Even though Harutoki 5 tied last year in an unofficial poll for the worst otome game of the year, I liked it enough to get the fandisk, and I’m playing it now. However, the problems with the first game have only partially been fixed.
One of the main problems was fixed, or at least it seems like it – I’m not going to explain fully because it’s a spoiler, but in the main game when you save the world, almost always a few particular people are sacrificed, there’s no way around it. And this problem is totally glossed over in the epilogues, which makes the heroine seem pretty jerky (unless you have magic disbelief-suspension abilities like me, or just assume that the writers screwed up and forgive the heroine). In the fandisk, it seems like the main plot is about how to prevent this, which actually makes me like the original game better as well.
But some of the other problems remain, not least of which is Neoromance’s continual refusal to provide full-voice, or even voiced scenes when it’s important. I can’t believe all the character-specific scenes aren’t voiced, it’s just ridiculous at this point. It makes me not want to buy their games. If they’d just provide more voices, I would be so much more willing to buy the overpriced special editions; instead I always buy the regular editions.
And my other problem with this Harutoki in particular is that in the CG’s, the heroine often looks emotionless, or non-human. Part of it is Mizuno Tooko’s artstyle – the huge eyes without pupils that she always gives heroines tend to look blank, but I swear she did better in #3 and #4.
Anyways, I’m just finishing up (hopefully) Ryouma’s route, then I’m going to stop in order to start either Brothers Conflict or Jyuzaengi, both of which I recently got. High school contemporary or Three Kingdoms catboys, hmmm…
I finally got the Harutoki 4 PSP with the Harutoki 5 demo included in it (thanks YesAsia, even though I paid extra to get it Fedexed it was sent a week late, grr), and have a few thoughts!
1. The beginning feels like Corda, probably because of the music and the modern setting. The heroine’s cousin Miyako is female, though she looks and sounds like a guy…her CV is Saiga Mitsuki, whom I’ve always heard playing male roles, that might be it (including Kuranosuke in my new favourite anime Kuragehime!!) Anyways, I’ll get used to it, though it doesn’t help that she gets jealous of the heroine’s male friends in a ‘childhood friend who loves the heroine’ kind of way.
1a (forgot to write this before): Sakamoto Ryouma (the guy with wavy brown hair) (CV: Suzumura Kenichi)…all I can hear in my head is him playing Okita in Gintama…must remember not to watch any Gintama before I play this.
4. The heroine seems extremely absentminded and kind of dense, but this is hopefully due to the scenes shown in the demo. And she seems to have never heard of the Shinsengumi or Okita Souji – though she grew up in Japan. Odd.
5. I think I’m going to laugh whenever Ernest (blonde guy) says something in English – not because of his pronunciation, which is perfect (though American/Canadian accented, not English), but because of the dialogue – “Gosh”, “My Dear Savior” being a couple examples. Then again, I’ve read some pretty cheesy romance novel dialogue, I’m sure I can handle it.
All in all, this demo does a pretty good job in making me impatient to play Harutoki 5! Thank god I have lots of other games to pass the time with until then, including replaying Harutoki 4 with all its new scenes, which I’m off to do now!
Yup, I just saw on Dengeki Online that Harutoki 4 PSP will have a trial version of Harutoki 5…Damn you Koei, how do you know how to tempt me to spend all my money!!! AND apparently there are 20 scenes added to Harutoki 4 (including the new epilogues) YAY!
B’s Log also had mini posters of all the H5 hachiyou as furoku *dies*. They’re pretty much the same pics as in the DOL article here. As well as a 20-PAGE ad – mainly showing the characters again, and a couple scenes. The first looks like the inside of a huge ruined building in a Western style, with a long silver-haired guy taking the hand of a girl in a high school-looking uniform on a half-gone staircase, and text which says,
“Choose. Which world will be destroyed?”
“Will he be the one to disappear…or will you?”
Then all the hachiyou have their own 2-page spreads, with a line of dialogue and a short description.
And then another scene where the girl in the foreground watches as a firebird erupts from a row of houses, and a group of people in Bakumatsu period clothes stare. The text here says “Time, long sleeping, is moving.”
So excited! XD
Harutoki 4 Perfect Edition for the PSP and Harutoki 5!!!!!! for the PSP have been announced at the Tokyo Game Show! Harutoki 5 is scheduled for next spring. Aagh, I might just have to buy Harutoki 4 PSP, I loved the PS2 version but wanted more, and apparently they’re adding stuff – hopefully new scenes (or voices!!) in the new edition.
It’s set in the Bakumatsu!! I really don’t know how to feel about that, there have been so many games set there I’m almost tired of it But since Harutoki has been heavily fantasy-based, I’ll hope that they bring a fresh look at the period (some of the characters are the usual suspects, Sakamoto Ryouma and Okita Souji, but there are some I don’t immediately recognize. AND! They are finally changing the seiyuu!! Very mixed feelings about this too. After playing several games with the same cast I can see why they’d want change, but man, it will be weird not hearing the normal hachiyou. On the other hand, Suwabe Junichi in Harutoki? I’m down with that Other seiyuu announced are Suzumura Kenichi, Okamoto Nobuhiko, Tachibana Shinnosuke, and Yasumoto Hiroki.
That’s all I have time for, this weekend was so busy I just saw the news now on Nari Nari!
There are pics up at Dengeki Online and Famitsu.
Oh, and Venuseclipse from Unbroken Hours let me know that my comments are broken, so I will try and fix that ASAP! And here I was sad that no one was commenting