Level-5 readies Girls RPG for 3DS

Professor Layton developer's Cinderella Life simulation aimed at creating more girl gamers.

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It seems female gamers are more partial towards portable and mobile titles, a notion which may have led Level-5 to create something to entice more girls into pursuing the hobby, particularly in Japan. The Fukuoka-based company recently announced Girls RPG: Cinderella Life for the Nintendo 3DS on Famitsu.com, a simulation tailor-made for female audiences.

A picture from the game's official website, which is full of pink.
A picture from the game's official website, which is full of pink.

The game is based on a popular cell phone title called Kyaba Jo Pi, where players manage a hostess club to entertain VIPs, some of them being characters from series like Lupin III. However, the 3DS title was renamed as such to reduce the game's ties with the hostess profession. Level-5 CEO Akihiro Hino, who will also be the game's executive producer, said that people might be against the idea of playing a game billed as a hostess simulator. Hino also stated that the game's core development staff is female.

Players control a custom avatar who has to work as a neosienne in a grand lounge/nightclub called The Castle in the town of Neo Ginza. A neosienne entertains clients by talking to them, getting them to order food, and showing them a fun time, be they pop idols, politicians, or CEOs. The game will use the 3DS's Spot Pass system to let players exchange digital business cards with others and have their customized neosiennes appear in each other's nightclubs. Players can spend their nightclub earnings by buying new clothes and furniture for their custom home in Neo Ginza.

According to the official website, the game is slated for a 2011 release, though the exact release date and even an English version have yet to be confirmed.

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DiverseGamer

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I can only hope for more quality titles like this on the 3DS. :P

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Pixel-Perfect

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It looks cute, I'll be keeping my eyes on this.

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Ardain

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too pink.

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Hawkstar59

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@TheGreatXL couldn't put it better myself dark cloud 2 was the bomb, should definately make a 3rd!!

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areszues92

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Lol they'll put robert pattinson and bieber in it..

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istuffedsunny

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This would never fly in the US but Japanese women like this kind of thing.

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TheGreatXL

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They would rather release this than Dark Cloud 3? -.-

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unbentonslaught

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This sounds more like a facebook game than anything else.

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santinegrete

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With all the articles in gamesites asking for devs to make games for a femme audience (written by women, no doubt) this is one of the most mentioned results from a country that was known from doing great games? I hope west devs have a better idea.

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ANUBISZER0

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I know girls that game and this type of thing pisses them off like you wouldn't believe.

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MogFromLeipzig

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Ouch. A game for little girls where they learn to please business men to make them spend money. =_= That's just the wrong kind of game. And does all girl's stuff have to be pink?

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PartyOnGarth

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@GreenXMega I've never played X-2, but the game received a universally positive response from critics and has sold over 4 million copies worldwide, so if you are trying to pick a game to prove your point, you might want to try another one.

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exedeath

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Awesome.

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fireball2124

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My girlfriend always told me that she wanted a game where the protagonist was a female supremacist who went around the world convincing non-believers (both men and other women, but mostly men) with physical violence and witty retorts. The protagonist would have attributes of strength which would increase the damage she inflicts with paddles and whips and you know, just those typical RPG elements you find in most games. You'd have mini-games that make your female character faster at tying people up, et cetera. She said for the guys who are interested in such a game, they spend the whole game trapped in a closet, tied up. Eventually you'll get out of the bondage by tapping buttons as hard as you can, but as soon as you escape the closet your male character will get a hammer to his nose and back in you go. I'll order this one for her for the lulz, but I don't think I'll be rewarded for getting her hopes up that someone finally developed her dream game.

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Viiper

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Your sammich making level is to low to make this. Please try again after using your only skill some more.

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GreenXMega

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Didn't Squenix already do the same kind of thing with Final Fantasy X-2? Everybody knew how THAT game went, so I think Level-5 is just embarrassing themselves.

