Enju is kunoichi who’s been training for years and is now set to go to her first mission in Kyoto. Little did she know that she would be the center of a feudal lord murder conspiracy. Also before we get started please check out this useful Wikipedia article about Toyotomi Hideyoshi and the Sengoku era rule in Japan.
Goemon Ishikawa – When Goemon first meets Enju he pretends his name is Goro and that he’s just a local manwhore. On her mission to catch Goemon, after catching him, Enju gets framed for killing Toyotomi Hideyoshi. She gets thrown in jail and while there she talks to Goemon and he suggests they both escape. Not knowing what else to do, and not wanting to get caught or have her clan get in trouble, Enju decides to travel with Goemon pretending that he’s “captured” her. They also pretend to be husband & wife so people think they’re commoners, not ninjas. Eventually Gekkamaru catches up to them, and joins their party because he wanted to protect her and decides to ignore his villages’ orders to basically abandon her. They basically keep going on the run until they pick up some shota who turns out to be a murder spy but he fails to kill Enju because Kuroyuki saves her.
Turns out the 5 lords are fighting over who will rule in Hideyoshi’s place, and they’re basically using Enju’s head as the deciding factor. So then in a scuffle with Tokugawa’s ninjas, Enju is captured by the Fuma clan – and turns out that Goemon was their former leader, by the name of Fuma Kotaro. He then pretends to capture Enju and kill her friends and force all the other clans to pay money to the Fuma to get a hold of her. It’s obviously all an act to trick both his enemies and allies and he ends up poisoning all of them before rescuing Enju along with Chojiro’s help. They set off fireworks in the castle and then steal the money and throw it to all the citizens in Kyoto. In the good ending, Enju and Goemon go travelling together much to Gekkamaru’s dismay. 😂 As they leave the village Goemon is like “yea I know u love me ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)✨” and kisses her before asking her to be his wife for real this time. Bad End: Enju lets Yodo stab and kill her and out of despair Goemon then kills all the other lords by using a drug that makes them go insane and kill each other.
Hattori Hanzo – Hanzo is Ieyasu Tokugawa’s right hand ninja man and always protects him. After Enju is framed for Hideyoshi’s murder, Tokugawa asks Hanzo to find her and protect her because he doesn’t believe she did it. So anyway he finds her, saves her from one of the ninja clans and they begin running away together. She realizes it’s kill or get killed so she trains every day with him, but one day she manages to kill one of her attackers and it really scars her mentally because she’s never killed anyone before. It’s also revealed here that Enju’s mother died by suicide. Anyway this basically continues until one night they have to jump into the river and they then take refuge in a cave and half strip their clothes to dry. While their clothes dry they cuddle together to warm up. ლ(́◉◞౪◟◉‵ლ) She gets captured by Goemon temporarily until Hanzo finds her and hugs her. After this he’s a lot less cold towards her, and Enju then starts to realize what an ikeman he is when his hair is all down and wet from the rain. 😍 He also tells Enju about how when he was 16, her mother wanted him to take her and run away.
Since he was loyal to Tokugawa and busy at the time, he of course refused, but has some regrets wondering had he helped her, she may not have killed herself. So anyway meanwhile back at the ranch, Enju’s piece of shit dad is like “ok go kill her now” and all her friends are like WTF, but of course Kuroyuki and Gekkamaru ignore those orders and instead protect her and try to convince everyone else to not kill her either. In the meantime Gekkamaru asks Hanzo to continue protecting Enju in his place. Anyway Gekkamaru had one job but failed miserably because Enju has to fight all her friends anyway! 😂 But then the shit dad shows up to reveal that he’s the one who caused the war between the ninja clans, threatened Enju’s mom to make ninja steroids at the cost of Enju’s life and caused Enju’s mom to kill herself to end her suffering. Not only that, but he’s the reason Hideyoshi died, and he intentionally framed Enju because he wanted to continue having “conflict” or else if there’s no conflict, ninjas have no jobs!!! Enju is so enraged at hearing the truth, she kills her father and finally frees herself from everything.
