Arithmetic’s newest game might be for people who don’t like Arithmetic’s usually writing style Let’s just get this out of the way…
Those of you who have come to my site for a while might remember THE GREAT ARITHMETIC RAGE of 2015 that spilled into 2016. To say I have had an on-going falling out is an understatement. I’ve openly spouted my opinions about themes that I have seen repeated in their games that I personally do not like (and, it’s my site, I can opinion all I want).
So, when I received an email from them asking if I would be willing to review their newest game release on my site, it… was awkward. They know it was awkward. They also know that I’m going to give an honest opinion and they were very forth coming with that is what they want from me.
I was given 60 tickets, a handful of dolce raising items, as well as gacha tickets and a route switch item. I am telling you all this because it’s really important to be truthful about what I was given in exchange to review the game.
I went into this with as much of an open mind as I could despite all that I have said and experienced. Please, please don’t let this be what I’m expecting. Please…
Spoiler Alert: It wasn’t.
Story – The Main Character goes on a Reality TV show in America to secure $100,000 to get her family out of debt.
“But, Vehura,” you say, “Don’t you mean to find ~love~.” No, I don’t. The thing is the show’s producer, Kouki, has found the show to be hitting a snag. The basic premise is, the leading lady “marries” three men, dates them for three months, and, at the end of that time, if one of the men actually falls in love with her, he proposes for realsies~
Every year the show has been on, there has always been a proposal at the end and Kouki finds that boring af. He wants to shake things up. This year, the leading lady is to go home empty handed. No proposal, just 100,000 of the crispest United States Dollars in her bank account.
Only problem… they’re all hot.
Even the camera guy.. who is a prince… *shrug*
But with the possibility of securing her family financially so she can pursue her dream of being a fashion designer (the apparently TOP TIER of woman jobs), she’s willing to do whatever to get this over with.
Of course, we have to worry about that pesky love getting in the way…
Main Character – Sassy when the story calls for it
This MC is something else. I’m used to Arithmetic’s MC’s being bland women who don’t stand up for themselves, are shy to all hell, and who let the guys walk alll over her and get dragged into their pace. They get put into sexual situations when they aren’t ready. I don’t know about you all, but even knowing the intricacies of why they say “no” and “stop” (embarrassment… usually… *cough*), I still find myself turned off when they come up in otome games when intimacy comes into play.
The MC in Cinderella TV is a bit inconsistent but still the best MC I have seen from Arithmetic.
I played Yuma’s route first and she was sarcastic, quick witted, honest about her feelings, and able to voice that she wanted to be intimate.
In Leon’s route however, she’s a little more hesitant. It’s almost like she can hardly deal with how intense and arrogant Leon is. Once she acknowledges her feeling though, she becomes the MC I liked in Yuma’s route, for the most part.
While this MC does her best to go with the production flow, she’s not afraid to put her foot down when she thinks things might be getting out of line. She tells people no. When there is a weird interaction when she’s alone with Hubert, she’s both on high alert and somewhat low-key turned on by what he’s implying.
But, she still has her insecurities. While wanting to be a designer herself, she still feels like she’s not ready to be in a professional setting. She recognizes that she sometimes has a hard time saying what she really feels when it comes to love.
Writing – Where the Snag Usual Occurs
The issue I have had in the past with Arithmetic has mostly to do with their writing. The main characters don’t seem to do much, there are a few of the men who are overly sexually aggressive to the point of assaulting the MC.
I feel like this is the game that they tried to do something different. As I said before, the MC is outspoken about the things that she doesn’t like that immediately elevates the story for me. And the guys also having their witty comebacks also helps.
There is a question of, if the show is supposed to revolve around the MC and the three rich men she “marries,” why is she still spending alone time with a cameraman, a writer, and a show investor? I get why (because they are potential routes), but they barely seem to do any filming. Then again, I have never been on reality TV nor watched how they make it, so for all I know, the rare filming is realistic.
But I digress…
Almost every single misunderstanding that happens in this game comes from the producer trying to start drama to get more ratings. He has a special rule where if he tells the MC to do something, she has to or she gets kicked off the show. Oh, and she’s not allowed to tell anyone about this rule. So that causes her to avoid the love interest for days at a time, invite another character on what should have been a secret rendezvous because she was told not to be alone with the love interest, or even go on dates with the love interest’s friend and rival knowing that he’ll take it the wrong way.
Basically, the producer is an asshole
The stories here are easy reads, I did find one route way more enjoyable that the other, more on that later…
Art – Dammit, Arithmetic has a good artist…
I really don’t know what more I can say about the character art and the CGs. They are nice. There are a few times that the text doesn’t match what the character is doing on screen.
You do see a lot of stock backgrounds. For example, there are scenes that are supposed to take place at the entrance of the mansion, but, since it’s obvious at this point that Arithmetic doesn’t pay a background artist and instead uses stock, the background that they use is that of a school shoe locker area.
I guess this is where Yuma stores all his shoes? In the entry way?
I just think, at some point, when you put out a few games, you should pony up and get yourselves a background artist. A small gripe that I think doesn’t belong in the gripe area, but still needs to be pointed out.
I have talked about this engine, in length, in my sporadic series “Welcome to Otome.” It’s a fairly widely used game engine, Arismile, that was actually created by Arithmetic. If you click the link before this line, it will take you to the long post I made with a break down with everything about the engine.
There is a lot to it. But as with most otome games…
Reading the story
Every day, you are given 5 story tickets to read the story. There are 15 chapters per part as well as Avatar Missions and Cinderella Checks.
