Dark Rose Valkyrie is the latest Japanese role-playing game presented to us by developer Compile Heart and publisher Idea Factory. It’s set in an alternate version of 1929 Japan where Black Garnet, a meteorite, has hit the Earth and caused a virus that transforms the public into deadly creatures called Chimera. The protagonist, Asahi Shiramine, is the captain of Task Force Valkyrie – a special unit created by a military agency in order to defeat these beings.
Hakuoki: Kyoto Winds is the latest game in the Hakuoki series, and is billed by developer Idea Factory as a “remastered telling of the beloved 2008 series”. Set in historic Japan, the game follows the protagonist as she’s taken in by a group of samurai while looking for her father who has gone missing. Being an otome game (literally translated as “maiden game”), the protagonist is, naturally, surrounded by attractive men – twelve of whom she is able to embark on romantic storylines with.
Rogue-like role-playing release Touhou Genso Wanderer follows the story of adorable protagonist Reimu Harukei. Reimu becomes entranced by the ‘golden sphere’ that soon-to-be antagonist Rinnosuke Morichika is holding, and tries to steal it from him. Clearly under the sphere’s spell, Rinnosuke fights back, and Reimu soon finds herself away from her home, trying to find her way back and battling the clones which have been borne of the sphere’s dark power. The whole thing feels a little trope-y, and starting the game feels like setting off down a well-worn path, so it’s a good job that it has a lot to throw at you to try and keep you interested.
Some eleven years after its original Japanese release, Ys Origin has been brought to PlayStation 4 by publisher DotEmu (via a PC localisation by XSEED back in 2006). Set 700 years before the events of the main Ys series, Origin steers away from the series’ familiar protagonist Adol Christin in order to focus on the background of the series’ story by exploring the world through the eyes of new characters.
From Compile Heart, the developer of the reasonably popular Hyperdimension Neptunia series, comes a new game from a fresh intellectual property. MeiQ: Labyrinth of Death is the story of a world that is suffering an eternal nighttime. Legend tells the story of a chosen Machina Mage who must turn the key to restart the world and restore order. The world of MeiQ is made up of five parts, and a mage has been selected from each part to partake in the quest. Enter the cast.
The Huntsman: Winter’s Curse is a PlayStation 4 game based in the same universe as The Huntsman film series. Billed as an “episodic role-playing game with card collecting elements”, the game follows the story of a girl, Elisabeth, who goes on a quest in an attempt to save her brothers from the corruption of the Ice Queen.
Amnesia: Memories is an otome visual novel where you play the nameless heroine who has lost her memories. The reason given in the opening scenes of the game is that a sprite named Orion has collided with you and takes up the space in the brain where your memories used to be. A cute notion, but as the storylines unfold, you begin to find out alternative explanations as to your new state of mind.