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Love Potion
Reviewer: Rowena Lim Lei 04/22/2002

Synopsis:
You are Yuichi Sakuma, an agent sent by JES (Japanese Educational Society) to investigate a posh exclusive all-girl school. Students have been disappearing without a trace, and no one knows where to start looking. To top it off, your colleague Megumi who was originally handling this assignment has vanished as well. Your must find out what has happened to the students and Megumi, before more names are added to the missing persons list.

Review:
Love Potion is a linear visual novel along the lines of "Fatal Relations" and "Amy's Fantasies". This time, it's about an all-girls school being plagued by student disappearances and a strange sexual fever. As Yuichi, you go undercover as a professor... searching for clues in your spare time. But amidst looking around and talking to various students, you somehow become the object of everyone's desire. Is it simply because of you're the only man in campus? Or is it something more? Be prepared to click away endlessly to find out.

The plot is rather reminiscent of the anime "Akiko", which is incidentally based on a bishoujo game of the same title. I couldn't help but laugh at the way our main character Yuichi trudges on from one sexual encounter to another, until I actually lost count of how many times he has had sex in a single day. Every event seems like just an excuse to have sex, sex, and more sex. The pacing is a bit of a drag, and the story gets fairly predictable at certain points to boot. I felt I would have enjoyed Love Potion a lot better had the execution been tighter, with less superfluous events and more focus on the major plot points.

It's difficult to think of Love Potion as a real game. You are given choices to make, but it doesn't matter because you can't pick the wrong one no matter what you do. For most part you are given anywhere from two to four options, and you have to keep clicking every single one of them until the corresponding message repeats itself. It's only until then that you can move on to the next scene. Game play consists of nothing but reading and clicking away. There is nothing to solve, nothing to think about.

The visuals are okay, sharing a similar illustration style with some of the other C's Ware titles such as "Fatal Relations" and "Glo*ri*a". The difference is, Love Potion's artwork is somewhat less refined and the overall effect looks washed out. While sex is depicted in a very detailed manner, one particular scene had a mosaic'd area, and some scenes featured an invisible male organ. Various fetishes are represented (anyone for an enema?) and controversial themes such as incest are more than hinted at.

Love Potion is far from being engrossing. In fact, I was tempted to abandon the game midway more than a few times... and coming up with a justifiable review was about the only thing that kept me going. I'd recommend it only if you want a whole lot of sex scenes with zero difficulty.

Miscellanies:
After you finish the game, a CG gallery featuring all the sex scenes becomes accessible. There's a music mode with all the background midis as well.

Screenshots
Love Potion
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Review Title:
Love Potion
Alternative Titles:
Etsuraku no Gakuen
Released:
1996
Approximate Length:
5-10 Hours
Suitable For:
Adults Only
General Rating:
2 out of 5 stars
Hentai Rating:
2 out of 5 stars
Genres:
Police, School, Incest,
Rape, Toys, Yuri
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