Ouran High School Host Club DS: Hosts A Good Time

By Jenni . April 19, 2009 . 5:02pm

image Video games based on anime and manga tend to be hit or miss affairs. Idea Factory’s Ouran Koukou Host-Bu DS, known to American fans as Ouran High School Host Club DS, is one of those hits. The game perfectly captures the humor and atmosphere of the series, and the full voice acting and simple controls make it an ideal otome visual novel for novices.

 

Ouran High School Host Club is a romantic comedy series surrounding Haruhi Fujioka, a scholarship student at Ouran. Haruhi goes to the school’s library one day to study, and goes into the music room in search of a quiet area. Instead, the Ouran High School Host Club, a club that is devoted to entertaining female students, is discovered.

 

The six members (Tamaki, Kyoya, Hikaru, Kaoru, Huni and Mori) mistake Haruhi for a male “client.” When attempting to escape their advances, Haruhi backs into an extremely expensive vase and breaks it. Tamaki, the club’s president and “king” dictates that Haruhi will work off the debt at the club.

 

Then the club members, one by one, discover that Haruhi is a girl.

 

She then continues to attend Ouran, dressed as a boy and working in the Host Club, garnering customer requests, in order to pay off the debt. Here’s where Ouran DS picks up. Haruhi’s a host, and she’s working in the club alongside the guys. Along the way, the club will encounter adventures with Haruhi’s childhood friend Sayuri, a outing in a water park, and a challenge by a rival high school host club chaired by Tamaki’s childhood friend Jean-Pierre Leo.

 

imageOuran DS progresses in a manner similar to the manga and anime. While you’re going through a month and a half period of time, you’re also going through five “episodes.” Each one offers a mini-story filled with humor and drama.

 

It also isn’t totally a visual novel and otome game. While it’s true that you’re trying to ideally shoot for an ending with one of the six hosts, you’re also struggling to meet a certain request quota by the end of the game. This is accomplished by sitting with Host Club guests and entertaining them. When you sit down with a girl, or a girl and another host, six topic icons pop up. You then have to choose the one that makes the girl, or girl and host, happiest in order to successfully pass. So there’s a slight, extra strategic element added to the game.

 

If you enjoyed the Ouran anime, you’ll love the DS game. Scenes from the anime are liberally sprinkled throughout the game in appropriate situations, as flashbacks and such. In fact, the game’s opening is the anime’s opening. All of the voice actors, major and minor, return to reprise their roles as new characters.

 

Even better, the DS exclusive characters Sayuri and Jean-Pierre Leo fit perfectly into the storyline. You’d think that original characters would disrupt the natural chemistry between characters and stories, but Sayuri and Leo are perfect additions to the cast as Haruhi and Tamaki’s childhood friends. In one portion of the game, where Renge and Sayuri are acting as announcers at a series of event, Sayuri’s reserved nature perfectly balances out Renge’s exuberance.

 

image There’s another area where Ouran DS excels – the voice acting. I’ve noticed in many DS games featuring substantial amounts of voice acting that the quality seems second rate. It can be muffled, quiet and even a tad warped. That isn’t the case with Ouran DS. The voice acting sounds absolutely perfect – you’d think you were listening to the PS2 version and not the DS one. A nice touch is that Idea Factory got Maaya Sakamoto to provide voice acting for Haruhi, the heroine.

 

As for extras, it is almost as though Idea Factory included six new extra stories or mini-episodes – one for each character. Each of these extra episodes uses a new choice option, where players make Haruhi nod yes or no to answer questions and advance the story, and two new CG scenes.

 

I would definitely recommend either this game, or one of the Tokimeki Memorial Girl’s Side DS games, to someone who’s always wanted to try an otome game but has been worried about the language barrier. Ouran DS is easy to play, enjoy and understand, even if your Japanese is only passable. It’s a delightful game and a wonderful port. Plus, it’s genuinely funny, and definitely one of the best otome games I’ve played this year.



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  • Vino (Tim N)

    Lol fine! I’ll pick it up x3

    • Vino (Tim N)

      Btw, I love these kinds of reviews/blogs. Keep it up!

      • http://www.siliconera.com Jenni

        It’s really a wonderful game. I’ve been enjoying it.

        And thanks! Glad you enjoyed the coverage!

  • http://www.cosmosgaming.com cosmosgaming

    I got into this anime series randomly, and I wasn’t expecting to like it nearly as much as I did.

    • http://www.siliconera.com Jenni

      Same here. A friend of mine told me to watch it, I did and I loved it.

  • http://twitter.com/matty_125 matty

    Ouran is a series I keep hearing about, but I never gave much effort to check it out. After reading the premise, though, it sounds right up my alley!

    • http://www.siliconera.com Jenni

      The anime is absolutely hilarious, as is the manga. Maybe try seeing if your local library has it?

  • Aki

    Where did you buy it? I want to buy one but I don’t want to buy online…

    • http://www.siliconera.com Jenni

      Unless you’re actually in Japan, you’ll probably have to use an online store to get it. (I’d recommend Play-Asia personally, I’ve been shopping there for years.)

      If there’s an import game store near you, you may be able to stop in and ask them if they could special order it for you.

  • blazblue

    i LOVE the anime is my fav ever!!! and the game opening just sold me=)
    i’ll b getting it soon! please make more reviews of japanese games like this one

    ( ‘,’)K-E-E-P I-T U-P(‘,’ )
    ( ‘,’ )

  • Aoshi00

    I liked the anime a lot, definitely above its peers in the same genre, not to mention the constantly high animation quality throughout the entire series. It’s nice they made a fun game that does the title justice. Though I’m not sure if I would try this since it’s an Otome game. If I do get this, it’s to hear King’s self indulgent dreamy voice in PS2 quality :).. I like Sakamoto’s masculine voice a lot too, we’d be hearing a lot more from her as FF XIII’s Lightning.

  • mrs.hitaciin

    well im going to japan soon where in japan can i get it?

  • Taylor

    Do they have this in english? Or at least with a guide?

  • ouran lover

    is it in english? tell me please

  • neneko

    if im buying this awsome game then i’ll surely need an english guide for the small icons that are in japanese >w<

  • MajestcWolfs

    I would absolutley love this game to death but one problem..I am not Japanese

  • Mary

    Is there anyway there would be an english version of this game? I would LOVE to hear vic on the ds *starts day dreaming* Mmmmm…vic * wakes up* If there is anyway i could help i would (e.g. mail the people of the game to request english, start a potision so the people will see we want english) but i don’t how! Can someone start a potision online so the people will see how much we want english!

    • Kitsu_chan

      that sounds like a good idea. I’ll do some research on places that americanify (new word^^) games like that, and maybe start sending a patition(sp) around ouran sites. It could work!

  • kelly95

    OH MY GOTH!!!!!!! i never new they made a ds game does it sell in america and in english?!?!

  • niq

    T.T WHEN ARE THEY GONNA MAKE AN ENGLISH VERSION??? T.T

    • mary24

      nothing is certain yet…and i’m sad to say that it is highly unlikey that it will be translated and brought over. I know because i created a petition and emailed many gaming compainies, and non have emailed me back except xseed. And they sad no. But please still sign the petition at
      http://www.petitionspot.com/petitions/ourands/

  • mary24

    Try for english version sign a petition at

    http://www.petitionspot.com/petitions/ourands/

    need more signatures!

  • http://youtube.com tamaki

    i love host club to

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