Hi! I've been a longtime lurker of Fuwanovel, and recently decided I'd like to become semi-active on here. I originally posted this review on my Tumblr, but thought it might spark some interesting discussion here.
I am both an aspiring VN dev and a longtime otome/BL game fan. I’ve played dozens of indie EVNs as well and involved myself in the community. So, it pains me to write a negative review about an indie EVN that I’ve looked forward to for a long time.
I’ll just get right into it: Seiyuu Danshi! is a bad game.
Meyaoi Games made around $40,000 back in 2016 on Kickstarter, which was an astonishingly 800% of their initial $5,000 goal. Back then, it looked like it was gonna be something special. So, when it released just the other day, I got it immediately and started playing.
But my expectations were immediately thrashed by the low quality of the writing.
Not only is the English awkward in nearly every line of the game, but the whole time it felt to me like the writers were obsessed with trying (and failing very badly) to make me think this was a translated Japanese visual novel rather than an OELVN.
From the title itself being Seiyuu Danshi! (why not just name it Voice Actor Boys?), to the names of all the characters, to the protagonist nicknaming everyone in some Japanese manner (Toru-chi, Tocchan, etc), to uninspired references to anime, it was made very clear to me that this was a game trying to be something it wasn’t.
Along with this, the game is filled with ultra-generic characters and dates that you’ve seen a million times elsewhere. You go to an amusement park later on with your boy, which was a $39,000 stretch goal. Are you treated to any special CGs or fun interactions on this expensive date? Nope! You just go, choose between a few rides, and read some dull dialogue about them going and having fun.
And maybe *I’m* missing something, because you can change the underwear of the protagonist as well as buy a whole bunch of clothes for him but he never actually wears it outside of the dress-up screen (and in the context of clothes, he doesn’t even put THOSE on). The clothes seem to simply be there for a boost in love points from your chosen boy, but you can just wear the same thing every time and he responds the same way every time. I vaguely remember there being one comment from Toru about the protagonist’s underwear choice, but I’ve only ever seen it when I put it on him in the first place.
However, I pressed on, because from the screenshots on their itch.io page it seemed like the main focus of the game was on the gameplay rather than the writing. Much of the advertising seems to be aimed at the pornographic aspect of the game. In their list of features, they specifically talk up the “interactive gameplay” during the pornographic content along with collectible costumes and toys to use.
But Seiyuu Danshi! falls flat even there. Not only does it take months (see: several hours) of grinding in-game to even get a boyfriend in the first place, the H content in this game feels like it’s missing something. Sure, you can buy an assortment of costumes and sex toys to use on your boy, but it always seems to culminate in the same end-scene, which is my biggest problem with the H content: chibi porn.
WARNING: NSFW-ish image
That’s right, after you go through “Foreplay Mode” where you manually pleasure your boy, you get treated to a mildly animated visual of your boy and the protagonist having sex. As chibis. There is also a chibi blowjob scene and a chibi masturbation scene. Maybe someone out there finds this attractive, but I sure as hell don’t.
The game costs more than $30, because the game has “100+ hours of content!” Meyaoi Games needs to realize that longer doesn’t equal better, especially when much of that time is spent doing basically nothing. Seiyuu Danshi! doesn’t have a story to tell, and the pornographic content is lacking. Therefore, I would give this one a hard pass.