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Review of Heroine wa Tomodachi Desu ka? Koibito Desu ka? Soretomo Tomefure Desu ka? Second

SubjectHeroine wa Tomodachi Desu ka? Koibito Desu ka? Soretomo Tomefure Desu ka? Second
Heroine wa Tomodachi Desu ka? Koibito Desu ka? Soretomo Tomefure Desu ka? Second
ByVote: 6.7che-boludo on 2021-10-05 last updated on 2021-10-19
ReviewTL;DR: They managed to keep quite a few of the good parts of Tomefure 1; sadly, some of it got worse IMO (most significantly, there's less icha icha and teasing/building up sexual tension, and more h scenes instead), but not *that* bad, and I still enjoyed playing it.

Consider playing Tomefure 2 if:
* you liked Tomefure 1, or you like harem games in general (although in the latter case, I'd recommend you start with TF1 first)
* while playing eroge, you're mostly after the h scenes and do not mind vanilla sex (with some icha icha as a nice side bonus)
* big (or rather, to use the vndb lingo, huge) titted girls wishing to become sex slaves and get impregnated are your thing (there is no average-chested/pettanko girl to be found here)

OTOH, it might not be the best choice if:
* you're looking for an eroge with a more fleshed out story, or one where icha icha and/or humor are the main dish, and the h scenes are just a cherry on top
* you wouldn't mind a game mostly focused on vanilla h scenes, but would mind being kept waiting a lot (in my case, ~20hrs on auto play) until the first scene
* you do not like kinetic novels

Liked:
Character designs/h scene art
As nice as TF1 (not that big of a surprise considering the artist stayed the same). For me, the girls' tits getting even bigger was also a welcome change, although at the tachie level, it did feel slightly awkward at first. Still, the h scenes were just fine. (If you already felt that TF1 bust sizes were too big, well, YMMV)

Characters
Contrary to TF1, there was no annoying (Aimi-like) character. Also, except Sera, they somewhat felt like they were revamped TF1 characters, namely, Sayaka -> Reika, Sakurako -> Sanae, Rin -> Hinano, Shiina -> Nanako

Voice acting
Not exactly award-winning level, but good nonetheless (not as good as TF1 though). BTW, TF1 Sayaka's voice is now Sanae's

Writing
Compared to TF1, I wouldn't call it great anymore , "just" good, and still as slangy and casual. Some references were being thrown every now and then, but I felt they were just an addition and not the central point of the lines in question. Definitely made me learn more slang, and also smile at least a couple of times, although sadly, I think I enjoyed the humor and the interactions in TF1 more.
For example, I was missing that Kaguya-sama wa kokurasetai-like narration (which was quite aplenty in TF1 and which I definitely enjoyed a lot while playing the prequel). Yes, there were a few of those every now and then, but nothing close to last time. To be fair though, this kinda this made sense, since in TF1 the narrator's primary role was to introduce a lot of background info that you were more or less already expected to know by having played TF1 before starting the sequel (e.g. what is tomefure in the first place).
Also, the brief interceptions where the MC's eyes were flashing and he was saying 'yareru' (that almost always made me burst in laughter) were unfortunately missing as well. (Actually, there was one instance of this... although contrary to TF1 there was no voice of him actually saying it, Reika broke the fourth wall shortly afterwards, complaining that MC has eyes, even though eroge MCs usually don't, she was like "so, WTF, are we going to have sex with *that*?" - I found that scene to be quite funny.).

H scenes
As in the prequel, by no means nothing out of the ordinary, just good old vanilla sex with the girls volunteering to be impregnated and made sex slaves.
I thought it was a shame there was just a handful of group scenes though. So much wasted potential here, since this is a harem game after all lol. (In any case, there were definitely more h scenes in total. ) The scene distribuition was also a major improvement upon the prequel. This time, every girl got more or less the same amount of h screen time (c.f. Sayaka basically being neglected until the end @ Tomefure 1 -_-)

Music
Not as good as TF1 but overall I liked it

Backgrounds
Same as music. Not 100% sure but some of the backgrounds might actually have been the same (inside the school, the school yard).

Didn't like:
Not much new stuff in general compared to TF1
TF1 brought in the fresh concept of tomefure, which might have set the bar too high (raising the expectations here as well, at least in my case). TF2 though, while introducing some changes (e.g. the characters already knew each other from the beginning), was somewhat disappointing in that it did not really introduce anything new. Arguably, the only new thing was Sera being a non-Japanese character... As mentioned above, I definitely had no problems with the characters here, but they did reuse a lot things that perhaps would have been better if changed to something else, e.g. both h scene and regular scene locations (e.g., the ofuro or the arcade).

Story
I didn't find it as interesting as TF1 (which for the record I thought was OK). For example, there was nothing close to what one could arguably call drama (c.f. Rin running away all of a sudden in TF1). The closest thing was when Reika and Sera were threatening to leave the harem, but this turned out to be an empty threat so...
Nor was there any subplot similar to the feud with the school chinpiras in TF1. All that happened was just a smooth conquest of the girls, a rather generic one on top of that. (Then again, considering this, contrary to TF1, turned out to be more or less a nukige, you could argue that it's stupid of me to have expected a story in the first place lol... regardless, I did find TF1's story to be much better)

Less icha icha and teasing/tension building, more focus put on h scenes
This arguably was the worst thing about this game IMO. What I most enjoyed about TF1 was the icha icha and the teasing/tension building up before the h scenes. Here, while these elements were definitely there and still proved to be fun, the pacing was rather different, which changed the kind of game this turned out to be. For some reason, in TF2, the tomefure ordinance no longer explicitly prohibited sex. This led to no 'this is wrong, we shouldn't be doing this - but..., but ..' kinda tension building moments (since everyone was ok with doing it from the beginning), the h scenes starting sooner as well as the harem forming relatively early on. To be more precise, it was maybe only 20hrs into the game until the first h scene, with icha icha screen time dropping gradually, so that after perhaps after another 10h (i.e. some 30h into the game on auto play) the icha icha was almost completely gone once all girls were conquered. From that point onwards, instead, it started feeling like a nukige because of the almost complete focus on sex. IIRC, timewise, TF1 was something like 50% story/ichaicha -> 30% story/ichaicha/h mix -> 20% mostly h scenes, whereas TF2 felt more like 30% story/ichaicha -> 20% story/ichaicha/h mix -> remaining 50% mostly being h scenes. (But, in case you were frustrated because of having to wait for so long for the h scenes while playing TF1, you might find this direction change to be a good thing - again, YMMV.)

Total play time: ~60hrs (auto play at medium-fast speed, with a dictionary lookup every now and then)

Comments

#1 by mutsuki
2021-10-05 at 21:00
< report >i like your "consider playing/not playing it" section that's actually a pretty cool idea
#2 by mrkew
2021-10-13 at 17:13
< report >Excellent review.
#3 by crusader325
2021-10-19 at 12:32
< report >Really nice review!

Haven't played Tomefure 2, but currently considering it. Yeah it will be also a let down for me if they turned down the tension/teasing building which I really like in Tomefure.