I finally got through the introduction, which admittedly wasn’t that long compared to games like Hakuouki. But that creepy teacher really annoyed me. Apparently Mizuchi can only have one minamo (what? I thought they all had lots??) so Mikoto has to have a hanafuda battle with his current one, who is a total asshole (of course) and totally fixated on him (of course).
At first Mikoto doesn’t want to, but the teacher goads her into trying.
I’m trying out the teacher because he suggested I train. Of course, I save before choosing.
He gives some more detailed info on stats and tournaments. I reload and go to Momose to see what she has to say instead. She mentions that the fifth Light, Utsutsu, disappeared right after he became a light, which is interesting, though I knew that from the magazines. I’m looking forward to his route the most, actually, he seems the least likely to annoy me.
Then I ask about minamo, and here’s where my blood pressure goes up. Minamo have to be virgins; as soon as you lose your virginity you lose your power as a minamo. However, apparently as long as ‘it’s’ still in place it’s ok. Huh??? I guess women who didn’t have one to begin with, or who broke theirs through non-sex methods don’t exist? Or somehow your power knows when you’ve had sex? But apparently it just cares about the hymen (Momose says ‘some girls’ do other stuff but are still minamo), so…anal sex then? Whatever. I give that particular aspect a pass and try to forget about it. Only to be reminded that though sex is bad for minamo, the closer in romantic terms you are with your Light the more powerful you become as a support. So, like, you need to get close, but not too close? (Cause then you’re a no-good ho-bag, amirite??)
ANYWAYS. Let’s move on. She confirms that each Light only has one minamo, except for Kurenai because he hasn’t decided on one yet. She also says that after graduating, the best students in the game go on to work for the emperor, and most end up in government jobs. This makes me wonder, do they still have their minamo there? Are their minamo doomed to be virgins forever if they need their power? Hopefully I’ll know some of the answers by the end of this post.
I finish talking to her and encounter Aoi(meangirl) in the hallway. The teacher comes after and reminds me that if I win, she’ll have to leave the school. Which annoys me again because, if Aoi is a powerful minamo, why wouldn’t another guy want her? Or is she ‘used goods’ and thus not deserving of a spot at this school anymore?
I’m not using a guide, so I kind of jumped randomly around after this. I visited Mizuchi in the 2nd-year hallway but he told me to basically GTFO because 1st and 2nd years aren’t allowed to hang out together at school (odd rule but ok), and he is all about following the rules.
Then I go to the greenhouse where Mizuchi is watering plants (with his power I think) and I fall down and he very reluctantly carries me to the doctor, worrying all the while that he’s ‘dirtying’ me by touching me. Yup.
After I recover from his screaming fangirls, I decide it’s time to level up, so I head over to the teacher’s room and proceed to kick my way through several opponents. This is the fun part – the game is based on an actual game that I’ve only played a korean version of (maybe after this I’ll get better at it?) where there’s a special deck with various pictures on them, that make up various sets. Depending on which sets you end up with in your hand and play, the point value is different. In this game, it affects the attack value. Of course, the special oni card that chose you makes your attacks stronger than others at the same level, so it’s not too hard. The interface looks confusing at first but it’s quite helpful, showing you what potential hands you have and making the decision-making fairly easy. There are lots of practice battles you can do, and once in a while someone challenges you, and if you win you add a card to your deck.
I spent a couple hours doing that (what can I say, I’m an RPG-er at heart), and then continued on. There was an event with Aoi where she’s a jerk to you in front of Mizuchi and he scolds her, which was a bit satisfying. Until he leaves and she says it’s your fault and slaps you as hard as possible, which has a painful-looking CG. Of course the heroine doesn’t do anything, just looks like she’s going to cry, all the other girls blame you, and I turn off the game for the night.
…Actually no, I did manage to get through that scene, which had some redemption at the end. Aoi is obviously the ‘psycho girlfriend’ stereotype that we all know and love, I can’t wait to see how she attacks the heroine.
…(10 minutes later): I was right, she does attack the heroine but she’s possessed by a monster while doing so (encouraged by her weak spirit of course).
So for the first chunk of playtime, I’m not sold on this at all yet, although the card game is a lot of fun. Mizuchi is fine, I hope the heroine gets to know him much better in the next chunk of playtime I do.
Yeah, I suck for not realizing how late it was, I got 5 minutes into Hana Awase and now I have to go to bed!
First things I notice:
Because I’m tired! And I’ve been meaning to post PVs for the last couple weeks and I keep forgetting…
Brothers Conflict is finally out, I might get it next week.
Toki no Kizuna!! Not a PV just the opening, but it’s the first vid I’ve seen for it. It’s SO PRETTY. And the heroine has a hawk! Can’t wait.
