Saturday, October 31, 2015

Halloween Demo Impression: euphoria

euphoria Demo Impression

                I’d just started college when the Saw series became a Halloween staple and looking back on it, one of the first things I think of is how the guys at the dorm always mixed in those movies into the Halloween Night Marathon we’d have playing from evening till some point after midnight (usually by the time all the pizza, candy and booze took their effect). I’m bringing this up because we’ll be wrapping up this year’s Halloween with a look at what some would consider the eroge equivalent, and Mangagamer’s upcoming acquisition from Clock Up come November 27, 2015: euphoria.

Pros: Interesting plot set up, the characters (for the most part) are pretty interesting, good artwork, very good music and voice acting.
Cons: Not sure if Rika’s character is supposed to be annoying or not and whether that’s a good thing either way, the demo ends.
WTF?!: Wonder how many guys would be thinking that in this position…

                The plot of euphoria begins with our protagonist, Keisuke Takatou, waking up to find himself and six women, all of whom he’s at least acquainted with, trapped in a strange white room. A mechanical voice then informs them that the reason for their entrapment is to participate in a game that is also their only hopes of getting out. The game’s rules are:

As outrageous as the rules sound, the group is soon given a demonstration of what happens to those who refuse to participate and makes it clear participation is the only way to make it out alive. 

                I admit while this game’s plot premise sounds (and if you browse euphoria’s very NSFW web page, looks) like it’s just there in order to justify its extreme H content (plus the demo ends on two samples of it per chosen heroine) but the story content of this demo does hint at what could be some interesting story to come. For instance, you can tell very quickly that there’s something slightly off about Keisuke (even before it’s brought to light) in how strangely analytical his narration comes across and it leaves you wondering just how the unlocking events will affect him as the story goes on, and the mystery of the game itself from its purpose to who’s behind it also makes for a plot thread you want to follow. I have heard there’s significantly more story from here so hopefully they’ll be enjoyable, plus I have a couple theories already and only time will tell how close those guesses are…

                Speaking of which, the other characters (click here for profiles) they’re mostly interesting as the demo content does a good job establishing their personalities based on their varying reactions to what the game entails. There’s typical reactions like with Kanae and Rika, an attempt at rationality from Aoi, but the most interesting are the unusual ones from Rinne’s seeming apathy towards the game’s rules and Nemu’s amusement with it all. It gets you interested in seeing how this could factor into their route’s plots and the character reveals and development that will occur. About the only flaw here is why I just said “mostly”, basically the one heroine that’s hard to get interested in is Rika. The reason for this is while her reaction to the game’s events is typical it’s overplayed to the point of making the character annoying, the equivalent of that one annoying character in the horror movie you’re just waiting to see panic and run away from group and into the waiting jaws/claws/knife/chainsaw of the monster/killer. The thing is I don’t know if Rika’s character is supposed to be annoying or not; whether this is a character we’re supposed to feel sorry for and it’s just not written right or a character I’m supposed to root for bad things to happen to. The full game will probably better establish this though I’m kind of leaning towards the latter since there’s some scenes of Nemu trolling Rika while she’s fretting over the prospect of participating in the game and they really do make for a good chuckle.

                In the area of presentation, euphoria looks to do really well. The visuals shown in the demo have been good from the background CG with some good detail to the facility, to the character models, to the manga-esque artwork for the choice of heroines screen, to the “very detailed” CG…I’ll explain later. In the sound department the demo shows we can expect good on both fronts. The music does a good job establishing the atmosphere, particularly in making the facility the characters are trapped in feel unsettling. The voice acting is all good, with the voice actresses doing a good job portraying the emotions of their characters. It also helps that we have some really good voice actresses to listen to including Ringo Aoba as Nemu, who some of you may recognize as Qoo from the Osadai games and Kanade from Deardrops, Mei Misono as Aoi, who some of you may know as Momoka from Eroge! as well as Nellis and Nadine from the Kyonyuu Fantasy series, and (despite my problems with the character so far) Yukina Fujimori aka Konoha as Rika who many of you probably recognize as Nene from Eroge!, Ruseria and Elicia from the Kyonyuu Fantasy series and Konomi from Princess Evangile.
                As for the ero scenes, they’re good though I should remind you that since this is considered the eroge answer to Saw (though to be honest I’m more reminded of the Zero Escape series) expect scenes of the hardcore variety and what you see in this demo are just the tip of the iceberg. There is an option in the game to make some of the more “nastier stuff” like scat and gore not show up, but you’ll still need to read about it.

