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Random VN: Gokudou no Hanayome


Clephas

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Gokudou no Hanayome was released by Galactica (a sister company of Baseson and one of the many subsidaries of Nexton) back in 2011.  I originally played it around the first time I started getting tired of charage... which was horrible timing, thinking about it in retrospect.  To be blunt, I hadn't yet developed my current style of evaluation, and I didn't have as much appreciation for the good points of charage at the time, so I basically judged it based upon what it wasn't... an action chuunige.

Needless to say, judging what amounts to a love-comedy charage by the standards of a chuunige is fundamentally ridiculous.  The two genres are about as far apart as it is possible while both are still VNs.  However, at the time, I didn't have the right state of mind to properly evaluate this game.

Gokudou no Hanayome centers around Gokudouin Yuichi, the soft-spoken heir to the world-famous Gokudouin yakuza family... of which there are only three members (his father, Tokiko, and himself).  Yuichi, having been distanced from the daily business of the family by his overprotective, somewhat yandere oneechan Tokiko, is living a relatively normal life until a young woman named Asahi, from another yakuza group that was once subordinate to the Gokudouin, arrives at his door, informing him that she is his fiance.  Soon after, she is joined by the Italian mafioso Fran, Yuichi's cousin Sarasa, and the airheaded American sniper, Amelia.  

This VN tends to borrow the older style, with a combative relationship between the heroines (the current trend is toward friendly, non-violent rivals or 'only falls for him in her own path' styles) and a protagonist so dense he puts the anti-radiation shielding in a nuclear reactor to shame. 

The heroine paths are split into three arcs... one centering entirely on the mafia/yakuza aspect of things, contains Sarasa's and Fran's path.  The second, mixing bits of science fantasy in, contains Asahi's and Tokiko's paths.  Amelia's path is... a bit out there.  Once you've played it, you go 'wtf', but I can honestly say I enjoyed all of the paths this time around.  While the romantic aspects are mostly limited (the girls are pretty obvious about their feelings in the common route, so I guess they felt they could ignore that aspect in the actual routes) that didn't really break the VN for me.

Overall... this VN is generally amusing, with decent comedy (mostly slapstick) and a wacky story.  I honestly think that, with a little more attention to the details, they could have made this into a first-class VN, but as a charage, it is still worth playing.

Edit: I meant to say this during the main post, but if I had to compare this to a VN or VN series, it would be the series that began with 'My Girlfriend is the President' by Alcot.  The generalized atmosphere and some of the back and forth between the characters is very reminiscent of that and Naka no Hito.   As a result, it made me smile more than once.

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