Somewhere right now, developer Baller Industries is laughing (in a terrible accent, no doubt) and rubbing their hands together in a maniacal, certainly diabolical way. And I am legitimately afraid of this image in my head. Afraid because I’ve just read a post outlining their plans to bring their latest text adventure, Tokyo Hosto (80 MSP), to PS Vita and other platforms. Mon Dieu! God save the PS Vita from this travesty.
Not that previous knowledge or familiarity is required, but full disclosure: I have limited experience with their other games. Outside of sampling Let’s Get Fiscal (a side-scrolling beat-em’-up and probably their only ‘real’ game) and reading Alan’s hilarious truth-roasting of the ironically-titled Rock Bottom, I’m aware of their catalog, and have largely avoided it. For very good reason, it would seem.
Tokyo Hosto puts you in the shoes of a pretty boy in a Japanese Host Club, where you have a simple objective; lavish the female (and sometimes male) clients with attention and your fantastic hair, and, above all else, keep the overpriced drinks flowing. So basically, it’s a multiple choice quiz about insincerely wooing women, where choosing the wrong (and not always obvious) option is hardly lethal; it just means your ‘conversation skills’ need some work. If that’s not enough, be amazed by a mediocre plot revolving around your wholly-objectionable boss, the top host boy, and league of various women looking for company.
I’ll save you the suspense. It’s terribly-written muck, with passable art and animation but offensive dialogue and voice-acting to surround it. Honestly, if you have any curiosity regarding the Host / Hostess scene, or the culture in general, I’d recommend watching any one of a number of videos or documentaries on the subject instead of playing this game. At least videos can be skipped when you get bored. Guessing wrong here resets the current scene, at best making you retread the same inane dialogue boxes to get back to the fork in the (illogical) road where you glumly press on or just give up.
Not that it much matters. Even with the two or three times you’ll guess incorrectly, Tokyo Hosto is over in about fifteen minutes, leaving anyone and everyone that suffered the misfortune of purchasing it dumbfounded and a little more broke. Yeah, that’s right. Baller Industries just ‘hosted’ me, and I didn’t even have a fake good time, nor can I lean on the excuse of being drunk. I willingly walked into this, completely sober. I really need to reevaluate what I’m doing with my life.