A gameplay vid of Black Wolves Saga. Rejet has a bunch up. I’m afraid to play this…
Hana Awase!! It says near the end that there will be three volumes at only 1470Y each, for Mizuchi (the eyepatch guy), Himeutsugi, and Karekurenagi/Utsutsu. Does this mean that Iroha (guy with the blue background) doesn’t have a route??
And a very well-drawn fanvid for TMGS3 (Seiji), no words:
Man, there are so many Tokimemo videos, I could do a whole post on them. Good time-wasting.
Jyuzaengi. The first 45 seconds are just announcing the seiyuu, so skip over that to get to the real PV (although honestly it seems like they’re mostly making really sure we see that the CGs have flowing hair and blinking eyes). I dunno about Ishida Akira’s character, his little kid voice here sounds pretty annoying.
And finally, Bakudan Handan:
Which I’m definitely getting, although I have a feeling I’ll end up only doing about half the routes.
B’s Log came with a huge book for Hana Awase!
It has lots of gorgeous art by Yura.
The heroine, Mikoto, transfers to Kasen Campus where the students (mostly the male ones) are trying to become ‘kaei’ – people who control hanafuda (flower seals) and can use them to play ‘Hana Awase’, a game in which they can bring forth power (to do things? it’s kinda vague). Mikoto likes card games, sewing and cooking, and easily gets involved in things. She gets interested in Hana Awase. The five boys in each year who win’ are called the Five Lights.
華詠 (Kaei): The few (usually) boys who can use the power of hanafuda.
華アワセ (hanaawase): the competition level of kasen, which is so dangerous it can be fatal. It is only done by kaei and minamo. What the public knows is the ‘hanautsushi’ version only.
水妹 (minamo): The girls who support the kaei with all their body and soul. Always pure young maidens, one kaei will need many minamo to get strong, but a minamo can only dedicate themselves to one kaei.
泉姫 (senki): A minamo who is so strong that she can support a kaei all by herself and has enough power to move heaven and earth. There are no minamo at present who rise to that level, so right now the senki is like a legend.
華遷 (kasen): the game which uses hanafuda. It’s done at ceremonies, contests, and even required for national relations (international? not sure).
Iroha (CV: Terashima Takuma) – the top of the top, the top of the Five Lights, and the object of the student’s admiration. He’s perfect and cool, and never shows emotion. He also has the ‘eyes of the moon’, which means that people can’t help but be attracted to him and there’s rumoured to be a test to get into his Chisengumi（地仙組）. The heroine also has this, but ‘the moon’ hasn’t appeared yet in her. Iroha acts the same way to everyone and is totally uninterested in love, but for some reason always shows up to help the heroine in a pinch.
Mizuchi (CV: Fukuyama Jun) – Brought up in a very strict household, Mizuchi believes in following the rules, and hates anyone who breaks them or betrays him. He’s used to discipline and became a Kaei as soon as he came to Kasen. He values the Minamo highly and treats them very well, grateful that they give him power, and so there are always lots of girls in his (鴻鵠組） who want to be his Minamo. He admires Iroha and wants to be like him more than anything else. Because he’s so used to controlling himself, he has no experience with love, and has never looked at any of the Minamo in a more-than-innocent way.
Himeutsugi (CV: Tachibana Shinnosuke) – He got into Kasen by special selection, and like Mizuchi, quickly became a Kaei. He’s strong but modest, and always stays back a step from groups, but somehow has an open personality that makes people love him. He doesn’t like conflict, so doesn’t start Kasen contests on his own, but once he starts, he gives it his all. The people in his Gekkougumi (月光組） are mostly kind like him, and he takes very good care of his Minamo. He’s never had a serious relationship since he couldn’t stand to hurt someone’s feelings and he’s never let himself fall for someone…until he meets the heroine.
Karekurenagi (CV: Hino Satoshi) – He transferred in second year and quickly became a Kaei to everyone’s surprise. He is equally admired and feared, and often skips school to find trouble outside. He only plays Kasen when he wants. He always is with Minamo from his Oukagumi（桜花組）, and treats everyone in his group as his possessions. He seems to switch them all the time, but the girls appear to enjoy being played with by him.
Utsutsu (CV: Sugiyama Noriaki) – He became a Kaei in his second year, but disappeared shortly after. There are rumours as to what happened, but no one knows for sure. Right now his ‘Houougumi’ (鳳凰組） is led by a deputy, but without the charisma of a Kaei, it’s very small and there aren’t many Minamo. He knows the heroine, although it’s unclear how they meet, and he feels positively towards her. The quote on his page says, “Mikoto is my special one. I only need Mikoto by my side”.
Just talking about Hana Awase took a long time, so I’m going to do the rest of the news on Wednesday!
The heroine, Mikoto, and Iroha.
And, mark this historic day on your calendars, because for the first time in years (at least, I think it’s years), the top 3 favourite characters are not all from Hakuouki. #1 still is, though (Saitou Hajime, yeah he’s kind of adorable). #2 and #3 are from Uta no Prince-sama.
Cast for Bakudan Handan!