Foreword: Despite how the description might be stunningly similar to the following meme
This phrase is much more serious and won’t incur any laughter once the reader’s done with it. As expected when I picked it up, Psychologic Love Comedy is has nothing to with the latter two words and in a short description, is “fucked up”.
Psychologic Love Comedy is the second game from a doujin company called initial. It’s quite short actually, and filled with Science Fiction theories. It’s also considered a “psychological thriller”, so I’d like to warn everyone in advance that this game DOES have very descriptive gore (there isn’t any visual gore, but has sound effects and words that does suggest it). Even I felt queasy on my stomach as I was reading this and this game will OBVIOUSLY not be for the faint of heart.
Title: サイコロジック・ラブコメディ (Psychologic Love Comedy)
Release Date: August 28, 2015
VNDB Link: https://vndb.org/v16584
Getchu Link: http://www.getchu.com/soft.phtml?id=865289
Game Type: Fantasy Psychological Thriller Novel
Summary: A girl wakes up in a strange room where everything seems to be chaos. The only number available on her AR is someone named Haruki, and as she knocks out guards who point guns at her, she agrees to meet this mysterious boy who she feels that she can trust.
However, that won’t happen, because the boy holds up the gun to her and with an apologetic expression, says “I’m Sorry. I’ll make things work out this time”, and kills her.
Please note that this review will contain major spoilers to the story!
Story Length: Very Short (< 10 hours)
Complete Story Clearing Difficulty: Easy
Comments: There are only two choices to be made within the entire game, but the first one isn’t so obvious. As a review with spoilers in it, I’ll make sure to describe it in more detail in the later sections.
Character Design Rating: 6/10
Story Rating: 8/10
Protagonist Rating: 6/10
Game Quality: Low
Overall Rating: 6/10
Rating Comments: Pretty much a “slightly above” average game, this should be a surprise because this is a doujin circle we’re talking about and the game itself is pretty short as well. However, as expected from people who were once likely the audience of this genre, they really had a good idea about how to go with a unique and original theme. Furthermore, the game has what I would like to consider an “excellent” storyline aside from the conveniences and holes due to ending with a mysterious ring in each “Chapter” and wanting the reader to read more and more.
Even at the “True Ending” of the game, the game makes challenges to the reader to really predict what’s going to happen. It leaves off with a very nice cliffhanger, which I can’t retain my praise for. (OMG GIMME AN AFTERSTORY *#&$(@#*&&@)
Or a harem route. I love me a good harem route.
It’s just quite unfortunate that as a result of the “short” part, the characters received very little development. Shallow is what you can probably expect here at least in terms of romance. As for their individual traits, expect several “Holy Shit” moments throughout the game since this is and the story is what the writer obviously focused on.
Protagonist could have been better, since his design of being the “almighty Level 6 Canaria” was super convenient without a good background story. He does have his protagonist-like moments though, which was nice. I kinda wish as a game this short, he actually be voiced since this would have amplified his design.
The game is designed so that there are “chapters” or pretty much short scenarios for each heroine, with the beginning scenarios being shorter and more of an intro.
Like this. As you can see, there are “46 chapters”, but as I’ll spoil soon enough, this story loops around itself, coming back to the beginning. This scene is also presented as the “First Choice” in Chapter 46, but selecting any of the 46 chapters at that point brings you back into the loop. Clever readers may wonder if it’s possible to choose to get out of this loop *HINT HINT pointtothebuttononthebottomrightside*
So three characters; let’s get to it.
Sora is Haruki’s childhood friend and as with your typical childhood friend scenarios, helplessly attracted to him. To boot, her submissive personality and amazing body proportions made this character extremely fake…….. or so I thought.
While I would normally find myself at least a bit disgusted at such a design, it seems that the writer takes this personality to the next level of horror, to the point Sora actually feels pleasure from punishments. To be flat out, a masochist. Now, it doesn’t end here either. She’s such a masochist to the point she’s willing to take any command from Haruki, which involves sacrificing her own memories and even her conscience to fill Haruki’s mind with happy delusions using her “Scratch”.
The route (and Sora’s loop) ends with the two characters living in the world of delusions, with the same lines being repeated (literally; the game repeats the lines like a mindless robot) and was frankly quite fucking creepy.
Mitsuki is next, as the younger sister who is bad-mouthed and abusive to a certain extent, she won’t stop harassing her brother with insults if he gets on her nerves. In a sense though, her insults seemed much more childish than anything else, which may have added to this character’s charm (as ironic as it sounds).
Mitsuki seems to hold a dire secret from her brother that she doesn’t want anyone to find out. Perhaps because of this, she stays in her room all day and plays video games… which Haruki finds to be rather unproductive. He would rather have his sister come out and enjoy going to school and make friends, but the siblings end up fighting over this with Mitsuki saying “Haruki will never understand her”.
