When I started playing this game I found out the sad news that minori. actually went out of business a year ago. While I wasn’t a fan of them constantly blocking foreigners from their site, I did like a few of their games. With steam having their usual season sale I decided to pick up both the EF games (first tale and latter tale) and eden so I will be playing and reviewing them back to back. The story focuses on various couples rather than the standard protag + heroines format. We begin our tale with the heroine Yuuko meeting up with her friend Yuu and talking about what happened in “the past”. Just a warning, I did NOT enjoy this game so if you’re a huge fan I don’t recommend reading this.
Miyako & Hiro – Hiro meets Miyako when she attempts to borrow his bike to chase some purse thief on Christmas eve and fails miserably. Then turns out they go to the same school but since Hiro is a shoujo mangaka in secret, he barely interacts with any of his classmates. Doesn’t help that Miyako often cuts class as well so she’s never really At school (and somehow hasn’t been left back?) And after she hangs around him a lot, and makes him dinner while he works, somewhere along the way they fall in love with each other and then bang at his apartment. 😕 I didn’t really see the flow of things but let’s roll with it I guess lol. At the end his childhood friend Kei wants him to go see her basketball match but Miyako is like “I’ll bang you all day if you don’t go” and to get Miyako’s good end you gotta pick the horny choice and then it flash forwards to him drawing her like one of his french girls. And then because Hiro is dumb and indecisive, Miyako goes to Kei and is like “guess what bitch I fucked him” LMAO. And then Kei runs away like wah wah I lost lmao it was so stupidly dramatic I couldn’t take it seriously. They tried to make it seem interesting by saying that Miyako’s parents neglected her cause they hated each other but it was kinda just…that? And nothing else and that everything was fine once they finally divorced. And then Miyako says she banged Hiro so he wouldn’t look at any other girl, and then Kei wangsts that wah wah why didn’t you notice my feelings oniichan sigh lol. Anyway after Miyako is picked and Kei is dumped, the story then goes into Kei’s route.
Kei and Kyosuke – Kyosuke fell for Kei when he saw her playing basketball, which was after Hiro had quit school to pursue his manga career. He’s a photographer so he wants to take a nice photo of Kei but instead of just asking directly he starts randomly stalking her until she catches him and nearly kills him. He asks her to be a model for his next short film and she finally agrees but has no idea what exactly he wants to film from her. He ends up just kinda filming her conversations about her life and her sister who lives away from her that she chats over email with. But the entire time Kei just cannot for the life get over Hiro, and constantly is at odds with Miyako so you have this massive endless ギスギス whenever they are together. (Also Miyako constantly treating Kyosuke like her personal chore boy was annoying lmao.) And so finally in order to get over Hiro, Kei decides that’s it Kyosuke, bang me right now – but at the last moment when he whips out the D, she runs off screaming that she cannot forget oniichan after aallllll *wangst*. 🙄🙄 And even in the end after she bangs Kyosuke anyway and says she loves him, in the epilogue she’s like “I still love oniichan after all but Kyosuke said it’s ok”….REALLY. Good grief Kei you’re gross 😒. And then to make things worse the game bugged out on me and during the end credits and end movie was completely black screen so I had no idea what the hell was going on to segue me into the next game. 😒
Renji and Chihiro – This starts the next game “The latter tale” and the first route is Kei’s distant sister Chihiro who Kei was contacting via email. Renji, the current protag who is half German, met her at some abandoned train station that she just kept sitting at for no reason. Since she’s Kei’s twin sister she’s older than Renji who’s still attending high school. Chihiro reveals she has brain damage from an accident and can only learn new things for like 13 hours and then forgets them immediately after. In order to remember what happened she keeps a notebook diary of everything she does that day. Because her memories are constantly reset any feelings she had with them, whether it be happiness or sadness ,vanish, and even though she re-reads her diary, she can realize something had happened, but she cannot recall the feelings that went along with it. So because it became really awkward for Kei and her family, so by her request, they ended up having Chihiro be looked out after by a relative – who happens to be Yuu – the person we first meet in the game that knows Yuuko.
Unlike the first game, this route quickly escalates into darkness showing Chihiro’s inner depressive thoughts as she wavers for why she is even alive and how all she does is burden those around her. And so they decide to become lovers for a day, and at the end of the day after both saying I love you, and banging on the school roof top, they agree to part ways and never see each other for a while until he meets her at the station again for her “first time” and asks her to read his story. The story isn’t his, its the story she had written self-inserting herself as the only person in the world, planning to “die alone” but it all changed when she had met a boy and could no longer do so. Wow great one night stand route SMH (I might be less salty if it wasn’t for the fact that they honestly didn’t need to insert an ero scene into such a depressing story but lol eroges). I mean I get there way probably no way to work things out but I guess I wanted some kind of a miracle but they went the realistic way bleh. After reading “her” story, Chihiro ends up crying and it pretty much just ends there. In Mizuki and Shuichi’s route though it appears like the 2 of them end up becoming lovers once again half a year later.
