Do you like horny demons?
The Ditzy Demons Are in Love With Me is the latest title published and localized by Sekai Project/Denpasoft. Many developers and publishers have taken advantage of the recent policy changes at Valve over sexual/18+ content on Steam, and Sekai Project/Denpasoft is no exception. They have released the all-ages version and an 18+ patch as a DLC for this title. Two other major titles, Sabbat of the Witch and Loca-Love My Cute Roommate, were also released on the same day and, as such, these three releases will be compared to one another. Today, we'll specifically be taking a look at The Ditzy Demons Are in Love With Me, also referred to as KoiKuma.
When I first heard of KoiKuma, I was told it was "kinda a horny game". Let's just say they were not far from the mark. To be honest, I was not quite sure what to expect. The title itself seemed like a pretty clear indication of things to come, but we can't always judge a book by its cover. I will preface this by saying I'm not into nukige and really look for VNs with more substance. Luckily, the VN isn't just a pure nukige and is also more of a charage.
KoiKuma centers around our protagonist, Ren Fujima, a run-of-the-mill high school adolescent who lives with his stepsister, Emiri Fujima, at his childhood friend's house. Needless to say, they live a fairly normal life together. However, after a heated argument between his childhood friend, Riria Kiritani, and her mother, Reika Kiritani, who also happens to be the principal of their school, ends up getting them all kicked out of the house and sent packing, they are sent to the school's special dormitory that's being used to rehabilitate problem children.
As the story continues, we are introduced to our main heroines. The classic student council president, Miyabi Aoi, who also happens to be a model and super popular in the school. The sweet and adorable kouhai character, Arle Arisegawa, who not only adores the protagonist but also loves animals. Last but not least, Yuu Ayasaki, the mysterious transfer student. These characters archetypes are nothing new to the scene, and by now you're probably scratching your head as to how these characters are even remotely related to the title. After all, is called ditzy demons and all. So what gives?
The story starts to really pick up once you've met all of the heroines and have learned that you're all moving in together. Due to the carefree nature of the dorm supervisor, our protagonist finds himself as her assistant because he really needs a place to stay. His primary job is to
sleep with all of them help rehabilitate the heroines so that they become normal members of society. However, you quickly learn that not everything is as it seems to be. I mean, all of the heroines were sent there for one reason or another. Not to mention, all of them are actually demons... Or well, at least some sort of mythical being.
Your stepsister, Emiri, happens to be an angel. That childhood friend of yours, Riria, just so happens to be a succubus. Miyabi, the perfect student council president, is a witch. So what about that token kouhai character? Well, Arle is a mummy. And Yuu, the mysterious transfer student, is a yuki-onna. At the very least, this matches one part of our title and covers the demons part. Now, what about the ditzy part, you may ask?
Did I mention this game is lewd? If I didn't, well, it is. As one of my friends would say: "Wow! It's right there!!!" Just minutes into KoiKuma and you get your first H-scene. Through the common route, you get six distinct H-scenes before you even get to select a character route. One scene with each of the characters and one common harem H-scene. All of these scenes happen due to your duties to help rehabilitate the heroines. Oh, did I forget to mention their quirks?
It just so happens that each of the heroines has a major flaw or issue. Emiri, your angel stepsister, is a huge brocon. Riria, your childhood friend, is a succubus that can't handle anything even slightly lewd. Miyabi, the student council president, and witch, is trying to make a love potion in order to solve fertility problems, but isn't very book smart. Arle has a problem with clothing and doesn't like wearing them. (Not sure this is a problem, really...) Lastly, Yuu, our yuki-onna, hates the cold. So, how are you, as an ordinary human, supposed to solve their issues? The age-old adage of
giving them "the D" helping them through their troubles, of course. Okay, there might be a bit of the former too.
Whether you decide on the all-ages or the 18+ version of the game, the main thing going for this visual novel is its characters. Sure, some of the archetypes are overused and the premise is a bit over the top, but the characters are still likable and distinct from one another. Character relationships and interactions are important and add to the allure of KoiKuma. Although the characters are all really lewd and seem to constantly yearn for your member, you actually have interactions with them outside of those scenes that are genuinely interesting. I know, it sounds far-fetched considering this genre, but it’s true. The overall feeling from the characters and the story is that of lighthearted comedy, which is honestly a good break from heavier reads in the industry and the hustle and bustle of daily life.
The soundscape in The Ditzy Demons Are in Love With Me is nothing spectacular, but the usage of BGM and other sound effects is effective. Not to say it isn't good, but it certainly isn't anything to write home about when it comes to music. Most of the BGM is appropriate to the scene and gets a pass, though. There wasn't much that really jumps out at you either in a positive or negative way, which might be a bit of a blessing in disguise.
Art and the character designs are another strength of KoiKuma, with the art being drawn by Sayori. Sayori and her circle, NEKO WORKs, is best known for their NekoPara series, which has multiple releases on Steam and consoles. Her much-loved artwork really suits this story because it further adds to the lighthearted atmosphere of the KoiKuma and certainly highlights some plot.
Systems-wise, the engine used for KoiKuma is your typical VN engine with some intuitive features like a quick sidebar for saving and loading. All you have to do is double-click on a slot to save and drag out a saved file slot to load it. Some other interesting features include the Climax Counter, just in case you want to immerse yourself in the full experience.
Going back to the story, the plot itself may be a bit overblown, but the VN is an enjoyable read nonetheless. Although it's littered with H-scenes, sexual connotations, and interesting plot points, the translation and editing really carry the VN through. For comedies, it's usually hard to localize certain concepts and jokes that won't come off as well in a more literal translation. I'm happy to say that this particular release takes some of those jokes and liberally localizes them to something more recognizable, while still keeping the spirit of the Japanese writing. Some of these become memes, while other lines come off as different references that are more recognizable for Western audiences. I would safely say the localization was a success in this case and really made for an enjoyable read.
To sum it all up, The Ditzy Demons Are in Love With Me is an interesting read with likable characters, a lighthearted atmosphere and story, and superb art courtesy of Sayori. The story itself is certainly interesting and the characters, although somewhat cliche, are still unique and help build the overall enjoyable tone of the game. Certainly, the 18+ version of KoiKuma has enough H-scenes to be a nukige, but in my eyes, the characters shine enough to be noted as a charage and nukige hybrid. With that said, this VN might not be suitable for every reader. If you're not into H-content or sexual jokes, this probably isn't the right fit for you even with the all-ages version. However, if you're looking for a lighthearted read with likable characters, good art, and an interesting premise, (with a bonus dose of plot), then this is a great choice. If you're wondering how the story goes down and how Ren solves the heroine's problems
with his D. Well, you'll have to pick up a copy to find out.
Verdict: You will like horny demons.
This review was written using a review key provided by Sekai Project.