Podcast ~ Otoge to Anime ~

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Episode 2: Otome Games to Anime Adaptations

Hello! It’s been a while since we last did a podcast and we were both taken aback by the interest that people expressed in hearing more of these. I honestly thought that no one would really care to hear about us TL;DRing or derping around about our opinions /)_(\! Anyway, we thought it would be interesting to take a look at the recent surge of anime adaptations of otome games and how the different sides of the otome fandom were affected by it.

Once again, I’m sure we missed a few points in here so I may supplement the bottom of this post with points that I forgot to include inside. Discussion is always welcome below so long as all the replies are civil and respectful!

Here’s an outline of the podcast again.

Outline of Podcast

  • Benefits of adaptations for otome game companies
    • Money? Audience?
  • Are there any benefits to otome gamers?
    • Increased number of fans
    • Significance of the English fandom
  • Are there any disadvantages for otome gamers?
    • Fandom division
    • Legitimacy of anime adaptation
  • History of otome games to anime adaptations
    • La Corda D’Oro ~primo passo~ (aired 2006) 8.0 (scored by 18734 users)
    • Hakuouki (aired 2010): 7.6 (scored by 19617 users)
    • Starry Sky (aired 2010): Score: 6.5 (scored by 5892 users)
    • Uta no Prince-sama (aired 2011): Score: 7.6 (scored by 13713 users)
    • Hiiro no Kakera (aired 2012): Score: 6.7 (scored by 6299 users)
    • Arcana Famiglia (aired 2012) Score: 6.5 (scored by 15394 users)
    • Hanayaka Nari, Waga Ichizoku
    • Amnesia
    • BroCon
  • Is it possible to have a successful otome game to anime adaptation?

1. One thing I forgot to mention was that anime provides an easier medium to swallow because the audience doesn’t need to know anything special. Most anime can be translated or subbed into many different languages and so the audience for anime is greater than it is for the otome game version. Putting aside the Japanese language barrier, anime is also quicker to watch and easier to follow rather than a long and time-consuming route.

There are advantages and disadvantages to portraying medium in this way, because people’s attention spans are often quite short. So, one way of viewing the anime adaptation is as another mode of expression for the otome game?

11 thoughts on “Podcast ~ Otoge to Anime ~

    Jessica said:
    February 19, 2013 at 04:02

    Wanted to leave a comment there has been news for more drama cd’s this year as well as a fandisc (want) and an anime for Diabolik Lovers. I just wanted to pass on the awesome news!

      Ilinox responded:
      February 19, 2013 at 23:35

      Ooh, thank you for dropping by and letting me know ヽ(*´ー`*)ノ although I’m afraid I already heard about that gkdfgahjgh. I’m really active on twitter and so I usually hear the news from there. Thank you a lot for coming by though! It was kind of you to let me know! (I hope a good animation studio picks up the anime for Diabolik Lovers since it’s Rejet debut).

    Julia said:
    January 22, 2013 at 07:31

    Hey! what about the anime series of Angelique?? ^^ It isn´t in your list

      Ilinox responded:
      January 26, 2013 at 00:42

      Oh gkjhsjhgfh I’m sorry!! You can tell Suri and I aren’t really well-versed in the otome games turned anime, haha, since we missed that one. I didn’t realize there were any more than that but thank you for letting me know!

        Julia said:
        February 11, 2013 at 05:41

        You´re welcome! and thanks a lot for your hard work! =D

    reins said:
    January 21, 2013 at 06:13

    just a lil note about UtaPri anime. they srsly changed Haruka’s backstory and made her a dumber? lol I mean you’re right, the game is crack. But anime Haruka lived with her grandmom in the boonies due to her health and she didn’t have a TV (like wtf). So she was surprised to see her Idol Hayato acting like an idiot bakappoi talento on TV when she thought he was a SERIOUS songwriter etc etc

    And the game Haruka pretty much starts out “I’m going to Saotome Gakuen yeahz” in her room like a normal student would. She chills out watching TV because she wants to see her idol Hayato fooling around on his show.
    Unlike the anime version, game Haruka is actually talented in music. She got stage fright in one route iinm and couldnt play the piano coz she was nervous. IDK WHY the anime decided to make her stupid (i dont know how to read music derp) Anime Haruka also is bad at directions, while she never had this problem in-game :/

    tl;dr Utapri anime is probably 40% accurate to the game and they dumbed down everyone so much

      Ilinox responded:
      January 26, 2013 at 00:45

      … What?! Why would they change the story that much? I remembered hearing about how the UtaPri anime gave everyone a really bad harem ending, but I didn’t realize they made her live out in the boonies doing nothing with her grandmother… There goes being an aspiring songwriter if she can’t even read music LOL.

      Hmm.. that makes me really curious as to why they would deviate so much from the otome game when making the anime.. do they think they’ll actually draw in a different audience? Or that was the only way they could spin the anime (that’s kind of sad..)?

    Anny said:
    January 20, 2013 at 12:29

    Kiniro no Corda kind of put a high bar for me with anime adaptations of otoges. Well, that was what dragged me into the otome gaming. Now it’s been 6 years though so my taste changed, so I can’t really compare.

