Release Date: 25th October 2018
Length: ~22 Hours
Links: Official Site, VNDB
Two hundred years ago, the city of Toukyou was cursed and turned into glass. All residents of the city can only leave if they wear something made of glass and must return before the stroke of midnight or else their bodies will turn to glass and they will die a painful death.
One night a self-proclaimed magician appears before Hairi and gifts her a pair of glass slippers, telling her that she’s the “Cinderella” he’s been waiting for to lift the curse on the city. He tells her that she possesses a special ability to move the clock in the city center – Astrolabe – by going into the clock tower and performing a “link” ceremony. For as long as Hairi can remember Astrolabe has been stuck at 11.55pm but the magician tells her that the curse will be lifted when the clock reaches 12.00.
At the same time, six men receive a box containing a single glass slipper and a card stating that the person who’s foot fits the slipper will be able to grant their wish.
Is this coincidence or is there perhaps something bigger at play?
Hairi’s parents passed away when she was young so she has spent most of her life living with her protective older brother Shion. Shion forbid her from leaving the city so she has no experience of the outside world but is very curious about it. She spends most of her time helping her brother out in their clock shop. She’s a great cook and enjoys chatting. Despite her initial distrust of Kashika and his intentions, she becomes very focused on trying to break the curse.
Shien Clinochlore (CV Hino Satoshi)
Shien woke up in the forest just outside Toukyou two years ago with no past memories. He ends up living with Ulen in the church near the city. He’s very passionate about tea. Shien is almost like the big-brother of the group and is very kind towards everyone.
Ulen Muller (CV Uchida Yuuma)
Ulen became fascinated with the curse cast on Toukyou while at university and moved into a church near the city to continue his research. He spends a lot of his time reading, often to the extent that he forgets to eat or even sleep. He claims to care little about companionship, often stating that love is just a hassle. He tends to be quite rude to others so has few friends.
Klone Spinel (CV Namikawa Daisuke)
Klone is a glass craftsman who often visits Shien and Ulen at the church. He’s very lazy and has little interest in doing anything. He’s actually a very talented baker and quite often brings sweet treats with him to the group’s tea parties. It appears that he doesn’t have a great opinion of those from Toukyou. He views Hairi as a nuisance.
Ela Amalric (CV Hanae Natsuki)
Ela is a childhood friend of Natra and Rindo who lives in Toukyou. He is very talkative and eager to make friends. He works in the city’s library as he loves reading. Ela hasn’t ventured outside the city but often longs to see the world. It appears that he’s from a pretty well-off family.
Natra Peony (CV Toriumi Kousuke)
Natra is one of the gatekeepers of Toukyou and can appear scary at first due to his size and demeanor but is actually a really sweet guy that just wants to be friends. He idolizes his older brother Rindo and often speaks about him. He adores gummy candy, especially cola flavored ones!
Rindo Wisteria (CV Okitsu Kazuyuki)
Rindo is Natra’s older brother and one of the watchmen of the clock tower. As he’s a bit older than the others, he exudes a mature aura and is always gentlemanly towards Hairi. He enjoys eating cheesecake and is actually quite an accomplished chef. His hobby is collecting butterflies.
Kashika Galle (CV Sugiyama Noriaki)
Kashika is the “mysterious” magician that gave Hairi the glass slippers. He’s actually a friend of Hairi’s brother so ends up moving into their house. He’s very friendly but it can be hard to tell what he’s thinking. He has a pet otter called Campanella that follows him about.
Character design and artwork for this game was handled by Suzushiro Karin. She has worked on Otomate Records’ drama CD series My Sweet Hubby and also did the artwork for the latter Norn9 games.
Opening: Cinderella Story – Ceorie
(I forgot to write down what the two ending songs were called but I’m pretty sure both are by Ceorie too)
The BGM for this game was composed by Kagawa Kyousuke, whom will be working on Otomate’s upcoming Jakou no Lyla games.