Good End: Even though Enju will no longer be chased by anyone, she can’t really go back to the village with all the murders on her record now lol. Instead she continues travelling together with her new boyfriend Hanzo and they take rest in a quiet town far from Kyo. Just when I thought things were gonna be cute/romantic from here on, some ninja comes to secretly tell Hanzo that Tokugawa’s given him a new order: to kill Enju. ಠ_ಠ Turns out it was Kazaori, the dude who’s just jealous that senpai won’t notice him and attempts to kill both Hanzo and Enju because Hanzo refuses to kill Enju. After they defeat the Tokugawa ninjas, Hanzo tells her he wants her to live and tells her to go on without him. Enju refuses, and after arguing they make out by the moonlight. ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)✨ The next day though unfortunately they run into Tokugawa, but he accepts Enju’s torn off sash as “proof” that she died while she goes off to a hidden village to live away from everyone in peace. So then 6 months go by, Hanzo retires from his injuries, and then he stops suppressing the horny and the moment he sees Enju he immediately jumps and makes out with her. Turns out he’s been a repressed ninja all these years but now that he’s retired, there’s no holding back baby. ლ(́◉◞౪◟◉‵ლ) My only complaint is his final CG felt like it was cut off? It reminded me of those weird cut off CGs in Charade Maniacs. I also kinda wish we saw more of the type of Hanzo we saw in the end in the whole route. He was also such a bro in all the other routes, I felt like I didn’t truly appreciate him until I finished the game.
Momochi Chojiro – Chojiro is Enju’s cousin and Mr. Srs Ninja similar to Hanzo. In this route, they have Enju go undercover as a maid to Kiryu’s estate to find the notice from Goemon and make a copy of it (I don’t know how you make copies in this era but sure.) I thought he was gonna be a stiff like Hanzo, but that wasn’t the case at all and in fact the moment he noticed Enju wanted to hold hands in Kyoto, he actually accepted it and also accepted the handkerchief she bought for him. (●´ω｀●) Oda Nobunaga ordered the Iga clan destroyed, so basically Chojiro saw his whole family and village burn in front of his eyes so he has a whole mentality of “not getting close to anyone because the pain of losing them is worse.” So after the whole framing incident with Hideyoshi’s murder, the game kinda copypasta’s into Goemon’s route because now Enju is on the run with both Goemon and Gekkamaru. Chojiro meanwhile is back at the ranch listening to shit-dad Kando’s bulshittery and wishing he could see Enju again. So anyway the rest of the route was boring as sin because Chojiro was not there, and I felt like I was doing Goemon’s route all over again. ಠ_ಠ
And so finally after 2 hours, Chojiro shows up in his own route but unfortunately it’s obviously to do his mission to kill Enju. He doesn’t kill her with his weapon but attempts to finish her off by strangling her and she’s like uguu it’s ok if it’s you oniichan. Before she dies though, Chojiro hesitates and just then Kuroyuki shows up, rescues Enju and they both escape. Somehow through the strangulation Enju realized she’s in wuv with him uwu. ಠ_ಠ But yea none of this matters as once again, now we’re back to spending time with Gekkamaru & Kuroyuki and Chojiro is off moping about his ninja loyalty or something elsewhere. So then somehow Ennosuke, who sucks in like every route, manages to kill Gekkamaru, and Kyara manages to kill Kuroyuki who’s like a MUCH BETTER ninja than her for PLOT reasons. Then another ninja shows up, kills Kyara and tells Kasumi to finish off Enju but Enju just screams in horror and passes out. And then Chojiro remembered that it was his route, shows up, kills the random ninjas and finally starts his route with Enju. 😂 Chojiro and Enju bury their friends’ dead bodies and take an unconscious Kasumi with them. While Kasumi is sleeping she starts screaming in her sleep that if they don’t kill Enju, the whole village will be destroyed just like Iga.
Upon hearing this Enju runs out in guilt realizing that everyone was attacking her to protect the Koga village. She tries to kill herself via seppuku but Chojiro runs after her and stops her. He then admits that his memories of spending time in the past with Enju kept him from killing her because she was more important to him than his ninja loyalty. More ninjas from other clans come after them again, kill Kasumi and almost kill Chojiro, but his and Enju’s lives are saved by Hanzo who of course has been watching over Enju this whole time per Tokugawa’s orders. Even when they finally get some moments alone to progress their relationship, he just cockblocks himself and nothing actually happens. They start walking towards Fushimi castle with Hanzo watching them from afar and Chojiro recovering slowly from the poison in his body. But then they get to Fushimi castle and find out not only is kusogge Hideyoshi ALIVE, but it was all a plan for him to decide his next successor. So basically they fucking killed all of Enju’s friends as part of their “game” for him to decide his successor. (ノ# ﾟдﾟ)ﾉ ┫:･’∵:．┻┻:･’．:∵
And the reason he even had Enju and Chojiro come to the castle is because he wanted to watch them kill each other in person. 🤦 The night before the battle, Chojiro sneaks into her room and finally confesses his love to Enju before kissing her. (Finally!!!!) The next day they pretend to fight but instead end up escaping thanks to Goemon who was MIA and Kuroyuki who didn’t actually die. And so they run away and decide to pretend to be husband and wife so nobody will suspect them. It’s like why didn’t they do this in the first place? And why would they not continue to chase them if they just ran away like before? This was so anticlimatic, not to mention the fact that apparently there was a heavy makeout scene with absolutely no CG to show for it. ಠ_ಠ In the bad end they kill each other and die together.
