Category Archives: English

Audience/Work Relationship – The”selfish confort” dilemma

Welcome back to the Tin Coffee Pot Time column, in short a normal “chat” column, or simply topics that are a bit tight in the normal columns that we deal with here in the Archives.

After my sister wrote a nice article on alternative ways of storytelling , making sound and accurate information as it should …

Now I’m going to screw everything up.

As you guessed from the title, “Selfish Confort Dilemma”, this is going to be an evil article. And a lot too. Especially towards you, our readers.

Because we will talk directly about all of us , about how we tend to approach not only the video game, but the entire fictional work in general! I will finally involve you in my speeches and we will no longer be the ones who “talk about games that are now dead”!

Too bad, since you are with me today, this will be done in the ugliest, most insensitive, cynical and at the same time angry way of all these years this site has formed.

And this intent is not at all noble, how will we pursue it?

To keep in line with the genre of games we talk about in the Archives, today we will analyze three titles; including two very… Or even too much loved ones. But we will analyze them on a moral level.

Ah, moral. The one we all like to talk about, including me, because it only relies on vague ideals. So we can say what we want, because everyone has their own ideas that should not be questioned because there is freedom of expression and … Do I really have to make all these premises?

But it is the one that we all feel compelled to judge, even if we, deep down, are all rotten. It is human.

And by “all of us” I mean us, public (who is also here in the cafe today!) Who spread the word about these games, making the right messages normal, making legitimate or wrong that they perpetuate… Because it’s fine for us . Because that story “gave us emotions”, even if in most cases behind that phrase it is not clear whether ours is true devotion to the work itself or something more rotten underneath.

“Ehm! I respectfully disagree! ”

“What would be rotten in the phrase ‘this story thrilled me?'”

“… Vanity, wanting to be understood in any case … Personal comfort.”

But I’m not a judge. I myself, at times, do not understand what leads me to attach myself to a work when I reflect on myself.

So, since we can’t do an examination of conscience on our own…
Let’s see in which types of works we recognize ourselves.
You know, the works that we consider “well made”, projects “to be loved”, stories that “touch the soul’s strings” and many other clichés that bring views to our “video essays”, bring likes to our comments or they just fool people into thinking that we have a deep mindset in the least, even if we are only good at philosophizing…

“She started with digs…”

“…”

“… Every time I wonder if my sister is a masochist …”

“Your support always makes me happy, girls.”

“So guys, let’s start with the analysis! I will take all your questions and answer peacefully respecting each of your fantastic opinions! ”

“…She lies.”

…..

 

“I would like to speak for a moment to be able to make a premise.”

Consider it a small disclaimer, but I really want to clarify that in this type of articles we don’t delve into the titles in their context as we normally do in Back To The Future, but we try to link various titles together around a core theme . This can lead the risk to the perception of a more “conspiracy and / or alarmist” type of article , and it is for this reason that I emphasize here that we are facing a series of personal reflections  observing in general the contents that the 2D independent videogame world offers (referring to the titles produced on Rpg Maker specifically) in the narrative field, obviously as is always done in these cases with a good dose of more colorful language for love of entertainment.

 

 ” Okay Ele, after I annoyed you we can proceed. “

 

Here, let’s see the last image! A recent Horror RPG (if Omori can be defined as such …)! A rarity!

… And above all, my source of nightmares for a few months.

So, yes, we will talk about much-loved and well-known games …

“What a drag! Cloé’s Requiem again?! Haven’t you already made 3 articles about that sh***y game? ”

“Well, I played it, didn’t I understand what they said in those articles? It’s small stuff, nothing special… ”

“Can we move on to the real interesting debates, please?”

Okay. We will start from a more general discourse, then.

Part 1 – The “poor victims”

For these first two parts, we will talk about more general themes, and then make the detailed analyzes of the single games clearer.

In these three games, “poor victims” are presented each time , people we should in theory become fond of, because of their traumas, bad experiences or emotions that, in theory, should make them more human .

But let’s see, in reality, what we are led to have to defend.

Cloé’s Requiem: Con Amore – “Pierre is a bit innocent”

Before moving on to Con Amore, let’s give a quick overview on the character of Pierre , using our appendix article on the characters of Cloé’s Requiem:

He is presented to us simply as “the twin of the protagonist who is less good at playing”, also blond and with blue eyes.

What immediately catches his eye, always speaking superficially, is the repression of his anger towards his brother.

(…)

In the eyes of some players, for what he has done and said, Pierre is nothing more than a repressed worm, ready to threaten his brother to kill himself.

Yes, guys, he really said it.

But how was this character, at this point detestable at most, treated in the “extra version” of the game, Con Amore?

“You had an expression of pain.
The performance didn’t seem funny at all. “

Ok, before I get down to it, if a catgirl gave you a heart attack in this game, she should theoretically be “Noir”, which in the original Cloé’s Requiem is simply a cat and was just a directly contrasting representation. with another cat, Blanc (who is also humanized in Con Amore).

(This is a review of Cloé’s Requiem Con Amore by a Japanese blog )

“I have inquired for you and I do not understand where you would like to go. They have eliminated those scenes, you cannot know if he repeated those same words. In original game you are so fond of that he would have apologized to his brother; so if by chance you would like to criticize this version of the game for having focused on a more human side of the character who among other things accuses himself and develops a path of personal growth I do not think it is a fair and deserved criticism. It is not healthy to always find the rotten in everything. ”

“Hey, you’re right! It may happen that certain relationships between people become more complicated, don’t you find it very sweet that out of guilt he is no longer able to express his displeasure?”

… Guys, really?

He death threatened his brother…! And since his is a real anger and hatred that he has been repressing for years, also given the cold attitude he has with his brother, along with some digs that can only make you think “what an asshole!”

This is not a simple “misuse of words.” That happens with people you really love. Even before telling him directly to die, he said something cooked and raw, always going to the concept that according to him Michel should not have been born. It’s not something you tell your brother, heck.

Let’s face it clearly: people like this usually never have a problem expressing what they think.  A bit of rhetoric as he always did, and even in his ambiguity he would be able to send very clear signals of his emotional state.

And here this subspecies of hole-patching game puts down a quarrel where repressed grudges have been brought out for years …

Like a fight a little bit more heated, but given only by anger and frustration?

“You had an expression of pain.
The performance didn’t seem funny at all. “

This screenshot, which we showed you earlier, is before the quarrel we mention. It more or less refers to the general condition experienced in the family, because like all the other bad things, as our friend had already anticipated, the fight has been totally censored in this version.

(Review from the Freem website!)

“You had an expression of pain. (…)”

 ” You think that the frustration, ‘pain’ and how much it may have felt is a valid justification for his ‘outburst’ and to define him as a victim?”

Do you think that “frustration” could be a good excuse for making such a character go from wrong to right by labeling him as a victim?

“… ”

You can see then, that to justify this character along with his immorality (such as hatred towards his brother, who is theoretically the wrong person to blame), the strong concepts said in the scene of the fight have been minimized. in Cloé’s Requiem , when those were the very elements that made that scene strong and meaningful .

Pierre’s characterization also suffered from this minimization of the obvious problems that Pierre had.

(The context of the next screenshot is that of the image above, although what Pierre says above refers to other events)

(This transcript of a dialogue that happens in the part game is taken directly from the translation of Cloé’s Requiem Con Amore, because in the video from which we took the screenshots this interaction seems to have been skipped … And we cannot take screenshots from us while downloading the game, not knowing Japanese)

Now we explain what they did to this character better: by removing the main characteristic of his personality, namely the attitude devious and false , they shaped him to try in every way to make us perceive him. like a childish kid …

…And the meaning of the sentence you read in the review “he perceives himself as a selfish person” serves to highlight this situation.

Let’s say he has simply become a “poor troubled kid who has yet to understand how the world works and how to openly open up to others”.

So guess what?

“You had an expression of pain. (…)”

BECOME A VICTIM

But why do we say this? Because the guilt becomes only of the adults and the insensitive world in which he grew up, for example.

Mr. d’Alembert reproaches Charlotte who doesn’t feel like taking the cat to the mountains, this scene was previously never shown directly and more weight was given to the little girl’s reaction the next day. In this sense the father of the two boys becomes a much more present figure, ready to take on the role of the evil and heartless adult in the most literal sense of the term.

In short, is totally excluded the possibility that he may have now assimilated the typical attitudes of the sick society they wanted to represent and have distanced him from this reality, as a consequence Pierre he took on another personality, as well as another role within the story that could remove him from any uncomfortable situation that he himself had generated in the original situation .

The cause of this:

It becomes this:

That is “ a single moment of weakness” given by momentary frustration, in reality is a good person , is a person to be pitied by this or to be sorry for.

“If I apologize to Michel, could it sound like it used to be?”

“Yes, sure, I’m sure!”

We explain one thing to you.

This change of course with all its relative repentance, the beating of the “infantile and selfish but good-hearted boy who cannot express himself” makes absolutely no sense when you think of the restrictive family and social context in which he was evidently found in the original game: let’s say that the guilt of “selfishness” was the last thing that was thought of in the most concrete terms. Those who could afford it led the reins and deserved his accolades; those who could not dictate the law were limited to being an instrument in the hands of the strongest. Thus, being “a lesser tool” Pierre was working towards a higher status. He practiced for his father’s recognition, simply applied the morality of hard work and “meritocracy” , in his perception of things the ideas he manifested during the game (including vent) they were all legitimate ; is not that he “suffered and therefore committed the bullshit”. Do you know when he started wanting to apologize? When the father died, that is when the object of the competition with his brother fell. Because, for the rest, he had ONE YEAR to apologize – and they live in the same house !! – and he absolutely didn’t give a shit.

(As always, we would like to underline the disturbing super sudden expressive change)

… AND THEN, from all the repressing and stacking emotions, the final rant is here.

I would like to point out that these words cannot be uttered by a person who doesn’t really cultivate these negative feelings . The focus of the matter is not that he is a childish person per se and that he “always wants everything for himself”, that was never the real problem. It can certainly be a way of seeing the character, a change of perspective that the authors have had towards him, but the point is that in reality, Pierre’s reasoning is correct, they make sense.

The change seems really imperceptible at first friction, but the reason we are talking about it here and we care so much is that everything has been done to de-empower the character of his faults making him essentially “harmless. “and absolutely redeemable at 360 degrees.

Here, THIS is what you might describe the spoiled and harmless child , just know that it has nothing to do with the original !

… You can see for yourself that the problems he complains about are quite different.

