Rorschach's journal. February 28th, 2010.
Moeblob carcass in the alley this morning, tire tread on burst stomach. The eroge industry is afraid of me. I have seen its true face. Their gameplay is nothing more than mindless tedium and the tedium is full of pornographic art and bad voice acting, and when the sound finally gets too loud all the vermin will go deaf. The accumulated filth of all their moe and loli will foam up about their waists and all the sales executives will look up and shout, "Hey, Cat Girl Alliance was fun, right? You should buy more eroge!"
And I'll look down and whisper, "No."
They had a choice, all of them. They could have followed in the footsteps of good visual novels, like Higurashi and Ever 17. Decent games that believed in engaging characters and intelligent storylines. Instead, they followed the droppings of doujin artists and pornographers, and didn't realize that the trail lead over a precipice until it was too late. Don't tell me they didn't have a choice.
Find out more after the break.
Cat Girl Alliance (PC)
Most of you probably know that Cat Girl Alliance was my first eroge. As such, I was hoping this game would be a good benchmark for me to judge the entire medium by. Unfortunately, I was disappointed; this game was little more than a string of pornographic images and accompanying text, barely held together by poor voice acting and something that could be called a 'plot' only in the loosest possible sense of the term. In other words, it sucks... HARD.
Cat Girl Alliance revolves around Tachibana Eiji, a character so inept he makes Keitaro look like a savant. Eiji has quite the libido, and gets a raging hard-on from the mere presence of anything remotely female. Unsurprisingly, he stumbles across class representative Takahata Rumi's "Health Club", where she trains girls to liberate themselves sexually. The club is inhabited by archetypes I'm pretty sure were stolen directly from Haruhi. Rumi is the the energetic and enigmatic leader (and catgirl futanari) who blackmails people into joining her club. Misawa Natsuki is the quiet and totally obedient shy girl who can switch between personalities on command. Azumi Shizuko is the large-breasted moeblob, who greets Rumi's perverted advances with insincere angry protests and tears. After Eiji is caught masturbating and creating Rorschach blobs with his cum in the nurse's office, he is forced to join the Health Club and embark on a fun-filled life of endless sex.
And that's pretty much all the plot there is. This game doesn't so much have a coherent story as much as a sequence of events. Eiji and company repeatedly slog through the school day, having mundane conversations about things like bento and exam studying, then engage in various kinds of sex once classes are over. Repeat this plot formula a few dozen times, and you've got Cat Girl Alliance in a nutshell. It's like watching a slice of life show, except with two-dimensional characters who make the girls of So Ra No Wo To seem deep and dialogue that feels like it was copypasted from Wikipedia's Japanese culture article.
The voice acting and music in this game are hardly worth mentioning, as they are generally unremarkable. Of course, knowing Cat Girl Alliance's target audience, I expect they care less about the story and more about the art, and this game certainly has no shortage of erotic imagery. While the art was technically good, it wasn't very high-resolution... only 640 by 480. Although it is possible to play the game full-screen, when I attempted to do so the images just looked pixellated, like they had been blown up in Photoshop. However, I wasn't too devastated by this since I didn't find the art all that arousing to begin with. This is mainly because all the girls look like over-sexualized lolis; I prefer my women fully-developed and confident, not willowy and blushing. Of course, that's just my opinion.
If you're just looking to enjoy the naughty pictures, Cat Girl Alliance does contain a number of nice features to facilitate this. The game's Skip mode allows you to blaze though the text at lighting speed, stopping only at the sections where you have to make a choice (which are few and far between). You can also set the game on Auto to automatically scroll though the text at a readable pace. Once you've unlocked a particular image, you can access it at any time via the Extra Mode, which also allows you to replay the sex scenes (i.e. images with text). Should you tire of the text, you can press Escape to hide it. All these features make browsing your porn collection very easy and convenient. Now, if only you didn't have to slog though so much aggravatingly mundane dialogue to unlock it...
If you're cool with paying 35 bucks for around a hundred low-res porn images, Cat Girl Alliance is a good buy. However, if you're expecting anything more than eye candy, I suggest you stay far, far away from this game. Personally, I don't think it's worth the money. After all, with so much free anime porn readily available from the good folks at Pixiv, 4chan and Danbooru, why drop so much money on something mediocre? Save your dough for the better visual novels... you know, the ones with interesting characters and actual stories.
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