Free Friends, or Furifure in Japanese, is a Hentai Visual Novel developed by Noesis and released in English by MangaGamer. The game follows the story of a teacher and his lewd relationship with one of his students that he met through the Free Friends message board online. The game has a few different endings and one true route, and is short enough that the player might want to go through them all.
The story begins with the main character, Sensei (his name is never revealed), lamenting his own life and how things are going bad for himself and his marriage. Strangely, he seems to be doing this in an alleyway of one of the towns more popular dating spots for groups of teens. While there, he checks out this one message board where people could message to keep each other company in the real world but notes that all the advertisements seem to be for sexual services. However, a posting seems to catch his eye, a gem amongst the rubbish. After messaging the person to meet up, they agree on a nearby location and soon meet.
Upon arriving at the agreed location, Sensei notices a girl in his schools uniform looking around for someone. After a short while the two of them are talking and they find out they are who each other is looking for. While talking, we find out that Yui is her name, and that she was looking for company and her friends gave her that website. The reason she wants company is because her parents are controlling her life and she just wants to get away from that. Sensei somehow determines this to mean that she is looking for the sex and so he leads her to a love hotel. It is there that he (forcefully) sleeps with his student, Yui.
After finishing up with Yui, the player gets their first choice in the game, to take photos of the encounter for personal safety, or to not take photos. Unfortunately for me, I click in the middle of the screen, and so I accidentally hit the ‘take photos’ option and so I was put straight onto the bad path of the game. Now, the bad path of the game is pretty much consistent entirely of Sensei forcing himself on Yui through blackmail and straight up raping her. There is also an alternative bad path or two depending on which actions you take at certain key points. As this was my first path that I accidentally stumbled onto, this severely impacted my enjoyment of the game. I don’t particularly enjoy that kind of thing. But, for those of you that do, it’s in there.
Once I finished the game on the bad path, which took a while because I didn’t want to play through it, I started the game up again. This time, I wouldn’t take Yui’s photos and threaten to leak them all over the internet. While this particular branch does start off a bit rapey, Sensei does actually hold back a lot more in this line. After the initial encounter, it seems like Yui gradually becomes more and more interested in her teacher until the two of them are pretty much an item. However, this storyline isn’t so straightforward, even if only one choice can lead off of this path. Their relationship does become more and more complicated, but it’s a story of love winning over all else, which is definitely the much better route.
Free Friends features a fully voiced companion in Yui, with the player character remaining silent throughout the game. I didn’t find Yui’s voice all that annoying, and the voice actress did a pretty decent job, or at least as far as my western ears can tell. However, there is a lot of moaning in the H-Scenes which can get pretty high-pitched at times. If you value your hearing, turn down the volume just a little. Considering that the H-Scenes are a bit on the long side, the moaning and screaming can start to get a bit grating at times.
Visually, Free Friends is pretty standard when it comes to the design of the game. The interface is your standard visual novel fare, while the character designs are pretty typical of Japanese media. The backgrounds were particularly detailed and notable. I also thought Yui was cute, even if the artwork itself was pretty plain.
However, a good thing with Free Friends was its H-scenes. These scenes were pretty detailed and was without mosaics in the English version. The sex scenes themselves weren’t particularly too far off of the vanilla spectrum of sex, with the most fetishy things being having Yui wear a vibrator in public and a threesome at one point each. For the most part, the game was with blowjobs and vagina to penis sex.
Overall, Free Friends is a pretty decent Hentai Visual Novel. It has a pretty decent good storyline, a bunch of different “bad” endings and some pretty good h-scenes. It’s a pretty short game, which means that you wont be taking a significant chunk of time out of your life to see all the endings. Players playing this wanting a hentai story will probably make the most out of this. Gamers wanting a more fleshed out story might want to give this a miss.
Free Friends is published by MangaGamer in English and is developed by Noesis. It is released as FuriFure in Japanese. You can buy it on the MangaGamer store for ~$25. We were given a code by MangaGamer to review the title.