It’s time to review yet another JAST Blue boys’ love (BL) visual novel localization! After being thoroughly engrossed by Sweet Pool (there are still scenes that remain vivid in my mind a year later), I couldn’t wait to see what Nitro+chiral’s first release, Togainu no Chi ~Lost Blood~ had in store for me. I soon found out that that would be another bleak narrative with a solemn protagonist and serve of Fight Club, post-apocalyptic Tokyo, and drugs added to the mix.Read More
Here it is, our long-awaited sweet pool special episode! If you haven’t played the game yet, don’t worry, you can still tune in for the first part of the show, where we discuss sweet pool developer Nitro+chiral and boys’ love (aka BL) manga and games in general. Then, with plenty of forewarning, we get into our full spoiler-filled impressions of the game and a discussion of the broader themes touched on by the game in general!
Warning: The entire episode has a content warning for discussion of rape and violence/gore.
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20:36 – Start of spoilers: Overall impressions
54:33 – Diving Deep: Discussion of themes
♫ “Willie Lomans,” from Alphabet Planet by Hiroki Kikuta, “chills01,” “sorrow” from Sweet Pool Soundtrack by Zizz Studio
Sweet Pool, the first of JAST Blue’s Nitro+chiral BL game localizations, is finally out in English! Not only did I have the very exciting opportunity to contribute very slightly to its release as a PR consultant, but I’m thrilled to share my thoughts on the full game with you in this review. It’s not often we get an official English BL game release, so Sweet Pool‘s release is definitely cause for excitement!
When the news was first announced that Sweet Pool was going to come out in English in time for its 10th anniversary, I was thrilled, albeit surprised. As the first Nitro+chiral game to come out officially in English, it’s a rather interesting choice… because Sweet Pool is quite notorious for its dark horror themes and grotesque, body horror elements. So, while Sweet Pool is billed as a BL game, I would recommend anyone interested in it solely for the BL elements to tread with caution.
This year’s Anime Expo has been especially exciting for BL (boys’ love) game fans. So far, there have been English localization announcements for not one, but five BL games! JAST Blue, JAST USA’s BL label, will be localizing Nitro+CHiRAL’s entire library, including their upcoming release Slow Damage. Meanwhile, MangaGamer has announced they will be localizing Luckydog1, a BL game about members of the mafia.
I don’t really write about PhD-related things here because I generally blog about my hobbies as a form of escapism from my thesis (the truth is out!), but after getting a few requests to share my bibliography, I figured I should go ahead and compile a shōnen ai/yaoi/boys’ love (BL) manga studies reading list!
Looking back, I’m surprised I made it 15 episodes without naming one of them “Anime Boyfriends.” Well, the time has finally come, and who better to talk about anime boyfriend simulators (aka otome and BL games) with than Amanda Cosmos? Her background in QA brings some really interesting insight to the discussion, as well, since I know absolutely nothing about how games work beneath what I see on the screen. Don’t worry if you’re unfamiliar with otome or BL games – we discuss exactly what those words mean, as well as some standout titles in the genres and our own personal favorites!
Remember, February is Dating Sim Month, so there’s no better time to jump into the genre!
Dating Sim Community Game-Along information: http://www.chic-pixel.com/2014/01/introducing-dating-sim-community-game.html
Amanda’s Otome 101 part 1: http://acosmos.net/post/75479460804/otome-games-101-origins
Opening ♫ – Ai Catch – Goatbed
Closing ♫ – Orion de SHOUT OUT – Kishō Taniyama