A surprise release that was announced only weeks beforehand, White Robe Love Addiction (otherwise known as Nurse Love Addiction) was localized and then released via Steam on July 7th, 2016. Does this medium-length yuri visual novel live up to the hype?
After playing through the game, I am pleased to say my answer is a resounding YES. While I do have some problems with Nurse Love Addiction, my complaints are not only minor but also lie with only the localization and not with the game itself. I know I sound like an ungrateful punk, but I truly do appreciate Degica for localizing, publishing, and sharing this wonderful visual novel to a global audience.
Length: Medium (15-30 hours)
Lewdness: 1/3 (Kissing and Hand Holding Only; No Nudity)
Price: 39.99 USD
However, before I elaborate on the small flaws, allow me to present a quick overview of this game and to go over what I enjoyed about the visual novel in question.
As expected by the name, Nurse Love Addiction is about aspiring nursing students, angelic nurses, and the pursuit of love. The main cast of characters are as follows:
Osachi Asuka: the protagonist and viewpoint character who is a simple and easygoing girl. She decided to become a nurse after discovering an old picture book containing her own childish scribble which read, “I’m going to become a nurse!” She has no memories of the first 8 years of her life.
Osachi Nao: Asuka’s responsible sister who followed Asuka into nursing school. Seemingly able to read everyone like a book, Nao really loves and dotes on her older sister.
Takeda Sakuya: One of Asuka’s classmates. A prideful, stubborn, upper-class girl who acts very cold to Asuka when they first meet. She is currently dating Itsuki.
Amatou Itsuki: Another one of Asuka’s classmates and the daughter of a distinguished family. Stylish, mischievous, and charismatic. Her favorite phrase is, “I’m lying.” She is currently dating Sakuya.
Oohara Kaede: One of the nurse instructors at Teito Nursing School. The daughter of an elite family known for their prominence in the field of medicine, Kaede is considered by many, including Asuka, to be an angel clad in white.
There are additional characters, of course. Since I would be spewing spoilers if I were to elaborate, however, so I will just leave it at that. As for the protagonist, Asuka, and her love interests, all of them are not as they seem. Every single one of them. The publishers weren’t kidding when they advertised “unique and rounded characters.” Essentially, my descriptions of the characters are true only at first glance.
And yes, two of Asuka’s love interests are dating each other, another love interest is your sister, and the last love interest is your instructor. Wow!
I feel like I have to mention the character design here, which is just amazing and well done. Asuka is a bit of a slacker, so of course she has unkempt hair that almost drapes over her eyes. The picture book which inspired her to become a nurse is about catching stars, so it only makes sense that the buttons on Asuka’s casual clothes are shaped like stars. Despite being responsible, Nao refers to herself in third person, which is considered to be girly (and slightly childish). As such, she wears pigtails/twintails. Itsuki is a stylish cool beauty, so she walks around wearing garter belts and has short, tomboyish hair. I can go on and on about this.
And there’s the voices. I think they also did an excellent job choosing the VAs. All the voices suit the characters. There’s also the matter of PASSION. Players are given 72 save file slots (9 pages of 8 files per page), but I used a good majority of the allotted slots as bookmarks for when the VAs (primarily Asuka) let loose with amazing, heartfelt screams. So much emotion!
Personally, I found all the voices to be very soothing, but I also have a high tolerance for squeaky voices. If the player finds some voices grating to the ears, however, the player has the option to mute specific characters. Furthermore, after the player clears a love interest’s good ending, the player has the option of setting the love interest’s voice as the system sound. So when the player clicks on a button or saves a file or loads a file, the player can hear the character’s voice! What if you decide you’re not in the mood to hear Nao’s voice when you hover your mouse over the menu? That’s not a problem at all since you can adjust the system settings at any time! Personally speaking, I keep the system sound set to Kaede’s voice at all times.
As for the plot… oh my god. One of the advertised features was “unexpected and surprising plot points that will keep you reading until the very end.” That is an understatement. Look, I was enjoying Nurse Love Addiction at a leisurely pace for a few days, listening to every voiced line with earnest. Then I started completing routes and I couldn’t stop. I basically sat down and went through the rest of the game that day, with my total time clocking in at 19 hours. I could have gone even quicker if I didn’t read at such a slow pace at the beginning. The visual novel was that engaging. I just had to know how each route ends!