We want to remind you how in the previous intentions we wanted to insist more on infantility, instead, of Michel: he is the character who ultimately had to face this issue, and the game does not failed to show you the negative side of the argument!

The result of all these changes in Con Amore, the proof that the approach in the way of seeing his attitudes has totally changed can be found in the doing this has minimized any possibility of conflict with other characters.

Let’s see for example a difference: observe how he treats Charlotte as a subject here, where as the nice guy he is, scolds her because he cares: “You will fall! Be careful!” and so on

… And how you treat it here. This expression speaks for itself.

In short, Charlotte was totally right after all!

But in the next case we will deal with a much worse thing, that is the total pathetism, given by the justification of an estabilished bully.

Omori – Aubrey: “What you’re dreamin’ about, Sunny? “

“… God I hate this girl.”

” … ”

“So, first of all I respect your opinion but…”

“But to me you remain a disacculturated bitch and know-it-all because you have not understood the beauty of this character because she is an absolute snack”, I would like to interrupt you and predict what you will tell me! ”

“Ele…”

“‘Kay, that was too much. An” analysis “on Aubrey, however, would have distracted us from the conversation, come on!”

So, except for this small incident with the community, which has been celebrating this game for a few months …

Aubrey. I confess that she is the character that made me roll my eyes multiple times in Omori, as she is simply a more serious case of a problem that all the characters in the game have: the accumulation of stereotypes on stereotypes.

But most of all, the way she was treated lowered the quality of the game even more.

I see that you are already preparing the pitchforks or a nice little speech for me, which would go from saying how profound Omori really is, up to my total lack of manners… For some reason …

But let’s introduce her for a moment, this “Aubrey” with an unknown surname.

Aubrey, in the real world presented by the game; because Omori is divided into the world of dreams, where they are all children, and the real world, where the protagonists have all grown up, having been a 4-year timeskip, is an active bully who gets commands a gang (what a gang, they use bicycles to bully. Are they put down like petty thugs, and not even a bit of vandalism? Or something like that!) who beats up  a poor guy for something that happened 4 years earlier than what we see through the eyes of the protagonist Sunny …

” Ah, come on! She’s doing it because she feels bad that Mari is dead, just like her father died, can’t you see? ”

“Sure. And the water is definitely wet …”

Let’s go in there with an in-depth look at her behavior for five minutes.

Aubrey has never and I say NEVER overcame her mourning for Mari , their friend, for 4 years (because there is a 4-year timeskip in the game), when Hero, another main character, despite being ( assumes) someone as close to her like her boyfriend went to college and passed it, in that time frame.

… And Aubrey above all still takes it out on her old friends. We can see such a nice display of maturity . She didn’t move on in her life after, let’s say it again, four years after mourning Mari-

“Hey, her father died too …”

“Ok, when? Did the two griefs happen in a short span of time, so that the despair was stronger?”

“Well, I don’t know, I guess …”

“Yeah right, continue to suppose. Games look better to you if you assume everything.”

“Oh. I liked this one.”

…In any case.

Four years since mourning for Mari, we said. And, later, she will blame her old friends for not being there for her.

Another great demonstration of maturity, because it is said in the game that everyone was grieving for their dead friend, and that they all had their problems! And after four years, where she has already found other people (“superficial friendship” or not, as perhaps she wants to be treated) she has grown up even if in a negative way?

Another thing to do, without having to get to monkey-like violence, or acting like a capricious child , would have been simply not seeing them again, not considering them, without being a drama queen in church!

Here, now that I’ve complained very well about Aubrey …

You know what’s funny?

From her childhood Aubrey never grows up during the game. We want to see how the game treats her?

Let’s take a look at Aubrey’s character in detail through the scene in which she is directly protagonist, the scene of the church.

The scene where, honestly, a feeling of absurd cringe assaulted me , due to various factors of unrealism, including people who were neither going to divide them, nor to do anything for kids who beat each other, not even the priest did nothing… And above all, the random comments of people: “Look how she is dressed …” and shit like that. Of those classic things just to say “we live in a society …” , but which actually have no context (because first of all, such phrases in that situation they are really ridiculous … And then because society, after this scene, is always and in any case quiet and happy, so it is not a theme that is dealt with in the work itself – and for the record: Earthbound had a supernatural plot that distorted the balances of the “cute little village” , so everything was functional to the conflict that would develop -) and serve only to see Aubrey as a victim, when in reality she is the one with a NAILED BAT willing to beat us in a church.

Back to Aubrey …

Let’s skip all the useless dialogues about “We WERE friends, now not anymore because now I’m depressed”… Let’s go straight to the lines before the fight.

Let’s start with this sentence from Kel. It’s very generic , seriously, but from here we can start the phenomenon where a character becomes “the author’s pet”, “the fanbase’s pet” or … In general, is justified for everything because “underneath there is a heart of gold!”.

Guys. Let’s stop.

The ending of the game, according to which Aubrey finally makes peace with everyone she is a simple sop for those who love this character.

“To behave differently, but still be a good person, actually with a heart of gold, who has people he loves, and cares about them, even if he’s a little aggressive”, talking about characters who are potentially criminal, violent, or even just bad people …

I tell you something bad, but in my opinion it is very true.

Do you know where this unrealistic concept tends to apply?

In young adult romance books. Trashy ones.

“After ?! SERIOUSLY ?!”

“… And one is gone. Okay, maybe I’ll be in real trouble if she starts telling herfriends“ I went to a convention of someone who compared Omori to After !! ”. Novella, if someone knocks do not open! ”

… Ele, I’m honestly worried about your actions.

You know this book? Hated by many booktubers, a representation of a toxic relationship, because Hardin is generally a boy with multiple mental problems, never taken as such.

… And in general, on the part of the saga (the first two books that are the basis on which the others rest, practically) he is almost never condemned or no one has the correct reactions to his attitudes, due to the fact that it is love interest of the protagonist and love interest cannot be represented for what it is, for a sick person or at least not suitable to attend.

We should root for Hardin every time, even though thinking logically for some situations in the book would be right for other characters as well. No, Hardin will always have the best because he has to have the best in life.

Because the author likes him, because the readers like him. In theory, such a person shouldn’t even interest Tessa, if the always unrealistic trope of “good girl-bad boy” didn’t exist and vice versa.

A depiction of the bad boy as given by Hardin convinces readers that even a dangerous man, such as Hardin can, with the right person change, can be “fixed”, because he has a heart under the stone.
Ah, the more pretentious call this “character development” of these types of characters.

Because these thoughts “comfort” the readers, when the reality is very different.

Don’t look at me like that! You know it’s true, you know you have the same dynamics as romance book readers! I can summarize you your character evaluation path with a very simple list!

  • Wow, what a cool person.

  • Damn they’re tough, they beat people up. Oh, it’s not morally correct, but they remain cool… Although I don’t know, is their beating *** …?

(Sorry, I couldn’t find a better frame for the scene where he hits a guy at a party. In the first film he hits a lot less than in the book and for the second film there is no convenient compilation of ” Hardin Scott Scenes ”and I don’t really have the heart to see the second film in full)

  • Aw, it happened ( insert trauma, death of parent, or … Anything bad at this point, is good) then. Ahh I get it, they try to defend themselves from what they felt. How sad, I understand why they’re doing this…

(This scene shows Hardin’s backstory, where his mother was raped and he had to see it all)

  • Actually in this round we are the bad guys who are limiting *** to express themselves. Please defend this person!

(The ones above are comments below a gameplay where the church scene in Omori is seen)

(These last 3 are comments under a nightmare scene in the second movie on After, where Hardin’s backstory is known)

Just like Tessa, also in our case for certain types of characters it is not the reason that speaks. It is the desire for a comfort character at all costs and our Red Cross syndrome to speak.

“Hey! Red Cross Syndrome is different from simple empathy!”

“If for Aubrey no one had used the same reasoning as” we can fix her! ” used with Hardin, Sunny and Kel would have helped Basil and left Aubrey to herself, because she is a girl who, at least in the way she wants to pass, is dangerous. ”

I basically have a comment on Hardin that speaks for me.

Do not take into account the lack of the double. I also ask you this question.

If, for example, Aubrey was actually aggressive towards Basil only as a typical bully: because she is having fun (or for real discrimination, then we can address this later) …

We would like her as a person?

Or, given that we really like the concept of “characters as people”: if we didn’t have the game that clearly tells us that Aubrey is a person to help … Would we like her? Would we think of her actions as “immoral, but done for GOOD reasons”? 

I don’t want answers here from the public. I leave this question open.

Also because I want to move on to another case, in which the work grimly justifies not whims such as words, or even physical violence given by immaturity, which is not given its own condemnation in favor of a real character development …

In the next and last case, the one for which Victor Frankenstein was badly punished in Mary Shelley’s novel is justified.

Aria’s Story – “Clyde’s Story”, or The Modern Prometheus

“Aria’s Story! Nice, it’s the game that got me close to Horror RPGs! ”

“…”

“But why do you compare those cute people, like Clyde, to a boring classic from the 18th century?”

Because that’s exactly what we justify for all of Aria’s Story, especially the dialogue added in later versions of the game.

The case of Clyde is almost funny, as surreal as it is.
And above all it makes me laugh, so as not to cry, how the basic direction of two / three tear-jerking scenes managed to obscure this truly disturbing aspect of the game, on which, however, in the end nothing was ever deepened, nor even thought about it as a real problem, or a moral doubt.

I can’t even write any catchphrases … Because the problem lies in the whole plot!

For those unfamiliar with Aria’s Story, here is the plot in brief. I just want to inform that it is all put into the final few cutscenes, while for the whole game we have only a foreshadowing put there and in general the cosmic nothing.
Juust some small inspiration from Pocket Mirror, huh?

“Pocket Mirror? But Aria’s Story-”

“Shh… You may complain later.”

The general plot-twist of the game is that the protagonist we have been in charge of all the time, Aria, is actually a copy of a dead girl, friend of the supporting characters we will meet during the game. Clyde, the creator of it all, with a magic pen (??) desperately wanted to bring back the real Aria. The “False Aria” was created with the magic pen, as well as a fantasy world based on the book of Lewin, part of the group of friends that Aria was part of (which includes all the characters).

Clyde wanted to test if the fake Aria was as good as the real one , so he trapped her in the world of books and brainwashed Dahlia (their other friend … Same role as Aubrey: bringing drama) and Lewin so they could guide Aria through her journey.

I’ll build on what the game actually tells us via seemingly useless dialogue between Clyde and Dahlia, and True Ending.