Kuroyuki – Kuroyuki was adopted by Kando when he was a baby and basically since at the time Enju was a baby, they were basically raised like siblings. His actual brother is Gekkamaru who was 3 years old at the time and was adopted along with him. Kuroyuki had left the village when he was 8 and hadn’t seen Enju for 8 years up until now. After Enju is framed, the one to save her from prison is Kuroyuki this time and asks him to run away with him after explaining that Koga and her father abandoned her. When they are surrounded by ninjas sent to hunt them down, Kuroyuki unleashes his special jutsu where he kills “shadows” of people which in turn kills the person it belongs to. Aka he has something similar to a sharingan if you’ve ever seen Naruto. After this he confesses to Enju that he’s been in love with her all these past 8 years and reconfirmed it when he saw her again. After they are attacked by ninjas again, Enju takes a hit of their poison needles to protect Kuroyuki and nearly dies. He manages to save her by sucking the poison out of her body with his mouth somehow (???) and then running off thanks to Goemon’s smoke bomb. The more time he spends with Enju, the less he can hold back his feelings of both YAN and DERE for her. That’s right, Kuroyuki is batshit yandere for Enju to the level of “I really dgaf about everyone else as long as you’re alive and if you’re not alive I have nothing to live for.” (Kinda reminds me of Takato from Clock Zero). Anyway while I normally am not a fan of yandere, this type is actually the kind I make an exception for. ლ(́◉◞౪◟◉‵ლ)
So then it’s revealed that everything was one giant illusion by Kuroyuki because he’s a skilled illusionist ninja. He’s basically isolated Enju the whole time so that she would only rely on him, even going as far as lying to her saying everyone is after her (though it was KINDA true he just…exaggerated.)😂😂😱 😱 And so once everyone catches up to Enju and realizes all of this, the news makes it to her father Kando, who this time wants Kuroyuki dead – rather than his daughter since that was all a lie too. However, him abandoning Enju was not a lie and in fact once Enju learn that her father wants nothing to do with her, she decides she will find Hideyoshi’s true killer – aka the guy who gave Kuroyuki orders to kill him. Meanwhile Hanzo reveals that the genjutsu comes with a price – you lose your memories and your sense of self. So because of this when Kuroyuki left the village at age 8 to train with the Kagas, he started to forget all his memories about everyone and the only one that remained inside him was Enju. (´；д；`)
While training, he was forced to sit through tons of horrifying illusions that broke him mentally for years. He also revealed he didn’t intend to frame her for the murder, as he didn’t realize she was in the other room when he killed Hideyoshi. But then we get another revelation from Kando that apparently the reason Kuroyuki even took up the painful training is because he wanted to become strong for Enju – he kinda forgot this little detail from his memory loss. (ヽ´ω`) It’s also revealed again that Kando was the one who set up the entire murder of Hideyoshi in order to keep wars going for ninjas to have work. Anyway Enju tells daddy-o that she’s done with his shit and tells Kuroyuki to take her away. Good End: Kando gets arrested for his douchery, Enju and Kuroyuki go to live with Tokugawa under Hanzo’s watch, we don’t get a kiss CG and instead get multiple fade to black kiss scenes. ｶﾞｸｯ (‘､3_ヽ)_ Bad End: Enju gets killed by Kando and before she dies Kuroyuki shoes her an illusion of everything being fine and happy.