In Conclusion:
                The demo for euphoria does a good job showing that we’ll probably have something to be thankful for the day after this Thanksgiving. From its interesting plot premise and characters to the excellent artwork, music and voice acting, I get the feeling we won’t be disappointed. A shame this game couldn’t make it for Halloween though as according to this interesting little interview witheuphoria’s Chief Graphics Designer, we may have a zombie in the game.

                And with that we bring another series of Halloween Reviews to a close. My apologies if it seems a bit scanty this year as I did have a really good import game planned to review go along with this demo impression and just got to the True Route last weekend…and then a nasty head cold came along and each day up till today made my head feel something in common with the many pumpkins being carved into jack-o’-lanterns. Hopefully I’ll have more to offer next year, but for now a very Happy Halloween to you all!!


  1. Hi BookwormOtaku. Looks like we have a new Kansen game. It's called 'Kansen: Clipping Chronicles' and I believe it takes place at the same time as Kansen 5. If you can make a review about it I'd really appreciate it. Keep up the good job in the blog!

    1. I'm aware of it but the problem is I can't find it on any of the import sites I use.

  2. Hey Bookworm, relatively long time fan though I discovered you quite by accident after the Kyonyuu Fantasy two episode hentai exploded (no pun intended) onto the scene. I immediately was curious to learn Japanese for the sole purpose of being able to play these games, however I was also in college and dirt poor at the time...that has changed, at least partially these days and I'm deciding to get back into it, however, if I may there are a few things I would LOVE to pick your brain about in regards to these games so, if you don't mind could I rattle off some questions to you? Give me a reply back if you can, any help would be greatly appreciated.

    1. I mainly just need to know is there anywhere online to still get the games (any and all of them) as a download or a purchase? I checked AmiAmi and from what I can see all of the games themselves were "sold out" or on back order, and while in the case of the Gaiden games I'm happy to wait for back-order it seems like the first game is just no longer being made. Over the last few days I've looked for downloads and found two different demos for the first game but the keyword there is, first question first, do you know of a place that still sells the games in their DVD format? Or any place that allows for downloads of the ENTIRE game? Thanks very much for the reply!

    2. It's been a while since I've bought anything from them but if you don't mind digital copies then you can buy the games from DMM here:

    3. Okay, excellent...and just for the sake of my own assurances, these are the full games and they just come in as downloads right? Get them, download them, install them, play right? No DVD required, etc, etc.

    4. Yes, they are the full games. May take a little while to download depending on your internet connection. Also there is DRM for it.

    5. Okay, this one is a bit embarrassing, but hopefully it will be the last question I have to ask...I feel like I'm becoming a bother, but tell me if I have these in the correct order by way of game series, its:,,, those three right? In that order?

      And these can be run on a laptop right? Not as in digital copies used only for phones, etc.?

      Hopefully that will be all, thank you SO much for the help!

  3. To answer your questions:
    1) Yes that's the right order for the main trilogy. I would recommend playing KF2 before you play Gaiden 2 (that's the third game you linked) mainly because Gaiden 2 references some things from KF2, especially regarding two important characters. Here's the link to KF2:

    2) Yes, these games run fine on a laptop, my personal computer is a laptop...a six year old laptop.

    1. Thank you SO much for all the help, the list of everything with the order the games go in is very helpful, I'd been having trouble figuring out what was what, I knew which one was first, but beyond that was kind of confused. And, forgive me but I have one more thing to ask then hopefully I'll be out of your hair...the site mentions the OS systems that will run laptop is about that old as well, but it runs off Windows 8 (I upgraded) do you know if the games will still run or will I have to downgrade back to 7?

    2. I haven't heard of any problems with Windows 8, but then again I'm still using 7 so I can't help you on that front.

      Also just to let you know, Kyonyuu Fantasy 2 if is a remake of 2 that tells the story differently and features new characters. I haven't finished it yet so I recommend just going with the original for now, plus Gaiden 2 specifically references events from the original anyway (2 if wasn't out at the time)

  4. Hey Bookworm...its me can imagine me coming into the room with my head hanging low if you want...I finally purchased and downloaded the first was no trouble of course, didn't even take that long, and I was able to pull up the Install Wizard with ease, though that didn't seem to do anything, so then I ran it as the administrator, that seemed to work better, but I still didn't get anything from it. Then, I unzipped the file, broke down every piece of it, and when I tried to run the installer that way, I get an EXE.error you maybe know what it is I'm doing wrong, or what I need to be doing?

    Apologies for bothering yet again!