Since I’m going to talk about Clyde, I won’t be interested in the “Good Ending”, where the “false Aria” accepts that she is someone other than Aria. Mainly because it is … Simply a really embarrassing ending, put into a last minute-update.

“But how? That ending is essential! You called the paragraph” the Modern Prometheus “, and you don’t talk about how Wendy managed to recognize herself as a single person and not as a copy of Aria?”

“… You know we’re going to talk about Clyde, right?”

Guys, the problem is not Aria’s reaction in alternative endings like Bad End 2 where she kills him so randomly or Good Ending where in five minutes she has an existential realization and above all how this ending creates some huge holes with what we have always seen in the game until the end …

For example, throughout the game we do not see a girl other than Aria, on the contrary we see a perfect copy of her also from the point of view of her personality. Besides, this magic pen is defective for example having created a totally different person! Clyde had to create a perfect Aria! It is a magical medium above nature not, in fact, a scientific experiment with unexpected events or bad brains, like Frankenstein Junior!

It’s the really troubling and disturbing plot premise, which makes that guy compare to Victor Frankenstein!

So, starting this damn analysis on Clyde …

I wanted to separate one piece of plot from all the others.

“Clyde wanted to test if the fake Aria was as good as the real one.”

If “Aria” didn’t prove to be an obedient creature, what do you do then, Clyde?

Meanwhile, the Aria just denied by its creator, which has met with who knows what fate:

You have the possibility to create life from nothing . You can create human beings as you please, fully thinking beings, with their own intelligence, questions, hopes, ambitions! Not robots!
And the life you create, you treat it like this. “If he dies in this world, I create a third, fourth, tenth Air …”.

So, automatically, “If it doesn’t satisfy us, we can kill and make another one that can satisfy our desires”.

Do you realize? With Clyde’s mentality, “Good Ending” could not even be contemplated , because an Aria that did not respect Clyde’s canons would be killed. The fact that the various “copies of Aria” had to even be “tested” says it … It wasn’t enough to see if Aria talked, walked or managed to articulate thoughts. No, we needed the Aria that Clyde wanted .

The slightly more realistic ending (although I always sin of any kind of depth), therefore, is actually the second Bad End where, as in Frankenstein, the Creature kills her master! Victor is punished because he has broken the laws of nature and repudiated what he himself created!

I … I don’t know what to say, even though I know I have to talk because if no one has noticed this very disturbing detail, I have to tell the details!

Speaking precisely of Frankenstein, to go directly to the point, or how this horrible attitude towards a new life is treated … Victor is questioned and eventually even killed, precisely because of the concept that Clyde says!

This sentence says it all!

“And you, with a satisfied conscience, would destroy your own creature!”

(And, in the final …)

Ah, I forgot.

Thinking about it, even the element for which he DELETED MEMORIES – Once again I wonder what other incredible feats this damn magic pen has – to Dahlia and Lewin makes me think that Clyde did not want anyone to counter him under any circumstances. This adds further concerns to-

“That’s not true! He did it to protect them, and then in the end he was thwarted anyway, can’t you see ?!” that’s a bad idea! ” Lewin said it! ”

“… I was just talking about it, flower girl.”

So, even if against this ideal there is also a tiny clash with Lewin along with a tiny afterthought …

After two dialogs, everything Clyde did and thought about doing is quickly forgotten because “now we cry”! An apology with crocodile tears and a “Clyde …” are not enough to say that this problem has been solved. Possibly, the whole game could have been based on this thing! This theme, that of the low value for life that Clyde has, is sinfully put aside and we will see why later.

So, summing up everything Clyde did, just to see what kind of person is justified … And just because I want to have fun, if possible I’ll compare his acts with phrases from any adaptation of Frankenstein, or the original book:

-he brainwashed friends who must have been involved in the madness he was doing.

(From “Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein” by Kenneth Branagh. I can’t digest it, but it’s still an adaptation of Shelley’s myth)

-He brought a dead girl back to life, not respecting the circle of life, and violating the laws of nature

(“It’s alive! It’s alive!” – Colin Clive, “Frankenstein”, 1931. Victor never says “he’s alive!” in the book. The famous phrase comes from this movie.)

-He expected his creature to look exactly like the one who was a dead girl, and if it didn’t pass a so-called “test”, if Clyde’s creation didn’t prove what it wanted … It deserved death, since has set deadly traps.

– Depends on how many times you die in the game, but he literally created multiple copies of Aria, with no conscience on the ones slaughtered by countless traps of her goddamn world.

And therefore, even if I have already mentioned it in many parts of this paragraph … It is all justified , and this is the truly incredible thing and … Yes, of the same level of restlessness as Clyde’s actions!

But why, you ask?

But for us, of course.

To give us a cute and conforting storyline of course-

“…”

“Well, it was actually done because a creepy storyline with a half-sick character wouldn’t have been good for the game.”

“Uh … Yeah … Aria’s Story wants to talk about something else … Clyde characterized in that way would have gone out of style …”

Oh yeah?

I tell you, would have actually made the “contrast between cute and disturbing “that the author of the game says so much in the bonus room at the end of Aria’s Story!

And then … In a horror game, would a character who made abominations go “out of style”? I am sorry to insult directly, but … Do you listen to each other again while you speak?

Finally: Aria’s Story, what are you talking about then, if a really defined and very strong theme (expressions used in a, I think quite appropriately, ironic way) permitted Clyde to behave like this?

“… It talks about friendship. Clyde did what he did for Lewin. He’s not as sick as you say.”

“… Is it bad that I am anticipating all your answers to my questions?”

… If he made all that mess for his friend of him …

Why did he feel compelled to do it all by himself? Why couldn’t they all agree?
Because it was madness , to bring a dead girl back to life. Lewin did not agree, Dahlia… We don’t know…? I have already said that: Clyde did not want anyone to oppose him, as he would have tried in a single dialogue window to do Lewin himself against him.

So, guys, I hope I have answered your questions … And that we can all conclude that Clyde is a totally unjustifiable person, now that we have all thought of it together (Again, irony reigns supreme) objectively .

But … We never thought about all this, seeing the final cutscenes of Aria’s Story. We’ve all been twisted.

Continuing my speech, we wanted to give a nice storyline of course, in a happy world where all friends are “one for all and all for one”, where people have their weaknesses and frailties, but that’s enough the comfort character on duty to let them pass them and make them become more perfect than they really are.

(This statement explains many things.)

Aria’s Story 2.0 – Bonus Room

“Wow that’s great! Really great!”
(Dialectal roman expression to indicate a catastrophic situation)

Here, precisely …

 

We like that world. That world comforts us, it makes us feel good to think “people have strengths and weaknesses, but we must always improve ourselves to become the best we can!”. A noble ideal, but one that we know very well that we do not know how to fully respect it. We know that we people are much more multifaceted, much more complicated than that.

However, since we really like that world a lot …

When cute little guys cry, we cry too . Even if all this has no context, it has no basis on which to stand, and it has so much rottenness underneath. We see beautiful faces crying in a crappy scene, and even if we had total nothing before, even if we didn’t have any path to get to that final climax … That scene moves us, so much that we cry.

It’s because we are the problem.

“…”

“…”

“… I wanted to talk about video games, not have a lecturer. Goodbye.”

 

“…”

“She left in time … Now there should be …”

Part 2 – “I finally understand them!”

Therefore, we have now introduced a discourse that will be thoroughly investigated in this second part of the article on the “Selfish Confort Dilemma”.

Do you know why I dealt with these three cases of recent games (except for Cloé’s Requiem) in particular, to finally get to the heart of the whole discussion?

Because all three have one element in common: childish whims that are taken as real suffering or real reasons to act in extreme ways.

Pierre, out of his pent-up frustration, literally told his brother to kill himself.
Clyde, to bring back to life a girl who for Mother Nature had to end her existence, created or intended to create multiple creatures that he most likely could kill him without hesitation.
Aubrey, because of what a series of childish tantrums is in all respects, is considered dangerous and violent as well as being the reason why Basil suffers from bullying.

However, we have said it many times, these whims have always been justified by the works themselves . And do you know why?

Because the characters are put down as victims.

“You had an expression of pain.
The performance didn’t seem funny at all. “

Hmm … Honestly, I only have five words to describe these things.

However, returning serious for a minute, I can react as I want but surely to see those scenes you will recognize yourself in the series of comments that I put as the penultimate image.

You feel that you understand the reasons for these characters, who are more human to you … Because they are weak.

I tell you one thing. This is not understanding. This is victimizing and justifying, what I am condemning from this whole article.

I will explain better what it actually means to understand.

“Understanding” means understanding the reasons why a certain act has been done, but not necessarily saying that it is right, that the one in front of us is actually a good person, or even just someone who is “likeable”. A character we understand is a character that the public is not forced to redeem, but who remains from the complex and logical psychology in his actions.

What does this philosophy remind you of?
The antiheroes . Anti-Heores are nice, huh? We all like them.

The antihero, basically, is used in modern fiction as a “darker protagonist” . In the modern panorama, due to the bad interpretation of this role in a screenplay, these pseudo-antiheroes are also justified, but as a more precise definition we can see that …

“The Antihero is an individual who – from the very beginning of events – has no fear of showing the darker side of his personality. The salient traits of his personality can range in any direction, from selfishness to violence, from reach to shyness, from fanaticism to submission to reach and exasperate every other human characteristic. His vision of his world is often not very lucid and not at all inclined to the rules of good living. ”
(from the site Scrittissimo.com )

-Breaking Bad, The Sopranos, Cloé’s Requiem: moral conflict and the essence of the antihero-

To better connect to what we are talking about, we go for three different cases : one is part of the type of video games we are talking about on this site, the other two are iconic characters of the series landscape – Walter White and Tony Soprano.

“Do you really want to compar a crappy game like Cloé’s Requiem to Breaking Bad or the Sopranos ?!”

“Whoa calm down, we criticized Cloé’s Requiem as much as you want, if you hate it so much …”

Walter White – The “OG”

Let’s start with one of the most praised and appreciated series of the last ten years , to get a general idea. I say “general” because Walter White’s psychology is far too complex to cover so briefly, as it constantly evolves throughout the series… And I honestly haven’t even seen Breaking Bad in full. Don’t point the pitchforks at me! I’ll get help from the wiki, which describes Walter White’s psychology very well, when we should mention it about episodes.

But in any case I believe that every nerd on the planet knows the origins of Walter White.

So, Walter White is a chemistry professor, not paid enough from his teaching job, nor from a second job in a car wash.

