Release Date: Jun 28, 2018
Edited by KnightAvenger
Evenicle is the third game by Alicesoft that was brought over to the west by MangaGamer, the first two (or three, if counting the games separately) being Rance games. This is, as is usual for Alicesoft, a JRPG first and a visual novel second, with ero scenes being scattered throughout the game itself. More on that later.
The game starts off with Asterisk, the protagonist, having a dream and then waking up on a beach, having swum to the mainland all the way from his remote island. After meeting with some characters that will be seen later on, the player is given freedom to control the character on an overworld map. It is a game with a proper and huge overworld which is not often seen in eroge, barring RPG Maker games that often don’t have that large or greatly designed overworld, but this game does not use that engine.
Gameplay consists of usual JRPG things, turn-based combat, exploring things on the overworld, buying new equipment in towns, earning experience and leveling up, having random battles, etc. But there are some notable differences between this game and most other JRPGs, with each of the aforementioned mechanics being slightly modified. For example, there is no mana or energy bar. Instead, there are points that characters gain separately from each other each time they get a turn in the battle. Then, once you acquire enough of those points on any of the characters, you can have them use a special ability, which, depending on the level of the character, they might have a lot of. The random encounters are random, but due to how they function, the player can manipulate the game into not having many random encounters. Mainly due to there being a bar in the upper left corner of the screen that fills up more the more you walk around and when it is fully filled, it starts flashing the word “Danger.” You can still walk when it starts doing that and you won’t necessarily go into combat, but the chances are high that any step you take could be the one that starts the combat. Additionally, the equipment works in such a way that there are only 3 slots for equipment, 1 each for weapon, armor and item. New equipment is always bought in the shops in towns, but while adventuring and fighting random monsters, you might get new versions of your already owned weapons in the form of +1, +2, +3, etc. After gaining enough experience, leveling up is done by going to a town and visiting a leveling place, which is not unusual for Rance games.
Indeed, this game is a lot like Rance in some aspects. The protagonist is like a discount Rance, what with his pervines but lack of wanting to rape women, instead choosing to marry all the women he sleeps due to how the world works in this game. The characters are so similar that there was even a never translated version of the game released in Japan as promotional stuff, with the main character literally just being replaced by Rance. It was the exact same game in every other regard, just with having Rance there instead of Asterisk. But, aside from just the main character, the world building is also very similar, as well as the characterization and writing for characters besides Aster. I will not go too much into it, but if you like world building, NPCs and such that is present in Rance games, then you will definitely like this as well.
Moving on to graphics, they are gorgeous, for the most part. The character designs as pretty good on their own, the CGs are always cool looking, and while quite often the characters in CGs can have weird anatomy, it’s not too noticeable or a big issue. There is an issue, however, when it comes to erotic scenes. The vaginas almost always look inflated, unnaturally plump, which is much less noticeable in the original Japanese version of the game since those bits are censored. That may not be an issue for everyone, but it just feels weird. At least, that is an issue when it comes to mainstream girls, the wives, but it does not apply to all the girls that Aster has sex with due to there being three artists in total. Those three different artists worked on the game, doing CGs and such for different characters, separately.
Another issue I have with the erotic scenes is the number of them that are vanilla, most of the time. While there are some scenes that may have some fetish fuel, they are much more often just basic sex, and while the excellent voice acting makes that bearable, it would have been better to have more scenes that would go for some fetish instead. There are a lot of sex scenes in this game.
Just like with previous Rance games, there is rape in this game. That is not unusual for either Alicesoft games specifically or hentai in general, but if you don’t like that kind of thing, then this is a warning. They are mandatory sex scenes, so the most you can do is skip through them or not play the game.
As I mentioned previously, the game has an excellent voice cast and voice acting is superb. Everyone except Aster is voiced and they all have excellent performances, be it an ero scene or otherwise. Of course, while the voice acting by females is great outside of ero scenes, they also make the many vanilla scenes easier to go through.
Music is okay but nothing special. While there are technically a lot of songs, there are only a few that dominate the majority of the game, so it feels kinda boring and there aren’t nearly as many songs as there technically are in the soundtrack. Still, they all do a decent job at being appropriate for whatever atmosphere the current scene has going on so at least it’s not bad either, just not great.
In conclusion, if you like Rance games and want more similar kind of games, don’t mind rape scenes (which some could argue are the core of Rance games) and want to play a JRPG that is also pretty good in terms of gameplay, then I definitely recommend getting this! However, you should probably wait until it’s on sale, since the full price is still $44.95 (USD) on MangaGamer.
- Excellent voice acting
- Gorgeous looking character designs and CGs
- Writing is good, Rance-like
- Has great JRPG gameplay
- Possibly too many, mostly vanilla ero scenes
Faris gives Evenicle a Drastik Measure of 9.1 out of 10 (91)