So with our final (I hope) installment of the escort series here comes Club Katze! (Katze is German for cat apparently.) To be honest this game feels a lot like LE1 than LE2. They took out all the annoying extras from LE2 (room decoration, touch/look/feel, mini games) and basically added the features that LE1 was lacking (scene skip, anytime save). Just like with LE1 present making and lottery has come back but for lottery you would just win randomly based on your leveled up stats and the presents would always just “auto succeed” based on your stats. While the game overall was a lot easier and less annoying (pretty much no repeat dialogue during the host visits and before/after scenes) the music and the art took a hit instead. ／(^o^)＼ﾅﾝﾃｺｯﾀｲ The music just sounded like some bland 1950s gangster movie combined with elevator music and well the art….let’s just say some of the characters just grossed me out period 😆 Our heroine is Takaoka Izumi who is forced to attend Club Katze as part of her job (as a spy or something??) but it doesn’t matter as her personality is as flat as a board.
Mori Asato – The one issue I had with the game was how the voices completely did not match the character designs. Asato was no exception. He’s 21 and is in a band. He doesn’t really like alcohol because he gets drunk really easily but that doesn’t stop him from drinking as part of his job. He’s often trolled by Tsubasa and scolded by the manager. He gets all emo that his band members say that he sucks at singing and dancing. He gets Tsubasa and Yohan to give him some dance and singing lessons so he improves. I guess this goes a long way because his band gets the opportunity to debut professionally. Somewhere along the way he confesses to Izumi and Izumi being as flat as a board agrees for one reason or another. The press grills him about him being a host that “tricks women” but I guess with Izumi’s support he makes it through. (And by support I mean the mattress mambo.) In the 2nd ending Izumi has to be all secretive about their relationship cause oh no he’s a celebrity now but he’s all like “I don’t care if the world knows that I love you!” Meh. ( ´_ゝ`) It’s funny the game was like a span of 10 months but I feel like nothing actually happened.
Haneda Kouichi (Tsubasa) – Tsubasa’s route was split into 2 parts for some idiotic reason. The first part was his “good end” where absolutely nothing happened. You just attended the club, and then suddenly boom the end. （ಠ_ಠ） His “true” end actually had a story but it’s beyond me why you had to go through the stupid good end first instead. So Tsubasa is short and he’s also a back dancer for some popular idol group. Apparently his fiance dumped him for a host so in the “true end” his true colors shine and he goes all emo saying that Izumi doesn’t know shit because she’s just a WHORE who plays with MEN at a HOST CLUB! ( ´_ゝ`) So one day during his dance rehearsal one of the stage props falls on top of him and flattens him like a pancake. Because of this he’s injured and he can no longer dance. He’s so distraught that he loses his memory of Izumi but suddenly remembers her because of some stuffed cat she sewed for him. Suddenly he’s like “IZUMI I LOVE YOU AND I NEED YOU!11one” and since she has no personality she’s like “lol ok” and she helps him with rehabilitation. She then passes his name along to a studio looking for a pro dancer and so he gets an offer to be in some movie in New York. When he finds out that she’s the one who did this he suddenly flips out thinking she did it to “get rid” of him by sending him overseas. Wtf? ( ´_ゝ`) But then she goes and quits her job saying “I’m coming abroad with you foo’!” Suddenly – humping! So then a few years later they’re living in NYC (where all “foreign trips” end up in otome games) and he’s some famous dancer or something. LOL you know I might have cared more about this if it was done the first time around….not me having to save, load, skip to get the “true” end.