Walter, after this presentation of his disadvantaged context, suddenly collapses and is taken away in an ambulance. At the hospital, a doctor informs him that he has inoperable lung cancer and still has a couple of years to live.

So, having been introduced to this world through a policeman friend of his who wanted to find a methamphetamine laboratory, due to … Various detailed reasons that I am not here to tell you, I do not want to summarize an episode of one hour and twenty …

Walter, along with Jesse Pinkman (his former student of him), also becomes an active producer of methamphetamine.

So, this was Walter White.

Who is Heisenberg?

Well, a nice change from before.

The methamphetamine that Walter produces begins to dominate the drug market. While Walter was initially picky about the use of violence, he gradually comes to see it as a necessity and eventually develops into him a ruthless drug lord motivated largely by vanity, ego and greed.

So does Walter White become a total villain by becoming Heisenberg?

Not really. Barring any analysis that can be done on his behavior, in the end Walter White’s transformation into Heisenberg is given by one who is already born as a frustrated man.

(Season 4, Episode 6 – Cornered)

“No, of course you don’t know who you’re talking to, so now I’ll explain how things are. I’m not in danger, Skyler. I am the danger. A man opens the door and they shoot him and do you think that man could be me? No. I am the man who knocks! ”

In this iconic and very famous scene, Walter is in the middle of his path of corruption , this being the fourth season. He feels insulted by what his wife Skyler is telling him, which is that he is “in danger”. Walter tells her that he does not know who he is talking to: he wants to show as much as possible that he is no longer what he was her husband and claims his nature as a “Heisenberg” that he has built.

“A man opens the door and they shoot him, do you think that man could be me? No. I am the man who knocks! ”

This sentence is very clear. We have seen that Walter White has always been a person with a routine marked by constant inconvenience: from the workplace to the family. I think the official fan-wiki description about the series can describe what Walter felt (when he was still “White”) better than me:

It is clear from the start that Walter is suffering from a midlife crisis. He feels downcast, tired, bypassed, cheated, emasculated, exploited and dissatisfied.

Even the field in which he has the most skill, chemistry, falls into the void of his disrespectful and apathetic students. Even before his diagnosis, Walter felt like a failure, unable to adequately provide for his family and fulfill the role that American society expects of him.

The news of his terminal lung cancer leaves Walter numb and shows almost no emotion when he learns it, as if he were already dead. Learning that his life will be unexpectedly cut off, coupled with the knowledge that he will leave his already bankrupt family, is the last slap in the face, the last humiliating insult that life can inflict. “

So, as Gavrilo Princip’s assassination of Duke Francesco Ferdinando is described each time, his cancer was just the last straw for a man already predisposed to failure. This is also the reason why so he got into the drug business relatively quickly, compared to what a person of true sound principles would take to make a decision whether to continue what Jesse introduced him to or not.

So Heisenberg actually, along with all of his negative traits, is just Walt’s frustration that ultimately came to the surface, making him the cruel kingpin who develops and descends more and more into depravity in subsequent seasons: Walter White’s is not, therefore, sudden corruption but the result of a constructed context to make him a frustrated person, even without falling into total disastrous / dramatic and a series of situations that have challenged his moral, both when he was supposed to be “Walter” and when he was supposed to be “Heisenberg”.

(Season 4, Episode 6 – Cornered)

A Walter is presented with the decision that he can admit to his wife that he is indeed in danger, because minutes earlier he demonstrated a moment weakness, I think also obvious. But Walter rejects this statement , claiming the nature for which he wants to be recognized, that of Heisenberg. But in general his entire conflictual relationship with Skyler is the perfect demonstration of the moral conflicts of him as “Walter Hartwell White.”

(Season 5, episode 14 – Ozymandias)

Since  his brother-in-law is part of the police and the latter is captured by a collaborator of Walter (I don’t know exactly the role of the character of “Jack” in the plot nor what relationship he has with Walter, so forgive me the small inaccuracies), even if by the end of the first season he has already started his journey as Heisenberg, this did not mean further moments of upheaval, weakness or humanity for Walt: He keeps begging for the life of Hank (his brother-in-law), but Hank refuses to cooperate and is killed. Walter is horrified; he falls to his knees and then falls to the ground on his side, crying.
After these situations, in fact, Walter in the series demonstrates under the name of Heisenberg who he always wanted to be , or rather “not the one who gets shot in front of the door”: hence the drug business, so he seems to be talented, for Walter it is a solution to this inner malaise he has had for his entire life and the horrible acts he does over the course of the series we can consider them as the outlet of a frustration that has accumulated for decades.

And therefore, given this continuous contrast between these two identities that blend inconsistently in Walter’s person, we have what everyone considers the anti-hero par excellence, the perfect anti-hero.

But, in any case, even if you can do all the psychological analyzes of the character we want for this man …

(And, I add, the one above is one of the acts that destroyed Jesse the most mentally, it seems)

(The one on the left is the woman’s son, Brock, who died for the same reason as his mother)

In short, we can understand as much as we want, by analyzing his personality … But he is still “The Danger”.

I thought it was fair to talk about Walter White, talking about anti-heroes. He is considered one of the greatest of all time and makes you understand perfectly what it means to have a well-written character who can be adored at the same time: without victimization, without mercy for him.

“Understanding” means understanding the reasons why a certain act was done, but don’t necessarily say it’s right, that what we have in front of it is actually a good person, or even just someone “likeable”.

Michel D’Alembert – The positive path of a kid at risk.

Let’s go to the little boy in the center, who looks a bit disfigured next to the two big men James Gandolfini and Bryan Cranston. His analysis will also be shorter than the other two characters, given that his psychology has been sufficiently analyzed in the appendix to the article on Cloé’s Requiem. I wanted to talk about Michel again from the point of his probable “justification” mainly because the comment I put three times in this article comes from Cloé’s Requiem: Con Amore, an extra version of a game that certainly has one of the more complex characters that I know well.
Then:

Michel, already from his past, is always considered a childish boy.

This infantility is visible: therefore, right from the start, we can guess that Michel’s immaturity as said by the other characters is not based only on chatter and above all it is TRUE. It has very clear demonstrations, including not being ready to enter the adult world, where everything was profit in those days.

We can see this from the character of Pierre, the more mature twin, who constantly condemns Michel.

Michel kills the maid Charlotte for a wrong, and later her father for the same reason, given his obvious propensity and risk of psychopathy.

he He then has a moment of delirium and, running away from home, he begins what is interpreted as a therapy path at Cloé’s home.

Here Michel, in addition to knowing the story of her girlfriend, begins to have a distorted view of her.

And when this vision is betrayed he has a second delusion.

“The Antihero is an individual who – from the very beginning of events – has no fear of showing the darker side of his personality . The salient traits of his personality can range in any direction, from selfishness to violence, from selfishness to shyness, from fanaticism to submission to reaching and exasperating every other human characteristic. “

But his positive path towards redemption along with what I consider therapy starts here: he reads Cloé’s diary, which disillusiones him with his previous convictions.

He realizes what he has done and, even though Cloé does not understand why he is doing it, Michel apologizes to her.

Michel has real faults , sick and twisted visions of the people whosurround it, and for this it has paid the consequences. It has done so with so much inner suffering, along with the risk of death at every corner because of the cursed house.

And, most importantly, the fact that his father was exploiting him for money is never, ever mentioned, and his inner suffering never becomes an excuse. That detail gives us he is told only to know the story of this character and why he ran away from home. It is as if for everything he did he had to go through those obstacles and that pain.

In the end of the game, therefore at the end of his growth path, Michel does not stay at Cloè’s house, hidden and unaware of her faults.

A player, however, can always think about everything Michel did before this final state. Michel is never a victim. He has always been someone who hurted people (or risked to do it): from murder to possession. For the entire game we have to deal with an ambiguous character, even if we subsequently know that he suffered.

“Understanding” means understanding the reasons why a certain act was done, but not necessarily saying that it is right, that what we have in front of us is actually a good person, or even just someone ” likeable ”.

(Michel, even after apologizing, still feels guilty about the distorted vision he had of Cloé)

(Michel has a constant fear of returning to the way he was before, a dangerous person for himself and for others)
Michel certainly had a different path than Walter’s, he is actually “redeemable” even in our heads compared to him …

But because Michel himself has had a path of growth , which can make us think of him as a person who has managed to grow in the course of his difficult life.

Michel also matches these descriptions, therefore, even if we have a different type of path.

Our latest case, which I will mention several times in this article, is Tony Soprano, star of the TV series “The Sopranos”.

“Hehe, I recommended this to him!”

“Here, in fact, I haven’t seen the series … Come here for a moment!”

TONY SOPRANO – A double view for a mafia boss

And only for this part about Tony Soprano here I am ready to do a little intervention! I want to be absolutely honest with the fans of this historic television series: I only saw a few episodes to take an exam; I have absolutely not seen everything about the world of “The Sopranos” and this is one of the main reasons why I will limit myself to commenting, also considering this case study as a way to close this parenthesis on the good examples of the characters, only one scene in particular that can summarize the our intentions on this article.

For those who read this article and do not have had the opportunity to enter the world of TV series, you should know that one of the strong points of “The Sopranos” is to tell the daily life of an Italian-American mafia boss . By daily life we ​​mean both the problems he has to face with his subordinates and the anecdotes of family life.

You should know that the first episode immediately focuses on the fact that Tony goes to a psychiatrist for the first time, where he begins to explain to us that had a panic attack, with fainting attached, when he discovered that the family of ducks, who had settled in the swimming pool of his house, emigrated.

There will be more anecdotes from the psychiatrist in which the recurring symbol of the duck keeps returning, for example in Tony’s dreams, and it won’t take long for the doctor to discover that that image is as recurring as the man’s fear of losing his mind. His family making him cry during therapy.

To see this scene just go to the minute 0:51:28, first episode

Not even five episodes later we have a scene like this!

Episode 5  , from 45.54 min you can start watching this long, anxious scene

There are two things that struck me while strangling Febby Petrulio, or maybe three.

The first, the most “obvious”, is how in the scene you stop to frame the belt that tightens on the throat of the victim. In short, we really insist a lot.

But let’s get to the important things:

  1. The shot has something disturbing because even the camera is in a position where it seems to be dominated by Tony, that is, we ourselves as spectators identify with the victim who is suffocating.
  2. A few seconds ago this poor man had said something like this: the moment he found him the night before “he didn’t shoot him because he was taking his daughter to college”, he thought Tony was another person .

