My blog focuses more on women’s situation Drama CDs. In a way, it is somewhat reminiscent of Otome games. You, or more specifically, the heroine, will be paired up right away with her romantic interest(s) of choice. Which would of course solely depend on which CD you have purchased. The only difference is, you can only listen and you cannot directly interact with the character(s). Most CDs I have heard so far, you do not usually hear anyone else but your RI. The only time you’d be able to hear all the characters together is when you purchase or are rewarded with what’s called an interlocking Drama CD if you have purchased all the volumes in that season. All the characters normally would be talking in one CD.
From experience, the only CD I’ve heard of so far that has more than just one guy talking in the entire CD at any given time, was in Chi Ookami-kun. They were only short appearances and I believe it was only around 1 to 2 scenes at most.
How to buy a Drama CD?
The easiest way would be to go and purchase the drama CD from Amazon Japan. Just make sure you have the Japanese title ready to copy and paste into the search bar. If you are more interested in purchasing from actual online shops, Tenso would be a great way to use as a forwarding service. I recommend checking out Tower Records, Stellaworth and Animate to purchase all your Drama CDs (including the R18 ones, yes). There are also many shopping services available if you’d like to purchase from Yahoo!Japan Auctions instead.
If you pre-order early, they will give you a gift or two called Tokutens. They’re all different so you would need to check what it says on the page. Normally they’re usually either Bonus Story Drama CDs, Free talk CDs, badges, bromides or postcards. If you happen to purchase all the volumes in the series at one time, you will be able to receive what’s called an “Interlocking” Tokuten if it’s offered by the shop you are buying it from – which I mentioned earlier in the intro. Those ones are usually something maybe like a Drama CD where you can hear all the characters talk to each other (and to the heroine as well). Sometimes, they would give a 76mm Mirror, booklet or even a set of badges of the characters in the series.
Please check out other guides online on how to set up your accounts. It’s all very clear and straight-forward so I won’t be answering any questions that concern these topics unless you really are having trouble.
What series do you recommend me to start with?
It really depends on what kind of story you’re after. I’ll list a few just to get you started at least.
Yuugen Romantica and Yuugen Romantica Uchouten
It was said that there are 7 mysteries in the school that the heroine attends, however, there are only 6 places that are supposedly haunted by some youkai. One day, the heroine for one reason or another, had to stay behind all alone at school. Unfortunately, being at school at this time of night was when she meets an evil presence. She tries to run away, but it was futile. What is to become of her? And more importantly, what exactly is the 7th mystery?
Season 1 : This one was mostly an introduction of some characters. My favorite CDs were Iriya’s and Hanawo’s. I love Zakuro’s personality more than the actual story. Arahagi was quite interesting and I liked him too. However, he is quite bratty so it all depends if the listener can handle a bit of “immaturity” and whatnot. Unfortunately, Toneri just didn’t work out for me. I am not overly fond of yanderes. I am still unsure about Hifumi’s as I think I may need a complete translation to understand it well.
Season 2 : This is when the youkai in some way gets tested in different scenarios and they end up changing in some way or another. My favorite so far in Uchouten is Merry. He is super adorable, direct, so sweet and is seriously really awkward.
The heroine was asked by her father, Enma to investigate the bathhouses. There are currently 5 bathhouses and 1 teahouse. Enma is the ruler of hell, which makes the heroine a princess or his daughter. The demons that were put in charge of each of these establishments seemed to be cursed for all eternity to be working there as punishment.
Website : Jigoku Onsen
Characters : Kiyomori, Ranmaru, Kira, Yoshitsune, Rikyuu and Mitsuhide.
Season 1 : I’ve listened to Kira and Ranmaru’s CDs with a translation and so far I’ve been quite happy with them. Kira’s is a lot stronger though and is actually my one and only fave work of Junichi Suwabe’s. Every CD’s scenario is different and each demon there has a different backstory. It’s been really interesting so far and I really like the characters. Some of them know that the heroine is Enma’s daughter and some of them don’t. She is reluctant to tell some of them as she is worried that it may cause some issues when she investigates their bathhouse.
This is about a group working as a special police force during the Bakumatsu period. The Japanese military government, the Bakufu was the one who created this organization in order to protect the shogunate representatives that were in Kyoto at the time. This squad had a very short “life” and it was only active from 1864 to 1869.
(Note : There are extremely suggestive scenes in here and is pretty much borderline R18 for some of them. So listen at your own risk.)
Website : Mokuhiroku , Kekkonroku , Hiyokuroku and Gyoufuuroku
Characters : Hijikata Toshizou, Okita Souji, Saitou Hajime, Heisuke Toudou, Susumu Yamazaki, Harada Sanosuke, Nagakura Shinpachi and Isami Kondou. (more were added later on in the series)
Season 1 : This one was mostly an introduction of the characters to the listener. It started off a bit weak but it does get better when you go on to the next seasons. I suppose it is necessary to listen to this one first. In my opinion, Heisuke Toudou had the strongest Mokuhiroku CD.
Season 2 : This season is called Kekkonroku. Unfortunately, most of the stories in this one are quite heartbreaking – but it’s really touching and it’s definitely worth listening to. I wasn’t able to listen to everyone’s yet but so far Heisuke’s Kekkonroku was amazing. Yamazaki’s was also quite heart-wrenching as well.