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Visual Novel / Super Health Club

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Clockwise: Philip, Chris, Kouji, Thomas.

Super Health Club is a 2015 visual novel game developed by Oonyx with art by Dongsaeng. In the game, you play the new branch manager of an local health & fitness center, tasked by your asshole boss Richard with cleaning up the mess your predecessor left —- namely, crippling debt. You have six weeks to get the club back into the green.

While there, you meet your new staff: Thomas, a personal trainer; Chris, a competitive swimmer; Philip, a bodybuilder; and Kouji, a martial artist. Throughout the game, you develop relationships with each, possibly even initiating a romance with one of them ... assuming you play your cards right.

The game was released on December 13, 2015. You can buy it here.

Super Health Club contains examples of:

  • Affectionate Nickname: Thomas is "Tommy" to the other three and eventually the main character.
  • A Man Is Always Eager: Every male character —yours included— doesn't seem to hold any reservations about having sex.
  • All Asians Know Martial Arts: Kouji, the only character of Asian descent, is Japanese, and is skilled in martial arts.
  • All Gays are Promiscuous: Each of your employees have at least one scene of them getting sexually involved with clients.
  • Ambiguously Brown: Philip speaks Spanish and claims Spanish heritage on his mother's side, but it's not specified if he means Spanish or Latino. The repeated use of the word "Spanish" and even his knowledge of weather in Spain (as the protagonist mentions going there on a trip a while ago) seems to lean on the former.
  • Bad Boss: Richard rapes Kouji in compensation for a deal they made for a job that Kouji didn't get and doesn't want anymore. He also cares very little about any profit or success as long as he gets to have sex with his employees, whether they want it or not. And of course, he's openly cold and cruel to his son, Phillip.
  • Bara: With big, manly muscles all over the place, this game is much more in line with bara than something like yaoi, which is tailored for a female-skewing audience.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: Thomas and Kouji, and occasionally Phillip and Chris.
  • Blackmail Backfire: Richard. His rape of Kouji, to which Kouji submitted to prevent the player from finding out he was originally after their job, happened in a room with a camera in it. It's used at the end of the game to make damn sure Richard never hurts anyone again. Kouji himself also makes very serious threats to kill Richard.
  • Blatant Lies: "Hey Phillip, what happened today? Why are there towels all over the floor?"
  • Brainless Beauty: Subverted. This is the general impression Chris leaves, being stunningly good-looking but also obsessed with keeping those looks in perfect condition and little else. A little digging however, reveals him not only to be into Jane Austen literature, but doubting anyone's conviction to stay with him. This is likely what fuels his obsessive need to take perfect care of his body.
  • Break the Badass: Poor Kouji is raped by Richard just because Richard wanted to, while getting talked down about control and his own lack of power. Potentially subverted—though Kouji is incredibly ashamed, he still defies Richard thoroughly to the end.
  • Cast Full of Gay: How convenient! Well, by way of being a gay bara-genre game, there isn't a single female to appear in it.
  • Character Development: The player character, depending on events, can go from enjoying casual sex with a secretary when the game begins to being appalled and disgusted at the idea in the end, having seen the damage it can cause. Or, in the opposite direction, he can go from being annoyed that said secretary took the casual sex as intimacy to enjoying a genuinely dedicated romance with an employee.
  • Color-Coded Characters: That picture up there is going to mislead you. In-game, it's green for Thomas, blue for Chris, orange for Phillip, red for Kouji, purple for Richard, and white for the main character.
  • Comically Missing the Point: Thomas, as another sign of relative immaturity. After questioning Kouji's apparent date with the player character, he gets teased about his "daddy" not having time for him anymore. Not only does he get the wrong person, but he manages to misinterpret "daddy" as "father figure" rather than anything sexual.
  • Coming-Out Story: Doubles as Origin Story for Thomas
  • Defrosting Ice King: Kouji is the most stoic of your employees, and warms to your character the least when the game starts. By the game's end though, he can come to care strongly for the player character.
  • Disappeared Dad: Richard is Philip's estranged father.
