Idol Project was a game released for PC-98 in 1995 by KSS. It was followed by a sequel game, a four-part OVA series, and music CDs in Japan. This is an unusual adventure game that looks like an idol-raising simulator. The player takes on the role of a chubby, short manager who guides idols through their careers, maturing alongside them. Although the best way to learn the game is to play it, I have provided some tips and a guide to help players focus on the gameplay and story. I’ve avoided guides that would spoil the story or reveal how to acquire each girl so players can have a natural and unique experience.
If you are trying to recruit a girl, but she rejects you the first time, keep going in and out of the location and talking to them.
If you are unsure when to trigger an event on a set day, keep going in and out of the location until you trigger it. Staying in the scene and looking around to pass the time only works in a few areas, such as the park and the festival grounds.
You will need money to care for yourself and your idols! The easiest way to make money at the start is not to sell your items to the pawnbroker but to check for lost items in grassy/bush areas such as the park, police station and the hotel. Check these areas from 5 a.m. to 6 a.m. Take items to the police station and get free money.
Need to pass the time? Looking at your fridge eats 15 minutes. Looking at your coffee table will waste an hour.
Do not watch TV. You can waste half your day doing nothing. The only time you need to watch the TV is on days you need to cheer your idol on at events.
Mimu will make you breakfast if you are home from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. Free food!
You must have your idols at least level 15 by August 1. If you need to do this quickly, stick with Mimu, Corvette, Leela and Extra. You’re stuck levelling Mimu up the most as she starts at level 1 and is the most difficult. However, the other girls will start at higher levels, and Extra will also come with some “extra” money from her dad.
Grab a copy of the manual on the Aridol’s
Idol Project Training and Event Tips:
Your idol’s stats will be listed on the side in white text. This information will turn blue when you schedule them for training or an event. The blue text will look bold with a shadow when they are actively in the event. That way, if you forget what day their event is on, you can always check the sidebar.
- Sunday: Nothing
- Monday: Nothing
- Tuesday: Swimming Event
- Weds: Concert Event
- Thursday: Recording Event
- Friday: Sports Event
- Saturday: Nothing
Idol Project Ending Requirements
Ending requires you to open up three idol events: Swimming, Sports and Concerts. You will also need to record at least one CD. You must also get two special invites to compete in festival concerts at the Milky Way Stage at GeoPro headquarters.
Get Swimming– Talk to Extra on Saturdays at the GeoPro headquarters. You must speak to her 3-4 times to trigger the flag, but she will always leave. Exit the scene and go back in, and she will come back as long as it’s Saturday.
Go to her rich dad’s house (above the park, looks like a fish) and try entering the area. You’ll get a text cutscene and can now enter that area. This is where you can scout Extra. If you choose to have Extra on your team, her dad will give you a massive pile of money. Having a little Extra is a good thing.
Say yes to selling Extra’s dad the painting in your place, which will trigger the invite to the swimming event.
Get Sports– You can trigger the invite event by participating once with one Idol in the Swimming event and then going to the hotel between 3 and 4 a.m. to trigger the Ghost couple who owns the hotel. They will give you an invite to the event.
Try to schedule the idol the day before the event takes place. Once you have locked an Idol into an activity, you can’t change it, and they can’t be scheduled for anything else until they complete the event. See the weekly guide to best optimize between training and scheduling events.
You make more money in events, around 30,000 to 50,000 yen and a considerable experience boost if you do well, but if by chance it’s an event the Idol isn’t great with, they will lose experience and bring home no money.
Around July 21, you’ll be invited to participate at the MilkyWay concert hall. You will need to select one girl, and you should choose Mimu.
July 23, talk to people in the park, at the recording studio, at the police station, and with Berlin to learn more about Aryisa, your ex-idol. Learn what you can from talking to people.
August 3, you must go to the Milky Way concert hall concert around 4 p.m.
To trigger the hard/bad ending in Idol Project– don’t go to the concert and enjoy this different story arc. At this time, I have yet to unlock all of the bad endings, but I have found at least two unique bad endings.
Get a Concert– After the Aug 3rd event, if you keep the Idols popular and active in events, you will eventually get a letter inviting you to perform at concerts. You must go to the Concert Hall (where Snap! Performs and where you find the Kung-Fu girl) at least once the day of the event to cheer them on, as the concerts are not televised.
SummerFest Concert and End Game– the best possible ending is through this event
Talk to people in the park. They will reveal where Aryisa lives.