Gekkamaru – Gekkamaru is Kuroyuki’s older brother and after Kuroyuki went off to train, Gekkamaru was the one who spent time protecting Enju. Because of his whole I WILL PROTECT you schtik + Hatano Wataru’s voice though, all I could see/hear was Rindo from Dance with the Devils. 😂😂When they were little they ran into some bandits in the mountains who were going to kill them but Gekkamaru ended up protecting them and killing them instead. It was the first time he had ever killed anyone to protect Enju and he did it because Enju jumped to protect him first. Ennosuke comes to kill Enju and Gekkamaru ends up killing him and then crying about it while Enju starts to feel guilty about everything as usual. Hanzo shows up and tells her that she has to either live or die, not be half assed about one or the other. Hanzo also tells them to keep running for 3 months while Tokugawa investigates on who did the murder. Eventually they run into Kuroyuki who obviously only cares about Enju, so he joins them in my headcannoned 3P route. ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)✨
They join a travelling circus temporarily and offer to help them do chores in exchange for a place to stay. Unfortunately he buggers off somewhere and instead, one of the troupe girls Suzuna asks Enju to help set her up with Gekkamaru cause she’s developed a crush on him. Enju agrees and in the meantime Kuroyuki offers to take her away instead ლ(́◉◞౪◟◉‵ლ) but since this is Gekkamaru’s route of course it won’t happen haha. Instead cocblock Kyara shows up to kill Enju and take revenge for Ennosuke. She gets hurt by the other ninjas that come too and while she’s resting, Gekkamaru admits to Enju indirectly that he’s unlocked the horny and now there’s no going back but also NOO BUT I’M YOUR SERVANTAAAAA. Suzuna confesses her feelings but of course Gekkamaru rejects them. Kyara had given up on killing Enju, however the Zatoshu ninjas use their jutsu to basically make her a fighting puppet to attack Enju and co once more. Fortunately they kill the leader and free Kyara, but because of the way their jutsu works, she was already dead before they even got to her. (´・ω・｀) So she basically says her final words before dying completely. Kuroyuki goes off to do his own research and meanwhile Enju and Gekkamaru get cozy at a nearby inn where she tries to help him get over a cold and instead ends up further making him horny. ლ(́◉◞౪◟◉‵ლ)
Unfortunately Goemon shows up to cockblock and kidnap her shortly after. Following a difficult fight with Chojiro, they manage to escape with bad wounds to Gekkamaru that Enju heals with herbs after bringing him to a cave (and warming him up with her body 💕). Chojiro catches up to them, but then Gekkamaru goes into his BERSERK PROTECTOR MODE and rage attacks him….until Chojiro is shot by more rando ninjas. Like wtf when did ANYONE have a gun in this game!? So then Chojiro’s well if I’m gonna die anyway I may as well kill you randos with me and so with that out of the way, Gekkamaru and Enju continue their running away. They finally reach the runaway ninja village and that’s where Enju confirms her feelings of love for Gekkamaru. Unfortunately she then finds out from the hidden village chief that her father was the one who killed Gekkamaru’s parents be cause they didn’t want to merge with the Kogas. Enju’s mother Kagari tried to stop him, but Kando refused to listen and killed them himself. When Enju tells Gekkamaru all of this, she starts crying and blaming herself and so he hugs her saying he will share the pain with her. Unfortunately, despite wanting him to kiss her, Gekkamaru stops right before and lets her go.