  • Depraved Bisexual: Richard is the only bisexual in the game. He doesn't give a damn about the success of the club, regularly takes on new assistants only to have sex with them, knocked up Phillip's mother and then walked out on them, went on the have sex with both Thomas's and the player character's mothers and traumatizing the former, and rapes Kouji.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: The first scene a player can get with Kouji has them sparring. Kouji's reasoning for taking a light hit harder than he thought he would makes it pretty clear he might have been staring at the player character's body. After playing through his parts on a replay, it'll be difficult to tell if Kouji is walking out of the room because he doesn't like you or because he's trying to avoid getting "distracted".
  • The Dreaded: Your boss, Richard. Especially for Phillip.
  • Driven to Suicide: Thomas, long before the events of the game, as a result of coming-out-gone-wrong in a small Christian town. After moving to a new town, but with no money or home, Kouji convinced him not to go through with it and to join SHC, which is why they're so close.
  • Dude Magnet: Your character. Before the end of the game it will be an open secret that all four employees have a crush on him, whether or not you pay any of them any attention.
  • Dull Surprise: In contrast to the very emotional performances given for Phillip and Thomas, Chris's and Kouji's voices can be especially guilty of this. Their voices will always sound low and matter-of-fact, as if they're discussing the weather, even during intense moments when you'd think it would liven up a bit.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: You actually have to work to get a good ending! Playing without strategy results in your character getting fired from the club OR even getting a dedicated sex scene with one of your employees.
  • Embarrassing Old Photo: Finding Thomas in Kouji's room (again) during their second fight has him reveal he's looking for one of these, so that he can blackmail Kouji into not treating him like a kid. He gets talked out of it.
  • Everyone Can See It: Even the other employees will comment on Thomas's and Kouji's relationship. Interestingly, none of them ever makes any comment turning the subtext into full-on text. Kouji himself comes very close—he says "you're my b—" when making up with Thomas after the first fight. Vocals however, say it as "be—" as in best friend. It's set up this way on purpose, but subverted if you hear Thomas's origin story.
  • Eyes Out of Sight: The player character has eye-covering bangs in every scene he appears in. There is exactly one instance of his eyes not being hidden by his hair, and that's his portrait on his desktop—and his eyes are still hidden by sunglasses.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble:
    • Thomas is the Sanguine. Young, emotional, very good people skills, and all smiles. Of all four, he retains the most immaturity and youthful emotion.
    • Kouji is Melancholic with a dash of Choleric. He can be rude on top of introverted, but feels quite as much as the rest of the cast and is organized and self-sacrificing.
    • Chris is Choleric with a dash of Melancholic. He is people-oriented and starts off a bit of a jerk, but feels emotions strongly.
    • Phillip is Phlegmatic. He is humble, polite, and tends to think the best of people, along with being emotionally understanding.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: Richard in a nutshell, and for good reason. It's only because he's their boss that anyone in the game treats him with any semblance of respect.
  • Gag Penis: Pretty much every guy in the game has exceptional endowment.
  • Guide Dang It!:
    • If you bought the game looking for a chance to see sex happen, odds are you'll need one to find any. The whole game can pass and as far as you'll know, nothing overtly explicit will have happened.
    • The "history" movies (which tie in with conversations on the characters' backstories) can be tricky to unlock, due to having far more specific requirements than the actual conversations. And as with the sex scenes, they are only available on one day.
  • Gym Bunny: Every character, really. Justified in that you (and your employees) work in a gym. Thomas or Phillip probably fit this trope the closest, though, since their physiques come from lots of working out. Kouji and Chris have physiques pumped up from their preferred physical activities.
  • Harem Seeker: Potentially, you. Also, decline the date with Kouji and see the converation the next morning:
    Manager: Wait...this is actually great. I can have my own hunky man harem!
  • Heartbeat Soundtrack: Get too flirty with Kouji and one of these might start playing. He's on to your shit.
  • Hidden Depths:
    • Kouji is a trained musician and plays guitar.
    • Chris loves literature, particularly romance and mystery.
