Is it Tough Being a Friend?


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I’ve encountered my ideal protagonist!

It’s my friend, Hinomori Ryuuga. We’ve become the closest of friends after entering high school.

My first impression of Ryuuga was “This is the kind of protagonist you’d see in something like an anime.” Then, that thought soon changed into conviction.

First of all, this guy almost never talks about his past. Also, he frequently slips out of class. As soon as he comes back, he gets extremely tired, blood comes out from his lips, the sleeves and cuffs of his uniform get torn, and so forth.

Furthermore, there’s always beauties that are surrounding Ryuuga. The one who’s like an idol within the school, Yukimiya Shiori. The cool expert of the sword, Aogasaki Rei. The mysterious transfer student, Elmira McCartney. It’s very tiring for me when these people appear in front of Ryuuga. I have to frantically make a fuss by saying things like “H, hey Ryuga! How did you get acquainted with Yukimiya!”, “W, why did the beautiful swordswoman Aogasaki come to the classroom to specifically meet Ryuga?!”, or “E, E, Elmira! What is it that you see in Ryuga!”

…So why am I doing this? That’s because I, Kobayashi Ichirou, am a pro at being a friend.

My life’s calling is to support Hinomori Ryuuga, the protagonist amongst protagonists, as a close friend character.

―Let the curtains open for the rom-com presented by co-starring best friend, Kobayashi Ichirou!

Associated Names
One entry per line
Yuujin Character wa Taihen desu ka?
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To Be a Power in the Shadows! (6)
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Ordinary I and Extraordinary Them (2)
How to Raise a Silver-Haired Loli (2)
There Was No Secret Organization to Fight with the World’s Darkness so I Made One (In Exasperation) (2)
I’m the Evil Lord of an Intergalactic Empire! (2)
Recommendation Lists
  1. Shoujo sweet to be read
  2. My Favorite
  3. misunderstandings
  4. Hidden Boss MCs
  5. My Personal Favorites

Latest Release

Date Group Release
03/30/20 2Slow2Late Machine... v6c3 part6
03/27/20 2Slow2Late Machine... v6c3 part5
03/25/20 2Slow2Late Machine... v6c3 part4
03/23/20 2Slow2Late Machine... v6c3 part3
03/15/20 2Slow2Late Machine... v6c3 part2
03/13/20 2Slow2Late Machine... v6c3 part1
03/07/20 2Slow2Late Machine... v6c2 part6
02/28/20 2Slow2Late Machine... v6c2 part5
02/22/20 2Slow2Late Machine... v6c2 part4
02/20/20 2Slow2Late Machine... v6c2 part3
02/17/20 2Slow2Late Machine... v6c2 part2
02/15/20 2Slow2Late Machine... v6c2 part1
02/13/20 2Slow2Late Machine... v6c1 part6
02/11/20 2Slow2Late Machine... v6c1 part5
02/10/20 2Slow2Late Machine... v6c1 part4
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22 Reviews sorted by

crocoer rated it
July 26, 2018
Status: c1 part3
It's good so far, but what I've seen might be a little polarizing later on.

... more>>

Seeing the cover art, I thought, ah, this "protagonist" he's supporting is probably a woman. I mean, the shading around the chest only reinforced the fact. Then I saw the illustrations. Yes, he is a she. At the later parts, it also seems like he moved to being the protagonist of some SoL harem story instead, so I believe that you are probably being mislead.


But if all you are looking for is the comedy, it is good so far. Really nice and some meta jokes that are not quite fourth-wall breaking. You really feel the MC (the perspective character, not the character he calls the MC) working hard. And he's secretly high-spec to boot. Overall, it looks like it will be at least decent.

I'll give it four stars for now since there isn't even a full volume to read and so far it seems to be above average quality. <<less
24 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
nguyentantan2001 rated it
March 18, 2019
Status: v2c2 part6

Honestly I don't wanna be that guy but I just really really HATE taotie. He ruins this novel for me. I know that the author already addressed the Ntr situation but still.... If you're a sensitive b**** like me then you might rage thanks to taotie. However, it still is a pretty funny light-hearted novel and I would definitely recommend you read the first volume.