The stories have two endings: Cinderella and Melty. Cinderella is basically the Good End and requires to you get all of the answers right (or making up the points) in order to read it. Melty is the Normal/Default Ending and requires no check.
These happen throughout the route you are playing. There are two options: Premium or Normal and both come with a story attached. Premium avatars can only be purchased with Platinum that you have to buy with real money. In exchange, you get a avatar with high Beauty and a story that is usually more romantic/sexy. If you cannot buy a premium, you can buy the normal, which is also going to be a good story.
Going on Lessons raises your Dolce and get you Gold (game’s version of money). Pick your favorite husband on your first lesson and after that, you can switch it up if you wish.
I would recommend setting an alarm to remind you to do your lessons every four hours that you are awake to make it a bit easier to play through the game.
There are Affection items, Terrace Storage, and a lot more in this area. Don’t forget to use your free daily spin.
Friends – Max Them Out ASAP
You get 20 Gold daily from telling your friends they are lovely. Also, you can send Pearls back and forth to use in the Pearl Exchange.
Item Shop – You can use your Gold on some items
Possibly taking a page out of other otome companies books, if you press the “Purchase with Gold” button in the item shop, you can buy Full Refresh Story Tickets, Gacha tickets, Love Boosts (for when you don’t have enough affection), Dolce Boosts, Terrance Gacha Points, Terrace Storage, Closet Storage, route change and route reset items with your Gold.
Use sparingly though, you will need Gold for Avatar Missions too.
Pearl Exchange – For the other things you need
You get Pearls by going on Lessons and you can also send them to your lesson partner sometimes with an excellent. If you then go to the exchange (Menu>Pearl Exchange), you can change your pearls out for a lot of items including Pumpkin Tarts (the stamina boost item) and avatars.
Text issues here and there
While the translation is the best I’ve personally seen for a launch from Arith since Fairy Love Tale, there are some issues here and there. There was a scene in Yuma’s route where a discussion about design had three empty text boxes. Every once in a while, the lines run together when they obviously were in their own. The character sheets for Lucio, Lawrence, and Hubert are still untranslated. At one point, in Leon’s story, the game refers to him as Clive.
They aren’t even blue, which is the only reason I would give this a pass.
For this game, instead of sending stamina items to friends, you will send pearls. They are the exchange item that you use to get clothes, mirrors, ect. from the Pearl Exchange. Why is this a gripe? Well, usually, when it comes to Arithmetic’s events, you need to have a LOT of stamina items to finish them. So, the fact that only way to get these, for free, is in the exchange spells potential issues in events.
So, usually with these types of games, you can use this gacha area to make up missing points. The Avatars usually repeat and you can easily rack up missing points.
Once you get all the avatar items in the gacha, the gacha will no longer give them to you. So, if you are like me and you screw up BIG TIME, ending up at -30 at a check, you are now stuck there unless you want to drop 2500 Gold per 1 Affection up on the store. It’s a departure to how this area works and thus, I am annoyed.
Random: What are this?!
I noticed there was some untranslated Japanese on the Love Interest Area. The circled area says “Enter your birthday” and the text above the English line says “When you enter your birthday from My Data, your horoscope will display.”
So yeah, I clicked that. And got to this screen.
And then I enter my birthday and
Whoa. What? I’m not sure if this was left in by accident or if it’s still being worked on but wow, all my luck except tenacity(?) sucks. lol My lucky color is khaki and my lucky item is a meat dish? lololololol I love it
Quick Route Review
As I said in the beginning, I was given tickets to play through both open routes and because of that, I’m going to give a small review of each route.
Leon – The Oresama
Leon is a real-estate mogul who’s used to getting the things he wants. In his story you get more interaction with the other guys and you get to see more of what Kouki is will to do in order to get ratings. Overall, the route was okay. The MC doesn’t really talk much about her dreams in the route, possibly because she is so distracted by the ridiculousness that is happening around her. She does come back to it in the Melty End though. Also, Leon likes the anticipation of waiting to get intimate with the MC. So, you are going to spend much of his route clawing for something between them other than making out a lot.
Yuma – The Cute Designer with a Secret
Yuma is the tease who shares the MC’s dream, so, naturally, she looks up to him. His route, for the most part, is pretty easy going. There is one part that kinda tip-toed on the line, but because of the MC’s past interactions and how she’s vocal about wanting to be with him, I’m willing to believe that once she got past her initial shock, she was able to get into it. I could be wrong, but she never expresses regret and their interactions only escalate after the scene with her encouragement. Overall, I found that I like Yuma’s route a lot especially after you find out his secret (that’s kinda obvious early on, but whatever).
Route Order Suggestion
This is gonna sound weird but, play Leon first because you get some more insight into the other characters and the lengths Kouki is willing to go to in order for ratings.
Yuma has better chemistry with the MC and they are more intimate. Also, I found the platinum avatars and extras in Yuma’s to quench that thirst more than Leon. (I would like to point out that I was NOT given free platinum. I paid for all of the avatars and Deleted Scenes myself.)
Overall, so far, an easy read. I like that the MC has a personality (finally, Arithmetic) and calls the guys out. The guys are, mostly, solid. There is, of course, going to be some Arithmetic grey-area, but I’ve seen way worse in their other games. There are still some lingering issues with empty text boxes and not capitalized sentences, but the translation is A+ as well as the grammar. Not quite sure what is up with horoscope area (it’s pretty funny though).
Official Links For Cinderella TV
Related Pages on Otome Obsessed