Valkyrie Drive: Bhikkhuni

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Valkyrie Drive: Bhikkhuni
Vdbhikkhuni.jpg
Senran Kagura: Diet Edition
Genre: Hack-n-Slash
Platforms: PlayStation Vita
Microsoft Windows
Release Date: December 17, 2015 (JP)
October 2016 (EU/NA)
June 21, 2017 (PC/Steam)
Developer: Meteorise
Publisher: Marvelous (JP)
PQube (EU/NA)
Franchise: Valkyrie Drive


Valkyrie Drive: Bhikkhuni is a 2015 yuri-themed hack-n-slash game for the PlayStation Vita and PC, developed by Meteorise and published by Marvelous in Japan, and by PQube in North America and Europe. It was first released in 2015 in Japan, and in October 2016 in North America and Europe, with the PC version available exclusively in digital format on Steam on June 21, 2017. The game is part of the Valkyrie Drive Multimedia Project, which consisted of the game itself, the anime and a social game for mobiles, and was produced by Kenichiro Takaki of the Senran Kagura franchise.

Plot

As with the multimedia project of the same name the game is part of, the game is set on one of the "Five Artifical Islands" abruptly named "Bhikkhuni", named after the installment's title. The game stars the Kagurazaka sisters Rinka and Ranka, who are sent on the island after they are diagnosed with an illness, in where they are sent on said island for quarantine. There, they also meet other girls diagnosed with the same illness, and the four pillar gods, who are the guardians of the island, in which they must defeat to learn the secrets of the illness they have, and how to cure it, yet at the same time, the girls also have to fight each other.

Why It Sucks

  1. It's basically just a re-skinned version of Senran Kagura: Shinovi Versus, down to the similar gameplay, menu setup, game engine, Dressing Room, Hub Room (now the Dining room), and Shop. Even the Lingerie Printer works the exact same way as the Lingerie Lottery from said game.
  2. Like the multimedia project itself, it suffers from one of the most absurd, mundane and non-sensical concepts known to man, in which it involves girls being infected with viruses that turns them into weapons when kissed and/or caressed by others.
  3. And with that, it has a very dull, paper-thin, disjointed and non-sensical plot.
  4. Even though you can choose your partner, your partner never appears during actual gameplay to fight alongside you, but only shows up during character intros for each level, when you do the drives, when you perform a Connect in where you and your partner merge into two, and when you are defeated heavily by your end-level guardian, in where your upgraded weapon turns back into your partner. In other words, your partner only upgrades your girl's weapon, adding more non-sense. The same rule also applies to some of the other characters that you fight against at the end of certain levels, in which, they are also accompanied by their partners, and like yours, also do not show up during actual gameplay.
  5. It is also coupled with a cast of bland, one-dimensional, generic, cliché and unlikable characters, some of them also looking like they're rip-offs of other characters from other games or anime:
    1. Rinka Kagurazaka rips off Nepgear from Hyperdimension Neptunia.
    2. Ranka Kagurazaka rips either Tifa Lockhart from Final Fantasy VII or Uzume Tennouboshi from Megadimension Neptunia VII.
    3. Viola rips off either Nina Williams from Tekken or Setsuka from the Soul series, more specifically, her apperance in Soul Calibur IV.
    4. Momo Kuzuryuu rips off Kayo Hinazuki from Erased.
    5. Manpukumaru rips off Vanilla from Nekopara or any other maid from any other game or anime featuring maids, and even looks like a split version of Yellow Heart from Hyperdimension Neptunia., minus her blonde hair, which belongs to Viola.
    6. Koharu Tsukikage rips off Yukiko Amagi from Persona 4, while wearing a school uniform that was directly ripped-off from Fruits Basket.
    7. Mana Inagawa rips off Yuna from Final Fantasy X.
  6. It doesn't help that the girls themselves also lack any sort of chemistry to one another, as they are only there for the purpose of satisfying the player when their clothes get torn off either during battles against either one of the enemies or the four pillar gods or each other, or when they kiss or carress when they do drives, and their clothes get torn off when the kissed or carressed one turns into her partner's upgraded weapon.
  7. Dull and uninspired voice acting and poorly-written and cheesy dialogues.
  8. Most of the game is pretty repetitive, where you simply kill lots of enemies before you face an end-stage boss, who'll be either one of the characters you can also play with, or one of the four pillar gods.
  9. The romance novels you unlock by simply filling the girls' romance meters in the Dining Room every ten minutes (in real time) with each of the six other girls are nothing special, especially given how dull and uninspired the girls really are.
  10. Has really dull in-game graphics, 2D artstyles and CG backgrounds, especially since its overall graphic presentation feels like its ripping-off Hyperdimension Neptunia, from some of the character models, the menu styles, its similar gourard-shaded look, to even the hexagon-style backgrounds seen during drives and EXE attacks.
  11. Really bland and uninspired music.
  12. The two endings you get depending on if you finish each of the levels on which difficulty and rank, are unsatisfying and nothing special.

Redeeming Qualities

  1. The dressing room can be pretty fun messing around with the girls and even kiss them after completing the heart catch minigame perfectly after a certain rack rank for each of the girls is reached, something you weren't able to in Senran Kagura until Estival Versus, until it gets old really fast, given how bland, one-dimensional, generic and unlikable the girls really are.
  2. It can be quite fun seeing the girls kiss when they do the drives (more particularly the fourth drive) or during the intro FMV, before this also gets old quite quickly, given the game's highly-repetitive nature, and once again, how unlikable and generic the girls really are.
  3. The opening song during the Intro FMV is good.
  4. The gameplay can be pretty decent, if not very repetitive.
  5. At least the game pace is fast enough.

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