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Shunkyoku no Tyrhhia ~What a Beautiful Dawn


Clephas

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I'm going to be blunt... if it weren't for the urging of one of my online friends, I wouldn't have played this game.  For one thing, it is a direct prequel to Gakthun, which I didn't have much fun with (I don't really like Japanese versions of Liar Soft games, for some reason... though I loved the English version of Sekien).  It is based in a steampunk world version of one of the most-visited eras of Japanese history in otaku media, the Bakumatsu era. 

In that era, Japan was opened by British air-fortresses, rather than by Perry's gunships, but the results were pretty much the same up until the beginning of the game (albeit with the usual liberties taken).  Since there was no walkthrough out for this game, as of yet, I ended up on a path whose history pretty much echoed rl history save for who died and when (oh and the individuals' motivations, of course).  Whether this was a good thing or not, I dunno... but the ending was decent, if bittersweet (not to mention that the last scene indicates that it is the one that heads into Gakthun). 

The protagonist, Hachirou, is the child of a Shogunate vassal family famous for their real combat oriented sword style.  He himself is a bit obsessed with modern steam technology, and his habit of constantly referring to his pocket watch shows off his straight-as-a-yardstick personality. 

Like a lot of steampunk-series games, this one jumps around between many different perspectives for about three-quarters of the game (relatively little time is spent with Hachirou, considering he is the protagonist), but this game escapes the rather... Steven Brust-style story narration (reference to the Phoenix Guard and its two sequels, which are written in a style that is excessively dramatic and roundabout) that poisoned me against Gakthun and some of the other games by this company.  In that sense, this was the easiest Liar-soft VN for me to read.

This game has heavy Cthulhu Mythos influence throughout its latter parts, ranging from a rather blatant one in the final battle scene of the ending I got to numerous smaller indications throughout.

Is this game good?  Yes, it is well-written and interesting to read.  Is it a kamige?  I can't really judge, since I have no idea how to get the other endings without a lot of trial and error (and I'm too lazy to do that with a liar soft game).  I'm giving it a decent rating because I liked a lot of it... but the way the game treated the Shinsengumi was a bit depressing at times (it really, really sucks to be Shinsengumi in this game). 

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Does this game have romance? I didn't see any tags for it, though judging by the cover Rin seems to play a more prominent role.

And if this title has routes, are those heroine routes or just routes with different plot developments?

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49 minutes ago, ChaosRaven said:

Does this game have romance? I didn't see any tags for it, though judging by the cover Rin seems to play a more prominent role.

And if this title has routes, are those heroine routes or just routes with different plot developments?

Romance... romance in extreme situations?  Liar-soft doesn't do soft romance, so all the relationships are under stress or are twisted in some way (there are a lot of non-protagonist h-scenes in this game). 

Edit: As for the routes, I have no idea.  I know there are other routes because there are blank spots in the gallery and certain characters just vanished from the stage after the first chapter with nothing happening to them.  I know you are supposed to get to other routes by picking different historical events to fill in the blank spots in the intermission.  However, since there are three of those choices in each intermission and there is no 'skip to the next choice in an instant' or flowchart function in this game, I am not in the mood to go off and create a walkthrough for myself.

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1 hour ago, Clephas said:

Romance... romance in extreme situations?  Liar-soft doesn't do soft romance, so all the relationships are under stress or are twisted in some way (there are a lot of non-protagonist h-scenes in this game). 

Yes, I expected that much. Liar-soft doesn't really seem to be big into romance. A bit of a pity, but as long as they've other qualities to make up for it, I don't really mind.

The title does look interesting, so should MangaGamer pick it up, I'd most likely play it.

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