18 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
N0r rated it
February 25, 2019
Status: --
A lot of people are complaining about this description being bait, and I can understand where it’s coming from. The premise that the description sets up is extremely interesting but it only matches part of the first arc before transitioning into more stereotypical romcom territory. While this is a bit disappointing, especially for people within the “side-character” niche who were targeted by the description, it’s still an interesting story. It is well written, and the humor remains consistent. Overall, it’s a good romcom even if that isn’t what it was... more>> set up to be. <<less
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AC253 rated it
September 2, 2018
Status: v2c1 part2
As usual, there may be spoilers in my review, but nothing much to say here other than - I NEVER KNEW I NEEDED THIS.

WELL. MAYBE I DID. Because honestly, I always loved the side characters of harem shows and reverse-harem shows, and I always have a special spot in my heart for the supporting best friend character. And he's self-aware too? The downside is... it doesn't stay that way. It's gradually growing more generic devolving into a standard rom-com LN, and though I didn't mind the lack of (actual) plot... more>> in the beginning, it doesn't hold my interest. I wish the MC remained as a side-character, but what made him (and Ryuuga, for that matter) initially unique is getting lost.

But there's friendships, there's humor, and there's some nice, easy-to-read translation. If you're in the mood for a breezy read or a funny story, it's worth a try. <<less
16 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
MrDowner rated it
December 2, 2019
Status: v4 c01
Its alright the author like setting like toeing the line of NTR it's fine if its just a one time thing but it keeps doing it with the volumes after its introduced it makes more sleazy than it has to be, also the protag explaining his fetish of being a support character each volume is starting to get tiresome. I only kept reading cause the protags interactions with other characters is fun. I'll drop it after volume 4 ends most likely at this point. Edit: nvm lmao dropped it now.
14 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
Bakaleaf rated it
April 18, 2019
Status: v3c4 part3
This is a great novel at first if you read "The power behind the shadow" novel you can see some similarity here but sadly as the novel progress the author had a sudden wrong turn that complete lost the very essence of the novel.

First the concept of MC role wanting to be a support character for his ideal main character was good even the concept of supporting some heroin for the hero is exceptional.

But sadly for some odd reason it went from diamond to complete garbage.

One reason is at first... more>> the MC was exceptionally amazing from planning to scheming you can say that it was entertaining but as the chapter progress the MC went from genius to retarded.


I suppose this all started when the Totie Spirit Possession, The MC character became GARBAGE and I mean literary Trash Character. MC was of being NTRed by the Totie was already a huge MINUS. Then he still push his dream as a support character in the most retarded way. He have a harem in his house yet barely have an impact. Even his relationship with the other girls seems idiotic as the Totie keep on replacing him especially in romantic moments like dating.

I don't know if the author just love NTR or something but the Totie character just is annoying in my point of view.

Imagine one of the scene where the Totie has a date with one of the Heroin and MC just watch at the distance where Totie promise this and that and made the girl in love with the MC because Totie has the same appearance with MC.

If this was Hentai maybe the Totie started raping the girls and MC watch at the sideline...


While since it's japanese novel where MAJORITY is a HAREM no TOUCH genre but with the idiotic ROMCOM approach it made me give up on this novel.

The Battle is repetitive and boring almost no originality. Their is no element of surprise what so every that made you think of something or make you expect of something.

Another novel started good and ended up as trash... <<less
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bonkleboi rated it
November 16, 2018
Status: v2c2
This novel starts off really good but then it baits and switch into something else. In my list, mocking and referencing cliches are always well received. So when I read the premise of the novel I knew I would like it. And, for the first volume, it was mostly true.
The MC is a guy obsessed with being a best friend side-character. And because of that he will always try to highlight the 'protagonist' and will use some common cliches to create or even force his ideal setting for the... more>> 'story'. This is where most of the comedy (the good one at least) comes from.

