The Inclusive Visual Novel Romance | First Love Story Review
Hello everyone and welcome to our place!
Favari, Inc. is a Japanese company which is known by works such as “Ephemeral Dreams, Eternal Love”, “False Vows, True Love” and “DEAD or LOVE”. They approached me not so long ago and asked if I was open to play the last otome game they have released and review it. Well, I can’t express how happy I was 🙂 It’s really something when a company asks you to do something like this!
However, just to make things straight, I’ll be reviewing this game in the honest way I always do. Don’t think just because they asked me to do it I will say the game is perfect 🙂 Also, it’s important to disclose that I’m not being paid whatsoever for doing this… I tried the game and felt it was interesting enough to write about it!
First Love Story is a Romance Visual Novel / Otome game. This way, as this type of games usually are, you will follow one of the stories you pick and make decisions along the line.
Depending on the choices you pick you will get more (or less) favor which then, in specific moments of the game will determine if you can proceed to the happy path (ending) or just the normal one.
As a mobile game, you will have 5 points of energy that will refill every single day. Each energy point is used to play a section of the story chapter. Each story has around 10 chapters and each chapter has around 10 sections, which means, in total, each story has around 100 sections.
Parallel to that, you also have what they call a mini-game. This mini-game is just you going to different parts of the school and meeting someone which will give you trust. This trust is needed to proceed into further chapters. As in the story, you will get 5 points each day for you to use.
The game has a gem system (you can get them by buying or by watching ads). A gem will give you 1 energy point for the story or 5 points for you to do the mini-games.
Things That I Loved The Most
An Inclusive Otome Game
From my knowledge, otome games normally tend to go in a specific direction. Meaning, they will normally focus on a specific type of relationship. First Love Story does not do this and you will have 4 different stories you can play:
- Straight relationship where you play the girl
- Straight relationship where you play the guy
- BoyxBoy (Shounen-Ai) relationship
- GirlxGirl (Shoujo-Ai) relationship
It’s really nice to have the possibility to partake different sexual orientation relationships. Moreover, these stories are always with the same characters making very interesting to see these characters behaving in different ways depending on the story while never breaking character or losing their personality.
I’m a sucker for romance, so of course, I would like the plot, right? I’ve played the girl in a straight relationship story and the gay relationship story. I have to say that I liked much more the latter.
For the straight relationship story, you play Chitose, your regular and typical Japanese girl in this kind of games. She starts to fall in love for the quiet and detached guy of the class, Asahi. To be honest, the story didn’t bring nothing new to the table and most of it was just Chitose having difficulties in coming forward and say what she thinks/feels. Nevertheless, both characters are cute and I saw myself wanting to see more.
Now, in a contrary note, the gay relationship where you play with Sou, a popular boy which changes his personality to fit the best depending on the situation, is very well executed. Here, Sou also falls in love with Asahi. Although the same general events happen as in with Chitose, the story couldn’t be more different. Here, the story has way more depth since both Sou and Asahi have never realized they were gay. Basically, more than a love story, it is also about one accepting himself and accepting his sexual orientation. I really loved the story and I would love to have an Anime adaptation of it! 🙂
To be honest, there is no character that I don’t like in the First Love Story world. I would say my favorite one is Sou who seems to me to be the one who has more deepness showing both faults and strengths in his personality.
Nevertheless, even if the others may feel a little more “standard” all of them end up having some kind of traits which makes them different from other similar characters. In the end, all 4 are very present in my memory and I liked them all.
Things That I Don’t Mind But May Grind Your Gears
Favary, Inc. is a Japanese company. This way, English is not their forté. There are some translation mistakes. There is even a scene where Asahi’s cat changes name randomly. To be honest, I don’t really mind. However, if you are a grammar Nazi, it may irritate you a little bit.
As a free game, First Love Story has ads as a way of making money. If you play the game at a slow pace and just do a couple of sections every single day it won’t really bother you. However, if like me, you try to play the game in one go, then I would advise you to pay the 3€ so you don’t get so many ads…
I’m not the best Otome player around here! I think my straightforward, western attitude is not really what you are supposed to do in these kinds of games xD This way, there were a couple of times where I had to use gems to get to the happy ending.
However, I have to say that there are some choices which I didn’t really understand what they meant and why one was better than the other. But, again, that may be because I’m just way too straightforward when it comes to romance 😀
Things That Need To Be Fixed
The Trust System just does not work for me. In the game, they call it a “mini-game”. But, the truth is that you will only tap in the place you want to go, read a phrase of a random character and that’s it. You don’t really do much.
I think this may have worked very well when they released the game and while waiting for the next chapter people would just log in every single day to get trust so they would then advance to the next chapter at the moment it was released.
However, now that the stories are complete it’s just a pain in the ass. Again, if you play at a low pace you probably won’t even notice this. But, for someone who played the game in one go, it just felt that the trust was there for you to use gems.
If you like Otome games, then you should download First Love Story. Even if it has some minor problems, the game is pretty fun and I found myself wanting to know more about the story I was playing.