  • Hotter and Sexier: Midway between weeks 4 and 5, Thomas, Chris, and Phillip will all have (terrible, but dedicated) ideas to getting the club more success. Thomas's idea is to serve champaigne in a tear-away tuxedo, Chris's is to put up life-size posterboards of himself in a speedo, and Phillip's is to paint himself green and rip shirts with his muscles, like the Hulk. The player character promises to consider each, but none ever takes off.
  • Hypocrite: Chris has a tendency to call Thomas out on hogging so much bathroom time on his appearance...when he uses at least 8 different lotions and a soaping robot in the shower.
  • Interrupted Intimacy: You can walk in on Thomas stripped down to his underwear with a (clothed) Kouji in the latter's room early in the game. It's never resolved on what actually happened, but thoroughly and repeatedly implied.
  • Jerkass: Richard, full stop.
  • Karma Houdini: Richard never receives any direct comeuppance for raping Kouji. He did, however, make the mistake of doing so where a camera could catch him in the act. At the end of the game, it's used to blackmail him by the player character, along with Phillip as proof of walking out on a child. It applies in full however, if the player character fails to get the club in the green and thus doesn't get the branch manager promotion.
  • The Klutz: Philip is apparently very clumsy and knocks into stuff a lot. It's a very sore point for him, to where it affects his ability to coach his preferred area.
  • Light-Haired Swimmer: Chris has bleach-blond hair.
  • Love at First Sight: Thomas will confess this as the case if romanced.
  • Love Triangle: Subverted, your character may feel as though they're getting between Kouji and Thomas if he chooses to romance one of them, but they're not actually together. There's also some subtext between Chris and Phillip, but it's not as explicit.
  • Like an Old Married Couple: Thomas and Kouji clash sometimes. Wonder why On the other hand...
  • Like Brother and Sister: This is how Thomas describes his relationship with Kouji after explaining his role in how he came to SHC.
  • Manchild: Thomas is 21 and upbeat, but also bathes with a cherished rubber duck named Ducky, has a fanatic love of explosions and action movies they appear in, and is implied to practice his martial arts because he finds it badass.
  • Manly Gay: In terms of physique, personality, and body hair, Phillip, Kouji, and Richard best fit this trope.
  • Multiple Endings: By nature of there being four possible relationships that may conclude with a sex scene, plus whether or not you pass/fail the actual plot of the game.
  • National Stereotypes/Asia: Kouji fulfills the All Asians Know Martial Arts and "eastern men can cook well by flashing knives very fast" stereoptypes, but subverts the "easterners are great with computers" one. His history conversation reveals that he was very aware of his status as a stereotype growing up and resented it. He acted out to shake it off, becoming a bit of a delinquent in the process.
  • Nice Guy: While all the other guys can stand out as being a bit of a dick at some point or another—even Thomas—Phillip is unfailingly nice, only ever getting angry in defense of his friends.
  • Noodle Incident:
    • Something happened to Thomas as a kid that left him very averse to sauna rooms, and it's connected to Richard. Putting the pieces together, it's likely he walked in on Richard having sex with his mother, or someone else, in a sauna.
    • Again with Thomas, Kouji hurts him by throwing some past event in his face involving someone Thomas apparently horribly misjudged. It causes their first fight. Finding out what happened reveals the full story behind Thomas and Kouji.
  • Not Even Bothering with the Accent: Chris is (ostensibly) British, but you wouldn't know it from his voice acting. Likeliest case is he's adapted after having been in America long enough.
  • Not So Stoic: Talk to him at the right times, and it's clear Kouji is just as attracted to the player character as the other three.
  • Office Romance: A good few examples. The first is a canon one between the player character and his secretary, Justin; though the player tried to make him understand it was just casual hookups, Justin seems to have developed a real affection. Chris was dating a member of the club that previously got laid off in one of the budget cuts before the events of the game. Thomas and Kouji never give anything solid, but it is heavily implied that they were dating before the player character arrived and the fights started—despite this, they seem to have never dated. There's also any of the possible romances the player character can pursue.
  • Parental Neglect:
    • Richard didn't even come to Phillip's mother's funeral and ignored his entire life.