And after the unfortunate man has left us his feathers, what happens? First you hear a rising sound, an echo, and then a flock of emigrating ducks is shown that Tony stares at, framed from top to bottom …

Surely the ducks that are heard in the background is a very important link in the context of the series, but even seeing this scene out of its context we can see the difference in the use of the shots on the character and therefore the change in our perception towards him. .

From below and then from above, we are above him, we can judge him because the character becomes small on the stage. From the veins, the effort and the expression of anger that almost frightens us, following the calm shown for those who have been carrying out these activities for a long period of time, there is immediately after this scene in which Tony “is judged from above” and he can only contemplate.

I want to consider another element in this scene …

I really want to show you how a simple comparison of images is enough to unleash certain emotions or sensations in us!
Do you remember that I had made a similar example, from the most negative point of view, in Cloé’s Requiem?

Without any commentary, dialogues, words, phrases but simply observing the change from one moment before to the next in a single scene alone 2 minutes, assigning a meaning at this passing of time we can change our perception of the character and our impression of him confuses us, keeps us tense and makes us reflect.

Returning to Ele …

So, in addition to what you consider a fan’s thoughts on Cloé’s Requiem, we also analyzed characters that are part of cult series, Tony Soprano and Walter White are often defined as among the best characters of all time … And indeed, all these beautiful characters respect this definition:

“”Understand “means to understand the reasons why a certain act was done, but not necessarily to say that it is right, that the one we have in front of us is actually a good person, or even just someone “likeable”. A character we understand is a character that the public is not forced to redeem, but who remains from the complex and logical psychology in his actions.

Let’s take one of the characters we have previously analyzed, does it reflect this definition?

Aubrey is a very childish girl who has developed violent outbursts and a propensity for aggression. This is because she is still grieved by two griefs she has had to endure.

But how does the game put you down this pain, which is expressed by Aubrey with unwarranted violence towards others?

So, ultimately, Omocat wanted to tell us that Aubrey hasn’t done anything wrong and that the problem is “the people” who “want her to be bad.” In short, “it’s always someone else’s fault” .

Small problem. Nobody wanted Aubrey to be reduced to this state. Aubrey as a child she was not bullied, much less hated by anyone: she was not even defined as a weak person. Aubrey self-destructed herself, she did everything, she should mostly blame herself!

We will explore this theme later, but …

Here there is no moral conflict for the player. Anyone who sees this scene totally changes their mind about Aubrey and in the end she is as good as everyone else. Violence becomes a her being “a little aggressive” and in the end they are all happy and content.

A character we understand is a character that the public is not forced to redeem, but who remains from the complex and logical psychology in their actions.

Crooooss

So this is not humanity. This is a simple crybaby, who wants to win over arguments that are dead and buried years ago, but only because she does painful faces, almost beats us with tears and is objectively a pussy crazy, we justify it.

Let’s compare it with a cult …

As we have already pointed out Tony Soprano is a mafia boss. From here we can understand that he does almost every kind of atrocity: I don’t think I have to explain what the mafia does.

But in any case, an everyday reality is also presented. We have the same boss that we find mercilessly killing people having a panic attack, and in general … Just being a man, with clinical problems from his past, but not for this the actions of he are justified. Tony is still part of the mafia, but at the same time he has a family he cares about, he has problems that unfortunately he has to live with …

But he never hesitated to shoot someone. He never hesitates to do his job, nor does he cry over it, when he is introduced to us. When we find out about his past we have the reasons for his anxiety about him, how he got into the mafia …

We only have reasons, not justifications.

There is, therefore, a real EMOTIONAL CONFLICT to judge him , or to put him on a moral spectrum instantly. Because it is born as negative, even if it demonstrates the so-called “humanity” that we all seek.

But why am I looking for “conflict” so much?

“Why, what a surprise, storytelling is done with conflict! If there is no clash between two or more elements, what development must there be? ”

And like conflicts, since today’s stories all want to pretend to be character driven… People look for conflict in characters. So internal conflicts, to be passionate about, to debate in order to come up with stimulating speeches, because when you want to analyze the reference work, this is what a fandom does …

“Ahh, you’re right. This thing has the philosophical meaning of –͚̓-͎̑͡ͅ-̭͎͗̀-̼̝̂̑-̞̗̿̾.”
“This girl doesn’t understand anything, but she doesn’t see the conformation of Omori’s maps? She blatantly says –͚̓-͎̑͡ͅ-̭͎͗̀-̼̝̂̑-̞̗̿̾!”

“She has never played Midnight Train in my opinion.”
“This double side, this double value and conflict that you praise so much with … What’s his name? Tony? It’s here too! Criminals but good-hearted all the same!”
“She talks about Tony Soprano, c’mon … She just wants to give herself a tone because her sister tells her all about this old stuff, and she’s salty because the others are more popular than her …”

“…”

“… Okay, I’ll give you an example with something your philosopher’s cerebellums might appreciate, since Tony Soprano doesn’t interest you.”

“Have you seen Frozen?”

“Ah-ha. The most innovative Disney classic I’ve ever seen.”

… I leave you to this screenshot. It is from the fans of a youtuber who criticizes animated films on Youtube: Flame88Tongue. She has heavily criticized Frozen in general, and her fans of hers have come up with a very interesting speech.

“There is an atavic terror to test children with a difficult story, or something that creates a little bit of anguish.”
“That’s right, if you don’t face anything, you never grow… These people want children to be surrounded by wadding”
“Fairy tales has the primary function to make children experiment negative emotions in a “protected” ambient, to prepare them to the traumas of real world, that isn’t really protected. (…) How much the loss of moral values depends from the loss of big narrations?”

The video focuses mainly on how Elsa’s character is treated. It has many similarities to the cases we have today: horrible person, victimized… So good, for some reason.

This need to make Elsa a victim conditioned the writing of the entire first film: the screenwriters, to make this BITCH true, had to rewrite the film from scratch. Elsa was supposed to be a villain, Let It Go was a song for the villain.

But no, you can’t have a bad person. All bad people have actually suffered, and they can be helped or fixed to make them the good people they really are! We talk a lot about “cruel world” and the like, to be a little edgy and pseudo-realists …

And then in the works of fiction we let ourselves be enchanted by these childish ideas?

Guys, we were confronted with children surrounded by wadding.

I despise the definition of “special snowflake” in English with all my soul. It is often used by ignorant people who, for one reason or another, feel they are minimizing the problems of others, insulting them in this vulgar way.

But … In this case I want to use it, I think it’s worth it.

This evil no longer seems to be relegated only to products intended for children …

What I notice in many recent creative works is that now we are no longer looking for something seriously raw or distressing , even in the genre that should be the cornerstone of these two sensations: horror.

We, the audience, have become special children who see the slightest struggle and want to write us a hell of a treaty. Not only because we are only good at talking, but because as idiots we let ourselves be moved by scenes that in reality then they have no consequence. We never see the weight of the actions done, or even just the weight of the words.

Because in the end there is never a real conflict, not even when potentially terrible or ambiguous things are done or said, “turning points” no longer exist. There is nothing that really marks, for example, the relationship between two characters, there is nothing that makes it change permanently for the better …

(Cloé’s Requiem, True Ending)

Or worse.

(Breaking Bad, S05 EP.12)

The value of the basic fictional work has been lost. The CONFLICT to be solved in order to have a resolution. Or the conflicts are so futile or really reduced to a minimum as to make the viewer always feel safe, with resolutions thrown in, idiotic, illogical, tacky and level of a soap opera at the level of useless drama. We spend our breaths on works that do what is the minimum for the work of fiction.

(Really, the confrontation with Basil had to be one of the main points in the game, not in the conclusion just to solve all the plot points. The single scene has potential, albeit with symbols seen, revised and overwhelmed, but compared with all the plot that exists, it is a show for its own sake, which is also illogical with plot elements.)

And I have a hypothesis on why all this.
Because we don’t want to recognize ourselves in any problem that could affect us too closely. Why us; public, developers or anyone… We always want to feel understood . Always. This is why we like worlds where everyone is a victim, where everyone can be “settled” with two words of comfort. We secretly have that attitude of “maybe life would work out this way”.

With “special snowflakes” therefore, in our case, I mean that we have reduced ourselves to small waffles . We want someone or something who always understands our problems, even if in some cases there is nothing to understand. And we do this with the phrases “there will be a reason why he is doing this!” , which actually translates to “there will be something that justifies these behaviors, because I cannot conceive that some impulses and jerks are in the human nature, which is not only complex when I want it, but is complex in any case, even with its inexplicable negativity “.

Instead in these types of works today no one is actually a bad person. We hide with the excuse that “we all have weaknesses and facets” to hide a gooey goodness of people affected only by external negative stimuli, which in reality they never have any fault.

This is why any attempt at conflict is futile.
Because in the end we all have weaknesses, so we always deserve to be understood and we must never change.

“You had an expression of pain.
The performance didn’t seem funny at all. “

Because in the end it is always someone else’s fault for our every negative aspect.

Because in the end our feelings, as long as they are good, can also be strong enough to commit immoral acts.

And as long as we suffer, any kind of our impulse or impulse, even if harmful to others is fine, so it will always be someone else’s fault .

Because we always deserve love, we always deserve to be understood and loved.

Do you want to tell me what the hell messages are from today’s creatives? Will you tell me what Horror RPGs are becoming and what modern fiction is becoming in general?

Speaking of the case of Horror RPGs, given that this site talks about this particular current and how it is falling to its demise…
I really want to show you how this current worked long ago.
On this site there are various articles in the “Back To The Future” section, where we talk about games that have been real cult of the genre.

Now let’s see what these titles give us. One by one.

Corpse Party – 1996.
It has practically given us the basics, even if it now moves away from what can be defined as a “classic Horror RPG”. Great representative of Generation 0, the CORPSE-PARTY (yes, I speak of it as a literary classic, because I consider this too history!) By Makoto Kedouin was the OG, the one who started so many projects on the basis of one thing: the contact and experience made by the player.

This was increasingly developed with Ao Oni , eventually reaching its peak with Yume Nikki.

Here the player experienced the real horror experience on their own skin .

Mad Father – 2012.

Generation 1: The Character Drama.
Sen wanted to try more at the level of similarity with passive fiction, and managed to prove that he was a creator capable of making entertainment . The story, in the original Mad Father, did not demand or force particular depths. Sen’s Mad Father began shaping what would later be completed by …

Mogeko Castle (Remake) – 2014.
End of Generation 1.
Mogeko Castle is a clear parody of what has been built during the generation in which it stands. It has brought variety to the Horror RPG genre, risking the gameplay a little to simple exploration, giving even more importance to the inspiration of the passive opera at its best, with many different registers to form a multifaceted work . So, Funamusea’s Mogeko Castle adapted to the best of what Sen had started, with a captivating product to the stars, and content to be stripped away (from character descriptions to content made by the author herself – such as those of the “Girl with Lifeless Eyes “And the” Girl with Flashy Hair “), so as to try to take the Horror RPG genre out of its niche, to take it to something bigger.

