Foreword: I really could’ve passed on writing up this review, but I decided to make one nonetheless since this game happens to have one of the greatest CGs I’ve ever seen in a game.
Despite being a nukige, the game is filled with adorable characters and a hilarious plot. There’s no drama here–just a light-hearted story for maniacs of all kinds, but especially “cat-ears” or nekomimi.
Title: にゃんカフェ マキアート ～猫がいるカフェのえっち事情～ (Nyan Cafe Macchiato ~nekoga iru cafe no ecchi jijou~) [ Lit. Trans: Perverted Situation in a Cafe with cats]
Producers: Skyfish Poco & Cabbit
Release Date: August 30, 2013
VNDB Link: http://vndb.org/v12505
Getchu Link: http://www.getchu.com/soft.phtml?id=770941
Game Type: Nukige Harem Novel with the theme “Nekomimi”
Summary: A collaboration between Cabbit, a company known for its heartwarming stories, and Skyfish Poco, a company specializing in various fetishes.
Kouya is a teacher-in-training at an all-girl’s school. His dream is to become a teacher, and while he’s working steadily towards that dream, the apartment he lives in burns down. Actually, he’s like this–extremely unfortunate, to the point he brings misfortune to people around him. Because he has nowhere to live, his grandfather, who is currently in the hospital, allowed him to stay in the store that he runs on one condition: Kouya has to open and run the store.
Kouya will do as his grandfather asks (because it’s not like he has a choice, right?) and with the help of three girls, will start the store successfully. Little does he know that all three girl are in love with him, and they all confess at the same time.
3 simultaneous confessions!
Story Length: Slightly Short (20 hours)
Complete Story Clearing Difficulty: Moderately Easy
Comments: A relatively short story, it’s actually slightly annoying to go through the game several times just to find side-stories you can unlock. Despite this, a lot of the side stories seem to appear after you’ve gone through a certain story–you just need to keep trying.
Character Design Rating: 7/10
Story Rating: 4/10
Game Quality: Moderately High
Overall Rating: 5/10
Rating Comments: An absolutely adorable game, with small details additions really bringing out the attractiveness in each character. Despite it being a nukige, the game contains plot rivaling your “average” game, consisting of silly and comical love triangles (or should I say a love-square?), and then adding three additional characters relating to each heroine.
Each of the “mini-stories” that the game presents is marked by the heroine (or subheroine) associated with the story.
Character Summary: I’ll start with each heroine and move on to the subheroine in the process.
Let’s start with Mike (pronounced Me-keh), who, upon introduction, is also shown to have massive amounts of emotion for our unlucky protagonist. Her affection stems mainly from her watching Kouya do his best everyday, and in her eyes, him simply enjoying his job made him shine enough for this girl to fall head-over-heels in love with her own teacher.
Mike usually tries to help Kouya by assisting him with small pieces of work, but as she hears of his situation, she decides to work in the shop he opens, and soon confesses. Seemingly the central heroine, it also seems that she has some relationship to Persia.
The subheroine related to Mike is none other than her own mother! With the name of “Miiya”, the reader can see that Mike’s mother is actually very young–to the point Kouya originally does not recognize her. Miiya, who often runs away from her job, finds herself under the care of Kouya very often, and this creates another love triangle between Mike and her own mother.
Second is Ameri. Probably my favorite character, I enjoyed her route thoroughly due to her actually suffering from MPD (multiple personality disorder)–something I also suffered with. Except in our story, they’re essentially two “Ameri” sharing one body.
Ameri’s route starts with the shy girl also falling in love with the teacher, who noticed her presence and saved her from sexual assault on the train. The reader is given a comical relief at this point, as Ameri explains that after Kouya drags the pervert to the next station, the assaulter actually brings over friends to beat Kouya up. In addition, Kouya’s bad luck comes into play as he is mistaken for a sexual assaulter himself and dragged away by the police (only to be saved by Ameri).
The first time the reader is shown the difference in Ameri, he is made to go “wtf?!”, since the game suddenly labels a white-haired girl as Ameri. In addition, this white haired girl is also rather haughty, and completely different from the cute Ameri that we know. Nonetheless, the game goes to explain Ameri’s problems with her family, which Kouya takes on himself to try to solve.
Oh, and to differentiate between the two versions of Ameri, the game uses the names “Kuro” and “Shiro”–“black” and “white” respectively, for their hair color. Have you noticed that the cats that ride on Ameri’s shoulder are also “black and white”? ;)
Frankly, I kinda wanted a scene where the “Ameri” splits into two bodies–that would’ve been really nice :D
Third is Persia. The setting is actually that these three girls are considered an “ojousama”, but the former two girls do not seem to fit that stereotype very well. I think Persia would be more lady-like…?
Nope. Instead, the reader can quickly see that Persia is a sadist–enjoying the troubled face of anyone, but especially Kouya. She even admits to being turned on after seeing his helpless face.
The game also introduces this character as the cousin of Ameri, and also a good friend of Mike. However, it also shows that this character is great with everything–so it seems very unnatural how she would fall in love with a normal guy like Kouya. He and the characters around him continuously question Persia’s affection for him, which includes her older sister who is also the Vice-Principal of the school: Kotora.
Kotora is infamous for her quick temper and harsh punishments. Other teachers are distinctively scared of her, and Kouya isn’t an exception. Despite this, other characters see that Kotora is especially harsh on Kouya because she actually expects a lot from him–such attitude soon mutates into love for this woman in her 30’s, who originally hates males with a passion.
Why is Ameri crying? D:
Sexual Content: Dominant
Comments: The unique thing about this game is that you start off with a harem, but you crunch that into one heroine in the end. Routes involving a subheroine usually also involve the respective heroine (Kotora –> Persia), and there are 5 endings–with Ameri having only one ending.
Despite her appearance, this is actually not Mike; this is her mom, Miiya! (Note the bonefish hairpin compared to Mike’s cat hairpin)
But yes, your typical nukige, with a semi-perverted protagonist who the player can easily “overtake”. By this, I mean that the reader himself can easily merge himself as the protagonist in the story. With the girls usually calling Kouya “sensei” or “Master”, there’s really not much you can say about the protagonist except the fact that he’s kinda… shallow.
But one of the things that really surprised me was that each of the three characters and their respective subheroines are designed by three different artists! WOW.
Call me blind or whatever, but I didn’t expect that–I mean, they looked the same for me, and this is a nukige were talking about, so I was assuming there was really only one or two artists until I saw the movie and saw three different “Artists” and was like “?!”
Ameri (Shiro version)! She’s badmouthed and arrogant, but once she opens up her heart to Kouya, she is absolutely the most adorable character ever. I guess she plays the “tsundere” role in this sense…
Affection for the Characters: High
CG Quality: High. The main reason why I even write this review is because of its high CG quality. Wow, is it normal for nukige to have so much effort?
Music Quality: Low. On the other hand, music wasn’t too great. With the theme of “comical love triangle”, don’t expect any drama in this game, nor a serious plotline
Addictiveness: Moderately High. As hypocritical as it seems, nukige like this is easy to come back to when you simply need a light-hearted story with cute characters and funny characters.
Conclusion: A decent game by the collaboration of Skyfish Poco and Cabbit, I learned later that the three artists who works on this game are the respective artists for the two companies. While I only praise this game’s CGs, don’t let it scare you away from its story. While not being a serious story that I usually enjoy, this kind of game is what I would pick up when I just want to watch a casual, comical love triangle.