Kuroki Hideomi (Rei) – Rei is 28 and speaks fluent Engrish. He also loves nukos and is bffs with Ryusei so I had to visit both him and Ryusei during his route おっさんホイホイ！ Rei has a fear of the dark as well and his personality is a bit of the kichiku megane stereotype. Apparently Rei was a victim of child abuse. His father would beat him and burn his skin with cigarette butts -_-;. His mother of course was afraid and just stood back and watched. The one thing he did with his mother that was against his father’s will was play tennis. Because of this Rei really got into tennis as a kid and then became a tennis pro. Unfortunately because of all his abuse scars he was forced to quit and so he started to hate both his parents and tennis. So when Izumi accidentally brings up tennis it makes him rage and he takes her to a hotel and humps her (but apparently its not rape because she knew what was coming the moment she agreed to go to that hotel with him!) So I guess after a while suddenly Izumi is like his first love and he confesses his love to her! She’s like “uhm…okay…I have no personality sure why not.” So then Rei calls his mom and lets her know that he’s got a lover now and he’s picked up tennis again. His father’s been dead for years now btw. Rei quits the host club despite tenchou’s begging him to not quit since apparently he brought all the hoes to the yard. The game ends with him sticking his hand down her shirt while she’s trying to make dinner 😆 In the epilogue Izumi’s become his waifu – and basically a housewife since that’s about all her kind of character is good for anyway. For some reason though, she’s “ok” with Rei still being a host once in a while to “help” Club Katze. Wtf? If that was me I’d be like “uh fuck no, go find some young guy to be a host you weirdo.” （ಠ_ಠ）
Kanbara Ryuji (Ryusei) – Ryusei….is such an ossan its’ not even funny. Not only does he call himself and old geezer on multiple occasions, he also sports this nasty face pube goatee that adds like 10 years to his age. Maybe if he was hotter looking I would have thought he’s a cute ojisan (like the tenchou in LE1) who likes to eat parfaits and play with puppies. Sadly my eyes just kept going to his goatee and I could NOT UNSEE （ಠ_ಠ）. I guess because in the past he was a model/actor, he’s the #1 host at Club Katze every single time. They hump on Izumi’s birthday and then he tells her he has a dream of starting his own hair salon. I guess that makes sense since a lot of his conversations have to do with…hair. Apparently 12 years ago though there was yet another old fart who took care of him during his celebrity days and then he started asking to loan money. When Ryusei said he’ll no longer do it, the man went apeshit and pulled out a knife lunging at Izumi saying it’s all her fault! 😯 Ryusei protected her and got stabbed in the arm. The man later shows up and gives money to Izumi to pass on to Ryusei. He leaves a note apologizing saying the money was to pay for his child’s surgery. Ryusei’s like “well shit man, if I knew you needed money for that I woulda lent it to you anyway!” （ಠ_ಠ） Oh Japan and your misunderstandings. So then in March the club holds a goodbye party for Ryusei but he says he’s gonna be there a little bit longer. A year later he quits Club Katze and starts his hair salon with Izumi by his side. VA I didn’t care for, chin pubes…I just kept zoning out in this route. His enka-like song made me lol though.
Miyamoto Souichirou (Minomiya Hiiragi) – Hiiragi is the sleezy tenchou of Club Sleeze. I mean his character basically represents what I think about the entire game. He’s 29 and maybe this was intentional but his sprite looks REALLY CREEPY. He has these thin creepy raep eyes and the bottom of his face is so LARGE he looks like an ape. Ape tenchou. 😆 Pretty much 90% of this route is sex. Everything he says is “I want to bed you” and he sends pics to Izumi of flowers that look like dicks and cooters. （ಠ_ಠ） He often takes her into private rooms at the club or behind some wall to have a quick fondle. At one point Asato walks in on them about to screw (or maybe already screwing) and runs away crying ﾌﾟｯ(※థэథ)∵.