Do you see how much these titles have given us? Some are really “simple” and none of them have “changed the international gaming landscape”. No one has ever spent such big words on it. Because they only did what their genre says: they were Horror RPGs.

We were just scared, had fun and expected nothing more than to get our hands on other “games similar to Ib”. We enjoyed it, when we were younger we didn’t sleep at night …

“Has anyone ever been afraid that Aya’s father would show up before you in the dark? Are you sure?”

“… No? ”

“Oh. Ahaha, children are so dumb!”

At certain times there was no need for Outlast’s big jumpscare, when it came out in those years along with its DLCs. No, we wanted to experience serious and very cool restlessness. Of course, we talked about the characters, we had innocent debates and everything: a great case was that of Ellen, who shocked the entire audience who watched gameplay or played The Witch’s House …

But the first thing we did was entertain ourselves , because the writers knew what the hell they were doing, and they knew they had to ENTERTAIN people.

Now … Now what do we have? What do the authors give us today?

(Intervista di Omocat a IGN)

(“Midnight Train” 2019 title from the author Lydia. We will talk about it later)

They give us their disappointments; how they cope with their disappointments. They communicate to the public their need to comfort themselves . They don’t care about us anymore. RPG Horror today has become just a label to be applied to causal titles from spoiled children who want to express how much they feel the need to feel “understood and important” because they are frustrated with their life and the world.

“… Those were my notes. Didn’t you edit them either, or anything? Hell, we’re not here to personally insult, I mean you had to put it down another way …”

“Listen … I had to say it. I couldn’t find any other words.”

“…”

“Who the hell do you think you are?”

“…”

Yes, I said a really generic and bad phrase. On the part of developers, these kinds of slips just don’t have to be there. We risk making the figure of someone who simply eats his hands to the success of others.

But … Really, I’m not going to insult individual authors here. It’s a problem that RPG Horror in general has been carrying for a long time. And in my opinion, is the one that leaves it a bit in the niche compared to other video game subgenres , what makes it undervalued as a genre to be totally fixated on and that has kept the current in “simple and adorable indie games that were fashionable in 2012 and now boh”.

The videogame has always been compared to many other different fictional works. From a technical or narrative point of view. In some cases, I take Red Dead Redemption 2, many games manage according to some to stand up to cinematographic works; be it blockbuster or B-Movie. On this, however, the video game is still evolving and I know it well.

Now, speaking of a relatively recent game, I really want to make you understand with a case study, with what is a case of creative ingenuity, all the good speech I made. We really compare a Horror RPG today with a character driven work of an industry that existed before that of the cinema, which today alas is suffering various problems.

“Dear Neil Lawton, this is gonna be a good day and here’s why.”
-Dear Evan Hansen and Midnight Train on the problematic protagonists-

The former is an adventure RPG released in 2019. The latter is a musical with a drama story, which premiered in Washington in 2015.

I played Midnight Train several times with my sister, because many times we enjoy playing things we hate since we are masochists.

“You count this pastime as… When with friends you see“ The Room ”by Tommy Wiseau!”

Dear Evan Hansen … I haven’t even seen it all, nor heard all the songs. I will know 3 or 4.

“What? You haven’t even seen it and pretend to compare it to-”
“… I can’t take it anymore… Are you still here, you…?”

I was saying … I don’t know the whole story of Dear Evan Hansen, I know some fragments and I know few songs, so I can’t objectively judge it as a product …

Why, however, I want to confront them anyway?

Actually I want to talk about a very, very simple theme, which in the musical I can circumcise to just the song “Good For You”, and in the game I can circumcise to Neil’s behavior in Chapter 4 of the game.

“Wait. You can’t compare a work of adventure, which also has an external plot to carry on, with a drama that has only the happenings of the characters to tell. ”

“… You’re the only one I don’t hate, you know?”

Indeed it is a legitimate question.

I wanted to compare them, more than anything else, always to return more or less always to the same themes: conflicts and the victimization of the characters.

Let’s start with Midnight Train… Together with what I describe as a beautiful and good case of “toxic postivity”. In fact, before we get to how he was treated by the game, we need to discover a certain part of Neil Lawton’s character.

As already mentioned, we will analyze Neil in Chapter 4. But first let’s make an overview of the character, thanks to the presentation of the characters written by the author herself.

Luna’s companion (the protagonist) during the game, a kind boy who wants to be a detective and is in the same situation as him. He is weak, naive and easily panicked, but he helps Luna with riddles and riddles.
During the game he has a subspecies of character development, which gives this initial description …

(Here he is talking to a vision representing his uncle … Yeah, let’s not ask any questions, as Neil has the classic backstory as a kid abused by the bad adult … Yeah, Dickens-style but worse.)

From these two images alone, if you don’t know the game… You can say “oh, this character has had arc corruption! And here he is at his peak! ”.

No. In the game this scene is actually very decontextualized. Simply … Neil shoots insults at this vision of his and after this scene of the “torture” the pseudo-santarellino always returns. As if this scene were to mark the strength to insult one’s abuser, to also mark the definitive boost in Neil’s self-esteem, given by Luna’s company.

After this scene, we have to go back to look for Luna, who in the meantime has gone away from Neil because it turns out in the chapter that she was a killer who took multiple lives and therefore for the returned remorse for everything she did, Luna wants kill yourself. I consider this to be a totally legitimate motivation.

But Neil, after understanding the girl’s suicidal wishes, how does he take it?

We see this boost in self-esteem as he has shaped his attitudes towards a girl who has tried several times to commit suicide. At this point in the game she has already tried to throw herself into some thorns and enter an incinerator.

( … I skip the very generic speeches “I’m a killer”, “The past doesn’t count!” – We’ll talk about this problem later …)

“I’m in the same situation as you too, but committing suicide is wrong, period! Not me and the others (game characters) have ever thought about it! ”

What the hell is that about ?!

“Ah well, you want to condemn Neil then. He just said he mustn’t kill himself, geez.”

“… Okay, then you see this sequence of images, when Luna resists Neil’s words and rejects his hasty conclusions.”

(Luna is a mute girl, Neil is reading what he wrote in her notebook)

What Luna says is absolutely right. She bears full responsibility for the lives she took.

And … And Neil gets mad at her.

So, at this point I wonder if it is ever possible that no one has ever questioned Neil’s attitude towards Luna in this scene.

I can describe this attitude as… Toxic. There is no other word.
Neil has the feel of an elephant on an ice rink. It is the equivalent of telling this person, who has tried TWICE to kill herself(and was trying again) that her wish is invalid, that it is wrong to think about killing oneself, when it is just normal to think for such a great remorse.

Really, even though I hate this game, in this scene I felt an absurd pain for Luna!

Neil is opposing with a really unwarranted aggression to the things she also says, which also have a basis. If this had been a serious game, Luna would have run away once again, with her trust torn apart.

Okay, okay, it’s just two sentences … But really, if you had a minimum of sensitivity from the game, these two sentences alone could have caused the death of one of the two main characters . Because, my God, if you have to deal with this issue in particular, if the character (albeit with a higher self-esteem) is generally a good person … I expect a minimum of delicacy from Neil.

… And not literally being aggressive (with a lot of screen shake, which gives me the idea that he screamed in her face) with a person who is the victim of a gigantic and serious sense of guilt, like what you can have after killing 118 people.

Does this accidentally slap face not know that it has to do with a delicate case and an unstable person? Luna has already run away from him several times just to end her life once and for all, Neil had all the signs to understand that Luna no longer cares about living… And she doesn’t take her problem as something complicated, but something to condemn? This time I want to talk to the author: Lydia … Literally, if you do a very quick Google search you can find ways on how to approach a person with suicidal wishes, and guess what NOT to do?

Then…

“Don’t give rushed advice and solutions”

“Prevent yourself from reactions of panic”

“Don’t give pressure on the moral point of view”

And after laying a pitiful cloth over this horrible reaction from Neil, what does he do to dissuade Luna from doing the insane gesture?

No, wait, what the hell does “deduction” mean?

Really? Even in this situation where Luna should be at the center of everything, Neil always has to stay in the limelight and come out like a hero after he attacks this poor girl? (And yes, here really Luna is a victim)

But why this deduction? Why Neil has the unhealthy idea of ​​”deducing” him who knows what to convince Luna that … His crime cannot be a good reason to kill himself …?

But why must he also be guilty of being a manipulator, of course!

Do you know what would have been a solution to Luna’s case?
Luna could take responsibility for her and find all the loved ones of these 118 people she killed, to redeem herself for her crime victim after victim. A long task certainly, but also wanting right for those who feel a great sense of guilt for what is multiple murder in all respects. It would have been a mission that lasted even years … But it did not end in the dramatic nonsense by citing a subject that could not be dealt with, nor did one do what Neil is about to do, when he saw that his cheap words against a serious problem did not they worked …

Negate the evidence – Another aspect is that when the manipulator negates a behaviour in which the victim was a testimony, or in any case they try to edit facts”

So this sentence, after all the flashback of Luna’s past …

It ends up having no damn meaning, and it’s just a parade of absurd buttocks!

Luna is responsible too. Luna killed people, and she was completely capable of understanding and willing. She could stop, she could do anything with her life and escape the loop she had entered as a child (she was “invited” into an organization where criminals were killed when she was an orphan) if she had fairly high morals.

And let’s go back to Tony Soprano …

He never hesitated to shoot someone. She never hesitates to do her job, nor does he cry over it, when he is introduced to us.

-We have only reasons, not justifications.

-There is, therefore, a real EMOTIONAL CONFLICT to judge it.

Luna , as did Tony, when she grew up (given that in the game, by the leaders of the organization, we are not shown any kind of strong mental manipulation to give her the idea that killing is good ) had full control over her decisions. When she knew she could kill people, a principled person would walk away.

Luna no, Luna agreed to kill. Like Tony she agreed to kill and do everything she did as a mobster.

But Tony is a person we don’t know how to judge effectively, so he does it … Even pleasure with reserve, since it’s okay, he has panic attacks, a real psychiatric problem … until he wants to take back his life he has never done anything to change.