Mizuki and Shuichi – Mizuki is Renji’s cousin and Shuichi is Renji’s gross pedo neighbor who not only hits on Renji’s married mom, but this route has him hitting on ye olde high school girl trope too. But we have to excuse his gross behavior because oh noes, he has an incurable heart disease and will die soon! Honestly the romance would have been totally ok and the route would have been better if Mizuki wasn’t high school age tbh. It starts when Renji’s mom Sumire asks Shuichi to babysit Mizuki for a week while Sumire and Renji are at school. Since he constantly freeloads food from Sumire, Shuichi agrees to do this to “pay back the debt he owes” to her. Everything is normal at first until Shuichi passes out one day in front of Mizuki because of not sleeping for 3 days – due to the fact that he has consistent nightmares because of his illness. When Sumire finds Mizuki and Shuichi fallen asleep on the couch together, she gets pissed and ends the babysitting agreement lmao. But in reality it’s just Shuichi wanting to cut ties with Mizuki because since he’s gonna die anyway he doesn’t want to have any deep relationships (let alone illegal ones lmao). Mizuki finds out from Renji and Chihiro about his disease and cannot keep herself away. In the past Shuichi was a professional violinist but had a muscle spasm during his concert which ended up cancelling the concert midway and made headlines. After that he quit and returned from Europe to Japan, but because he loves playing the violin he once in a while goes out and plays alone at night by the beach.
On one final evening, he plays his last song until his muscles ache and then sets his violin on fire while Mizuki watches from afar. After he’s about to leave the burning violin, Mizuki rushes out, kicks it into the ocean while screaming and then gets it out and starts crying that the Violin is “part of him”. The next day she gets sick and while she’s sleeping at Renji’s place, Shuichi comes over to check on her and finds out that not only is she adopted, but the “original” Mizuki, who was Renji’s actual cousin – died at a young age from drowning in the ocean during a family beach trip. This is all a lie though because what actually happened is Mizuki’s mother decided to do a murder/suicide of her whole family and drove her car off a cliff into the ocean. (Initially Mizuki’s mom tried to strangle her but couldn’t bear to do it herself so she literally let jesus take the wheel.) Mizuki (named Miki (未来) at the time) was the only survivor (due to the fact that she was passed out from strangulation and didn’t breathe in as much water) and was raised at the same orphanage church as Yuu and Yuuko. After losing their daughter due to a drowning accident at the beach, Sumire’s sister adopted Miki as her own daughter and called her Mizuki (but using ミズキ instead of 水姫). After this they thought that oceans brought bad luck so they always told relatives to keep Mizuki away from the ocean. Despite them both falling in love with each other and confessing, Shuichi pushes her away just like he did with his ex-fiance because there’s no future for anyone who stays with him. Because she refuses to stop seeing him, he pretends to assault her (though it wasn’t obvious what he did in the all-ages version I later checked the CGs and he basically shoved his hand up her skirt >_>).
This effectively makes her run away crying, and the guilt and nervousness of what he just did makes his heart pump harder than it should which sends him into another spasm from which he is barely able to recover due to being unable to access his medicine in a timely manner. Mizuki reveals her past to Yuu but despite this she didn’t want to be with Shuichi so they could lick each other’s wounds, she genuinely had feelings for him and wanted him to be happy despite her own past. She then also tells Yuu that she’s the girl that Yuuko saved and ended up sacrificing her life for. After Yuuko’s route, Mizuki’s route continues and she decides to “settle” things with Shuichi. And she does so by taking his broken violin that got repaired and throwing it BACK into the ocean, good lord what a waste of money! At least sell it on ebay! And then she grabs Shuichi and throws him in the water too ?_? saying she’s killed both him and the violin now and now he can “start over fresh”. Which I guess actually means let’s just bang until you die Shuichi and he’s like k works for me lol. Also while they bang she’s like “I want to have your baby even if you die!!” and so uh no conctraception was used on this day. And then Yuu comes by to check on Shuichi’s wellfare but instead finds him post banging Mizuki and is like bro that’s soo illegal. 😂 Yuu ends up leaving the city and says goodbye to Mizuki. For Christmas Mizuki surprises Shuichi with his violin as it turns out she only threw out the empty case into the ocean but not the actual violin (thank god lol). Shuichi then plays silent night on his violin for all the church visitors that evening as a prayer for Yuu and Yuuko.
