Hey Nasties, Mod Aria’s back today for more Gamer Date Night! Today, I’m talking about a dating sim that’s been around for awhile: It’s called Dandelion: Wishes Brought to You. This game was the first otome dating sim done by Cheritz; they’ve also done Nameless and the popular Mystic Messenger. And Dandelion is very different from the other games that Cheritz has.
The story focuses on Heejung. She’s a university student and a brilliant artist, but pressure from her disapproving mother forces her into a deep depression. One day, she wakes up and finds that someone has left a bunch of cute animals in her house (three rabbits and two cats). Heejung eventually decides to keep them as her pets, and she names them all. The animals help bring her out of her funk, and she soon finds herself loving life again. However, she quickly discovers one morning that the animals have turned into five handsome young men.
From that point, the game diverges into the route of the character that has the most affection with Heejung. Usually, otome visual novels come in two forms: an affection system based on correct choices, or a stat system where building up particular attribute categories helps move the route along. Dandelion has a bit of both, but the stat-raising part of the game is definitely the majority of it. I myself am not a fan of stat-raising games; I find them to be arbitrary. And Dandelion’s “stats” happen to be pretty gendered and silly: femininity, art, beauty, pressure and stress. You’re supposed to maintain the first three while keeping the other two at a minimum.
Suffice it to say, I did not enjoy the actual gameplay of Dandelion. But I did enjoy most of the characters. There are the three rabbits: quiet and cute Jieun, Jieun’s handsome gentleman friend Jihae and the tsundere Jiwoo. Of the two cats, there’s the popular and affectionate Jiyeon, and the easy going but rambunctious Jisoo. I enjoyed all the character’s routes, but Jihae and Jisoo are my favorite of the available guys. I felt like Jieun, Jiwoo and Jiyeon were a bit to immature for my taste. Though I did really like Jiyeon’s route for how intense the story was.
As for the writing, it’s certainly matches Cheritz’s style. The routes are cute, but most of them are quite poignant. I wouldn’t say this is necessarily a happy game, as even the good ends aren’t as good as I would have hoped. If you’re looking for a comparison, I’d say that the good ends to Dandelion are even sadder than Hakuoki’s good ends. Regardless, they do make sense for how the story is set up, so you can definitely give Cheritz a thumbs up for sticking to their guns.
Physically, the game is quite beautiful. The character models are very well done and attractive (particularly Jisoo and Jiwoo in my opinion). The music to the game is quite catchy. I loved the opening song and still have it on my iPod to this day. I kind of wish there had been a few more CGs to the game, but Cheritz was still breaking out when this game launched, so I understand they were likely on a strict budget.
In sum, Dandelion is a very deep and heart-trending game despite how cute it looks on the surface. If bittersweet endings aren’t your thing, then I’d suggest looking elsewhere. But if you’re okay with having a box of tissues with you as you play your otome games, then I highly suggest Dandelion. The writing for plot and characters is excellent. Hopefully Chertiz will continue the trend of making fantastic otome games for us fans!
Thanks for reading this article and have a great day you guys! Stay tuned for more NWG content, too!
~ Mod Aria/Sam