Luna, on the other hand, is the manipulated victim. Only because she was taken as a child. She did not have opinions, she did not see what the organization was doing growing up and MAYBE assessed that hurting people for her own personal justice is WRONG. No, she is a poor victim!

And because of that, for that manipulator Neil, she has no responsibility for the people she killed. She was just unfortunately manipulated … To kill 118 people in her entire life! Luna leaves the organization only when she is the age we see in the game!

But how was everything with the same title treated? This set of misconceptions, mental manipulation to lead to thinking that we have no guilt, which led to yet another case of de-empowerment, after Aubrey and Pierre …

Nothing. The cosmic void. What mattered to the game was to have the final releases come after some drama.

But that drama didn’t help either. I wrote it before: there are no consequences, there are no conflicts, there is no doubt or negative element in the personality of these characters.

Neil’s attitudes are never seen as wrong, so he means that ignoring one’s guilt for the game is the right thing to do, in favor of one’s personal well-being.

But also because, even in that one scene where Neil has an outlet scene …

We do not get anything for him. Everything is left aside, in favor of the thought that Neil has “become strong” and the negative factor of “paying back with the same coin” is not taken into consideration.

A real moment of strength on Neil’s part would have been to ignore, REALLY acknowledge that what he was seeing was a false thing and if he was going to have a moment of desperation just think he didn’t know who to believe, Luna or what his uncle was telling him, since Luna ran away just for fear of being judged by Neil. And for a moment of realization it would have been nice to see how he has to reconcile the strength and the good attachment to logic that (according to the game) he has shown in the structures, together with the sensitivity that his uncle defined as a weakness, but which it would help him understand the case of a girl with suicidal thoughts.

This is only a method of revenge in these cases and if done this way; only for a mere and irrational outburst … I consider it childish and it shows how we have lowered ourselves to the same level as those who harm us. Shooting insults right and left for what you know is a vision? Do you really want to tell me that this is not childish?

But Neil, for his infancy, is never condemned even by the director of the game. This should be a moment when we say “Yes! Tell him!”.

But in reality I have only and only seen a gigantic excuse for what he has become in the course of the game from a soft boy to a formed manipulator, who pushes himself on others and gets into their personal facts, because he must have his own realization. that he is fit to be a detective. Unfortunately Luna supports him during the game and this also gives me the hypothesis that Neil uses Luna for his own personal comfort, to counterbalance the constant insults received since he was little.

But this is perhaps my conjecture.

What remains irrefutable is that he became an exalted manipulator during Chapter 4 and the game never told us, because every moment of his aggression, even if not justified, is put down as a moment of strength.

And why on Earth?

Because he didn’t live well as a child. Because he was abused.

This is an excuse for risking having a girl die at your hands. Guys, it’s the same case as Aubrey:

“The fault is always someone else or something else, if you are the protagonist”

And you know what? Do you really want to know?

This law doesn’t just apply to sneaky people like Neil.

It also applies to those who SHOULD BE THE FUCKING VILLAINS.

… Which in Lydia’s world means NEVER.

This last sentence is meant just to say. Do not think that these two fools were authoritarian villains when Luna was in the organization and therefore they had a development, even if forced.

Although here I do not understand if this chick is trying to “convince” Luna subtly or not …

They make her choose whether to kill the criminals, or just investigate them and then let the “action team” do the dirty work …

They offer you all the amenities and literally want to make sure you have a “good stay”.

And no kind of betrayal of these expectations is seen. Luna, in fact, in the organization does not have any kind of sign of exaggerated training, nor any sign of actual abuse by the organization.

So we can conclude that even the so-called “villains”, who should kill the criminals even if it is wrong …

THEY ARE GOOD.

And why are they good?

OH. MY. GOD.

So, let’s recap the barrel dump that is in Midnight Train …

The evils are not the fault of the protagonists and here everything is fine, they have to do with something supernatural —> So it is the fault of Black Gear, which engineered this train to continue the “criminal cleanup” work that the organization is already doing. However, their actions also come from abuses suffered (there could still be a social criticism and the police who do not intervene but are not explained in this way) —> So is it the fault of the train …? Of the curse …?

“Why are we still here…? Just to suffer…? ”

IS. Ridiculous. I will not even bring in the cute colored people! It’s just ridiculous!

The fault lies with a fucking train! Because no character with a beautiful face can take the blame. Because they are all GOOD and that’s the first thing we need to understand!

“…”
“…”

Now, to give overwhelming proof of what I will say at the end of this appendix, therefore also the second part of this article …

Let’s talk about Dear Evan Hansen. Let’s enter the Arena Stage in Washington for a few minutes and see how the hell they treat characters, in general, how good conflicts are built both between characters and characters, and between CHARACTERS AND THE AUDIENCE . Thanks to the cases of Walter White and Tony Soprano we have understood well that to add layers of depth, the conflict between characters and audience is also very important. So, let’s start by analyzing one of the latest songs from the musical by Benj Pasek, Justin Paul and Steven Levenson.

“Good For You” is one of the songs that marks the greatest conflicts between Evan and many people in his life, including his mother. I will not talk about the verses of the other two boys (Jared and Alanna), given which are very connected to the plot of the musical and how they were “pulled” into Evan’s situation.

You have to know that in the musical, Evan is a boy who suffers from severe social anxiety. The song “Waving Through A Window” is the complete representation of his frustration and pain for this situation he is experiencing.

(Screenshot from Ben Platt’s performance at 2017 Tony Awards)

“I try to speak but nobody can hear
 So I wait around for an answer to appear
While I’m watch, watch, watching people pass…
Waving through a window

Can anybody see?
Is anybody waving back at me?”

But in “Good For You” (spoiler) he has a conflict mainly with his mother, because for a series of events, Evan has found himself almost replacing her with another family and the woman is destroyed because she knows that at the level of comfort for Evan, that family is better than her but at the same time she is furious with her son over this replacement, working twice as hard to support him after Evan’s father leaves. I think these lines can sum up what Heidi Hansen felt:

Have you found a place where the grass is greener?
And you drop the fence to the other side?
Is it good?
Are they giving you a world I could never provide?
(…)
And you say what you need to say
So that you get to walk away
It would have killed you to have to stay trapped
When you’ve got something new

Well, I’m sorry I had it rough.
And I’m sorry I’m not enough …
Thank God, they rescued you!

(Scene before “Good For You” from… A bootleg. Yes, the life of theater kids is difficult.)

After all this pain thrown out by Heidi, even with a lot of passive-aggression (“It would have killed you to have to stay trapped – To live with me, I add – when you’ve got something new”, “Thank God, they rescued you! “) …

(“Thank God they rescued you!”)

Do you still want to remember Evan’s social anxiety? After this song and after what Evan does in the first act including lying to a family who lost a child, just to get closer to his crush … 

(Scene for the song “For Forever”)

Will you forgive him because… “Can anybody see, is anybody waving back at me?”

As noted above, Waving Through A Window in particular reflects how Evan feels about his social anxiety. He objectively suffers from it, so he has problems relating to people. Like all the characters we have described so far, Evan suffers from a bad situation of him.

But, in any case, he caused this.

… But the musical is keen to let us know that Heidi is wrong too. She also says phrases like “I’m doing my best!”, But with the constant teasing that he says to the Murphy family in anger, his excuses seem almost to be self-justifying in not understanding his son out of pride.

A few minutes earlier: “They’re not your family, Evan!” in a mocking tone.

A few minutes later: “You’re the only good thing that’s happened to me, Evan! I’m sorry I can’t give you more than that… Shit! ”

“…”

Here. Do you understand what it means to have a conflict with dignity, even if with people who can also be born as “victimizable” to the maximum?

I have no idea who to “justify” either. They both have good reasons, but at the same time they have those elements why it cannot be said that they are in the wrong or in the total reason!

Do they both suffer? Absolutely. But both because of this they have never harmed anyone, because they “suffer” and “are good people”? Absolutely not. Both have harmed those around them and no one is spared.

Heidi shows what I consider a principle of hysteria which shows how problematic she is as a person without “sugaring” anything or making her obvious problems less visible . But also Evan shows once again how much he is a person who, if he finds a good opportunity, wants to make things turn around on his own account (a dialogue with Alanna proves this).

In fact, let’s see the comments under the song we mentioned …

There is a real moral conflict, there is a writing of the characters that allows them to debate their ideas, because the work at this point did not expire in “this is right, this it’s wrong. ”

So, do you see what the conflict does?

Conflict gives GROWTH . To the characters, to those who talk about them “on the other side of the screen”. To all.

Evan and the DEH characters in general are still a source of debate… Because there are so many conflicts to start with! These are the types of works that, I can say even without knowing the musical in full, at least make you think, they make you talk about them in the good sense of the word! Therefore, the public automatically, if it reflects on the work, also reflects on itself, on its own morals …

So, back to Midnight Train… After seeing what’s fashionable in the already beautiful industries you form, with so many critics in tow; an industry that video games also aim to become … Can we really consider these types of stories well written, or at least of quality?

All that mass of manipulation, toxicity, ridiculousness … For what? What does the player have to put up with hours and hours of this bullshit for?

To see the characters, always with their beautiful faces, happy and content, without any awareness of what they did, what they said and what happened during the game. What kind of good ending is that?

For this reason I, perhaps interpreting the term on my own, I consider this as a real “toxic positivity”.

There hasn’t been a development, there has never been a COMPARISON with the outside world, there hasn’t been a real CONFLICT that made them change “from so to this”. Let’s stop fooling ourselves, these people are still the same shit ever . They cried a little more, but they were never questioned about their ideas, nor had real and interesting moments of confrontation with something different, or even something they cannot understand and / or completely excuse with little words from the shonen battle. poorest you can find on the anime market …

Just like all of us. Midnight Train is made like this because it is made by an originally passive spectator, who has reflected in her work everything she would like. Drama, cry a little … But no real conflict. No real challenges to face.

Children surrounded by wadding. As I said earlier.

I wanted to talk about this case because I believe it summarizes everything that has been said in this very heavy second point of the entire article. I thought it was a nice way to conclude this second point, also comparing a work that we theoretically “want it to become the new norm”, with what is now the norm. Even if, in the end, we return to the same concepts.

Indeed, I copy and paste these parts from a few paragraphs ago – I understand that in this long article we can get lost.

We don’t want to recognize ourselves in any problem that could affect us too closely. Because we; public, developers or anyone… We always want to feel understood. Always. This is why we like worlds where everyone is a victim, where everyone can be “settled” with two words of comfort.