Haruki at this point decides to accept Mitsuki’s “everything”, which might seem very heart-warming in the eyes of the readers, but soon backfires to another “Oh my god” moment as readers find out exactly what Haruki got himself into.
Yuika is the last of the heroines, and is actually quite the mysterious character, seemingly being on Haruki’s side and wishing for his happiness (or so she says) right when they meet. In reality, they’re the ones who agree on being partners as both Level 6 Canaria, and originally train and work together to fulfill many duties, including trailing a specific individual or even the “body-less murder”, where a murder occurs, but nothing is left in the scene except a large pool of blood.
In reality, Yuika occurs in various scenes and indirectly shows the reader about the “Truths” of things, from the conclusion of one of the heroine loops to the identity of some characters, and finally in chapter 46, the ultimate truth about this world.
In a sense, Yuika seemed to be the central heroine of this game and the individual involved in the “True Route” of the Real World, where both Mitsuki and Sora are killed.
Story Analysis (aka, Spoilers):
So I hope you’re prepared for spoilers, because I’m going to get to it right off the bat.
You can see Haruki living relatively peacefully with Sora, Mitsuki, and Yuika even with his memory loss, but in reality, some things start to go wrong. With him falling in love with a heroine (which happens automatically from Sora -> Mitsuki -> Yuika), he starts to found out something rather troubling about them, how Sora can read minds but loses her own memories in return, how Mitsuki can get “erase” things but loses her own existence, and how he himself is also a victim of “losing something” every time he uses his powers called a “Scratch”.
As someone considered a “Level 6” Canaria, or pretty much the most powerful Canaria (at this point, I was reminded of this guy), he is explicitly stated at the end of the game shown to be capable of creating things from thin air, which even includes an alternate universe that he does create in the real world. In exchange for using such a large amount of power, he was split in two and the other half resulted in the character Yuika. His memory was also implanted in her. So simply put, the “other conscience” that Yuika speaks to is actually Haruki himself before he created this world.
Speaking of which, I think it’s time to present my ultra-high quality diagram of the flowchart of this story:
So basically, once you start the story, you actually start in that blue loop at the top. As you continue and view Sora and Mitsuki’s stories, this “loop” is repeated again each time. The loop is said to have ended when Haruki makes his first decision of deciding to leave this loop (within the 46th chapter), which brings him back to the real world. From here, there’s another choice where one takes you into the bad route which suggests that it continues through the original time-frame (even with Yuika as an irregularity, since she’s not supposed to exist in the Real World), while the other involves the two escaping from the Canaria Research Institution and creating a distortion in the original time-frame.
Confusing? Yeah, me too. It took me roughly an hour after I finished the game to figure this out myself.
Sexual Content: High
I’m just going to say this right now too; it seems that when you begin the game, the entire 46 “chapters” are open to you. DO NOT open any chapters in advance, as much as you might be tempted to do so. Some scenes involve climactic and gorey scenarios right off the bat and you might find yourself with the same reaction (quite fucking literally) as the following animal in the gif.
You’ll also be lacking the storyline previously to actually understand it, so just don’t.
I SAID DON’T!
Because this is a very short game with two choices, it seems that there are no “save” functions within the game. It only has a “suspend”, which saves the reader’s position within the chapter and closes the game. In reality, since each chapter is pretty short, it won’t be necessary to have a save feature anyways.
As mentioned previously, DO NOT touch this game if you’re the faint of heart. It’s a good game (don’t get me wrong), but it might be too stimulating for a normal person who’s not used to this kind of genre or too dumb to understand what the game is presenting. In fact, I really appreciate it if games do introduce elements that require an individual to be at least capable of thought to be able to understand; it really differentiates the idiots from the intellectuals.
… and the perverts. Imouto Magical Girl, anyone?
ANYONE?!?! DON’T LET ME BE THE ONLY PERVERT HERE
Affection for the Characters: Moderately Low
CG Score: 3/10. Cute artwork, but too little CGs with the background being pretty much “fazed real-life backgrounds”. While I guess for this specific title, it really worked for its purpose.
Music Score: 4/10. Way too creepy is the best word to describe it. The entire freaking game screams “suspense and horror elements” from the very beginning and soundtracks only amplify this oh-so-obviousness.
Conclusion: Quite the game that left an impression, this is definitely game a bit harder to understand, but is well worth it for the individuals who enjoy this kind of darker genre (aka me). I’ll definitely get into initial’s first title (which the producers say is completely different from this game and more of a nukige, but you never know), and would like to recommend Psychologic Love Comedy for people who want to experience some “Holy Shit” moments.