*. Apparently he’s had some huge crush on her since they worked together at some bridal salon but she probably erased his raep face out of her mind so she didn’t remember him. He keeps telling her he loves her and he’s serious but nether Izumi, nor me, could take him seriously…until he’s like “COME MEET MY MOTHER OR ELSE I GOTTA GO ON AN OMIAI.” When the mom meets her she goes bat shit after hearing her name and tells her to GTFO. Turns out there was some incindent where Izumi made some improper boquet for her at that salon or something. So in order to convince the baba that she’s suited for her son, she makes another flower boquet. Baba finally accepts her and tells her that she needs to be ready for Souichirou who’s a manwhore like his father. I mean for white day he gives Izumi a freaking dog collar and says “oh this is a choker”. ( ´_ゝ`) Anyway he quits Club Katze and makes Rei the new manager while he focuses on his flower arranging activites since his house is all easy breezey and extra Japanesey. 3 years later he’s still groping Izumi, now his waifu, and says he doesn’t want kids because he’d rather spend some time with just her for a while. I like his thinking – on that part anyway. Otherwise….good lord. I do admit though I laughed my ass off just at how horribly perverted all his photos, and pickup lines were 😆
Fujimoto Akira (Kanade) – Kanade is actually quite adorable despite being voiced by a lady (Saiga Mitsuki). He’s 21 but my impression of him was like the “underage guy” like Makoto in LE2 or Chihiro in LE1. Fortunately unlike the former 2, he’s actually quite sweet and shy and doesn’t go bitching about one thing or another. He’s still in college and he loves books. His original intention was to work in the back of Club Katze but he was probably “forced” to become an actual host by Hiiragi 😆 His other part time job is working at a bookstore but I guess it just doesn’t pay the bills like manwhoring does. One day his oldest sister Yui shows up bitching that he shouldn’t be working at a host club. She then proceeds to stalk him there to try to get him to quit. Eventually he and Izumi talk to her, and his other 2 older twin sisters. Turns out they just can’t seem to “let go” of their cute little brother (*´ω｀*). Kanade on the other hand wants to become independent so he plans to move out and live on his own for a while. In December he finally confesses to Izumi that he likes her. Izumi’s all like “uh let me think about this”. Honestly I feel all the confessions in this game felt so…sudden but I think it was ok for Kanade because he seemed to be all shy and blushy around Izumi anyway. The funniest was Valentine’s day when he’s like “僕をもらってください！！” (Please take me!….and be gentle…) HAHAH XDXD |萌|･´∀`･)ﾊｧﾊｧ 萌えぇぇ↑ So anyway Kanade passes his college exams and moves out. They agree to keep in touch via email/phone (I don’t know what the point of this was…) A few years later he’s opened a book cafe together with Izumi and says his other dream is to make Izumi his waifu.
Johan Gruner – Johan is the club pianist so fortunately for half of the game all you had to do was take his piano lessons and skip through everything else. Since he wasn’t a host, speaking to him was a lot nicer. A lot of the conversations with some of the hosts felt so fake sometimes but pretty much every convo with Johan was somehow relevant to my interests. Actually Johan, as you can see by his name, is from the Netherlands so he’s a huge weeaboo. He’s got like darumas, lanterns, hiragana posters in his room and he gets super excited if you give him presents like yukatas, tempuras and banzai trees 😆 In order to help him earn more money, Izumi introduces him to Hiiragi to be a pianist at the club. Hiiragi almost gets him to be a host but then says he’s unqualified for that because he has no experience with women ﾌﾟｯ(※థэథ)∵.*.∵ Johan’s parents died so he’s been raised by his grandma. His grandma, as a young girl got into a ship accident leaving Japan and was saved by a Japanese man. That man was her first love so she studied Japanese in the hopes of someday to reunite with him but she never did. She became a Japanese teacher in the Netherlands and that’s basically how Johan got interested in Japanese culture. Unlike Yoh’s dad in Starry Sky, he doesn’t speak in freaking Katakana and actually speaks good Japanese! At one point Johan sees Tsubasa fall on top of Izumi during xmas eve and gets all jealous. For like no apparent reason they made Tsubasa have a crush on Izumi and when he realized Izumi likes Johan he was all like “at least spend Xmas at the club with me~” Like really? Did you need to throw that in? ( ´_ゝ`)
