There are certain visual novels where someone playing might be positive there would be a greater awareness of and appreciation for them if others only knew what they were like and about. Except, because of their nature or topics, they end up being obscure titles. You could consider them a hidden treasure and pleasant surprise where the secrets surrounding them stay unrevealed because of them being directed at specific audiences. While Nurse Love Addiction is a well-executed yuri visual novel, where players follow a young woman who could find love with another woman, it also has this depth and lore to it to uncover.
Editor’s Note: There will be NO spoilers about Nurse Love Addiction in this article.
The basic story of Nurse Love Addiction isn’t all that atypical from a visual novel with romantic elements. We have a young woman who seems a bit innocent, naive, and uncertain about herself. Asuka is getting ready to pursue her dream of becoming a nurse. However, she isn’t exactly sure why she wants to be one; she only knows that she wanted it so much that she made a note in a childhood. After high school, she heads to university alongside her younger sister, Nao, to see if a lackadaisical girl with no direction could become a respected caregiver. There, she meets Sakuya and Itsuki, two fellow students who are at the same level as her and Nao, are in a relationship with each other, and somehow seem more mature than them. With the help of their teacher, Kaede, they go through the next few years pursuing their degree.
What is great about Nurse Love Addiction is how much time it spends establishing the characters and their world before even getting into the thought of romance. Yes, there are fanservice situations. Asuka is hit on by a few of the other characters and finds herself in about two “whoops, somehow we’re on top of each other” situations. But these are brief moments in a game that spends actual hours establishing these women as students, showing what some of their classes are like, portraying Asuka as a struggling student who doesn’t learn at the same pace as her peers and approaches some problems differently, and building up bonds between people who might not have gotten along well immediately.
It is only once Nurse Love Addiction has that foundation that wheels begin to turn. First, it is to start to establish relationships. It takes quite a while before someone even gets the option to make their first decisions here. Even when you do start making the first choices that send you down different routes, they don’t begin by being overly romantic. Instead, they have you spending more time with the characters in a natural way, perhaps flirting, teasing, or engaging in ordinary conversations.
Then, depending on your decisions, there will be the Nurse Love Addiction “wham” moments. That is when the story beats kick in that set this yuri visual novel apart. There is one route where everything about the game will meet your expectations. It’s one that is fairly obvious, once you start talking to people and learning about them and their reputations. The relationships with the other three heroines are far different. I’m honestly afraid to say more, lest I give any hints away. Rest assured that it will do things you don’t expect and the archetypes you see, such as the princess, little sister, and mysterious flirt will all be subverted.
What’s also great is how easy it can be to see both the good and bad endings. Nurse Love Addiction is the sort of yuri visual novel where each one is worth seeing. Some of them go places and can be uncomfortable. Others, when you get a good ending, can be satisfying. After you make the “good” choices that get you into a relationship, all you have to do is make a save before the last decision. One answer gives you the good end, which is normally rather safe, and the other gives you a bad ending. Be advised that there could be very sensitive and even graphic ideas there, though! (Things take even more of a turn.) Also, if you make one “wrong” choice on a route, you get locked into the bad ending early on.
Nurse Love Addiction has untold depths. You are helping Asuka find love, sure. You’re watching as she tries to pursue her dream. As you go on the journey, more than a few of the relationships will surprise you. Maybe it will be in good ways. Perhaps not! It is definitely an unexpected experience and the sort of visual novel even people who don’t normally enjoy yuri relationships might want to learn more about.
Nurse Love Addiction is available for the Nintendo Switch. You can also find it on the PlayStation Vita and PC.