games which is fully translated into English. I'd recommend Kuuso and Kodonomae. Do not touch Akifusa. His path was laughably disappointing. Furutsugu is hit or miss, Gentoka has solid potential to bore you.
  • If you've got an iPhone or an Android, I'd also recommend "Enchanted in The Moonlight" by Voltage

#10

In terms of free games I recommend the Ascension series, chapters 1, 2 and 3. They are a great combination of action, adventure, fantasy, and romance (with an awesome MC to boot!)
Ascension Chapter 1
Ascension Chapter 2
Ascension Chapter 3

@pyla8 have you played these? They're by the same author who is working on the Ascension game you mentioned, and this series is essentially its prequel


#11

Glad I came across this page, I was just looking for something like this.


#12

@iris So I had played other games by Cyanide Tea but never Taarradhin. I absolutely loved the art, the characters were GORGEOUS, couldn't stop staring at the MC when I was supposed to be reading, I really love how she was drawn. My first playthrough left me thoroughly unsatisfied and frustrated, (as I'm sure it was supposed to), and when I unlocked the "true" ending... I cried quite a bit. I loved it. Thank you so much for that reccomendation

@pyla8 OH MY GOSH I LOVE 7 KINGDOMS! It's probably more like a CoG game (yes, I know CoG game is redundant) than any of the others here because there are so many choices, but I'm mad at you for getting me so excited for a game that won't be finished until the end of the year! I'm terribly impatient, so the same goes for Essence. Why are you so cruel? MAKING ME LIKE GAMES I HAVE TO WAIT FOR!

@Sashira I looked at the Speakeasy tonight game and it looks good, but I think it's bad enough when games try to force you to pay for each individual romance, but they're also charging to see the ending to the story you already paid for, and then pay again for its epilogue. Do you think that the game is worth it?
I watched a video of the Embric of Wulfhammer Castle game, it was pretty funny! I can't seem to find a place to download or buy it, do you have any suggestions?

@Sneaks Katawa Shoujo honestly has some of the best art out of any of these games, as well as well written and complex characters. Heads up to anyone who plays it, the story is quite long and quite engrossing! My only complaint is that I was expecting more choices, but that's entirely my fault for going into the game expecting that.

@Owlet I had seen the Dandelion game before, but I can sometimes be stingy and didn't feel like coughing up $20, do you think it's worth it? I'll have to take a look at "Nameless," and I played the demo of Royal Trap which I really enjoyed


#13

Oh my... I think I played most of otomes that are translated or wrote in English. So.. I can recommend few wink

Aloners is free game from the end of 2014 and I think it's one of my favourites from last year. There's only one romance option but it's really good written. You're playing as a girl with no memory who wakes up naked in a hud. What is waiting for you is a guy with gun pointed right at your face. And as it turns out he thought he's last person on Earth... It's really, really good and you can control your charcter and her responds. I played it like ten times already smiley

There's a also The Second Reproduction and it's first otome I ever played, I love it! It's completly free now since company decided it. There's Japanese version of game but with English patch. Since it's free I can even send my copy because it's hard to find now. You're playing as Christina, princess of human kingdom. For centuries humans are fighting with demons. Queen, your mother, is sending you on a secret mission to demon kingdom to assasinate a demon lord since you're one of the best soldiers. There are 3 romance options, the story is very good and it's actually pretty sad.

Autumn's Journey from Apple Cider is free, cute and pretty. It's rather short one but I enjoyed it very much. It's about friendship, growth, the story is really warm wink

From last year there's also Halloween Otome , completly free. It's about Halloween costume party with rich and famous. Your character isn't rich or famous, she won the invitation in a competition but while on party no one reveals their identity. It's really sweet story.

I also really like 2 short otome from Ababo - Love Blossom and School Festival . They are warm and fuzzy and romantic - I enjoyed them. They maybe don't have the best graphics but the stories and characters are good wink

Enjoy!


#14

Oooh I also liked Autumn's journey! It was adorable smile They are working on a sequel, doubt it'll be here anytime soon but I'd love to play it blush

And the Halloween Otome game was fun as well! I liked that it had puzzles and challenges, which were great for the 1st play through, but when trying to get the different endings, became a bit repetitive. Surprisingly, I ended up liking the general end the best, even though you didn't get a cute romance scene out of it.

Heads up, just noticed that your Aloners link actually sends people to the site for School Festival.


#15

Ooh. Tough call. Buy Dandelion if you can deal with:

  • A HUGE amount of stat-raising. Think something equivalent to one Harvest Moon season.
  • A luck element involved with stat-raising. Depending on whether or not you're a completionist type, you might spend an hour or so quick-saving and quick-loading to achieve maximum affection bonuses.
  • A love interest who could be absent/ignoring you for (in-game) weeks on end. You pass the week day-by-day, so this does get to some people. That said, the game plays through something like one in-game year? So, you do have a lot of time with most characters.
  • Triggery material in Jisoo's bad ending (hint: do not flirt with anyone else when playing Jisoo's path. The man-child's raging jealous.)
  • A named and voiced heroine. The name is not customisable.
  • A noticeable number of typos and grammatical errors (the game was initially in Korean)
  • Some really bittersweet endings. People cried playing this game - a LOT.

I'd honestly recommend "Nameless" over Dandelion. There's much more of a visual novel element in it. There's no stat-raising (only occasional mini-games, but that's like one/twice a character route). A few warnings about "Nameless" though:

  • Bad choices "carry". Meaning that if you make a wrong choice early on, chapters could go past and then you'd "suddenly" get a bad end. You would've made a fair number of correct choices during then, but you'd have no way of knowing which choices were correct or not.
  • Some triggery material (only with Yeonho's bad ends and Tei's bad ends). Use a walkthrough if this bothers you.

That said, both games shine in the following aspects:

  • Ridiculously pretty CG art
  • Tasteful choice in music
  • Really, really good voice-acting. This is particularly prominent in the more emotional scenes. Jiwoo, Jieun, Lance and Tei's voice actors all get A+ in my book.

#16

Thanks, I changed it so now it should be ok wink
I know about a seqeul and I also can't wait. There's gonna be so many new otome soon, I can't wait!


#17

Embric of Wulfhammer's Castle should be available here. If not, I'll toss the rar in my dropbox. There's a walkthrough somewhere that might be handy, as some of the endings you can't get in one playthrough unless you do them in the right order. Edit: Use the deluxe download. Also, the walkthrough is here.


#18

I would also suggest black chicken studios who make Scheherazade and Academagia. They cost money but I found both games to be really fun and have loads of replay value.


#19

Well...I've seen it before, but I dunno. I played some of it before and do appreciate the dialogue colorings. It's pretty good, not one of my favorites but I'll give it another try.

Haha! Why am I so cruel? Well, lots of reasons. (Also I think she's releasing a free demo with the third week too so yeah. For Seven Kingdoms.)

I'm now looking into Dandelions b/c I sort of love stat-raising (I dunno why; maybe COG influenced?)


#20

Depending on how mechanical heavy you want to go, you could look at Summer in Fairbrook, and Winter in Fairbrook as well for romance by Winter Wolves.

You might look at Backstage Pass (it's still being worked on) by Ayu Sakata of Sakevisual Games (she wrote the Fairbrook games for Winter Wolves as well). However, it is in Early Access on Steam.

I do know C-14 by Winter Wolves should also see a release sometime this year.