Yuuko and Yuu – Yuuko and Yuu met when they became orphaned after their parents were killed in the great Otawa earthquake/disaster. They both ended up being raised at a church orphanage together for about 6 months until Yuuko got adopted first. They ended up reunited when they saw each other at Otawa high school a few years later but even though Yuuko was amicable to see Yuu, Yuu wanted nothing to do with her. The reason is because during the earthquake/fire disaster, Yuu’s house caught on fire, and being a young kid he ran terrified out of his burning house – leaving his sister to die in the flames. So now every time he sees Yuuko, since they were in the orphanage for the same reason, it reminds him of that tragedy that he wishes to forget as it brings him survivor guilt. Unfortunately for him though, Yuuko has a crush on him since forever and will not leave him alone, along with Shuichi constantly enabling her bullshit before he goes off to study abroad. Unfortunately things are not all great for her because she’s constantly bullied by the bitches in her class, and Yuu is the only one who notices but his efforts to tell her brother (who’s a teacher) go on deaf ears and Yuuko herself tells Yuu that it’s no big deal and she can deal with it. ( ´_ゝ`)
The reason of course is because her step-brother, Amamiya-sensei is actually a giant disgusting pedophile rapist who’s been raping Yuuko non stop for 2 years since she was 13 years old, and also violently beating her, shoving his lit cigarette butts into her skin and scratching her with a wood cutting knife. She’s tried to run away but because she was so mentally and physically abused, she realized she had nowhere to go, and was too terrified to go to the police or social services (though somehow I feel like this kind of shit flies in Japan more often than in America so I don’t honestly blame her???) So she just kinda became jaded to it all, and would rather put up with domestic violence than try to “make it on her own”. She also warns Yuu that if he attempts to stop the sensei, that he might get himself killed. Fucking horrifying ugh. So then Yuuko reveals that she faked the bullying to get Yuu closer to her, and then reveal her misery to him so she could bring him down with her cause he seemed so happy to her even though they came from the same situation. Yuu forgives her because he loves her and tells her he’s going to get her away from pedophile sensei – but then of course they completely ruin it by having them run and bang at a church whyyyy come on. Most real victims of sexual assault don’t suddenly flip flop 180 and are like “yea I’m totally ok with banging some guy I just fell in love with”. 🤦♀️🤦♀️🤦♀️ The next day they find pedosensei at the school and Yuuko’s got a knife and I’m sitting here hoping she literally just cuts his dick off but Yuu stops her and tells her that she will never return to him and that he will take care of Yuuko from now on. One thing Yuuko asks why the fuck he abused her all these years and his disgusting reply is “dahr durr I just miss my imouto and i’m buttmad that she died in the great Otawa earthquake and I had to just take it out on someone and you were just RIGHT THERE Yuuko!” Acting as if Yuuko and Yuu didn’t also have the same fucking tragic event in their life like wow really? REALLY. The creepier part is the knife Yuuko had was the knife pedosensei gave to her in case she wants to fight back but she was so mind-broken she never did and just put up with the sexual assault and battery literally every night. (ノ# ﾟдﾟ)ﾉ ┫:･’∵:．┻┻:･’．:∵
So after this Yuu hugs Yuuko and is like ~its finally over~ meanwhile fucking pedo just walks off with absolutely NO PUNISHMENT FOR WHAT HE’S DONE WHAT THE FUCK JAPAN. (# ﾟДﾟ)凸 But fortunately the psychopath died in a fire and Yuuko ends up moving in with Yuu (despite her absent step dad finally coming out of the woodwork to be like oh no not my step-daughteroo! Like wow where the fuck were you when your son was raping her and beating her for 2 years?) Even after some time passes, Yuuko continues to have nightmare induced panic attacks where she relives all the assault and Yuu has to often help her calm down during all of these “attacks”. Her screaming gets complaints from neighbors but Yuu doesn’t give a crap, and instead suggests they get her some counseling/therapy but she refuses because she doesn’t want to discuss her trauma to a stranger. A couple days later Yuuko met Miki (before she was adopted as Mizuki) at the orphanage, and Miki was still in denial that she was now orphaned after her mother drove the family off a cliff. So anyway despite Yuuko having sexual assault trauma, it somehow turns 180 and she just wants to bang Yuu non stop and dumb horny teenagers not using contraception eventually leads to Yuuko getting knocked up. She finds out 2 months in and intends to have an abortion because they’re still students and only Yuu even has a part time job to support them. Yuu is upset and wants her to pop the baby out but she’s like yeaaa no thanks and then goes cray and whips out her knife to “cut the baby out” School Days style. 🙃 Yuu tackles her to get the knife out of her hands and ends up slicing his hands instead and then she’s like wah wah fine I’ll keep the baby and also drop out of school – what a great future for Yuuko.
