It has been just a few days since ROOM GIRL was released (30th of September to be exact), and with no hesitation, I got my copy via DLsite to start playing and see what is different about it compared to ILLUSION’s previous games in the last few years.
Returning to realism since AI Girl graphics-wise, ILLUSION is now giving you the opportunity to experience the challenges of career women with sexually active lives in Japan, albeit not as exciting as it sounds in the execution of gameplay.
Though it is very early for me to give a final opinion on any aspect of the game, dare I say, I have enjoyed my first hours getting familiar with the resource management feature that is the highlight of ROOM GIRL.
Finally, there is some depth in gameplay, something that I personally feel that ILLUSION has lost the ability to produce over the years, always leaning far too heavily on the adult content while forgetting everything else in the process.
ROOM GIRL challenges you to manage your characters stats between mood and stamina. Being a productive worker requires energy and the will to follow player-issued commands, both of which gradually decrease with each action given to your character.
One of the main objectives during work shifts is to produce as many “coins” as possible that can be spent in a shop to upgrade your characters so that they may be even more productive during their shift – That and also to get in bed with your fellow co-workers and customers/patients.
In addition to the shop system, the same coins can also be spent on special character actions, some of which are lewd by nature. Thanks to this gameplay loop of earning coins by being a productive worker, there now is an actual reason to play the game while working your way to unlocking lewd stuff, something that I would not feel confident saying about ILLUSION’s previous titles. Who still remembers Koikatsu’s stats system of “Press Left mouse button to punch the air”… I still facepalm just thinking about it. (Koikatsu Review)
Stress free gameplay
If you are looking for a relaxing game to throw away your stress and put your mind at ease, ROOM GIRL got you covered on that part. The atmosphere and music are very soothing and there is no hurry in finishing your shift as time only moves forward when action is given to a character.
Unlike one would expect from a Japanese work environment, urgency does not exist in this game, you set the pace for everything. When you feel like not working anymore on a particular character, you can move on to the next one at another location even during an active shift. The game wants you to be in control.
Beyond the praise of relaxing gameplay, ROOM GIRL in general is very pretty to look at. This is partly due to great environment design that previously has been very mediocre when looking at ILLUSION’s last few games in recent years.
When looking up close, none of the assets used in the game are particularly highly detailed but that is okay because the end result screams high quality with the benefit of asking less from your computer in order to play the game smoothly.
Loading screens this time around are heavily reduced. No longer do you have to wait while the game loads in every nook and corner of gameplay. I am looking at you Koikatsu!
The game loads a workplace or other location of your choice and once done so, there are no further loading screens within that area. You can enjoy uninterrupted gameplay for an entire shift and beyond before seeing another loading screen!
As I am writing this, I am working to bring you the first detailed look into the character creator. I want to make several unique-looking characters to demonstrate many of the possibilities in ROOM GIRL to create your dream waifu.
To say the character creator utilizes the same engine as in ILLUSION’s previous titles would be a shock to no one. It is pretty much a copy-paste from AI Girl, only with new clothing options here and there. Another year and another ILLUSION game where the developer has done almost nothing to improve the character creator to make it feel new and fresh.
While you can go nuts and do all kinds of crazy-looking characters to test the limits of the character creator, it is nothing you have not seen before. There are hardly any new sliders or ways to manipulate a character model any differently than before.
A hard-to-swallow pill for ILLUSION, a couple of new clothing options makes no one excited at this point, especially when ILLUSION has not even made the effort to bring most of the old clothing options from previous games in order to expand the library of choice, only a few.
Having said all that, if you do not expect any major changes to the character creator compared to previous games, then there are hardly any further gripes to point out as the character creator still holds as one of the most advanced options in the adult video game market.
Naturally many of you want to know about the adult portion of the game, and even though this is the part I have spent the least time in at the moment, I can already say that the experience is almost exactly the same as in ILLUSION’s previous games, only with new sex poses to offer.
The 3D sex simulator in ROOM GIRL is pretty much a copy-paste from games like AI Girl and Koikatsu, but there is no sign of effort put into improving the old system. This is not to say the sex simulator is bad or anything, it is just the same old thing we have seen many times before. At this point, it would be high time to see something new and creative for a change that brings the sex simulator to the next level.
But again I say, if you do not expect any major new changes to the old formula, then it is best to take everything I have just said with a grain of salt and just enjoy your time with ROOM GIRL as it continues to provide the same level of experience you have got accustomed to, nothing more nothing less.
Is it worth the wait?
We all want to see more Japanese adult games being localized to the west but is ROOM GIRL in particular worth the wait? Not everyone even with the ability to access the Japanese version wishes to do so. There are those who rather enjoy the game once it is localized but currently there is no official information on a such plan being carried out by ILLUSION. However, it is very likely that behind the scenes the game is already being or is going to be localized, as has been the case with ILLUSION’s previous titles in recent years.
As far as I know, none of the previous games already localized ever got an official announcement before finding their way to Steam and elsewhere as ILLUSION tends to be silent about such projects. So it is not far-fetched to hope to see ROOM GIRL in English a year or two from now.
Based on my own experience thus far with the Japanese version, at the moment, I see no reason to not recommend the game despite some of my earlier gripes. The game may follow the old formula already seen many times over in ILLUSION’s previous games when it comes to its character creator and sex simulator, but the bottom line is it is still decent fun to play regardless of the lack of innovation.
I will work to bring you more information about ROOM GIRL and its gameplay and new features, not to forget adult content in all its glory. This has been just a small taste of what is yet to come in midst of a busy week as I continue to work a day job while at the same time focusing my time and energy to create Halloween-themed NSFW art for the gallery.