    But to make a more overall view, no vn with a lot of ends turn very well as an anime. And with Amagami having the multi-route version it had, there’s been a lot of different tries. I think that the main reason an anime is “successful” is more about the original fanbase, and it’s kind of mirrored among the western fans too. If we take some non-otoge and look at their anime adaptation they aren’t really that much better than the otoge ones, but even so they are in general a bigger hit, mostly because people just know it better. Not everyone is like me and tries every single series that airs. As I see it, most would choose something they’ve heard of or that seem interesting. Well, that’s what I see among my anime friends right now – the people who watch Amnesia is a handful of people who try every anime and the rest thought it was interesting (until they saw the first episode and got so bored they don’t know anymore). I’m the only person in those circles that actually play otoges so I was the only one who actually knew Amnesia, but I haven’t played the game, so yeah…

    But, yeah, back to my first paragraph… After Kiniro no Corda nothing impressed me in anime adaptations. And KnC got, as mentioned the comic adaptation and all, which I know others I know read, so I think some of the fanbase comes from that or thanks to that knew about the series and gave it a try.

    (As for in a BWS anime. Rath should be the route to animate. But I’m biased when I say that, I guess, lol. But if I were to choose someone else than the main guy, and not go by my own biases, I guess Mejojo kind of feels like a good choice… But anything would be fine as long as it’s not Auger.)

      Ilinox responded:
      January 26, 2013 at 00:39

      Hmm, yeah, I think you’re definitely touching a point about how most otome games don’t translate well into animes precisely because of the multiple routes. It makes it hard to choose just “one” route to feature and it’s never really worked to try and aim for a harem end.

      I agree that I think the anime companies are trying to tap into the resource of people who’ve already played the game and will be interested in it but.. with how easy it is to stream things in this day and age I think they’re also reaching out to new audiences. I mean take a look at the Amnesia fandom and how it sort of exploded all over the place when subs came out ;;; I think anime is much faster and easier to consume than a game and so it tends to be more.. popular or is heard about more when it’s in that format compared to being a game.

      Haha, I probably sounded biased because everyone knows that Mejojo is my bias in BWS (although Arles is right up there too) but in terms of the story Rath just doesn’t really.. reveal much. The whole civil war happening in the country seems to revolve more around the past conflict between Arles and Mejojo over anything else ;;; I mean you could make an argument about Fiona and Rath being the next generation.. but it just seems much more situated if you made Mejojo the main character. He’s like a byronic hero.. sort of.. LMAO.

    huyutfsakura said:
    January 20, 2013 at 09:44

    Personally, I think some of the animes were actually pretty good to their otome game. I find it cool to see which route the anime would take but mostly it ends up in either harem ending or hints to favourite characters. Hakuouki was an okay adaption, utapri I liked, arcana I liked, starry sky confusing in ways so I didn’t really like it, and amnesia I’m loving right now. I think it’s to market to those who don’t play the otome games but are into the shoujo category and to those who played and would like to see an anime of it. I do think that since anime is very international that the people who do watch it might not understand the story since they’ve never played the game. Then it’ll get overexposed and with most overexposeds they turn out quite bad. For example, they’ll be more people asking “Where can I play this in english?” or “Some english patch this!!” and it’ll be very annoying to see comments like this “No english patch, where can I findz this in eng!?!? :( ” I’m not a fan of those comments, and I hate them for it. I always find that when things get overexposed it always backfires and we get random idiots in our fandoms and even haters that don’t know anything about the culture or how things work to comment on it. (ex. Psy gets popular and the kpop fandom grows, idiots comment on how men wear makeup, they laugh at the koren lyrics they don’t understand, the new rookie group fandoms like exo’s are just a bunch of teenage hormonal idiots, international fans can be the worse sometimes.) I know I’m getting into a rant about this but I just hope, 100%, that people don’t screw up the otome fandom because I keep going from fandom to fandom that gets overexposed then ruined. I love the anime adaptions, and I hope people aren’t idiots and start to badly overexpose it. I love otome games and even if they get badly overexposed I’ll still play them T u T

      Ilinox responded:
      January 21, 2013 at 23:52

      Hmm, yeah! I think it might be a way to get the word out and draw more people into the shoujo category or make people interested in the otome genre. But at the same time, because of the quality of some of those I feel like it might do the complete opposite ;;;; Like it seemed that a lot of people didn’t treat UtaPri seriously or anything.

      Mmm, yeah. It’s definitely an unfortunate thing that I think Suri touched upon a little.. about how there’s an equal chance to get an idiot or a fan as the fandom grows. And also as the fandom grows more and more diversity is brought in which might lead to cultural clashes, especially when some people don’t realize what kind of audience that most anime is intended towards.

      I don’t think you have to worry about it being overexposed because otome games right now is still a very niche thing. I almost want to say that it’d be possible to fit every otome gamer out there in a large audience hall ;;; like that’s how small we are. We probably wouldn’t even be able to fill out a small country.. but I also think that it can’t be denied that we’re growing. I mean, just look at the variety of otome games out now and how almost one to two otome games are coming out in a month.

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