Valkyrie Drive – Bhikkhuni Review (PC)

Posted July 25, 2017 by Chris Berto in Video Games

Developed By: Marvelous Inc.

Platforms: PC (played), Playstation Vita

Released 6-20-17

Editors note: According to the chapter select I’m right around 50%. I’ve played enough to know what the game is or isn’t. Continuing to see how the story unfolds would be pointless on this type of game, and it’s beginning to get uncomfortable to play in the house with my wife and daughter

Valkyrie Drive – Bhikkhuni sets players in the shoes (and lingerie) of seven playable characters sent to the island of Bhikkhuni where they must learn how to control and cure the infections known as the “V-Virus” and “A-Virus”. Persons infected with the A-virus are given the ability to transform into deadly Valkyrie weapons when sexually aroused, while the V-Virus enables someone to wield an A-Virus weapon in battle. The women on Bhikkhuni Island are special in the fact that they’re infected with a unique strand known as the “VR-virus” in which they are able to both transform and wield Valkyrie weapons. The concept serves as little more than an excuse for the women to fondle each other and get into combat scenarios, which, surprisingly enough, are quite engaging.

Valkyrie Drive Activation

First and foremost however, Valkyrie Drive is about fan service, and it delivers by the bustload. During my time on Bhikkhuni, I spent time in a lingerie shop, was groped and fondled by robot guards, interacted with love interests in the cafeteria, and was pounced on, kissed, and tickled in places not suitable to discuss in a review. The character models are rendered beautifully, if not wholly unrealistically. The measurements that these lovely ladies possess border on insanity and, thanks to the abundant use of a “selective” physics engine, each voluptuous pair of assets moves and jiggles to an almost distracting degree. In between missions, players are sent to the cafeteria to take a break from combat and to explore the other gameplay loops; relationship building, and lingerie shopping!

So many styles to choose from!

During the downtime in the cafe, players are given the opportunity to talk to the other students of the Bhikkhuni academy to fill in plot details and to also increase their romance meter with the other girls in class. The girl-on-girl action knows no limits unfortunately as two of the main characters, Ranka and Rinka, are sisters who have no qualms with groping or fondling each other. There were moments of gameplay in which certain events between the sisters made me (a 32 yr/old man) feel uncomfortable and caused me to question my ability to keep playing for the sake of this review.

The other activity players gain access to while in the cafe is the ability to purchase/unlock new lingerie. There are a total of 100 sets of lingerie to unlock with Bhikkhuni Points (BP) which are earned during combat and at the end of each mission based on the rating achieved. The lingerie ranges from “tasteful” boy-shorts to panties that amount to little more than dental floss covering the girl’s private areas. Given the previously mentioned breast sizes on the women on display, the tops act as little more than nipple covers with pretty designs. There is no other point to the lingerie other than its purpose as eye candy for the player… and it’s role in combat.

As weird as it may seem to read, the combat in Valkyrie Drive closely resembles the frenetic action of the Devil May Cry and Dynasty Warriors series. Combat is performed with a series of combos, air-juggles, and timed dodges for minor damage increases. With the exception of the stage and boss battles, enemies come in large waves and act as cannon fodder and go down fairly easily akin to the Dynasty Warriors series. These waves of enemies serve to fill one’s hit counter, which in turn fills up the girls Drive meter. This meter can be thought of like the super meter in any of the Marvel vs Capcom games in that it can be filled into multiple level segments. Pressing both left and right shoulder buttons activates drive mode and summons your battle partner, utilizing her A-virus ability to transform into a combat enhancing weapon. Thanks to the intricate story implications, these drive transformations take place during a 5-10 second cut-scene in which the girl being summoned is aroused by the summoner, starting off with a simple caress of the breast and evolving into a full on sexual arousal with intimate kissing and genital fondling depending on what level the drive meter is at when activated.

Without the fan service trappings, combat is actually quite enjoyable, if not repetitive. The intricate weaving of timing based dodges and combat rolls mixed with fast and strong attacks and the ability to airjuggle into ground combos would fit at home in any serious arena combat game. Where Valkyrie Drive puts its stamp on the genre in the inclusion of tearaway clothing. As battles progress the combatants clothes starts ripping in dramatic fashion. By the end of a match, the loser will be left standing in her lingerie, complete with heavy breathing and overly bouncing breasts.

Victory has been achieved!

Upon completion of the combat arenas the visual-novel style dialog picks up to carry on the story. Interestingly enough, the state of the combatants and any other cast members included in the conversation will be in the same state in which they ended the last round of combat. While the continuity can be applauded, it’s hard not to be distracted or see the irony of these women having a serious conversation steeped in intrigue and character drama all the while one or two of them are standing there in their lingerie as if it were perfectly normal attire. The story starts off simple enough with the girls competing to be the very best in their graduating class while besting the virus which infects them, but eventually morphs into the girls uncovering the secrets of the island and the ulterior motives of the staff that inhabit it. As is the case in most games of its ilk, the story is mostly just inconsequential filler for all the lingerie-clad, breast fondling, girl-on-girl fan service.

For fans of the genre, there’s a lot to like. The women each have their own unique personality and quirky character traits, from Ranka’s absolute obsession and infatuation with her older sister, Momo’s detestable attitude towards anyone who prevents her from training, and Manpukumaru’s hilarious fixation on food and her willingness to do anything to get her hands on another rice bowl or eel wrap. The combat, while silly in its premise is fun and engaging, and each of the girls have their own fighting style mixing various combinations of melee and ranged based weapons including swords, bows, guns, fists, etc. The fan service mini-games of unlocking new and skimpy lingerie and leveling each girl’s relationship meter with her fellow students are an additive distraction that for the right audience can easily increase one’s playtime. If you prefer your arena combat action games to contain an engaging story, and fully clothed protagonists it’s better to look elsewhere; however, if scantily clad women beating the clothes off one another for the sake of showing off how well rendered their busts are, then Valkyrie Drive – Bhikkhuni won’t disappoint.

About the Author

Chris Berto