So I decided to finally fully play and review a Voltage game. And this time, I’m not dealing with that GREE shit, I just straight up bought 3 routes from Serendipity Next Door. I hope you enjoyed my $12 Voltage so now I can go ranting about how much of a ripoff your games really are. The story is about our 25 year old heroine (arbitrarily named Harukawa Sanae) who works in an import foods department and one day gets switched to import household goods instead. At the same time she gets to better know the neighbors in her apartment building. I didn’t realize the Japanese title literally meant “Be careful of your neighbor” because I sure as hell now know what they meant by that ／(^o^)＼.
Hibiya Masaomi – Masaomi’s probably the only decent route & guy in the whole game. He’s basically an entitled diva musician who’s on hiatus and temporarily moves into her building. He’s very talented when it comes to composing his songs but he fails at everything else. He can’t cook, he lives off energy bars and he has 0 sense of direction. While hearing his guitar one night Sanae leans against the balcony partition to listen to it and….falls through it breaking a hole in it HAHA. Because of this they get oddly more close and start chatting it up with each other. While hearing his guitar one night she leans against the balcony partition to listen to it and….falls through it breaking a hole in it HAHA. Because of this they get oddly more close and start chatting it up with each other. Masaomi starts to do little things for Sanae though – like giving her her favorite alcoholic drink plum brandy or always sitting near her. One night he comes through her balcony like a bed intruder begging to borrow her rice cooker 😆 She suggests that they just buy one so she helps him go out and buy one together. Afterwards she teaches him how to wash and cook the rice. One day while she runs into Masaomi in the grocery store, some dude who used to work for him comes up and starts talking trash. He says that he only got famous because of his mom’s looks and daddy’s connections so Sanae splashes red wine sample on her face as a distraction to get Masaomi to take her home. After this she realizes she’s in love with him.
The good news is Masaomi is also now in love with her and he keeps constantly coming over asking her to cook him food. He says he only wants to eat Sanae’s cooking over his health bars & drinks. She doesn’t know how to act around him and things get worse when a tabloid catches them on a boat at the lake together. (Although the reason was that they took a boat to catch her place mat that blew into the lake.) She tries to avoid him after this because his manager tells her to stay away and not ruin his career. Masaomi won’t be having any of this, so after being away from the apartment for a while, he returns and Sanae can’t hold back her feelings any longer. Well Masaomi’s not about to hold back either cause he grabs and kisses her making her realize the feeling is mutual 😛 And so after one of their building’s BBQ parties, Masaomi sneaks with her into her room and plays his new song for her. He also the points out that’s not the only reason he came there and they have some sexy time – after which he tells her to next time wear the purple thong that he saw her holding the first day they met. ((((((((((ﾉ∀`)･ﾟ･｡ ｱﾋｬﾋｬﾋｬﾋｬ I actually managed to get Masaomi’s happy end on my first try without a guide so I didn’t bother going back for the good end. Looking back in restrospect, other than his early self entitlement, he was a pretty cute guy. His interactions with Sanae were my favorite and the ending was really cute. Also for some reason he’s the only one out of the 3 that actually got laid in the main story lol.
Takasaki Izumi – Izumi’s a 23 year old college student who works many part time jobs to support his tuition. His dream is to be a veteranarian and one of his jobs includes working at a pet shop and walking a dog named Poochie lol. One day when Sanae gets sick and passes out in front of his apartment, he takes her inside and takes care of her. Due to this he ends up skipping a work shift and loses one of his jobs. The next day Sanae hears Izumi apologizing to the landlord for not paying the rent on time. She realizes he has a lot of work he does to keep up his rent so she offers for him to come eat at her place anytime. In the meantime her project at work goes better she finds out that the reason he’s having rent issues is that night he took care of her…he was fired from his job for skipping his shift. (´・ω・｀) The pet shop owner tells Sanae that Izumi has actually run away from home. One night while Sanae is at the bar with Shoko and Yuujiro, while Shoko’s in the ladies room, Yuujiro is crying about how senpai won’t notice him. He ends up shaking Sanae with his complaints to the point that she topples in his lap. Just then Izumi so happens to be passing by in the same bar and sees this and totally has a misunderstanding xD. Sanae catches up to him explaining its just her coworker only to hear that he had trouble talking to the cute girl he was supposed to be set up with by his friends. She gets him a drink since he’s drunk and they sit on a park bench until he passes out in her lap. After he wakes up he tells her that his family owns a large business in Hokkaido and his dad wants Izumi to take over.