This game’s system is pretty standard, although aside from the normal choices there are also special “Judgement Time” choices which look like so:
At the end of the prologue you’re basically taken to a “pick what route you want” screen:
As you can see, there are some locked routes. Ela & Rindo’s routes unlock once you’ve finished one route. Kashika’s route unlocks after you’ve finished three routes (I don’t think it matters which) but the game tells you anyways:
I will include a recommended play order at the bottom but, as the game tells you, their routes contain spoilers *gasp* so you should play them at the end, in a certain order.
I’m not even going to beat around the bush with this review – I feel as though Otomate actually put some effort into this game and they really picked a good game to kick-start their move to Nintendo Switch. That’s not to say that there are some (small) problems but overall there’s a lot to like here.
It’s actually quite unusual to have an Otome game with a cast that are all adults (although I feel it’s becoming ever so slightly more common) but most of the characters are SUPER adorable anyways – it was so hard trying to pick a favourite to vote for in the character poll!
I actually really liked Hairi as a heroine – she was proactive and despite being sheltered, the game didn’t focus on her naivety which was a nice surprise. I also found her to be very funny and her interactions with the guys was also very enjoyable for the most part.
I wasn’t really expecting to like Shien so much but he’s just genuinely such a sweet guy~ I really appreciated his big-brotherly nature and he provides a welcome warm respite to the snarky attitudes of Ulen and Klone, haha.
Ulen was actually the first route I did (whoops~) and I found him to be quite an interesting character and enjoyed his route overall. He’s pretty funny as a side character in the other routes too & is honestly amazing in the extra scenario.
Klone immediately interested me due to his lazy nature ( very relatable ). I suppose he’s kind of tsundere but is so adorable when he wants to be. I found his and Kairi’s interactions to be super funny and somehow he ended up being one of my favourites? His route is probably one of the weaker ones but I’ll forgive him~
It was actually really weird seeing Toriumi Kousuke voice a younger brother as opposed to an older one but Natra is really cute, just like a big puppy! His route was so cute and fluffy at points that I was literally almost crying. A good boy!
Rindo was a really weird character. I don’t want to spoil his route but I’ll just say that I wasn’t really a big fan of him, despite the obligatory tragic backstory.
I pretty much bought this game because of Hanae Natsuki (why isn’t he in more games? 😦 ) so was looking forward to Ela’s route, especially as it was locked. It does make sense why you should do his route later and I definitely enjoyed it. I thought Ela as a character was really sweet too – plus he and Hairi make such a cute couple! He’s also very amusing in the extra scenario.
It’s been pretty clear since the game was announced that Kashika’s route was going to be one of those endgame/locked/true/etc… type of affairs. I really enjoyed his route overall and thought that he was an interesting character, maybe not my most favourite but still fun.
The subcharacters, while few in number, are also fun. I really loved Hairi’s brother Shion and is it bad that I kind of wish he had a route? 😛
I suppose one of the things I wasn’t too keen on were the tragic endings – these are kind of like the “Merry Bad” endings that some other games have. I’m not really opposed to these in theory (since one of the whole points of the visual novel medium is to give the reader the opportunity to experience different endings) but the way they made some of the characters suddenly yandere was a bit jarring. Some of the characters could definitely turn yandere if certain conditions arose but others (Natra!) are literally so sweet that the he felt out of character for the entire thing. Maybe I’m just salty because they dedicated two CGs to these endings!
The bonus “extra” scenario was also great. It’s presented as 10 separate chapters and is basically the guys having tea parties and answering stupid questions. It’s honestly super hilarious (Ulen and Klone are amazing hosts haha) and I was literally crying with laughter at some points. While there aren’t really any spoilers, I’d probably wait until you’ve finished Rindo’s route to read it. I personally left it until last so it ended the game on a nice light note.
Speaking of the artwork, can we have a shoutout to whomever did the BG artwork because I literally couldn’t stop myself from taking screenshots of everything – I honestly might use some as PC wallpapers they’re so aesthetically pleasing.
