Steins;Gate: My Darling’s Embrace (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Az Elias 07.02.2020

Review for Steins;Gate: My Darling’s Embrace on Nintendo Switch

Phew, this one took a while to get here, didn't it? Steins;Gate's romantic what-if spin-off originally came out just a couple of years after the first game in Japan, all the way back in 2011. Perhaps the mission was to build up the fan base of the series before it seemed worthwhile to chance a title of this ilk in the West, which won't naturally be as appealing to even the most ardent fans of the franchise, given this is very much a light-hearted side story. At the right price, though, Steins;Gate: My Darling's Embrace just might demand a pick-up if you know what to expect.

Picking up during an alternate version of Steins;Gate's story, main character and self-proclaimed mad scientist Rintaro Okabe has gone back into the past - just as he did on many occasions in the original plot. In his bid to raise funds for his laboratory team, he has tasked his members to come up with new gadgets and inventions to sell to the public. As in the other titles, the opening chapter or two sets the stage of events and give a little recapping of familiar characters - sure enough, the whole crew is here, including Kurisu, Mayuri, Daru and the rest. Genius girl Kurisu seems to have designed something ground-breaking in her tireless efforts to create a marketable gadget…but it is a prototype that needs more testing.

The incredible pair of bracelets she's crafted are intended to help couples repair their relationships, with each person wearing one on their wrists. Move too far apart or argue with each other, and an electric shock will jolt the pair of them. As it is indeed still a work in progress, though, the bracelets don't have an unlock function, and will only come undone once the inner workings deem the couple to be on good terms. See where this is going? Yep, it doesn't take much to figure out that Okabe gets caught up in being locked down to one of the many girls (or guys) of his lab team, and having to spend the following days in close, awkward and often sexually tense proximity until the bracelets come loose. What follows are numerous humorous events that retain much of the charm that made Steins;Gate so appealing.

Screenshot for Steins;Gate: My Darling’s Embrace on Nintendo Switch

With several lab members to get intimate with, there are multiple arcs and endings to achieve. Like previously, the interactive moments mainly come in the opening hours, with text replies from Okabe's phone determining which path and girl he ends up being chained to. It was a criticism in the past, but the same applies here; it is difficult to know how to set Okabe on a particular route without researching which choices to make using a guide. Save yourself the trouble, and just look it up online in order to fall onto the path you want, else it will only get frustrating. Quicksaves and super-fast skip options really help to get through the text and replaying of scenarios easier.

A return of the brilliant music and beautiful art of the original title again brings the world of Steins;Gate to life, and new scenes capture some of the more amusing moments, with the likes of Kurisu even ending up in a cat maid outfit that normally only Faris and Mayuri don. My Darling's Embrace may be lacking in the serious elements that combined so well in the first game to offset all of the silly and quirky stuff, but this is about bringing out a side many fans loved and exploring that even further. Who doesn't want to see where getting close to Kurisu or Mayuri could lead? Heck, probably the most hilarious events are when Okabe is forced onto a path with the very effeminate looking Luka.

This is most definitely a spin-off that sits in well with the rest of the series, taking full advantage of the what-if concept to deliver a fun distraction that fans of Steins;Gate would be wise to check out. It's just a shame the grammatical errors are one too many and can be a slight bother.

Screenshot for Steins;Gate: My Darling’s Embrace on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

7/10
Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10

Steins;Gate: My Darling's Embrace deserves credit for managing to retain a desire to spend more time with these characters, and runs with the humour and nerdiness in combination with the sexually natured and light-hearted narratives that Okabe ends up entwined in. It does the series justice by sticking to what makes everybody so appealing, but it is a very specific type of visual novel that doesn't get into any serious or dramatic situations. Understand what you're setting yourself up for and this is a fun alternate diversion to the original title.

Developer

5pb

Publisher

Spike Chunsoft

Genre

Visual Novel

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

Comments

There are no replies to this review yet. Why not be the first?

Comment on this article

You can comment as a guest or join the Cubed3 community below: Sign Up for Free Account Login

Preview PostPreview Post Your Name:
Validate your comment
  Enter the letters in the image to validate your comment.
Submit Post

Subscribe to this topic Subscribe to this topic

If you are a registered member and logged in, you can also subscribe to topics by email.
Sign up today for blogs, games collections, reader reviews and much more
Site Feed
Who's Online?
Azuardo

There are 1 members online at the moment.