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Cloud737

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@be_skeptical LOL @ housekeeping RPG. Indeed, that's the kind of demeaning message they seem to send, like women are weak and only good for these lowly tasks. Heck, it's even worse, it's implying that women should devote their minds and souls to men's needs and be like disposable toys who are only good for providing dirty fun. Now go into the kitchen and make me a sammich! :P

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RobbySpry

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Companies are only after the generalized stereotypes because they are the largest groups, which means that it's where the most money is at. As stated in the article, the core staff are apparently women, but that doesn't mean that they are exempt from creating a game based on generalization. These women themselves probably believe in the stereotype and may even be living it. But that doesn't mean that most women are this way. This is originally nothing but a many hundreds of years old media-made (and therefor man-made) ideology of how the world is or should be to them. The only facts that Level-5 are going by here is the research about how many gamers that are women, what kind of games they like to play and where they like to play them (as was mentioned in the article that the article above links to) and has therefor NOTHING to do with the actual personality that these women have. Just like people who enjoy hunting games can be completely against hunting in real life. There are way too many denominators in the equation to be able to accurately say that the majority of women would enjoy a game like this. Some women who buy this game will do so because they: - like the style of the game-play itself, regardless of its theme - want a casual game on their mobile device(s) - they saw an ad of the game and want to make it their first - they're bored and/or got too... Read the full version of this comment by clicking my name.

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Raeldor

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Level 5 make the best games... can I get a sex change?

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Atheno

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When the title of the article says, Girls RPG game, I think they actually truly mean, "Girls" not women. Though don't worry, trust me, at my gaming store women in their 20s and 30s will buy this. I'm not saying every woman is like that, they just exist.

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Eyetroll4a10shn

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1st date purchase for me!!!!

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autobot_optimus

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Uhm I think they meant this game to be for young girls like under the age of 10 who might be into this kind of thing not the female gender as a whole. There might be girls out there that are stereotypically girly in their interests and they may own a video game system so why not make a game that they may be interested in? It'll probably be more fun for them than some shovelware crap like the imagine series and may get them interested into trying a variety of different games.

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Smokescreened84

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@Cloud737 - Sadly that game is PS3 only, I don't have a PS3. Little more awake now so the idea in my mind is a women in her late twenties, early thirties, who finds herself being thrown into a life she never wanted and having to make to choose between preserving the time line, or changing things and risking wiping herself and her daughter from existence.

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baltim123

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i think girls will prefer CoD over this , and i'm pretty serious.

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calvinsora

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I don't think there's any need to cater specifically towards women in gaming, the same with men. Games are games to be enjoyed by those that fancy it, and gaming isn't geared towards any gender in particular.

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FinalKloud

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Dark Cloud 3... please

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be_skeptical

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We are not girls, we are women. We don't want games with pretty shoes and chiffon dresses; we want BFGs and flaming swords. This makes it sound like those "boy games" are just too difficult for our little feminine brains to understand. They might as well make it a housekeeping game where you can level up your laundry skills or something. FYI, just because the game is made by women doesn't mean it's going to appeal to women gamers. Just sayin.

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StSk8ter29

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Not all girls like obsessive amounts of pink.

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ecoolen

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Yes "very girly" indeed, VIP whoring. Who actually plays this crap??? I thought Level 5 was better than this... I get that hostessing is appreciated differently in Japan, but in the West, this is kind of frowned upon.

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Cloud737

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@Smokescreened84 Heh, your wish for a female-centric game reminded me of Heavenly Sword. Female lead? Check! Close to 30? Check! Destined battle? Check! You should try it out if you hadn't, I heard it's awesome! :D Now THAT would be a good (female-centric?) game IMO! :D

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Dradeeus

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I figured one of the best "girl's RPGs" would be a game like Recettear. Girl gamers I know also enjoy Sandbox RPGs like Elder Scrolls, or games with equal "storyline" gender equality like Mass Effect and Dragon Age. It doesn't need to be dolls and fashion and stickers to get a fashion audience. It just has to be a game where one can play as a female, that doesn't feel any less complete or unsuited to them BECAUSE they're playing as a female.