Just like how the love interests are out there, the plot is also a wild ride. Time and time again I kept getting caught off-guard by developments – and yet there’s still an ample amount of foreshadowing sprinkled throughout the story. I have half a mind to play through the game again to enjoy the little details and hints. And some parts are just so funny I couldn’t help but cackle like a witch at times. This is an example of a well-written script.
That being said, this game isn’t all fluff and sparkles. It gets into some dark content. There’s an age restriction for Nurse Love Addiction, for instance, but there are no nude scenes. Furthermore, one of the suggested Steam tags for this game is “Psychological Horror.” Let that sink in for a minute.
In regards to the endings, I will try my best to mind my words in order to not give anything away. There are 9 endings – each characters gets a GOOD END and a BAD END, so that’s 2 endings for each of the 4 characters. The ninth ending, the After School End, is the obligatory “protagonist doesn’t choose a love interest” route.
The four good endings all left me feeling so warm and fuzzy to the point that I have a difficult time deciding which pairing is the One True Pairing. I have to give a slight lead to Asuka x Kaede, though, but that’s just my opinion. As for the bad endings, that’s where the bulk of the mature themes and content lie in ambush. Just giving my readers a heads-up!
Also, Degica weren’t kidding when they said the game features bittersweet love. I mean, sure, after a lot of trial and tribulations, Asuka ends up with a girl (or more) in each route, but that doesn’t change the fact that your other love interests still love you. It’s what happens in games with multiple love interests, I know, but unrequited love is always tough. I’ve spent the last few days replaying the scenarios in my head, but as I mentioned above, finalizing the OTP is very hard.
If I were to suggest an order for the routes, I’d recommend to clear Nao’s route first and leave Kaede’s route last. While it’s not necessary to follow this order, I think Nao’s route provides the most information. This really helps with Sakuya’s route and Itsuki’s route since those two routes build on said background. Kaede’s route is more amusing to complete after finishing Nao’s route and is sort of separate from the rest of the routes, so that’s why I recommend saving her route for last.
I mentioned earlier that I think the character design was on-point. Well, the art is also gorgeous, so we have a wham-bam-thank-you-ma’am- combo going on here. Nothing off-model in sight; just very pretty girls falling in love with other pretty girls. What more can a yuri fan ask for? Unlocked CGs can be viewed by clicking the Photos button, which is unlocked after finishing a route.
There are 15 soundtracks and they are all great. To be fair, three songs are just the opening song as three separate versions. Nevertheless, I can listen to the OST for hours without getting bored. And every love interest comes with her own theme! The Music menu is also unlocked after completing a route.
There are two more features players can unlock by completing a route. The Memories menu allows players to re-experience unlocked good and bad endings. The last feature is the Messages menu. Clicking this button allows the player to listen to recorded messages left by the VAs where they talk about the game as people and not as characters. There’s 6 messages – one for Asuka’s VA, one for each of the four love interests, and one more for Asuka’s VA which is unlocked after completing all the routes. Suitably, the VA also congratulates the player for doing so. Yay! Sadly, none of the messages are translated, but it’s still nice to listen to the VAs talk in Japanese.
So what are the drawbacks to this game? I’m sorry to say this, but I feel like the localization let down the players a little bit. I’m fussy about honorifics, so I was sad to see how they dropped “-chan,” translated “-san” into “miss,” etc. There is also a considerable amount of typos that only increased as I progressed throughout the game, leading me to think that the translators were in a rush.
A side note: I didn’t realize that the menu buttons, “Record” and “Re-examination” were the “Save” and “Load” buttons until I had played the game for 2 hours. It’s not Deciga’s fault by any stretch of the imagination – I was just too slow at putting two and two together.
tl;dr – Nurse Love Addiction is a medium-length (20-30 hours for completion) visual novel about girls learning about what it means to love and what it means to be a nurse. Despite its bubbly premises, the visual novel dips into some unexpected material and will keep players entertained until the very end. Just be aware most routes have a component of supernatural happenings. With well-rounded characters, amazing voicing, beautiful art and enticing music, Nurse Love Addiction is well worth the price tag. The only sore spot is the quality of the localization, but beggars can’t be choosers. This game is a must-have for yuri fans. Thank you once again, Degica and Kogado!
Players can buy Nurse Love Addiction here.
My Steam guide to the routes can be found over here.