Mobile Monday: My Moocher Man – I picked up a hottie!

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We take a look at one of the many “idle games” available for Android.

Title: 私のヒモ男~イケメン拾いました~
My Moocher Man – I picked up a hottie!
Developer: GOODROID, Inc.
Download it from the Google Play store here.
Currently Japanese language only.

I’ve been playing more mobile games lately, so I thought it might be fun to take a look at a different one each week. This week we’re looking at My Moocher Man – I picked up a hottie! (This is my own translation of the Japanese title 私のヒモ男~イケメン拾いました~. The word “himo” refers to a kind of male sugar baby, but I think moocher fits in this case.)

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I have a tendency to download these idle games (in Japanese they’re referred to as 放置ゲーム) because of the cute art, and then they inevitably disappoint me. The basics of these games are all the same: you collect points by clicking on an object, and these objects build up over time (hence the idle part). When you have enough points to level up, the character will morph into its next form, until you eventually get to one of a few different endings. Replay is encouraged by not being able to collect all the forms in one runthrough, and there are usually several different endings.

This one turned out to be a particularly egregious example of a game that’s made for ads. What I mean by this is that the ads aren’t there so that the game can be played for free –the game has been literally designed around being a vehicle to get the player to watch ads.

The story is that you stumble across a guy in the rain and end up taking him home. He mooches off you, and your relationship can develop in various ways depending on your day-to-day interactions.

He strews junk around your room which builds up and you then clean up for points. However, he has to be in a good mood to produce all this crap, and his mood goes down as time passes. To boost his mood you can have a brief conversation with him in which you have to choose the right answers to make him happy. You get three conversations per day, but after that you have to watch an ad to get more.

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The problem is, the guy’s mood goes down ridiculously fast, and the conversations are incredibly short. So the majority of your time in this “game” is spent watching ads. Not only that, but you also have frequent invasive pop-ups advertising the developer’s other “games”. Idle games aren’t designed for extended interaction, but when you’re watching 30 seconds of advert for every 20 seconds of play, you know something’s wrong.

My advice, even to those who like idle games, is to stay away from this one. It’s a shame, because it’s a funny idea and the art is really cute, but this is no more than a cynical cash grab.

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