Girls Love Roundup – February 2017

girls-love-roundup-feb-2017It’s a brand new month! And we have a lot of new stuff releasing in February, as well as some late January releases for regions that missed out on the early date. Thank you for the feedback last month. As requested I will from here on add links to digital releases of manga, should there be one, rather than just leave it unsaid. Let’s get to it!

Manga – New Releases (February 2017)

81i0vaqcbrlBloom Into You (Volume 1) by Nakatani Nio

Release Date: February 13th in Europe (Already out in North America)
Published by Seven Seas

In Bloom Into You we follow Yuu, a girl who have just started high school and who’ve been wishing for her own “shoujo manga romance” since she was a child. On the day she graduated from middle school a boy confessed his love for her, but she just couldn’t answer him.

After much contemplation, she decides to turn him down. But she’s not sure how to tell him, so she turns to the student council president, Nanami Touko, for advice. But to her surprise, the cool and independent student council president who never falls in love with anyone suddenly tells Yuu that she thinks she could fall in love with her. And so her own shoujo romance between girls begin.

The manga has been fairly popular during its period of fan scanlations and I’m quite happy to see it getting an official release. It’s a fairly traditional GL/shoujo mix, but it’s been a while since we saw one of those hit the west and this is a particularly good one.

81ndhw7xxglKase-san and Morning Glories (Volume 1) by Takashima Hiromi

Release Date: February 28th in North America (March 1st in Europe)
Published by Seven Seas

Takashima Hiromi‘s Kase-san series has been a longtime fan favourite among people who read GL scanlations. In Kase-san and Morning Glories we meet Yamada, a high school girl who is also a flower enthusiaist. She meets with the schools track and field star, the titular Kase-san, who she soon falls in love with.

The story focuses on the romance between people who are very different on the outside. Kase and Yamada like different things and behave in different ways, with Kase being a stoic cool girl and Yamade being a clumsy loner. But these differences become what draws them closer together as they try to look past these differences to make both of their first loves bloom.

The series itself releases in individual volumes that can be read in any order, with Kase-san and Morning Glories being the first in the series. The book is still ongoing in Japan, but at least two volumes have been confirmed my Seven Seas as releasing in the west.

71smbkfvg5lKiss and White Lily for My Dearest Girl (Volume 1) by Canno

Release Date: February 21st in Europe and North America
Published by Yen Press

With what might be the most traditional GL title ever, Kiss and White Lily for My Dearest Girl tells the story Ayaka and Yurine, who end up finding each other as they both enter high school. Ayaka, who always were at the top of her class, discovers that the lazy girl Yurine was a secret genius able to compete with Ayaka at school!

The two get closer and soon become friends, but it seems something more is growing out of that friendship as they get closer. They also meet two other girls, Mizuki and Moe, who are already a couple and take care of the gardening club. As Ayaka and Yurine get further pulled into the world of girls loving girls, the drama and seriousness between the two grow more and more.

The manga is still ongoing in Japan with six volumes having released so far. Yen Press have so far confirmed the first three volumes for the west throughout the year. (Digital Release Available)

81pvqecfxhlKindred Spirits on the Roof: The Complete Collection (Omnibus) by Ito Hachi and Fumiyo Aya

Release Date: February 13th in Europe (Already out in North America)
Published by Seven Seas

Based on the popular visual novel of the same name by Liar Soft, Kindred Spirits on the Roof tells the story about an all-girls school possessed by two former students, Enoki Sachi and Nagatani Megumi. These two spirits are in love, but never had a chance to fulfill their love in their living days.

With the help of Toomi Yuna, the only student who can see the spirits, they try to pass on to the afterlife by helping other students who feel the way they do get together, creating their own “Yuritopia” at school. The omnibus collects two manga volumes telling the tale of two different couples, alongside extra content such as full-colour inserts.

The visual novel was localized for the west in 2016 and is available for purchase on Steam, I highly recommend checking it out. I even went as far as putting it in my Top 5 Games of 2016 video.

61fteu4pxlLove to Lie Angle (Volume 1) by Merryhachi

Release Date: February 7th in North America (Already out in Europe)
Published by Digital Manga Publishing

I have to admit, I never expected Love to Lie Angle to be localized. Originally serialized in Comic Yuri Hime, this is love triangle harboring on harem manga. Natsuno Hanabi is about to start high school and is accidentally assigned to a different dorm than planned, the Tachibana House. In the Tachibana House she runs into her childhood friend Fujiwara Konobi and the mysterious beauty Takamura Iori.

It’s a very funny, and very perverted, book and one I’ve been following since it first started serialization. Merryhachi knows how to make old harem manga tropes feel fresh again, something that’s clear just from the fact that it’s a GL manga.

While it won’t be for everyone, especially with its constant sex jokes and commonplace nudity, I do recommend checking it out. The art is superb and the characters are very entertaining. It’s also something as rare as a manga reaching Europe before North America, which is just a fun little note.

81a9yh949jlMiss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid (Volume 2) by Coolkyoushinja

Release Date: February 21st in North America (March 1st in Europe)
Published by Seven Seas

I’ll be talking more about Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid later on in the post thanks to its recent anime adaptation, but the manga is something quite special. It’s rare to see the Monster Girl genre be used outside of the heterosexual romance angle and that’s what makes this great little comedy manga so enjoyable.

Having been invited to Miss Kobayashi’s apartment after a drunken late night encounter in the mountains, the massively powerful dragon Tohru decides to come live with Kobayashi as her maid. She’s in love with Kobayashi, which she’s not shy about admitting, and hopes that by appealing to Kobayashi’s love for maids she’ll be able to win over her heart.