When I was playing the game I thought that Suzushiro Karin’s artwork looked familiar but it was only later when I read that she’d worked on My Sweet Hubby that it finally clicked haha (that series brings back some bad memories *shudder* ). I thought the artwork was generally pretty nice, although I feel as though the aesthetic and soft, almost fairy-tale like colouring really appeal to me personally so I may be biased.
The BGM was also a really standout part of this game and I loved that each track really helped set the mood of a scene. It also had a very fairytale/fantasy vibe to it which I appreciated. I’ll definitely be hoping that they release a soundtrack! The vocal songs were all nice but I don’t think they are all that memorable.
The game’s system was generally okay. They had the skip to next choice feature which was a blessing but it was a tad slow – I still appreciate it though!
My Score: 8/10
Maybe it just appeals to my love of fairytales but I really enjoyed this game – I thought that the characters and setting were great and the routes are mostly of good quality, with none of them being overly predictable.
While this isn’t a game that you probably shouldn’t go out and buy a switch to play, if you do own (or plan on buying) a switch then I’d definitely recommend this game! I’ll be happily waiting for a soundtrack or fandisc but I just hope that since this is one of Otomate’s first switch games that it doesn’t get forgotten or overlooked (like poor trigger kiss).
Recommended Route Order
Klone → Shien → Ulen → Natra → Rindo → Ela → Kashika
That’s me for now – hopefully I’ll manage to have to Koroshiya to Strawberry review out next week at some point. I’m currently playing Moujuutsukai to Ouji-sama ~Flower & Snow~ and have finished Erik’s route – it’s a pretty nice game so far and I’m enjoying the mofu-mofu parts, hehe 😀
Thanks for reading!
Thanks for the review! Good to hear that this game’s pretty good. I’ve been eyeing this one but I’m kinda wary that the story might not be as good as it looks.
And yay! Glad you’re enjoying Moujuutsukai! 😀
Ah that’s fair enough – maybe wait for it to go on sale or something if you’re not sure?
Thanks I actually just finished it yesterday and it was a really fun read – the fandisc was too adorable! It was definitely a lot better that Moujuutachi to Ohime-sama so that’s a bonus 😛
Yeah, I should do that. 😀
Ooh! Otsukare~ who’s your fav? :3
AAAHHH!! I’m so glad to see you liked this game!!!! I really want to buy this since I’ve got a switch but I haven’t bit the bullet yet. The story did interest me and I love fairy tales and shit so I really wanted to buy it but I’ve been waiting for reviews~ Think I might have to pick this up now 8D nvm that my backlog is ten years long ^q^
Do my eyes deceive me? Otomate did this game justice?? Oh I’m so happy. I’ve been really hopeful for this game for a long time but I was so worried because every stunning looking game they’ve released has been subpar at best – although CR seems to be the exception rofl. If you have any recs for game like this with a fairytale vibe or princes I’m all for it! ❤ They're my weakness rofl. And would you rec this for the Switch or the Vita? Currently I only have a Vita but I'll have to make the switch soon (no pun intended).
Oh gosh so sorry for the late reply! ;u;
Yes this game is super fun and definitely has a strong fairytale vibe, it’s actually only available on switch at the moment though but would definitely recommend picking it up when you get one c:
Hmmmmm, I spent like a couple of days thinking about this and I can’t really think of many Otoge with fairytale-esque stories or princes. If you haven’t picked up Moujuutsukai to Ouji-Sama yet then that would probably be the closest (it’s getting a switch port too) or Taishou x Alice has some interesting(?) takes on fairytales too. Tokyo Yamanote Boys also claims to be a fairytale + the first game has a princely character too, the games are more comedic than anything else but the vita port with all 3 original games seems to be pretty cheap now too 🙂
Ooh, I’m glad to see someone else talking about the game, and glad to hear you enjoyed it! It’s really such a fun journey, the extras were an absolute blessing. Agreed with you on the bad endings – some of them felt like you switched tracks to a completely different game. (Same feel re: Rindo too, ha ha.)
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