The bottom half will be done this week! If you missed last week’s post check it out here. If you need a reminder of the rules:
1. They must contain a route that delves into their backstory, 2. They must be involved with the main character in someway, this doesn’t have to mean romantically but they have to at least become friends 3. They must be female (that is what heroine means) and 4. They must be of similar age to the main character. I will be making an exception for Angel Beats! as the characters are of all ages but they appear to be the same age. To decide the ranks I used how their route fits in with the story’s theme, their personality as well as how much I like them as a character. One last thing before I get started! I will be spoiling every work done by Key, this includes Kanon, Air, Clannad, planetarian, Little Busters!, Angel Beats!, and Rewrite. I won’t mention things done by Tactics such as One and Moon as I don’t have enough experience with those franchises.
Also keep in mind I have yet to read Little Busters! as I am waiting for those extra Refrain routes to be released but have seen every anime adaptation made for it so I will only be using those as basis for the characters (not the best but who knows how long it will take!) Now without further ado, let’s get started!
#30: Kotori Kanbe (Rewrite)
I really like Kotori as a character. She’s funny, playful and just an all-around cool character. My problem is her route. It mainly just dragged for way to long with really only Kotori, Kotarou and Kagari and some action but not very much. She also gets super stressed and tired near the end of her route which turns her personality for the worse. It also pains me that when we see her as a kid in the Terra arc she’s a genius but when she’s older she’s getting terrible grades because she has to focus her entire life on being a druid and their duties. Another case of like the character, hate the route.
#29: Haruka Saigusa (Little Busters!)
Haruka I liked and I liked her route but there was nothing special. In her route we learn her family is super high class and old fashioned and her mother was having sex with 2 men at once which got her pregnant with twins but 2 different fathers (I looked it up and yes, this is actually something that can happen). 1 man was a convicted criminal and the mother ran away with the other, so her family decided to hold competitions between her and her sister and whoever did the worse was kicked out. Haruka wins but sacrifices herself for her sister so the family basically ends up treating them both badly. She’s a delinquent character, always getting into trouble and hanging out in Riki’s class instead of her own. I like her but there’s just nothing special (which I think says a lot about Key when a character like that is this low)
#28: Kanata Futaki (Little Busters!)
Hey look! Haruka’s sister! The same issue I had with Haruka actually. Kanata is pretty much the exact opposite of Haruka personality wise. I actually like her quite a bit more than Haruka but the reason she’s only 1 spot above is her route. Haruka’s took place in the imaginary world and Kanata’s in the real world. It is switched up a bit as instead of trying to figure out which daughter belongs to which father the family is forcing Kanata to marry against her will. I like the team work the Little Busters do to save her but I don’t think running away would really solve anything. I also have issue (no matter how traditional the family is) with not only a forced marriage, but also she’s a junior in high school.
#27: Shiori Misaka (Kanon)
Shiori is a “I like parts of her and her route but not everything” character. I find her “I don’t like people who say that” phrase to be a little annoying and I absolutely despise her sister for trying to forget about her. If my sister was going to die soon I’d want to spend as much time with her as possible and make her last moments to best they can, not make her even more depressed (and even attempt suicide that Yuichi and Ayu accidentally but luckily stop). Also going by her Visual Novel route, I found her H-scene to be kind of forced and awkward where as the rest at least fit with their character a lot better. I know I was mainly negative but one of my favourite moments from the anime (her birthday scene) was from her route and her ending in the Visual Novel was the only one (including Ayu’s route for some reason) that hinted at Ayu’s wish to the point of almost spelling it out (the rest were way too subtle).
#26: Tomoyo Sakagami (Clannad)
It pains me to have a route as amazing as hers this low down. I just don’t like her character all that much. I know she’s one of the most popular Clannad characters (even Jun Maeda seems to like her best) but I just don’t really like her as a character. Her route is probably one of the longest aside from Nagisa’s and I enjoyed every moment of it, something I was not expecting. The main thing I don’t like about her is she pretty much throws her life away to be with Tomoya. She’s still successful but I think she could be so much so if she balanced them. If we were just ranking routes (who knows, maybe I’ll do that in the future!) She’d very likely be Top 10 but taking her character into account, I have to drop her. Keep in mind, I did not play Tomoyo After (I couldn’t bare the H-scenes from what little I played) so that did not play into her ranking, it is also a spin-off so I likely wouldn’t have counted it even if I did finish it.
#25: Masami Iwasawa (Angel Beats!)
I have a feeling from what we’ve heard, once Angel Beats 1st Beat releases she’ll be much higher, unfortunately for her a 1 episode route and only even really being in Episode 3 (she was in 1 and 2 but very little) we don’t get to know much about her. We learn a lot more about her than many other Angel Beats! characters who we learn next to nothing about, but, I still don’t know enough to rank her higher. I do like her but, her route in its current state is holding her back.
#24: Akane Senri (Rewrite)
Early on in my Rewrite adventures I claimed her to be my favourite character, then
I played Lucia’s and Shizuru’s routes, I learned more about her and grew to like her less and less. I don’t dislike her but I like her far less than I did originally. You’ll also notice if you’ve read Rewrite, the 3 bottom characters are the ones that either are the only heroine to appear in their route or appear alongside another for brief moments (Shizuru cameos in Kotori’s, Akane is kind of major in Chihaya’s route but doesn’t appear too much and no one else appears in Akane’s, I wasn’t counting Kagari as she’s different and we’ll get to her later). I also found Akane’s route to be a bit boring at the parts that were just the sections of Gaia fighting each other.
#23: Ayu Tsukimiya (Kanon)
UGUU! I like both Ayu and her route. The UGUU got a little annoying after a while but I still like her. I really don’t have much to say about Ayu really, I don’t have any real problems with her, and obviously her route fits with the story as she’s the main heroine so her route IS the story but I just think she’s outclassed by everyone higher than her.
#22: Kyou Fujibayashi
Man do I want to die? Putting the 2 most popular Clannad heroines in the bottom half with the only 2 bellow them not even technically heroines? Kyou is the opposite of Tomoyo for me. I really like her character, not so much her route. I already talked about how in her route it involves you breaking up with Ryou to date Kyou (breaking up with a girl and immediately dating her sister is a dick move guys) but it also involves while you’re still dating Ryou, mainly thinking about Kyou. The way you split the two routes is they both mention a stone they want, you buy Kyou’s, Kyou asks if you prefer long or short hair (in front of Ryou) you say long. Even though I don’t like her route it does really fit in with Clannad’s “Family” theme (I don’t think a single one doesn’t actually) which is why she’s not simply the place above Tomoyo but not all that much higher.
#21: Yuiko Kurugaya (Little Busters!)
I had a really hard time placing her and Kyou and I feel pretty much the same way about them. You could really switch either one but I didn’t want to give any ties (aside from #40) so I eventually decided to just place Yuiko higher. I think the main reason her I didn’t like her route that much was it confused me. This might be due to it being the anime (if it was it was the only route in Little Busters! I was confused by) and her place might change once I read the visual novel. Basically it involves the world being on an endless repeat (but the weather didn’t get this memo) and only her and Riki are aware of it but it was her causing it. I’m not even sure. I really like her character, probably a little more than Kyou which is why I gave her the spot over.
Well that does it for this week! Tune in next week when we finally break the Top 20, and maybe all the Key works will be present (Air had to be left out of this round, sadly). See you next week. Same time, same place.