Hot Japanese Imports: Vitamin Y for DS review

August 10, 2009 - 4:28 pm No Comments

Vitamin Y DSTitle: Vitamin Y: Super Supplement Minigames with B6 & T6
Price: $44.90
System(s): DS
Release Date: October 30, 2008
Publisher (Developer): D3 Publisher (D3 Publisher)
ESRB Rating: N/A, Cero B for Ages 12+
Pros: All familiar Vitamin X characters return, lots of mini-games, unlock CGs by playing well, mini-games can be quite challenging, plenty of variety, voice acting is even thrown in.
Cons: If you’re not familiar with the series and characters, some mini-games can be quite tricky. Sometimes the touch screen controls aren’t as responsive as they should be. Plentiful Engrish voice acting.
Overall Score: 8/10

The six troublemaker students from class X and Vitamin X are back! Only this time, they and their six teacher advisors are starring in Vitamin Y: Super Supplement Minigames with B6 & T6. That’s where the B6 and T6 in the subtitle come from, it refers to the six stupid (baka) students and the six teachers. Clever, isn’t it?

As Vitamin Y so helpfully states in the subtitle, it’s a minigame collection filled with games that losely pertain to, or star, the characters from the otome game Vitamin X. It also features a story mode which acts as a little otome story. Your success in the chosen character’s mini-games leads to a successful ending.

Vitamin Y

What’s a school festival without events?

Time for a school festival! All the boys from Class X are participating, and each one has his own section set up with various mini-games. In the Vitamin Y story mode, the female teacher of Class X (the player) chooses to follow one of the six student’s stories, sampling mini-games from each student’s area.

All six students have teamed up with teachers to create a section devoted just to them. Tsubasa Makabe and Ginji Katsuragi run Megane Kingdom, Hajime Kusanagi and Koji Ootori run Lost Nana Sugoro Park, Shun Nanase and Taro Konokage run Starship Visconti, Goro Fumonji and Sho Nikaido run Fairy Popeland, Kiyoharu Sendo and Shojiro Kinugasa run Trick or Scream and Mizuki Madarame and Masaki Sanada run Toge Island.

Vitamin Y

Filled with weird and fun mini-games that are occasionally difficult to control.

Vitamin Y is a fairly robust minigame collection. There are 26 mini-games in all, with four in each student’s section and two general mini-games involving all students. Each section has two games centered around the student, one game starring the teacher and one general game. If you clear the section by meeting score objectives, you can unlock special CGs.

This is a great game for people who don’t speak Japanese. While the story text and voice acting is all in Japanese, as well as game instructions, the menus, character names and many other sections are in English. Also a few voice actors sneak in English words, particularly Tsubasa’s VA. The pronunciation is off, but it sort of adds to Vitamin Y‘s charm. The mini-games are pretty simple and easy to figure out once you try them, resulting in a pain-free experience.

The only downside is some games are difficult to play, due to either imperfect controls or insufficient Vitamin X knowledge. For example, one of Goro’s Fairy Popeland games requires you to decide if an image shown is male or female. Goro is a boy who dresses as a girl, so his girl outfits and boy outfits have to be separated appropriately. Also a dog, lizard and Shun images appear to throw you off. There’s also a Megane Kingdom whack-a-mole style game that requires you to hit the appropriate characters on the bottom screen that match two images shown on the top screen. Since many characters look a bit alike, this can be quite difficult for those unfamiliar with the series.

Vitamin Y DS

If you always wanted to try an otome game, but hate visual novels and simulations, try Vitamin Y!

I only borrowed Vitamin Y from a friend, but after playing it for a few days I’d definitely pick it up if Play-Asia had it on sale for under $20. It’s adorable and often quite funny. For example, there’s one minigame where you have to slap the characters to wake them up. When the teacher Ginji pops up, you get to use a book instead of your hands. The minigames are fun, in general, and pretty atypical compared to other minigame collections. Plus there’s tons of voice acting, which is an unexpected bonus. I’d definitely recommend Vitamin Y to friends.

COMING NEXT WEEK: Important Importables looks at games inspired by the anime/manga Sugar Sugar Rune.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Last week Important Importables went through the steps one must take to buy from iTunes Japan.

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Full Story » | Written by Jenni Lada for Gamertell. | Comment on this Article »

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