Houkago Saikoro Club Episode 9: Game design classes

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The group breaks for exams

I guess we’re getting into some new territory now that the cast is complete. I don’t particularly have a problem with Midori feeling insecure after having met Emmy, but I think that the two characters would be better off if they balanced each other out. It’s still early, so there’s definitely still hope for that, but that was the main thing that bothered me in this episode. Other than that, I liked how it approached the universality of playground games and basically defending homebrew rules.

Emmy tries to find the shop

As I mentioned before, my main concern with this episode is that it seems to validate Midori’s insecurities. Emmy seems to have a real knack for game design, and she comes from the lauded country of Germany. It’s true that Midori needs to swallow her pride, but I would prefer if Emmy had her own set of flaws too. The episode starts off by joking that she has a bad sense of direction, but that doesn’t translate to much.

Midori is unable to clear all of the locations

I like that the episode gives Emmy the win in Elfenland. Combined with her flashback to her friends in Germany, it feels like she deserves that win. Also, I don’t know if it was just me, but I have no real sense of why her final move was able to win the game. Is this something for people more familiar with the game?

Miki explains the game

This episode takes a weird digression into childhood games, but it ties it together well. I liked how it touches on the shared concepts in the playground games of different countries. I’m more familiar with “Red Light Green Light”, but I can still see similar concepts in the Japanese version of it. I’ve also coincidentally seen the Korean version as well, and that version is even subtly different in its own way.

Emmy tries to improve the game

In some senses, a playground game is kind of a weird example. It makes sense for the rules to be simple since children play these games. That being said, I do like how the episode naturally gives Emmy the chance to modify the game by using somewhat basic concepts. I know people can often get a bit straight-laced with the rules, so it’s nice to see the girls embracing the adaptations.

Emmy tries to handle Midori

All in all, I think this setup is promising so far. Emmy mentions that she initially wanted to develop a game with her childhood friend, so I take this episode as the beginning of her potential partnership with Midori. I think it would be cool to see the two working together.

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