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ChiliDragon

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As a female, I am a bit insulted that anyone would think I would like a game like this, much less pay money for it. Though I notice that an English version is not yet confirmed, suggesting that this is a Japan-only release. And if it is, then there obviously is no reason for the developer to care with females outside Japan will think, since we're not their target audience.

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Lsnake

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What the hell is wrong with you Level-5? Start working on Dark Cloud 3 instead!

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Cloud737

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While I'm all for games girls can enjoy, I'm looking at this in quite a negative light. Should I take it that girls are weaker than men and thus can't stand and aren't interested in gorgeous normal games (e.g.: Persona, Mass Effect)? And I take it playing the demeaning role of an almost prostitute-looking hostess is all they dream to be? What's sadder (and more infuriating) than discrimination against females is that they actually accept this as normal (case in point: they propagate this culture of wearing short skirts, putting excessive attention into looks, especially faking your looks through makeup and appearing and being all fragile and vulnerable), while at the same time complaining about the inequalities they suffer... I think that indeed females may be the weaker sex, but not because of any genetic predisposition, but because of the culture they propagate and how they lower themselves to the demeaning role society thinks it's appropriate, least they suffer social anxiety for not conforming to the norms (i.e.: weak mentalities). Pretty much the same stupidity as the men culture of being all tough, insensible, rude, hooligans and a pigs (and that's normal and actually desirable traits, otherwise you're not a "real man").

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Linkari

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@MrHatnClogs Amen brony.

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nocoolnamejim

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I wonder if developers actually have people assigned to read the comments about their game ideas. The comments in this thread are pretty consistently some permutation of: "You're doing it wrong."

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JaxxRaxor

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@nocoolnamejim I agree with you. Now Japan is more conservative when it comes to female gender roles, but I'm sure that even in Japan a lot of women will find the premise of this game demeaning. Hostesses in Japan are sort of like the modern/cheaper variation of the geisha in which the primary job is entertain male customers (not sexually, although that will occasionally happen). This game may do decently in Japan but I can't see it being released in North America and Europe where feminism is much more prominent. Also nocoolnamejim, most female gamers are in their mid 30s (although that counts the many casual games that attract a predominately female audience). I don't think adult females would be too attracted to a game in which the protaginists are primary in High School (and I'm of the mind that Japan obsession with youth is way overboard and excessive if you look at all the anime, manga, and video games they pump out). I think a game with strong female protagonists at least 18 or over would be more appealing to women.

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loveless9

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sigh.

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Rejsby

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......Are they serious? If I ever come across this game, I'm going to go through surgery and change my gender to male. This is just....

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Rejsby

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[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

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eddieham13

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I think that more men will buy this. :p The majority of Female Gamers play the same games as Male ones do.

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Savvy30039

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Darn... I read the title and thought they were talking about some epic adventure aimed at women. I should have known better...

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KnightSkull

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Why do developers think girls only play "girly" games? I don't know any girls over the age of 10 that would want to play something like this. Female gamers want to play the same games as every male gamer, not crap like this.

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-Saigo-

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So...a girls game...where the idea is to serve men by "entertain[ing] clients by talking to them, getting them to order food, and showing them a fun time". Yeah...good luck selling that to any self respecting female.

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nocoolnamejim

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Sheesh. Level-5 has fallen a long way from the absolute gem that they produced with Dragon Quest VIII. I could be very wrong here, but I'm thinking that many women will find this game more insulting than attractive. You don't have to trot out some "Barbie" type game to attract female gamers. Just do good games with strong, empowered female characters rather than "baggage" type "damsel in distress" female characters that exist only to fall in love with the male lead and be rescued. Persona 3 Portable is a great example of a game that would be very attractive to women.

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alexLmx6

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@ronnet - It says the game's core dev staff are female, so they must be fine with it.

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DrAmazinDood

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wow talk about bringing the female population down :P

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happynoodleboy7

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This game will probably sell very well in Japan, but the people buying it probably will be 30-year old male otaku instead of girls.

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zmanrwks

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I have a feeling this won't work too well...

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merleage2

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all i got's to say is FFversus13 !!!!!!!!!!!!!

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