It’s been three months since the MC has started her life at the academy when Ishigami decides to assign her and Goto to a case where they’ll go undercover as bodyguards. The MC struggles with her feelings of love for Goto as she tries to maintain the superior-subordinate relationship between them, but finds it difficult to do so when Goto becomes more involved with the case and starts to let his past affect him.
In this route, you start to see more of the Goto from MSB. He’s still caught up in the past, where he regrets that he couldn’t save his partner from her death. However, his relationship with his partner is different compared to MSB, and I found it interesting that Voltage decided to do so, since it was his defining characteristic in his MSB route. It didn’t necessarily have that much of an impact on the route in HLITF, since the MC perceived it differently, but it changes some aspects of his character. It becomes clear in this route that Goto never was “young and carefree” before his partner’s death, which explains why he seems a bit more gentle in this game overall compared to MSB.
The MC has realized her feelings for Goto, but is unsure of how to act on them. While there aren’t any rules against relationships at the school, she still feels uncomfortable about her feelings for him due to their student-instructor relationship, and struggles to hide her feelings for most of the route. Some people might dislike this, but it’s important to realize that in the police and military, fraternization is usually taboo. Although they’re all officers at the academy, Goto is still her superior due to his position as an instructor, and her struggling with this fact is a realistic depiction of what would actually had happened if this was a real life situation.
While the MC was more levelheaded in this route, that was the only difference I saw other than her struggling with her feelings for Goto. I was expecting more from their relationship development on the romance side, since the route title was Falling in Love. The MC does get a better understanding of whom Goto really is, and Goto does open up to the MC more. However, there wasn’t that much of a difference from their situation from the end of MS1. I was disappointed because I was expecting more from this route, since Voltage decided to split the main story into two parts. It delivered in some aspects, but not as much as I wanted it to. Goto’s confession to the MC seemed to come out of nowhere to me because I didn’t see the romantic development that I wanted; while there are certain parts that others may perceive as him falling for her, to me they seemed more like moments where he lets himself be more honest and open with the MC, and didn’t have any romantic undersides to them.
Voltage did a somewhat okay job at this route, but I think they could have done a lot more. If you liked Goto from MSB, then I would recommend this route; it’s a fresh perspective on his character, and I liked that aspect a lot. If Goto’s MS1 interested you and you want to continue with his storyline, then I would recommend his route. Otherwise, I hesitate to do so; while I (somewhat) liked this route, I can see why a lot of people wouldn’t. Happy playing!