If that isn’t bad enough one day on her way home from shopping, Yuuko sees Miki who runs towards her – just as a car is coming. Yuuko jumps to save Miki and ends up taking the hit while the hit & run driver just drives away. Also I guess because this is probably like 1996 or something so nobody really had a mobile phone so she couldn’t just dial emergency or call 911 for help and ended up crawling bloody into the church as she died in front of Miki. Just then Yuu finally comes in and finds Yuuko bloody and unconscious and has to tell Miki to call an adult to call the ambulance like WHY DID YOU HAVE TO WAIT SO LONG TO DO THIS OH MY GOD ?? Anyway Yuuko is buried beside her mother near the church and when Yuu goes to visit her grave, he runs into Miki and asks her to never forget about Yuuko before suddenly coming to the realization that Yuuko is never coming back and breaking down into tears. Yuu returns back to the city, bringing us back full circle to the start of the game and is talking with Yuuko’s ghost who is waiting for him at the church. She reveals that she’s not Yuuko’s ghost, but the ghost of Yuuko and Yuu’s unborn baby. ( ﾟдﾟ) But he’s like nah I’ma still call you Yuuko and I want you to know that I love you. Unfortunately the emotional scene was completely ruined because the entire animated movie showing Yuu and Yuuko parting was a giant black screen for me I ended up finding someone’s playthrough on youtube that probably didn’t use the shitty steam client. If I wasn’t already angered about the story itself and how unsatisfying and miserable the whole experience was, this was the cherry on top of this shit sandwich. ಠ_ಠ After watching that youtube video I am so confused on how Yuuko is able to actually touch physical people and objects despite being a ghost lol. But then she vanishes and leaves behind some feather blah what a crappy way to end the game.
I don’t even know where to start with my anger and disappointment of this. Starting with the broken movie bug (that I’ve seen other steam reviewers complaining about) that was never fixed to the uttery SHITTY NNL translation that I didn’t know to disable until I played the 2nd game.
The most offensive thing in this game is there’s at least 2 pedophiles, and 1 is an actual pedophile rapist that had no punishment for anything he’s done other than dying in a fire. (Like ok yea I know, divine punishment but holy shit he deserved to suffer in prison for the rest of his life tbh.) The 2nd thing that bothered me is how completely and utterly disconnected the first and 2nd game are. It’s like jumping from a fluffy basket of bunnies into a rusty pot of moldy fungus. The first game was just teenage romance/angst that wasn’t even particularly interesting but then you go into the 2nd game and it’s like HOLY MENTAL (and physical) ABUSE BATMAN. So much child neglect, child abuse and all the perpetrators get away with it until karma death hits them in the face. Other than Miyako and Kei, nobody feels like they got a happy ending and in fact all the latter tale couples just feel like they got shafted or they will get shafted given time. (ノ ﾟ溢゜)ﾉ ┫:･’∵:.┻┻:･’.:∵ The revelation in Yuuko’s route made me shut the game down for the night and pick it up the next day because that’s how freaking angry I was. Sigh well this is what I get when otome games are dying and I’m pretty much out of games to play so I turn to these eroges and here I am. On the topic of ero, I really wish this game had no porno in it. I mean I did play the all ages version, but the game didn’t particularly “hide” what was happening other than just “fading to black” before the actual ero scenes started.
While in some routes I guess it kinda made sense, in others it was just what? It almost felt abusive in a sense and was very off-putting. Out of all the characters though, I think Mizuki was definitely my favorite one. Despite the shit that happened to her and the things she’s seen as a child, she still managed to grow up and even help a grown ass adult get over and face his problems. Bonus points to Renji for putting up with all the shit around him, including all his mom’s sick milf jokes. ( ´_ゝ`) And finally the one thing I truly did like is how there were multiple couples rather than 1 guy changing his personality for “each heroine”. It made the story a bit more cohesive & connected, but sadly the story was too depressing and offputting to even enjoy that aspect.
I only have 1 more minori game I got on sale (Eden) to play and I can only hope it’s better than this but seeing some random cgs here & there I’m probably in for another depression tsunami.
Edit: Eden was so bad that after 9 hours I just uninstalled it. Extremely boring characters and yet another loli fetish character who “looks 12 but is like 100s years old”. Gross. I’m glad you went out of business minori good riddance lol.