By Benny Carrillo / January 10th, 2017
Building Trust in Order to Reform
The story of Criminal Girls is why I think someone should really pick this up. A good story can always make a game worth the investment. The original Hyperdimension Neptunia, for example, was a really rough game, however, people enjoyed the game due to its characters and story. The same idea holds true here. The overall goal of the game is to reform the girls and escape from hell alive. However, like most JRPGs, a heavy emphasis is put on the characters and their development. The interesting thing here is that if you really think about it, the unifying theme of Criminal Girls is trust. Without delving into spoiler territory there’s only so much I can say, but really these girls are not evil. Yes, they have done bad things, but they’ve closed themselves off from everybody. They no longer trust people. This is where you can bring the BDSM aesthetic in play. If you stop and think about it, something like that requires a lot of trust.
Over the course of Criminal Girls, the various heroines start to open up to not only the main character but each other. They learn, grow, and start to heal old wounds through facing their sins and their own blemishes. However, they can’t do it alone. It’s a group effort between everyone and it only works because they can, at the end of the day, trust each other. Am I reading too much into this and trying to connect dots where there aren’t any? Possibly. I won’t deny that the BDSM aesthetic is there for fanservice sake, but whether intentional or not, it does feel like it fits the overall theme of trust that the story feels built on.
That all said, don’t assume that means this story is genre defining or anything. The story and characters are enjoyable, but at times it does feel a little light. Also due to the dungeon crawling nature of the game and the backtracking you will need to do, it can make doing the girls’ individual side-quests a bit tedious. Still, if you enjoy a character-driven story I’d think this is worth a shot. That all said, let me tell you who I think will enjoy this game.
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