Visual novel review: Majikoi
Maji de Watashi ni Koishinasai! was released back in 2009 by Minato Soft and was apparently the #1 best selling eroge of its year.
For those who aren’t aware, Minato Soft is Takahiro‘s company that he created in 2006(?). He is the main scenario writer for most of the games released by the company with the main exception being Shoujo-tachi wa Kouya wo Mezasu which is being written by Tanaka Romeo and will be coming out early next year after the anime finishes airing. Although people who follow anime much closer than visual novels might recognise Takahiro as the creator of Akame ga Kill! and Yuuki Yuuna wa Yuusha de Aru.
Anyway, back to Majikoi. There used to be a partial patch a few years back which translated probably around half of the game, (but for some strange reason that release is no longer listed on vndb so I can’t double check any details). Early this year, a team of people who translated everything that remained untranslated from the previous group and combined it all into a complete patch.
The release came as a surprise to me at the time because I wasn’t really aware anyone was working on it. (probably because the project was based on the fuwanovel forums) But as it seemed to be a decently popular game I thought I’d give it a go.
Majikoi is about a group of close friends who have been together since childhood. They all attend Kawakami Highschool, a school with a heavy emphasis on martial arts. The protagonist is Naoe Yamato, while he doesn’t have any particular strength in martial arts, he is intelligent and acts as the tactician to support the other members of the group.
The group of friends includes four boys and three girls. At the start of the game, two new girls join the group to make a total of nine people.
There are routes for each of the five girls that can be accessed directly after finishing the common route. After finishing a few of them, some mini-routes become available. There are mini-routes for two female classmates, as well as a teacher. There are also routes for the three remaining male members of the group. As you can probably guess with martial arts being part of the setting, most of the routes have combat as an important part of the story.
After most of the game has been completed, another major route becomes available. (Probably after completing the routes for the five main heroines, I did all the mini routes as they became available so I’m not sure whether they are required to unlock the final route or not.) I don’t know whether it is considered the true end or not, but it is definitely my favourite of all the routes.
I really like it when visual novels have a route at the end which is unlocked after completing everything else. It’s a cool way for the author to control what the reader finishes on. Ending on some of the best content a game has to offer is much better than accidentally ending on a one of the more mediocre routes.
As far as ero content goes in Majikoi, for better or worse, I think the h-scenes were much longer than normal. Maybe 2-3 times longer than normal? That doesn’t matter much though. This should go without saying, but people who read eroge are obviously not in it exclusively for porn (unless you are playing a nukige obviously). I mean why would anyone looking for porn sit down and read 50 hours worth of story for 5 hours of h-scenes? It is probably more accurate to instead of classifying eroge as porn games, as “games which include porn”, or “literature which includes porn”.
I honestly am not sure where I was going with that. It sort of just flowed naturally from what I was writing. But I’ve decided to leave it in because it might change some peoples misconceptions about the medium. (Who am I kidding, if anyone is that against visual novels there’s no way they read this far into the post.) If people are writing off visual novels completely because they just assume it is only good as jack off material, they really have the wrong idea. Obviously the medium isn’t for everyone, but it’s a shame that some people have never given it a chance.
In summary though, Majikoi is a fun game. It doesn’t take itself seriously, and the characters being in a loyal group of friends is pretty cool. It’s far from my favourite visual novel, but I’d recommend it to most people assuming they have the time to play it and aren’t looking for something too serious.
- Doesn’t take itself seriously.
- Lots of characters.
- Close group of friends that stick up for each other when they face problems.
- Mini-routes which add extra depth.
- Really cool final route.
- Decent soundtrack.
- Protagonist’s fetish is anal.
- A few routes aren’t quite as good.
And for the record. I went back and rewatched the anime after I finished the visual novel. It really isn’t that good. It’s essentially all anime original except for parts of the first episode. Anime original is all well and good. It’s just that in this case it wasn’t good at all, especially if you try comparing it to the visual novel. Even the class war from the first episode would have been much better if they had just adapted it directly from the visual novel. So if you’ve seen the anime before, keep in mind that the original is much better.