Alongside the ride even more supernatural creatures start showing up in Kobayashi’s life to make everything one big hilarious mess. I highly recommend the manga as it’s a blast from start to present.

81ahegrtlslSecret of the Princess by Morinaga Milk

Release Date: February 14th in North America (March 1st in Europe)
Published by Seven Seas

I don’t think it’s unfair to say that Morinaga Milk is the most famous GL author in the west. She’s put out a ton of titles over the years that sometimes it felt like she was the only one able to break through. Her latest work to be localized is Secret of the Princess, a one-off about two unlikely students coming together.

In the story we follow Fujiwara, the captain of the volleyball team. She’s a popular girl, always admired by the students around her. One day she accidentally breaks a priceless vase belonging to the school’s principle. Nobody saw her except another girl named Yuu, whom Fujiwara begs to keep the accident a secret to not risk hurt her reputation. Fujiwara tells Yuu she’ll do anything she asks, to which Yuu replies that she wants to go out with Fujiwara.

After the intial surprise that Yuu would want to date her, Fujiwara slowly realizes that maybe this whole incident might have just been destiny’s way of bringing the two together as they fall mutually in love.

Anime – Current Releases (Winter Season 2017)

c0a05f5fc7c935111a02e0d8f011916f1483619715_fullMiss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid (TV Anime)

Simulcast Date: January 11th – (Crunchyroll)
Localized by Funimation

Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid had its premiere last month, as mentioned in January’s Girls Love Roundup post. I absolutely love the anime so far with Kyoto Animation’s adaptation living up to the original manga with ease. As I had hoped, the series kept its shameless admittance of Tohru’s love for Miss Kobayashi, leaving no reasonable trace for doubt in the series’ Girls Love genre tag. If we’re lucky we might even get to see the second lesbian duo get adapted as well, depending on how far into the manga it goes.

Episode four will be out today so please look forward to that, as it will feature one of my favourite chapters of the manga. If you’ve not yet checked out the anime you should head on over to Crunchyroll as soon as possible and get that sorted out. It’s one of the best anime of the season and could easily be one of my favourites as the year closes as well.

Games – New Announcements (February 2017)

mainimgSeaBed (Visual Novel)

Release Date: Late 2017 for PC
Localized by Fruitbat Factory

Well this sure was a surprise. Announced on February 10th, the critically acclaimed mystery Girls Love visual novel SeaBed will be making its English debut on Steam later this year. I think it’s fair to say that nobody saw this one coming.

In SeaBed we follow three women. Sachiko, a designer who keep having hallucinations about her past lover, Takako. Hibiki, a psychiatrist and friend of Sachiko who try to help her while researching the way human memories work. Finally, there’s Takako herself, who have begun forgetting her past life at a rapid rate, no longer remembering why her and Sachiko drifted apart in the first place.

If you’re a fan of Girls Love but feel there’s too many visual novels focusing on your normal school life stories or exaggerated fantasy settings, this is a title well worth keeping an eye on when it releases later this year on Steam.

Games – New Releases (February 2017)

nights_of_azure_cover_artNights of Azure (RPG)

Release Date: February 7th for PC (Already out on PlayStation 4)
Localized by Tecmo Koei

Originally released on multiple PlayStation platforms, Gust’s Nights of Azure is finally coming to PC in just a couple of days. In the game you play as Arnice, a holy knight protecting the saint Lilysse. The two are travelling through Rusewall Island, a land where nobody sleeps at night. You must battle mosnters known as Jayou who are the reason people can not rest any more. The game is an Action RPG with real-time combat, letting you summon demons as servants to help you in battle.

The Girls Love levels of the game have been somewhat disputed in the west, as is common, with the localization being criticized for pushing Arnice and Lilysse in the roles as best friends more than their roles as romantic interests. It was this that made me skip the game in its original western release on PlayStation 4 last year. However, despite these claims I’m glad to report that plenty remains, including two very important elements. At the risk of saying too much, I’ll simply say that if you were worried the game wouldn’t end on a canonical gay note, you can stop worrying.

The game will be available on Steam and I hope all GL fans end up picking it up so that the sequel can get localized as well!

1410881926_mg_product_thumbnail_imageThe Shadows of Pygmalion (Visual Novel)

Release Date: February 24th for PC
Localized by MangaGamer

The Shadows of Pygmalion was announced for localization two years ago and is finally coming out late this month. It’s an all-ages fantasy VN about a high school girl, Hajiro Mina, who come into contact with three girls who work to fight off beings known as puppets. After an encounter with one of these puppets she finds herself pulled into the conflict at hand as she gets to know the girls to her side.

The game deals with some dark subjects, such as trauma and suicide, but features complete girl-on-girl romance as part of its narrative. A lot of famous voice actresses are part of the cast as well, such as Kitamura Eri, Hanazawa Kana and Ogura Yui among many others. As a matter of fact, my favourite voice actress, Izawa Shiori, is also in it! If you decide to check it out, get ready for a lengthy visual novel with high production values.

You can pre-purchase the game on MangaGamer right now or wait for the Steam release.

And that’s the Girls Love stuff of the month, so far at least. If more pop up the post will be updated to include it! All the manga listed is available on Amazon in respective regions, as well as various other book retailers. If you have any suggestion for how to improve Girls Love Roundup, leave a comment or hit me up on Twitter.

Until next post, have a gay old time.

Header image from The Shadows of Pygmalion by Tsutanoha.

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