The problem is that the author started adding other elements to the story and these started to overthrew the original idea. By volume 2, the cliche setting the MC had set up and his position as a side-character have almost dissapeared and with that out we're only left with a typical romcom. I guess if you still like a regular romcom you can enjoy the story but for us that came for the comedy it's a real bummer. <<less
12 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
December 23, 2019
Status: v3 prologue
The MC insists on being a friend character that he doesnt mind being NTRed. I feel bored reading, no parts of the story that makes me excited to read the next chapter. The romance is bland. The heroines are duĺl which someone you can find most in cultivation chinese novel. Each volume ends with no progress in the story.
8 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
boomstick3000 rated it
July 25, 2018
Status: c1
Only first chapter so far, but it feels like a breath of fresh air. MC's passion is to bring up the talents of others, but there are hints that he's pretty talented himself. For now it's pretty amusing.
7 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
Sager rated it
July 24, 2018
Status: c1
Only the first chapter is out but I'm already enjoying this its really funny!

It's also nice to have some originality for once
7 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
fireutsie rated it
February 15, 2019
Status: v2
Like others have said. This novel is a bait and switch. The summary had me completely fooled and while the plot twist was kinda unexpected. I didn't really like it and the plot soon became generic afterwards. This wasn't what I had signed up for. Such a shame too since the original premise was kinda unique and plenty fun.
6 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
mmem rated it
July 27, 2018
Status: v1 illustrations
Interesting premise, so far it's been fun and I've always had a soft spot for side characters over main characters, though he's reasoning for being a side character is questionable. I especially can't wait for the protagonist to learn the truth.

At least that's what I felt until I saw the illustrations. Now this story seems like it'll become generic real quick. I just don't feel motivated to continue reading. I'll probably come back later when there's more chapters, hopefully I'm wrong about the direction this story will go in and... more>> this'll stay interesting. <<less
5 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
Fourthaid rated it
August 3, 2018
Status: c2 part5
This is early for a full review, but there's some potential for an amusing read here. The passionate way the MC wants to support someone else into the limelight is quite funny, despite him in actuality being far superior to all of his previous "main characters".

However, as is always the danger when it comes to comedies based largely on misunderstandings, it can get old quite quickly, which was why I was pleasantly surprised...

... more>>

... when the obvious girl crossdressing as the ideal Hero, Ryuuga, was revealed to be a girl within the first two chapters to the MC. I was expecting that to be a recurring gag and somehow sidestepped by a bunch of different tropes as excuses, such as it being a gender bender curse or a potential twin sister or what-have-you whenever it got brought up.


So far, with a fairly limited amount of content, I'd give it a solid 3, 5/5 and round it up to a 4. How it'll handle the comedy and romcom aspect of it in particular will shape that score. <<less
4 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
July 26, 2018
Status: c1 part3
This is something coming from a guy with unique kind of mindset it seems. It never passed my mind that a protagonist can be put as a sidekick character, meaning the harem guy's friend. Tell the author that someone had enjoyed his creation with just the first chapter.
4 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
iwasyourweebgod rated it
April 7, 2019
Status: v3c1
This novel started out being very interesting to me however, volume 2 was just uninteresting.

it feels like the author planned out to volume 1.5 but ended up rushing the rest. It feels subpar and boring and Jesus they just start tossing characters around to the point that the harem is a. Too big and b. Not believable. Not like most harems are but this one just doesn’t work at all.
3 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
FujiwaraSensei rated it
March 1, 2019
Status: v2c3 part3
I've been reading this novel for the past month and its pretty good.

But until this MC who is kind of retarted dense and who just want to be a side character is really annoying.

... more>>

At the volume 2 of the novel is where the cringy part begins.

The MC find his friend to be a girl. The girl is inlove with him and he just think of it as a "Boyfriend Role" was really annoying. And oh he just realized that he's the 2nd boss' vessel. Plot twist.... The 2nd boss dont want to fight the heroine but the MC keeps bugging him up to become one so he can get back to be the heroines friend.


Im not really sure if its worth the time reading the story when some volume is making me fuse up until I explode become of the MC <<less
3 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
March 17, 2019
Status: v2 epilogue
so cleared 2 volumes at light speed and my thoughts on this are three:

It is a trope parade breaker, guy pretends to be a pervert but seems to have an existential block that prevents him from ever going the distance. Usually you get dense, he is fairly observant and aware of the others feelings, or super pervert he is perverted for cosplay but not to a high degree.

second, he is aware of the tropes honestly he reminds me of Deadpool a little, he semi-breaks or fully breaks fourth wall when... more>> he monologues. He also is human and superhuman, he has a lot of stupid skills he still doesn’t realize he is MC level OP.