Izumi couldn’t give up his dream of becoming a Vet so he ran away from home. Because of this he had to pay for his tuition and living expenses all on his own which is why he has so many jobs. Now here’s where shit don’t make no sense. It seems like Izumi is busy with his work and is slowly developing a crush on Sanae right? But then turns out he’s been trying to get with this Minami girl and Sanae cheers him on offering to practice helping him get over his shyness. Like wow wtf where did this plot point come from, was it even necessary!? That night he sends Sanae a text asking if she wants to go to the movies. At the movie, A Puppy Tale, both Sanae and Izumi end up bawwing their eyes out XD. After this Sanae realizes she’s falling for Izumi but is upset because he’s still attempting to get with Minami. hen Sanae’s project at work has problems again she gets home crying but Izumi comes over and comforts her. She feels better after work so she goes to see him at the pet store only to find him flirting with Minami. Feeling crappy Sanae heads home with her flat tired bike while it starts to pour. At the building BBQ the next night, everyone teases Izumi because he’s got a date with Minami…but Sanae is upset. When Izumi talks to her he asks if she can cook for him again, but Sanae refuses and says he shouldn’t hang out with other women now that he has a girlfriend. She even lies and says she’s dating Yuujiro before running back to her apartment to cry. The day of Izumi’s date, Sanae ends up going to the park with Yuujiro and while he yells out I LOVE SHOKO (Sanae’s boss) he tells Sanae she should let her feelings out too. She ends up yelling I LOVE IZUMI!! …right as Izumi is walking by with his dog ＼( ^o^)／
Shit’s awkward between them but Sanae just lies saying she was joking and wishes him luck on his date with Minami. But before leaving, he instead bursts into Sanae’s apartment telling her he’s madly in love with her instead! They both hug and realize the feeling is mutual. Aaaallrighty then! Good End: They start dating but decide to keep their relationship a secret so the other tenants don’t make fun of them. Happy End: Izumi asks Sanae to tell him that she loves him like how she yelled it out in the park. They still keep their relationship a secret but ichaicha in his room saying they will take their relationship slowly just likw how they originally “got together”. Honestly I’m just like WTF. The whole time this dude seems like he has the hots for this Minami chick, then suddenly one night he just bursts into Sanae’s room going I LOVE U GUURL. I’m not sure if it was something lost in translation or what but I felt like there was not too many hints that he only wanted to focus on Sanae. Well there was…until Minami came into the picture and then I just got confused on what the hell he wanted to do with himself. Honestly I’m disappointed since this was supposed to be the tsundere character and I usually love those. (´・ω・｀) Also like wtf he was 23, she is 25 but the route made it seem like he’s some little teenage boy and she’s this OLDER WOMAN who’s unfit for him. 🙄 Give me a break you’re not at BBA level yet Sanae.
Narita Shinobu – This whole character is basically lost in translation. The google play page lists him as the “flirty building manager” but he’s very much a HARAGURO YANDERE MANAGER. He seems like he’s ┌(┌ ^o^)┐ﾎﾓｵ with Keiichi aka BYRON who’s always hanging around him. When Sanae asks if they’re homo directly but they laugh and never really answer it. Keiichi says that Shinobu can’t be with Sanae because he has a broken heart. At the building BBQ they end up drinking more and then Sanae wakes up the next morning in bed with a naked Shinobu ＼( ^o^)／ She quickly runs back to her apartment before he wakes up and tries to avoid him, although it appears like he has no memory of what happened. A few days later Sanae catches Shinobu arguing with a woman in the park. He comes to her place that night saying she better not say anything or else he’ll tell everyone about their sexy time night! XD He said that she’s the one who told him to “find a new love” but Sanae was like “oh I thought you were ┌(┌ ^o^)┐ﾎﾓｵ”. He then says Sanae should be his girlfriend but she’s like whut and kicks him out of her apartment. The next day basically he blackmails into her being his g/f or else he’d tell everyone about their 1 night stand. After work he calls Sanae to the park in front of the woman she saw him with the other day…he tells that woman that Sanae is now his girlfriend and that he’s breaking up with her.