Ask about Aryisa at the recording studio.
Go to the disco and find Layla, who will confirm the rumours. You can now go to Aryssia’s house.
Try to talk to Aryisa.
Go to the police and talk to the chief.
Save and go to the brothel to unlock the VIP room. Talk to everyone there.
Go to the library and talk to the girl there to trigger a conversation about Aryisa.
**If you have this idol in your team, she will be replaced by a part-timer cat girl.**
Go to the disco and talk to Layla till she suggests Mimu’s song.
Go back to the house and talk to Mimu.
Go to Aryisa’s place.
Make a CD– Go to the recording studio and make a CD. You need 1 million yen to make a CD. You must show up on Thursday for the recording.
Your first CD will trigger a problem, and you must go to GeoPro and talk to them. Agree to pay them a 20% cut from sales, and you will make a CD. Saying no will cost you a million yen, and you’ll have no CD. Pay them.
Go to the park and talk to people. You’ll get a hint to speak with Berlin at the bar.
Go to Berlin and buy one drink from him, then talk.
Do this several times to get a hint about the past and the story until his text goes back to offering in-game tips.
Go to Aryisa’s place.
Go to GeoPro’s offices.
Go to Aryisa’s place and keep talking to her until her text repeats. You might need to go back and forth from her place to GeoPro’s offices a few times.
Eventually, get the SummerFest Event Invite for August 31 at 4 p.m. at GeoPro.
Go to Aryisa’s place and talk to her until her text says, “All my songs have been fake.”
Go to GeoPro, but no one will be there. Click the chair.
If this doesn’t open up, you must go to the Brothel and VIP room for the trigger.
Go to the police and talk to the chief there so he says he will support you.
Schedule Mimu for the SummerFest concert a few days before the event if you want to keep levelling her up or attending events or right away if she’s already over level 15.
Go to the MilkyWay Concert Hall at GeoPro on August 31 around 4 p.m. to trigger the game’s final ending.
Always forgive. Forgiveness doesn’t mean forgetting or excusing the harm done to you. It doesn’t necessarily mean making up with the person who caused the harm. Forgiveness brings peace that lets you focus on yourself and helps you go on with life.
Idol Project Quirks and Quarks
In the park, there is a blimp in the sky. In the evening, waste some time looking at it a whole bunch. You can spam-feed your levels this way.
As you level up, you get less creepy, you get less H when talking to women, you make more money, and your comments about others improve.
Save before talking to idols in their room to avoid “problems.” Some girls will leave and never return if you trigger their bad times. Reload and try another girl, or look at your coffee table before trying the girl you want to talk to.
The same thing works for getting hints about where to go or who to talk to at the brothel. Save before going in and reload after you have learned what they said. This won’t work on the times the police officer says he has “stress informants,” though, and that’s the one time you need to go in. You will know it’s “that moment” in the brothel as they will invite you to the VIP room. Say yes, and you will unlock the flags you need to keep advancing.
You need to collect seven hidden objects in the game to get the secret congratulations screen at the end. You don’t need these to win the game, but it’s cute to get it. The symbols are located at:
- Park on the seller’s carpet with stuff
- Pizza place orange square cup stack
- Library in a frame
- Hospital back wall of items
That’s only 4 locations, but they will re-generate as time goes on, so always try to click around these areas when you are there, and eventually, you’ll click/find 7 of them.
There is no way to see your stats/experience or even the girls, just the levels. Just go with it.
Idol Project tends to crash a lot. It’s not you, the emulator settings or your computer. That is just how the game is; it even crashes on the actual disk game itself. Save often. I have noticed that Corvette events often crash the game. Also, the game crashed a lot when going into the disco.
My Look at Idol Project PC-98
Idol Project is an enjoyable game with unexpected twists and a satisfying story. Although I haven’t tested the guide on the FM Towns release, the game’s stunning pixel art, saucy humour, and adorable music make it highly appealing. The game is rated PG-13, but nothing would require you to hide it from your friends or family. The music remains enjoyable even after playing for hours, and the game is a fun experience.
Last year, in 2022, when I streamed Idol Project, a few people contacted me asking for help playing the game. I decided to create this guide to assist those individuals. However, before starting the guide, I needed to address the game’s crashing problem. Although the crashing issue may affect your gaming experience, you can still complete Idol Project if you save frequently.
Idol Project is a delightful obscure game. Try it out today!