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I got a nice package the other day. Inside was a total of three discs, with two games on each, for a total of six new eroge to sit proudly on my shelf of shame. One of these discs was a combination of X-Change and X-Change 2, two games I had been wanting for a while. I’ll get to the other four eventually, but for now, let’s look at X-Change.
I bought this because I have an insatiable desire for physical eroge. I just simply cannot help myself as I follow in the footsteps of people I probably shouldn’t consider to be role models, such as Yamazaki from Welcome to the N.H.K, and Kirino from Oreimo. Both characters have enviable eroge collections; entire closets and walls filled with porn games of all kinds. So inspiring.
Unfortunately, living outside of Japan without skills in Japanese is a drawback if you want an eroge collection. Physical copies of these games in the west of are somewhat rare, and the ones that are available can get pretty pricey. Thankfully, the good people at J-List have me covered!
Granted, the games in question are older ones from the late 90s and early 2000s. But, if you’re like me and love the nostalgic art and storytelling of this era, this is no problem at all. It didn’t take me long to decide to get them, and despite the lovely Otaku Apologist telling me he could get me “press licenses”, and to “save my money”, the order was placed. Working in the eroge business has its perks, but press licenses can’t get you neat stuff to put on your shelf!
So, how are the games? Well, if you even just look at the box art, you’ll see they’re dated, though that’s to be expected with games this old. But, even legendary classics like Kanon or Kana look dated as fuck nowadays, so I wasn’t too worried about that. Actually playing them, I found they weren’t incredible or anything, and they were short as hell, but they were also fun and kept me entertained for a few hours.
X-Change 1 is about Takuya, a junior college student who belongs to the chemistry club. Being the dumbass that he is, he spills a mysterious chemical all over himself, which turns him into a girl. This is a situation millions of people around the world would love to be in, myself included, but our ungrateful protagonist just wants to be turned back. Fortunately, the school is used to him fucking up in chemistry club, and just kind of accepts it. While the club president and resident genius works on a cure, Takuya finds out what life as a girl is like.
He goes through a lot, from simple things like having difficulty with his bra and perverts on the bus, to having sex with various members of the school faculty, as well as a number of his classmates, to getting raped by his step-sister’s boyfriend and being hospitalized. He gets to experience first hand what it’s like to be a girl being confessed to, treated inferior, and what it’s like to be nothing more than a sexual object to a bunch of misogynistic men. And boy, does he love it.
There are 7 endings total, five “Game Overs” and two main endings. The first main ending I got was dating the chemistry club president, Asami, and the second was the canon ending, where you end up with your childhood friend, Asuka. The five “bad endings” usually end with sex with some random guy, like your gym teacher or a gangbang of art students. Depending on what happens, Takuya will either take the antidote and turn back, or find an excuse to stay as a girl and live his life as a total cockslut.
X-Change is a full on nukige. Every tidbit of story is used to propel Takuya into another bang scene. Everyone wants a piece of his ass, and after discovering how sensitive his body is, he is more than happy to share his pussy. Fortunately, I like playing nukige for the story, but if you’re not like me, and are looking for fap material, then don’t get X-change.
Remember how I said this game was dated? That is especially true for the art. The sprites look nice, but the bulk of the game is sex CGs, and they’re lacking. The characters look inconsistent, the anatomy can be poor, the linework is bulky and unfitting, and the nipples look like they were pasted on. The pubic hair and vaginas look kind of nice, but even that contrasts with how the rest of the game looks.
The backgrounds vary in quality. For instance, Asuka’s bedroom and Takuya’s bedroom don’t look bad, but the classroom and chemistry room are horrendous.
Being from 1997, the sound is limited. There is no voice acting, just very 90s MIDI music. This suits me fine, as I can use speakers instead of headphones without worrying about the other occupants of my house knowing I’m playing a mediocre 90’s porn game. Interestingly enough, none of the music loops, so once a song ends, it’s just a weird silence until the next song starts up. While no track is bad, per say, after a while everything just seems to meld together.
To be quite honest, my main drive for wanting to play this, and probably why I enjoyed it despite its shortcomings, is nostalgia. It brings back memories of a younger me discovering porn through shitty hentai flash games on Newgrounds in the early 2000s, which quite often stole artwork from games like this, when they were still brand new.
All in all, X-Change was fun to play through. It has its flaws, but isn’t completely terrible! The game kept me entertained, and there were a surprising amount of endings, so while each route was short, there was a lot of replay value to get 100% completion. Most importantly, I didn’t feel like it was a waste of my money, and it left me wanting to play X-Change 2. Get this game at J-LIST or JAST USA.