A few days later Keiichi tells Sanae that Shinobu used to be in love with a girl who lived in that building but she didn’t respond to his feelings and then went off to Paris. He seems like a huge jerk to Sanae but then he does stuff like send her a boquet of daisies to work. Eventually the two of them are able to make jokes about each other and it doesn’t feel like some weird DoS doM relationship. Keiichi hopes that Sanae will help Shinobu get over his former love. One night after cleaning up from a BBQ Sanae comes into his room and finds the photo of him and his old love Fumika. He says that he was shocked that she would leave him to go to Paris and get married so he can never have her now…but he can’t get over her. He even plants forget-me-not flowers to remind him of her. He gets mad at Sanae for bringing it up and nearly attempts to rape her but she pwns him and tells him she knows he can’t stop thinking about his old love. He finally opens up to her and admits that when Sanae told him he could “find someone else” he was angry that she could say something so lightly to him. So that’s why he wanted to basically make her feel like shit by being all haraguro and making her act like his g/f. He then admits that the night where it seemed like they had sexy time, nothing actually happened. Sanae tells him that it’s ok to still have feelings for this married woman (lol?) and that she’d always be a shoulder for him to cry on. He takes upon the offer and hugs her crying on her shoulder.
The next day during a building fire drill, Shinobu tells everyone that Sanae is his girlfriend. Sanae runs after him being like wtf dude and he’s like “yea I was messing around but gurl I wanna date you for real”. So they go on a date to Ginza and he keeps taking Sanae to really expensive stores scaring the crap out of her with potential thousand dollar gifts. Sanae says she doesn’t need expensive gifts and she takes him on what a “normal” date is like. They go to see some pr0n movie, and take purikura together. And so after spending more time with him, Sanae starts to realize she’s falling for him. They make a promise to plant daisies together one weekend but Sanae has some work issues that need to be taken care of so plans are cancelled. Shinobu is understanding and gives her a kiss on the cheek before she goes telling her he loves that she’s such a hard worker. (*´ω｀*) Unfortunately when she gets home that night she finds him emoing in the darkness of his apartment because he’s received a letter from Fumika. Turns out it’s a wedding invitation to her wedding and he’s shocked that she just sent it to him which means she never saw him as a love interest to begin with. He says that in his head she was already married when she sent him 1 postcard from Paris saying she “found someone she loves” and never answered his confession. After this Shinobu goes back to his moping self and Keiichi being sick of his shit says he’s gonna take Sanae away from him. Shinobu thinks about ripping out the forget me nots out of the garden to forget about Fumika but Sanae stops him and tells him not to force himself. (Even though she is forcing herself trying to deal with all this NTR ／(^o^)＼ﾅﾝﾃｺｯﾀｲ).
Shoko notices Sanae is down and suggests she move in with her niece who’s moving to Tokyo so she can be away from Shinobu. Sanae considers it and starts packing her stuff until Keiichi comes into her room and is like guurl plz don’t go! He tries to get them to talk at a BBQ but Shinobu shrugs her off saying he’s busy. Sanae ends up moving out the following day and says she’ll tell Shinobu about it the day after when she returns her apartment keys. (´・ω・｀) Just as the truck starts to pull away, she hears someone yelling her name and running behind it – it’s Shinobu. Good End: Sanae asks Yujirou to stop the truck and as she runs out, Shinobu grabs her and begs her not to leave him. Sanae then tells Yujirou that she won’t be moving out after all and they have to unpack everything again :lol:. And so at the BBQ a few nights later, Shinobu just grabs Sanae and makes out with her in front of everyone ／(^o^)＼ﾅﾝﾃｺｯﾀｲ. Keiichi gets pissed off and makes Shinobu drink so much beer until he can barely stand up. Sanae takes him back to his apartment and they both pass out on the couch. A few days later he invites her to his place and tells her that he couldn’t get over Fumika because it was something out of his reach that he always WANTED….but he realized he’s better off what’s within his reach – aka his love for Sanae. He tells her how much he loves her which makes her burst into tears.
