Moe’kemonMoe Chronicles was developed by Compile heart and released in Japan May 15th 2014 and in Asia a separate English subbed version was released on May 5th 2015 on the Playstation Vita.
Moe chronicles is the second game in Compile Heart's Genkai series, following up from Monster Monpiece. the series is set in a world were the monster girls have become hostile to humans in all but one village, where the humans and monster girls still live in harmony. It is here that a young man named Io lives a carefree and somewhat lazy existence plagued by his desire and inability to talk to girls and as such he becomes somewhat the outcast of the village, seen as a lazy layabout and contributing nothing to the prosperity of the town. Because of this view the elder forces him to go on a journey to save the world and make his contribution to his home.
The story relies on a 2d text based narrative that almost seems the standard for most Jrpgs. For this review I have used the Asian version with English text and while its not the worst I have seen I often could not follow the story, although I am not entirely certain if this is down to poor translation or the story being poorly written or a mix of the two. That being said its not a total write-off as overall I was able to follow it quite well only been mildly unsure as to exactly what it was trying to explain, particularly when characters would reference previous events in the game. Other than that it remains the tried and tested way to convey any JRPG’s story, it is not overly cluttered and you don’t have a million and one things to follow at any given time.
Graphically it mostly relies on a manga/anime art style, this work well especially when it slips into the more Ecchi style, when stimulating the monster girls the game offers little animation other than changing facial expressions, jiggling boobs and back sides when poked/prodded/rubbed and pinched. One point I did personally like was while moving around a map engaging in random battles it would show what you were looking at as the battle started, even if approached from behind Io will turn to begin the battle and the background would display what would be behind you when traversing the map. The exploration is fun with a few twists to throw you off at times from warp portals to traps, one gripe I noticed is that at seemingly random times every 2 or 3 steps on a floor would start a battle. While its not unusual for successive battles it can become quite annoying when it happens so often giving upward of 100 battles per floor compared to the usual 20 or so.
The battle system itself is also quite simple, offering only the basic commands such as attack, skill, defend and charm (Charm powers Io’s desire) making it easy for even a novice to come to grips with and be able to master fairly quickly. Only the use of Io may seem to break away from the norm, Io who despite been portrayed as the hero of the tale seems to take a more supportive role using items and deciding if the party should flee, however he also has the choice of storing his magic or desire as it is called and releasing it on a girl in order to power up for the next turn. Honestly I found it odd that he takes this most passive role as he always is seen with a weapon of some sort.
Onto the sound, it is what most would expect from titles of its kind, nothing too spectacular or memorable but fits well with the themes from each region you visit ranging from sensual bathhouses to snowy fields. While all this is indeed innocent enough I would not advise playing in public as if the fact your rubbing and tapping your vita screen vigorously didn't look odd enough the moans coming from the monster girls as you arouse them surely will lead to some very strange looks from others around you, so pack those headphones.
For the bulk of the game you will be traversing maps and taking part in battles against the H monsters as is usual for dungeon crawling titles. You move around in a 1st person view and engage in turn based battles, while all this is very standard of this type of game there is however one small difference. You will occasion have to do battle with one of the girls, think of them as bosses and sub bosses or if you are familiar with the Etrian series like FOE’s, in fact they even behave in the same manner patrolling and having an on map avatar.
These battles are a little different and if you wish to add the girl to your party you must help them “regain there senses” you can do this in one of two ways 1) hit the girl with her elemental weakness or 2) destroy articles of her clothing or at least down to her undies, stripping her to her underwear is the quickest way but on the flip side each item of clothing remaining gives a gentleman's bonus to allow you more time to “convince” the girl to join you by providing stimuli touching them in set places in a specific ways, it’s a unique way to expand your party for certain and honestly at times just a little bit creepy.
But that is to be expected in a game with Moe in the title that requires you to strip girls. Often it comes across as more fan service for fan service sake, although without it you would just be besting the girls in battle and would loose the most unique feature. Although you can actually fail to convince the girl to join you due to the time limit, you can come back at a later time and try again making it impossible to miss any girl so you never have to worry about screwing up too much.
For my closing notes while I have seen the game get a lot of hate due to its mechanics i found it easily enjoyable based on its other mechanics alone and although I had minor issues with the story I was able to follow it quite well, The striping of the girls and saving them is a interesting feature and will of course appeal to some, this title has its own merits beyond the obvious core and in fact it all pulls well together even to the point of the fan service being somewhat explained by the story leaving me to think that one without the other would only be half of the game and as with the previous title offers something different that may not appeal to all tastes though to those that it does will surely enjoy this.