That night Kasumi, who had come to the village claiming she’s on their side, actually betrays Enju and takes her yandere pill and starts going cray and attacking again. Kasumi also reveals that the “I MUST PROTECT” mode is a jutsu that Enju’s mom put on Gekkamaru when he was young so he would always protect her. Kasumi fails to kill Enju in time, and the poison she drank basically kills her. Just then Gekkamaru shows up, and feeling bad about him being her forced protector, Enju says “Break Free!” which breaks the spell and he is no longer forced to protect her. Gekkamaru goes then into MUST KILL ENJU mode because as it turns out, he was under ANOTHER spell put on by his mother to actually kill Enju as revenge for Kando killing her. Kagari had then used a spell on top of it to change “kill” to “protect” but now that Enju removed the “protect” part only KILL is left. Fortunately Kuroyuki and Hanzo are both on Enju’s side so they help rescue her from Gekkamaru’s murderous rampage. Unfortunately they end up fighting him anyway and wanting to free him, Enju offers herself to be killed by him and tells him she loves him. Gekkamaru has an inner battle with himself not wanting to kill her so to get a hold of himself he STABS HIMSELF and then Hanzo swoops in and declares Enju the winner. !? ( ﾟдﾟ) Also if one of the ways to break the spell was for Enju to find a boyfriend, does that mean Gekkamaru goes on a murder rampage at the end of all the other routes? 😂
Enju is taken to Fushimi castle where she finds out of course that Hideyoshi is alive and it was all a bullshit contest to declare the next guardian for his heir. Also for some reason in this route, Hideyoshi killed his body double himself rather than it being Kuroyuki sent to do it. ಠ_ಠ At least they kept the consistency that it was a joint effort between him Kando I guess!? He also reveals that Hanzo was just following her to be a “witness” and stop any problems but little did he know that Hanzo was against this and actually saved Gekkamaru. To add salt to the wound this kusoGGE kept a box of locks of hair from all of Enju’s dead friends. ಠ_ಠ Enju having heard enough of his bullshit tells him to STFU, runs into his room and takes his sword to attack him. She ends up fighting Kando too but when she’s nearly defeated, Gekkamaru comes to help. They both kill Kando and threaten GGE saying they will “come at him one day” but then run off. Good End: The GGE is so stressed in fear of murder he dies from it lol. Maeda takes over but he’s old too so Tokugawa starts making plans to be the next leader. He recruits Enju and Gekkamaru to join the Tokugawa ninjas but Enju and Gekkamaru refuse saying they just want to live the rest of their days as commoners in peace. Their former village meanwhile is in chaos since their leader is dead and they have to completely reorganize everything. This is also why when Hideyoshi asked the village to go kill Enju and Gekkamaru nobody bothered going cause they had no set ninjas to do the mission. Anyway Gekkamaru & Enju now both in love live peacefully ever after. Oh Kuroyuki is still alive somewhere probably crying over being NTRed yet again (and also the fact that Gekka got a kiss CG while he didn’t orz) (´；д；`) Bad End: Gekkamaru dies in Enju’s arms after stabbing himself and Enju can’t live without him so she follows.
So while I did enjoy this game it’s just NO NINKOI. It didn’t help that the game took place in the same Sengoku period and Toriumi and Shimono were both LI voices 🤣🤣 so I kept comparing the two games. That said, I still enjoyed it and I’m glad to have gotten it during Steam’s sale.
Honestly my favorite thing about the game was the heroine Enju. She is SO GREAT and when she gets mad she doesn’t just cry and take shit, she takes revenge! Despite the odds, she trains hard and tries to get stronger even when all her friends around her are dropping dead. So if anything, the heroine really made this game much better than I expected initially. I also really liked how they had her sprite be standing next to the other characters’ sprites which made her seem like she’s part of the action rather than 3rd person camera.
The love interests/routes were generally cute, with Kuroyuki being my favorite, then Gekkamaru, Hanzo and Goemon. Unfortunately Chojiro was just uninteresting to me from start to finish and he wasn’t even present in half of his route which made me not really care about him much as a character. (ヽ´ω`)
I only have a couple complaints. Since I played the english translated version, overfall the localization was fine but there were 2 things that bugged me. They translated 遊び人 as LIBERTINE which is so weird to me so I just call him a manwhore xD. The other thing they translated “embarassed” as “shy” a lot. So the heroine would be like “I felt shy” rather than “I felt embarassed” so that would really stick out like a sore thumb during romantic scenes. There was a lot of copy pasta between routes. The story was pretty much the same in all of them, and in some parts even though I definitely had seen this dialogue before, the game wouldn’t let me skip it as “read” for some reason so I had to force skip through it. There was definitely some silly interactions between the side cast & Hanzo that I wish we had seen more of. Too much time was spent on copy pasta plot points that we had seen in all the other routes and I couldn’t wait to “get past it” so I could finally see “the new things in the route I am now on.” The font on the Steam port was some kind of shitty system serif font and apparently it wasn’t that bad on the Switch version so I’m not sure what happened there. Also I don’t know why but MY BEST BOY (Kuroyuki) GOT NO KISS CG WHYYYYY THOOOO (ノ# ﾟдﾟ)ﾉ ┫:･’∵:．┻┻:･’．:∵ He’s literally the only one who didn’t!!! Why!??!😠😠
Regardless though, I still enjoyed the game for the heroine and the character interactions. Ultimately though, if I had to pick between this and NinKoi I’d pick NinKoi in a heartbeat…and now that every game is ported into 1 on the Switch version, I recommend all fans of Nightshade give that one a look if you haven’t already! As usual thanks to thos who dropped by my stream to chat while I was playing. ヾ(≧▽≦)ﾉ