Happy End: Sanae tells Yujiro to continue driving despite Shinobu running behind the track LMAO. She then sends her keys to Keiichi and tells him to give them back to Shinobu LOL THIS IS WORSE THAN THE GOOD END. If this wasn’t bad enough, he basically stalks her to her work, waits for her to come out and then drags her to some alleyway asking her wtf she’s doing – then 壁ドン’s her and kisses her (and it was so bad that her head looked like it got flattened in the CG.) He then says he loves Sanae and that he couldn’t forget Fumika like how a child can’t have his favorite toy. And so he asks her to move back into the building because he can’t live without her coming home and saying “I’m home” to him. And so Shinobu invites her to a rooftop party the next evening and afterwards brings her back to his room for sexy time. Unfortunately, while Sanae’s taking a shower, Shinobu cockblocks himself and falls asleep. The next morning he wakes up and rages at himself for falling asleep but Sanae assures him there will other opportunities for sexy times lol. Seriously this guys entire route is centered around his feelings for some hoe who rejected him, and because of this he tries to make every woman he gets with feel like shit so she can understand his PAAAAIN. And it’s only now that Sanae was THE ONE to make him forget his PAAINNN so he can finally have TWU WUV. How sweet! not. ಠ_ಠ
Well I guess it was entertaining enough but Jinpachi was so douchey in the prologue/other routes that there was no way in hell I was gonna pay for his route lol. I honestly thought the story flow was okay but some of the endings felt really sudden and out of nowhere…particularly Izumi’s made no sense at all. While the game has “choices” for you, they are mostly pointless in deciding what happens. For example it will be like “read a book” or “don’t read a book” and even if you chose “don’t read a book” the heroine will still be like “..well I think I’ll read one anyway.” Okay clearly you had intended to read that book without me making that decision for you! The other thing is, while the choices help “lead you” to what end you will get (good or happy) even if you don’t get one, you just go to the chapter select and…select the one you didn’t get XD Therefore, I didn’t even need to use a guide to get the endings I didn’t land on because…I just go back and press a button lol… So in that sense it’s almost like pick whatever funny choices you want during the route, and even if you don’t get the end you wanted you can just click on it from the chapter menu! The CGs were let’s face it…terrible. The guys were okay but the composition was poo, the heroine looked like a blow up doll in most of them and a lot of them were mostly just close up head shots of the guys. In the promo image the heroine actually looks cute and has eyes but in the game CGs it’s just whut. I actually thought the heroine was pretty decent until I got to Shinobu’s happy ending where all common sense just flew out the window.
I’m kinda bummed Keiichi didn’t have a route but the app did say “coming soon” so I guess I’ll leave it sitting on my phone until I can play it. The other problem I have is how much of a ripoff Voltage’s games are. I mean look I know they can’t be free and I’m not asking it but they charge $4 for the main story, $2 for the “epilogue” and another $4 for “season 2”. If you’re only gonna buy like 1 guys routes it’s not so bad but if you wanna play multiple dudes it starts to add up. And well I’m sorry I don’t feel like paying $30 for a game with derpy CGs, and no voices :|. (Would actually be $40 if you include Jinpachi who I gracefully ignored.) I’ve played mobile games where $4 got me an entire route with better more quality CGs and more of them. Each route here only had 4 CGs in the main story and I guess if you got the epilogue & season 2 it would have been 9 total. There’s a ton of these kinds of games on the market, and it’s good that non-Japanese speaking otome game fans have an option to play translated stuff but I can’t help but feel sorry for them sometimes. This is the kind of thing they have to pay for and the quality is subpar compared to what’s available in Japanese. Ultimately if you want a value for your money, pick up that Japanese book and start learning ＼( ^o^)／. Until then, Voltage will just have to satisfy your desire to date doctors, thieves, NTR, fake husbands, devils, rich casino owners, coworkers and high school boys. I do admit though, their translation is pretty hilarious and much better than what QuinRose poops out with Google Translate.