One year ago today (May 5th) I got on GIO and did what would soon become a popular blog series, Import Reviews. And since that day I've been happy to bring you reviews of some of the most obscure, and unheard of games from half way around the world. But ever since I've started there has always been one game I've had my eye on. For some New Love Plus is a game that most people associate with Japanese gaming. The sort of dating sim/ virtual novel game. But for me it was curiosity. The game is very popular in Japan, and I wanted to know why. What I expected was very little, and what I got amazed me. New Love Plus ends the first year of Import Reviews with an absolute bang.

World meet Rinko

The story is nothing to ignore in this one, and it's because of the games 3 main characters: Manaka, Rinko, and Nene. You simply play yourself, a new transfer student at school. In 100 days you have to meet, befriend, and eventually date one of the 3 girls. For my playthrough I went for Rinko. When the game started Rinko was simply the girl who was always in the library. A simple character with no depth. But as the game went on I came to learn so much about her. Her fiery personality, yet a soft side for cats. A girl who's father considered her the third wheel after he got remarried. A sad girl who spent hours at the library, listening to her music and reading, instead of going home. Rinko was more than just eye candy for the player, she felt real. And really that was what made this game tremendous. It's hard to remember the last time I cared, or liked a character this much. So much changes, and learning new things about the girls just adds more to make for game that thrives off its story and characters.

Rinko spends a lot of her time in the Library

Gameplay wise the game is fairly weak. The game is cut in 2 parts. Part 1 is your hundred days and this is where most of the story comes from. During these days you can select 4 activities to do. Each activity raises and lowers different characteristics of your character. Going to class raises intelligence, Going for a walk raises your athleticism. Based on these characteristics the girls might become more or less fond of you. There are also moments where you will be asked question and made decisions. Moments like these can be scripted or random. As dull as it can get some times, it goes rather fast and I was so into the story I kept wanting to go on. As you get latter in the game, I started to notice it mattered less, the more a girl liked me. The 2nd part is more about having fun. Going on dates, and using many of the 3ds features like the camera to take pictures of an AR version of your girl sitting on your couch. But it is worth going through to get more story and learn more and more about the girl you chose.

Whoever you pick, chances are you won't be disappointed.

When it came down to it, New Love Plus amazed me. It looks great, plays great, and the story of the girls was terrific. I was absolutely pleased with this game. There was so much to like about the game. That said it's sad that this will be something that people will still see as being weird, something as a "only in Japan" thing. But people who keep an open mind will find a surprising game to love. For people looking to import, KNOW YOUR JAPANESE, there is tons of it!


- A Lot!

- Story

- Looks great, and 3d works well

- Rinko!!!(biased)

- Pretty much everything


- Still a dating sim, people will frown upon it no matter how good it is

-100 days to get a girlfriend pressure is on! (took me 98 days)


- Gameplay can be slow, but once your girls story picks up you'll be blowing through days.

- with 3 girls to learn about, you have to pick, stick with your girl or move on to get more story. Choices are hard...