    • Chris's parents were drug addicts, and their addiction cost his little brother some love before he died.
    • Kouji's parents barely noticed him, the the point he started doing illegal things just to get their attention.
  • Permanently Missable Content: Granted, "forever" doesn't mean much since it's a visual novel that can be completed in a few hours any given day—but this applies to the romance scenes, especially if you have auto-save on. You trigger them by visiting the member on a certain day with 100 heart points, but what you might not expect is that you need exactly a hundred heart points. If you go over, it's inaccessible. Cementing this is that it's almost too easy to get any given member up to triple digits, but it's much harder to pull them back down because there are only a few opportunities to lose heart points scattered throughout the game. If you follow one member around too much, you can screw yourself out of the romance route before the game is half over. This is currently in the process of being fixed, so that this danger no longer happens.
  • Perma-Stubble: Phillip and Kouji always have a line of stubble as part of their portraits.
  • Please, I Will Do Anything!: Before the events of the game. Kouji, knowing that the Super Health Club is on its last legs and that the other three have nowhere to go if it shuts down, pleads this with Richard to give him the manager job so as to try and save it. He doesn't get the job or care in the end, but Richard ends up exploiting it anyway.
  • Pretty Boy: Chris has a near-pompadour crewcut and cares to a ridiculous level about his physical appearance, to the point of using a miniature robot to soap him in the shower. At one point in the game, he will be called a pretty boy by the player character.
  • Punny Name:
    • The youngest and thinnest character is named Thomas Reed, the most muscular character is named Phillip Burgess (burger, as in beef) and the tallest character is named Chris Hughess (huge).
    • Kouji would appear to be the odd name out, as "Ishikawa" means 'rock river'. Looking up the name Kouji online however, reveals that it means...."abundance and two".
  • Seme: In terms of being the "giver" during penetrative sex, Kouji is only depicted as a top (unless you witness what happens with Richard).
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Thomas and Kouji. Phillip and Chris swap places with it every once in a while.
  • Shirtless Scene: You get many opportunities to walk in one your employees in the bathroom, sauna, or locker room. Hilariously, you can try to walk in on Kouji like this, but he'll be fully clothed already. The player character's thoughts show him to be struggling to find a reason as to why he walked in that isn't "ogling Kouji in his underwear".
  • Sleeping with the Boss: If your character gets involved with any of the employees, naturally, as well as a canon case with the player character's secretary, Justin, early on. Richard also has a sexual relationship with Kouji that you can observe when he visits, if certain conditions are met, though it's anything but pleasant.
  • Team Chef: Philip is the club's default cook, but sometimes competes with Kouji for who can make the best food.
  • Team Dad: Kouji. Most of the issues he goes through involve him taking care of the other three guys, Thomas in particular.
  • The Tease: Most of the time it's difficult to tell whether Chris is seriously flirting or not. Other times, he seems to delight in making yanking the living hell out of the player character's chain.
    Chris: Oh yes...Games that are fun to play with two persons in the privacy of their own room...Those, I call fun games.
    PC: And what would we be doing in those games...?
    Chris: Oh? We'd be working off quite some strain while the heat would be steadily increasing until the tension erupts into pure bliss for all players.
    Chris leaves in roughly .5 seconds.
    PC: But...but... (thinking) What a tease...
  • Two-Person Pool Party: Two examples:
    • One of Chris' sex scenes involves him giving head to a client underwater in the pool.
    • Your character's sex scene with Thomas takes place in the bathroom tub.
  • Uke: In terms of being the "receiver" during penetrative sex, Thomas and Phillip are only depicted as bottoms.
  • Unmanly Secret:
    • Kouji is afraid of water. Meet him next to the pool, and he'll play it off amazingly smoothly. But try assigning him to a pool job...
    • Chris loves reading authors like Jane Austen and Agatha Christie.
  • Wide-Eyed Idealist: Thomas is the youngest of the group, and the most upbeat.
  • Where Everybody Knows Your Flame: It's pretty much assumed that everybody at Super Health Club is attracted to men.