I went into Yuuto Ichika Makes Friends expecting a cutesy indie adventure where I would go around and, as the name implies, make some friends. Instead, within the first five minutes, I was informed that I was on the run for murdering a psychotic governor who wanted to use nuclear weapons to deal with local city problems. I was then called an illegal immigrant for using magic and threatened with jail time, which then turned into community service, through conversation that included the phrase, “listen, whore, I can’t arrest kids.”

Yuuto Ichika Makes Friends

“Yuuto Ichika is back to make some new friends! Explore a town full of thugs and befriend all sorts of criminals and crazy people.”

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When “community service” turned out to be going around town making friends, things seemed to take a turn back towards my initial hopes for the game. Whew! Yuuto’s even looking around for her long-lost bestie, Chizuru, and making friends in Chizuru’s new town only ought to help her find her buddy! Fantastic, I thought, leaning back into my pillow after a long day of work, things were getting back on track.

Then, a clown screaming for his meds started firebombing people’s homes.

Yuuto is followed around by a shouty volunteer police officer for the whole game.

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Indeed, the romp that LAME Dimension (the developer which proudly displays that name when you boot up their cartridge) takes you through is pretty fascinating. I then went into a dumpy alleyway where a man wearing way too much makeup and standing in front of a giant graffiti of the word “Lame” asked for $200 per second to remain in his “hallway of wonders”.

Once I had rejected that offer, I taught one of the newly homeless people (remember, home-bombing clown?) how to use magic to knit themselves a scarf, and then immediately broke into a home to steal an alarm clock for someone who had broken into another home, so that I could bring them the alarm clock, allowing them to take a nap while breaking and entering but without being late for their upcoming meetings.

This game serves as a pretty accessible introduction to the world of business.

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I then exchanged a cookie for a revolver “gun-sword thing” which, surprisingly, raised no objections from the volunteer police officer (herself also a cutesy anime girl) that had been following me around all this time so far. Instead, the officer went on a rant regarding the difference between trading arms and just giving them to other people, and the nuances that United States arms regulations may have to contribute towards this topic.

Presented without commentary.

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I don’t want to spoil more of this rather unique (is that the word?) game, so I’ll stop here. There’s nothing to mention regarding gameplay; you’re just walking around talking to people. The music is okay, and the close-up art, which is frequent, is pretty well-done considering the hardware and the fact that this entire thing was made in one week, during what I assume must have been an exceptionally delirious fever dream.

Verdict: Magic is illegal


Magic crimes, home-bombing clowns, and illegal gun-sword trading – what more could you ask for? An utterly unique game likely made in a state of deep, deep madness.
download Yuuto Ichika Makes Friends on Itch.io

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