Crush Crush: Don’t judge me
Doki Doki Literature Club: Still doing the main slice of life section to do the routes before the game takes the mask off. I’m actually enjoying these parts and I think it’s part of the game’s secret that makes it so effective. The character writing is legitimately good in these sequences outside the dolt of a lead (which I do get is meta commentary), building on old cliches in small ways and making some relatable characters in the process. Without that foundation, the rest of the game probably wouldn’t have the lasting impact it does. It actually reminds me a lot of Homestuck, which was also partly about characters somewhat aware of their fictional status betraying the established narrative and the boundaries of the world itself to reshape it as they wished. Monika even reminds me of Caliborn in how they both can’t accept their role, the big difference being that Caliborn just embraces it even more than expected, and Monika rejects it so much that she accidentally loops back around into becoming the supportive friend yet again.
Chroma Squad: This game is adorable. A bunch of Sentai show stuntmen quit and make their own indie series, and you get to manage everything and play out episode fights as tactical turn based strategy battles. The script is my favorite part, with the five questioning what the best way to entertain the audience or push a good story. There’s even a segment where one of them considers having an episode where they rescue a damsel in distress, another points out that could be seen as sexist by an audience no matter their creative intentions, and decide to take the production more seriously and break from toxic traditions to try and teach little lessons while putting on a good show. It was the most wholesome, adorable little moment I have seen in a game in years.