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Mononokei Kanojo



Yes I played this, for obvious reasons.  This is one of those rare nukige that makes an attempt at escaping being a nukige.  It attempts to have a story, has an interesting setting, and even has interesting heroines with dark pasts...

Unfortunately, there are places where it stumbles (and no, I'm not talking about the high H content).  The most obvious place it stumbles, for someone just starting it, is the horrible way the music is handled.  It cuts out in some scenes, has little connection with what is going on in others, and is outright (and completely so) generic at others.  Considering the money that had to have gone into the Live 2D system and the character visuals, this strikes me as being a singularly stupid way to handle things.  Yes, you don't expect a nukige to have GREAT music, but I do think a baseline of good music such as is seen in even the weakest charage, should be well-within the capabilities of even a newbie company.  I was horrified to see them reusing the 'everyday life' music heard in Norn/Miel games, which is pretty much the worst everyday life BGM in existence.

The character designs in this game, while not godly, are definitely done extremely well.  In particular, the kitsune Tamayo, the inugami Yanoe, and the yukionna Hisame have excellent character designs, even if the latter two are just a bit off from my personal tastes.  You can tell that a large portion of the budget for this game was put into the character designs, and it definitely pays off.  

Live 2D is, like most motion animation, a waste of money.  It doesn't really add anything to the experience (except for people who just want to see boobs bounce), and it requires an engine that is so bug-ridden that the weirdest crap can render it inoperable (I hate Unity engine).  

Now, for the story... and there is a story, albeit not a great one.  Essentially, the protagonist, due to some kind of mess in his past lives (and he has a large number of them, lol) is cursed with bad luck, to the point where if something bad is going to happen in the area he is in, it will always hit him.  One night, he encounters a beautiful kitsune during a kimodameshi at his school (for those unfamiliar with it - in other words, people who don't normally play SOL games - a kimodameshi is basically a staged test of courage), who promptly and gleefully reverse-rapes him (though he gets into it halfway through).  The next day, the class idol, Tenko Tamayo, is all over him, and eventually he ends up learning about youkai and their relationship with humanity.

To be honest, what bothers me most about this game, after finishing it, is the fact that every single one of these paths at least meets charage-level and possibly nakige-level requirements for writing and scenario.  Unfortunately, the music and oddly-timed jumps into H-scenes tends to break things up whenever they start to get really serious.  Moreover, some of the paths (Yanoe's in particular) sometimes get weird jumps from decision-making to the results, taking out a lot of the fun of watching the characters struggle.  

Nonetheless, since I enjoyed the youkai H, the setting, and Tamayo's path, I added extra points that kept it out of the gutter in my vndb list, lol.


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