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Venus Blood Empire

Clephas

1490 views

Yes, I went and played a game in this series, mostly because Sanahtlig is an old friend and I didn't want to keep brushing him off. In fact, I'm marathonning this series starting with this game.

First, an initial umbrella statement... this would have been a first-class story (though flawed) if it weren't for the massive amounts of tentacle rape and choukyou. Am I serious? Yeah. Despite everything, the base story is actually really good.

Unfortunately, the same can't be said for the gameplay. It takes the form of a conquest-strategy VN where you use six-soldier units to attack cities that are defended by up to six soldiers. Unfortunately, there is nothing resembling actual strategy to the entire thing. Oh sure, you have to manage your resources and keep your soldiers healthy... but that's the closest you get to it (there are some strategic elements to the management of the power gauge and the use of skills, but those are minor). Basically, it is a 'make your units more powerful than the enemy's, then stuff them down his throat through brute force' approach. It has its moments, but they are few and far in between.

The biggest upside of the story is the protagonist - for all that he is a ruthless pragmatist and schemer - and his closest subordinates, and the biggest downside is the final antagonist... I mean, you just don't get any more cookie-cutter than the last boss. I will say that the actual last battle in the Law route was pretty cool, but I was thoroughly bored by the boss's motives within ten minutes of its appearance. The ending also felt generic and truncated, which is sad after the richness of the actual story leading up to the end.



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Empire was also my first exposure to the series--and I was left intrigued but a tad disappointed.  Like you, I was impressed by the storyline's originality and especially the protagonist.  The protagonists in the Venus Blood series have cunning and ruthless streaks, which makes for entertaining storytelling.  The combat system in Empire is fairly primitive; later entries in the series significantly develop and improve this system, adding layers of strategy with each new release.  Massive amounts of ero are a series staple, and unfortunately the sexual training does sometimes interfere with the pacing.

 

The good news is that if you liked this game, it only gets better from here.  Empire is the weakest game of the series that I've played.  Abyss, Frontier, and Gaia all significantly improve on the gameplay.  Story quality is fairly consistent as well, with Empire & Frontier Abyss & Gaia forming pairs that are structured somewhat similarly.

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