Third sometimes the story gets weird and too crazy that the development of characters is too stalled or shallow, the cast is already up to 8 heroine candidates at volume 2 with the author trying to point them all at the MC he gives them each events so development is fairly shallow or forced (against the MCs will) down his throat. While I’m all for harem stories every now and then the development between MC and the main are rather ridiculous at times and his quest for normalcy is at time approaching disbelief if not for his existential worldview that he is a side character

Well pretty sure I butchered this somewhere but whatever, this is a fairly interesting story that can definitely kill time and parodizes the standard shonen harem story <<less
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Vidashall rated it
January 15, 2019
Status: v2c2 part6
I had fun reading this novel, although sadly there is not enough material to read and properly judge it (at least translated material).

I was able to enjoy myself and have a couple of laughters along, but sadly after volume 1, the story seems to be getting messy, I can't see the direction is taking.

... more>>

At the beginning the MC was supposed to be an "extra", a mob character, someone to support the "protagonist" Ryuuga. But now he is becoming the "protagonist" of the story, and although I have not problem with that, for me it seems too quick and boring how he became OP


Although if we ignore the "story", and how generic the characters are, it is still a fun reading.

Characters - 2/5

there is nothing special about any of the characters, they are predictable and I have yet to see any "growth", they are two-dimensional. They are characters you would see of your average romcon.

Plot - 2.5/5

Just like the characters, the plot is pretty much generic, the only difference is that we see it from the perspective of a "side" character which makes it a bit more interesting.

Protagonist - 3.5/5

The protagonist of this novel is what makes it fun and enjoyable. His inner monologues along with the way he acts with the characters is pretty funny. Although he is not completely original, he is still better than a two-dimensional characters.

My only problem with him is that we have yet to see his "true" self, after all, he created a persona to go along with the "story". Sometimes we see him getting out of character and maybe showing the true him, but he has yet to totally discard that persona.

Romance - 2/5

not much to say about this, is pretty average.

Comedy - 3/5

Like I said before, the MC is what makes this story fun to read.

Well, that's it for now, it saddens me that the translator stopped working on this novel but I comprehend.

Hopefully he or anyone else might pick it up later, so I can see how the story progress and might be able to give it a more accurate "review". <<less
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Aho555 rated it
August 9, 2019
Status: v2c2
I didn't mind the twist, but even considering that this is a gag novel, it's just messy and all over the place.

Characterization is weak - the heroines are generic types; plus there's nothing unique about their behaviour or how they talk. They're a bore.

So are the romcom situations the MC gets caught up in. They should be the main content but instead they're bite sized summaries and the author is more interested in writing about how meta-aware the MC is and how he plots his way around the story.

MC is... more>> ridiculously hellbent on sticking to his role according to tropes..... which might sound great but since this novel is messily and generically written, it's just not funny or entertaining enough.

I mean:


How can a hero-type girl forced to live as a boy, who relieves her stress by being as girly as possible in her private time with the MC, often by doing erot*c cosplay parades for him; make me want to yawn as I'm reading it?

By the way, the novel cover already hinted strongly that Ryuuga was actually a girl; and of course the way 'he' was barely fleshed out as a character before 'his' unveiling made it obvious that Ryuuga was a generic harem member.

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Rayzofdeath rated it
March 2, 2020
Status: v4c1
Just finished volume 3, and I gotta say, the overall premise is good, but with the addition of the author tip-toeing the line of NTR really sets it off for me.

... more>>

Like the addition of Taotie, I know he's been added for 'comedic relief', but honestly, he f*cking ruins this novel for me. Occasionally he's alright, but I personally think that he is really annoying and adds nothing to the story. But, I just skip over any part with him in it as I cannot tolerate him lmao.


Other than that, it's a decent novel that will keep you decently entertained. Solid 6-7/10 imo <<less
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