Anyway Johan is so upset he quits being a piano teacher. When Izumi goes to see him he tells her that when he is with her his “chest hurts and he feels sick” 😆 How the hell do you NOT KNOW what that is at the age of 21. Really? Were you raised under a rock? So anyway after Izumi clears up the misunderstanding (?) he goes back to being her piano teacher while working Saturdays playing the piano at Club Katze. One day he tells Izumi his grandma is sick but he has no money to fly to the Netherlands to see her. Izumi lends him money and goes with him. He lies to his grandma saying Izumi is his lover (to make her feel better) but later apologizes for lying. Izumi is disappointed cause she likes him and she wouldn’t mind being his lover for real… (*´ω｀*) Finally in March he tries to tell Izumi he likes her by saying “The moon is pretty” because idiot Hiiragi told him that’s how you say “I love you” in Japanese 😆 Since his message doesn’t seem to be coming across, Johan kisses her instead. Later on Izumi finds out she has to go to Australia for her job because I guess she’s the only one that can speak English or something. She’s sad that she has to part with Johan so the last night at Club Kazte, Johan sings to the song she played for his birthday on the piano, and then they go to a hotel for some last minute humping. A few months later while she’s in Australia, Johan comes to see her. He tells her that he’s graduated from Japanese music school and he’s auditioning to be in the Australian orchestra. A few years later, he’s obviously made it in as a pro piano player and he’s married Izumi – making both of his grandma’s dreams come true.
So let’s see memorable moments…Rei and the nuko, Asato’s quickfap in the dark and Hiiragi’s porn flowers 😆 Tsubasa is supposed to be the “main” character I think but he was more fun in everyone’s routes but his own. （ಠ_ಠ） I’ll come out and say it straight – I just didn’t like the art style in the game. Actually come to think of it, I think the art style works better if it was a black & white manga…but in color it looked really…weird. Some of the CGs were a massive improvement over the sprites – especially Hiiragi. Good lord it was like going from ape to hot manbeast. The only characters whose character designs didn’t freak me out were probably Tsubasa and Kanade (although Kanade looked so girly sometimes I kept thinking he was really a trap…) The music was really bland this time around. A lot of it sounded the same to me and not a single BGM stood out to me. The character songs were a nice addon but I only liked maybe 2-3 of them. I’m glad they brought back the emails/phone calls feature from LE1 because that was a lot more fun than LE2’s room visit/look/touch system. The problem I have with the game, aside from the art, is that it felt so SLEEZY. Like I didn’t think anyone’s stories except Kanade and Johan’s were all that interesting. Rei’s and Tsubasa’s were dramatic, sure, but aside from that the entire game just felt so…sleezy to me. Like LE1/LE2 characters were fun and cute but everyone here felt like they just wanted to woo the heroine into bed or something (especially Hiiragi god damn dude..). Also the guy at the beginning who told Izumi she has to go to the host club…after doing his route once and giving him “advice” all his scenes thereafter were just..skippable. It’s like what was his purpose again anyway? I completely forgot by the end of the game. All I remembered was his sprite has a crooked neck. Since now I’ve played all 3 last escorts I’ve made a chart of what basically each one is like:
With LE1 we had fun characters with interesting enough stories. There was plenty of host club activities but the programming was fucking terrible and because of no global save I couldn’t complete all the routes. With LE2 they greatly improved the programming and gave dramatic stories to all the characters….however all the host club activities felt pointless and tedious. It was so annoying that I felt like going to the host club was just a chore and just more crap for me to skip through. With LE3 they shifted the focus back to the basics like in LE1 and continued with the improved programming but I guess they forgot to give the characters any kind of interesting stories….especially the heroine. The heroine in LE1 coulda been a dude and this whole game coulda been a BL game and you wouldn’t notice. I think her personality shined the most probably in Kanade and Johan’s routes which is probably why those were my favorites. Otherwise she felt as transparent as plastic wrap and she would just mold herself to the cookie cutter shape the guys wanted her to be.
So maybe one day where that ? is , we’ll get LE4 that will give us the nice art, the great programing and a story to keep us occupied and interested the entire route. I can dream can’t I? 😆