Archive for Hanako Games

The Royal Trap

Posted in Fantasy, Games with tags on April 21, 2013 by Cara Marie

The Royal Trap is by Hanako Games, the same company that made Long Live the Queen. However, unlike Long Live the Queen, it is not at all stressful! It’s strictly a visual novel, for one thing. No mini-games and little risk of dying.

In The Royal Trap, you’re Prince Oscar’s companion, accompanying him on a trip to the ‘debut’ of one Princess Cassidy; Oscar is one of three princes hoping to marry Cassidy. (Inheritance runs through the female line, so men have to show off and put themselves on display: I really like the world-building in this game, the gender roles that don’t match ours.)

For his sake, and for her to be successful at her job, Madeleine needs Oscar to come off well. But over the course of the game, Madeleine becomes increasingly aware that once Oscar is married, she’s out of a job. That no matter how much affection Madeleine feels for Oscar, their relationship has an end date. And Madeleine needs to make a place for herself afterward.

To up the awkwardness further, Oscar has just given her a letter proclaiming his love for her (in a fairly undramatic, ‘it cannot be’ way.)

So that’s the set-up. The drama starts when Oscar gets hit over the head … and Cassidy gets kidnapped!

The mystery of who’s responsible is revealed halfway through; but when you return to the royal family, you end up with the blame. So the second mystery is why are you taking the fall, and what are they covering up.

I’ve got two of the endings thus far. The first was with Callum, Cassidy’s ignored brother. Callum is kind of callous and violent, but he cares about Cassidy. And I liked his relationship with Madeleine because he seemed to bring out her ruthlessness and pragmatism. And also it meant you got a happy lovey-dovey ending, where Madeleine has a place of her own and a hot husband. (Although I got the ‘normal’ ending, not the ‘good’ one, I think because I broke Oscar’s heart, ha ha ha.) And it feels like you’re more involved with Cassidy and their story.

The other ending I’ve got so far is with Nazagi, one of the other princes come to court Madeleine. I think the Callum ending felt more natural, but I really liked the Nazagi ending anyway. He marries Cassidy, but because Cassidy can’t have children, he ends up proposing that you be his mistress! And having their heirs! You don’t get to know Cassidy so well in this version of the game, but you do end up being her advisor, and this whole ending is basically rife with fic possibility!

At some point I’ll be playing this game again to experience the other endings – especially because they take you on such alternate routes through the second half of the game. I’m sure one of them will explain what’s going on with the assassination attempts!

Long Live the Queen! … eventually

Posted in Fantasy, Games with tags , on March 12, 2013 by Cara Marie

Finally, I have bet Long Live the Queen! You play the game as Princess Elodie, whose mother has just died. This means Elodie has had to leave school to come home and learn to reign before her coronation next year. She has to learn quickly, because this game has almost as many deaths as Limbo.

I think I’ll wait a while before trying another run-through, because staying alive is exhausting. It’s a fun game though, and I’m looking forward to seeing what other routes I can take. And making sure that printing press gets built! It’s quite frustrating when people come to you wanting money for awesome things and Elodie doesn’t know enough to realise those things are awesome. Dammit, Elodie. Or dammit, Elodie’s father for not giving her any actual advisors. Or poison-testers for that matter.

My Elodie ended up being quite warlike – I wasn’t nice enough to my nobles, I guess, to stop them rebelling. But putting down insurrections is quite satisfying. And I suppose I did prevent war with another nation. By forcing one of my nobles into marriage (no wonder the nobles hated me). I was forming alliances! And that’s what you get for sneaking troops into their country! Unwanted marriage!

And then said noble’s brother played the same trick on me. And not to prevent war: to get revenge for me marrying off his sister! And while I can see the political benefits … Elodie is going to be queen, after all … that really strikes me as the worst revenge ever.

It was kind of delightful – this is from the epilogue: ‘Attendees said that the ceremony was lovely, but the bride and the groom kept glaring at each other while taking their vows.’

Worst revenge ever :D

That’s basically all I’ve been doing these last two weeks – well, not just playing Long Live the Queen! but playing other games from Hanako as well. Life-sims are good stress relief.  (Also, I tried being a ‘proper’ gamer and playing a first-person stealth game but it made me feel ill. Life-sims and visual novels never made anyone throw up, I bet.) I’ll probably post about the others later. First I have to frame a response to Magical Diary that isn’t just  ‘fuck you, Damien’ …