We want someone or something who always understands our problems, even if in some cases there is nothing to understand. And we do this with the phrases “there will be a reason why he is doing this!”, Which actually translates to “there will be something that justifies these behaviors, because I cannot conceive that some impulses and jerks are in the human nature, which is not only complex when I want it, but is complex in any case, even with its inexplicable negativity “.

In these kinds of works today, no one is actually a bad person. We hide with the excuse that “we all have weaknesses and facets” to hide the gooey goodness of people suffering only from external negative stimuli, who in reality never have any fault.

That is why any attempt at conflict is futile.
Because in the end we all have weaknesses, so we always deserve to be understood and we must never change.

“… I think I’m done.”

“…”

“…”

“So what?”

“Like“ so what ”?”

What harm is there if everyone is a good person in these works?

“In the end it is fiction. We know how to discern reality and fiction, so we know perfectly well that not everyone is as good as in these works. We have only evolved, we no longer feel the need for what you consider … Conflict . ”

“You made the girl in yellow go away for what reason? She was right, you’re here and you talk a lot on a pedestal because you really just want to lecture us all about what’s right and what’s wrong! ”

“Why should what you call” comfort “hurt the work of fiction in general?”

“Why … No message is said. This is becoming everything-”

“So? Amoral works have always existed. It’s pure” entertainment “, as you said so much for Mad Father. It’s like criticizing fairy tales for-”

“Ah … Sure … Come and talk to me about fairy tales, love stories …”

“When here the issues that wanted to be treated, with authors who wanted to” enlighten “people with their intelligence and sensitivity … They are totally distorted …”

“Come and talk to me. I want to have a laugh.”

 

Part 3 – Ṭ̵̃h̸͕́e̷͚͋m̸̬̎a̴͂͜t̸͚̾i̷̩͆c̴̪̈́ ̸͗͜D̶̚͜i̶̢̿ś̸ͅt̷͍̉o̷̧̾r̵̘͑s̶̛͎i̷͉͌o̸̬͌n̸͍͋

Cloé’s Requiem: Con Amore – “It’s not me, it’s my curse”

So let’s start from case already analyzed in the second part of the article on Cloé’s Requiem – Cloé’s Requiem: Con Amore. A sort of extra version of the little-remembered Horror RPG. Both Con Amore and Cloé’s Requiem have been analyzed in the series of articles mentioned above.

In Chloé’s Requiem, Cloé’s father (the co-star) has sexually exploited her daughter since she was very young – about eight years old.

A person like this the viewer reduces, on a moral level, below a worm.

I’ll show you how it was treated in a … Extra version of Cloé’s Requiem – Cloé’s Requiem: Con Amore. This extra version was supposed, in theory, to make some plot elements clearer.

In the “game” (since it looks more like a poor quality visual novel) you see a “demonized” version of some people who died during the game, including that of the waitress Charlotte …

Perfect, Charlotte has become a total monster, covered in blood. Because she “is a curse”. This bloody girl you see on the cover is the “evil script” of the original one, something bad that can be defeated with love and holy water.

But there is a huge difference between Cloé’s Requiem and Cloé’s Requiem: Con Amore: in the original game the “curses” are not mere monsters to be defeated, but something much deeper. There are many interpretations to them.

(If you want to see a very long article on the characters of Cloé’s Requiem, it exists on this site).

So, let’s get back to us and how the curses are represented in “Con Amore” …

If this is an “evil double” of the delicious Charlotte …

“I’m afraid of losing Cloé, he seemed obsessed”

… Even Alain, the abusive father, developed an evil double before he died!

With “he” we obviously mean the so-called “curse”, which in Con Amore has become a supernatural being who seems to… take possession of people… and make them do bad things.

So, according to this logic, Alain is a good father who cared about his daughter.
So it wasn’t Alain who raped Cloé.
So Alain is a person to be pitied, even if in the original game he is always presented as a very ambiguous character in the way of expressing himself or, in any case, as a terrible figure.

No, really, they have foisted on a curse a fault that can only and only belong to a particularly sick human being . Let us realize the gravity of the situation.

They made a rapist into a “man in pain” , and for this reason alone the plot element was invented for which Alain would try to cure Cloé, who is suddenly “sickly” (which NEVER mentioned in the original game, any harm he has in the game was solely his father’s fault).

“I’m afraid of losing Cloé, he seemed obsessed”

If we don’t count the various holes and inconsistencies with the original game 1 if you follow this narrative line that it looks more like a fanfiction than a real explanation of the curses, I ask you …

“Guys, let’s face each other. Can’t you smell bullshit?”

” … ”
Let’s finally go to the audience. How did the Japanese audience take this badly made visual novel?

According to the audience, Cloé’s Requiem Con Amore served to deepen the characters of Cloé’s Requiem.

“I’m afraid of losing Cloé, he seemed obsessed”

And this certainly includes the case of Alain.

Let us realize. Having justifications for the actions of a pig who hides himself in the image of the distinguished man of the 19th century in recent years means “understanding his character more”. It makes it written better, you know.

… Are you kidding me?

NOW YOU UNDERSTAND WHAT I MEAN BY MY “BAD AND TRENDING” PHRASES TOWARDS NEIL AND THOSE OTHER ASSHOLES WE HAVE DEALT WITH SO FAR?

LET’S RECAP WHO IS … OR WHAT IS ALAIN.

Alain is represented as a monster who has ruined the life of an unstable wife and a daughter too small and fragile to stand against him, taking the latter as possession of her (if you remember certain phrases he has in the game). You cannot dispute me about this: Alain sucks, Alain is a person who cannot be pitied for any reason IN THE WORLD.

But the amount of crap he does as a person doesn’t make it badly written! he doesn’t make it sketchy in any way! He is a person, with his own sick inclinations, who has hurt people, who has traumatized them for life!

However, in any case …

A character we understand is a character that the public is not forced to redeem, but who remains from the complex and logical psychology in his actions.

This is a reasoning that can be applied to Alain: we do not redeem him for any reason, but we can basically understand that he is sick and this is perfectly reflected in his actions! This does not make him a sketchy character at all! , compared to this “twist” of shit for which “it was the curse to do everything”! (See note 1: “Plot holes…” – Further study)

Indeed, I tell you one thing.

The rightly monstrous characterization of Alain throughout the game was fundamental as a wrong example for Michel (given his inclinations to, just like Alain, disrespect for human life and possession), with disturbing parallels up to direct confrontation!

That’s what FUCK I mean by “theme distortion”!

He became a poor man consumed by a curse that came out of nowhere and tried to fight, poor thing … And so what Michel fights at the end of Cloé’s Requiem (not Con Amore) is … Dunno, yes, a final boss fight against a curse the final.

So Alain in Cloé’s Requiem loses any kind of depth because “every time it was the curse that spoke”.

Therefore, justifying Alain the issue of violence against minors in Cloé’s case is resolved with a “something external possessed him, it was not human man who did that violence”, therefore something as serious as RAPE. It’s distorted at the level of APOLOGY.

APOLOGY TO SOMETHING THAT STILL HAPPENS TODAY. ONE OF THE WORST TYPES OF PHYSICAL VIOLENCE.

“I’m afraid of losing Cloé, he seemed obsessed

 

“Group violence of a 15year old, shock phrase of the Piemonte mayor: “How we can define this? Kids being kids”.

“Rimini rape cases, three minors condamned at 9 years and eight months. The lawyers: ‘they feel guilty’

ALAIN LOVED CLOE’.

Omori – Depression: the new badge to stand out?

Literally, like I go to sleep at night after a day seeing all the internet elation about this game.

… It’s literally the part you’ve all been waiting for, huh?

Omori, the new pearl of the indie game … “The new Undertale”, they say …

“…”

“…”

I have… A premise for this game to be made. For a speech that we will carry on later. In this article or another, we would have liked to talk about this game from this point of view; or the one according to which we should reassess our maturity as a public, to properly judge the games to be rewarded and give any merit that exists or not.

And now you will discover the reason for this, among many, bad and “absolutist” phrase.

Since we will talk about it on the basis of the fact that it has distorted in a very serious way what it wanted to deal with, let’s first of all go to what makes the “themes” treated at a minimum of depth, not even to be defined as themes.

Because it is because of an initial superficiality , an initial distraction, a having taken things too lightly, or even a creative ingenuity at the base that led Omori even towards the offensive for what concerns the topic of depression .

But let’s go one step at a time. Why are the themes “non-thematic”?
There are various points we can go through, both in the so-called “dream world” and in the so-called “real world”.

Let’s start with something that can be refuted: realism.
The realism of this game has really put it under their feet, from two points of view.

Let’s start with the aesthetic aspect; something very minor.

From the world of dreams to the real world we should have some kind of difference. In the types of characters we meet, in the type of people we approach, even unknown ones, the colors, the atmospheres …

(Screenshot of Coraline, 2009 game taken from the film of the same name by LAIKA Studio)

In Omori, on the other hand, we have the same types of characters, colors and vibes as in the world of dreams. The latter is only put down in a more extravagant way: the whole game, however, has never made me detach from the idea of ​​J-RPG with cute characters who fight for cheap jokes. Only the ages and the fact that the characters have black and non-colored lineart changes. This effect is given to me above all by the colors of the maps, which in Coraline we have seen completely changed from the imaginary world to the real world.

In addition to the fact that the direction, in any case, always remains the same; always with these more playful and / or almost “childish” tones and dialogues in the most everyday scenes, and he wakes up only when he has to present a dramatic scene.

In addition to the constant “wacky” characters (I take Maverick as the strongest example) both in character design and in personality … That in the world that should literally contrast with an imaginary world … They are just really bad and out of context.

Why does this become an aggravating circumstance?

In theory, the player is from the point of view of a “depressed” person. I don’t think it’s possible that the world around it is so colorful.

“Sorry Ele, but all this talk of the context cannot help but make me think about how great potential would have been expressed if a more appropriate environment had been chosen.”

Just imagine if, for example, an environment closer to a small town had been chosen instead of the village scattered around the world. Even a big city with its own rules, why not.

To begin with …

  1. The friendship between these children would have been better appreciated if placed in a ruthless context, such as the individualism that develops in a more urbanized geographical area ; moreover, places such as the playground, if compared with, for example, the smog of the city, would have had even more value.
  2. As we said before, in a city it is easier for parents to get lost in work and children to be neglected and for phenomena such as hikikomori to develop.
  3. Growth and the period closest to adolescence could have been faced in a real context of continuous confrontation between attachment to childhood and ‘approaching adulthood , in many teen dramas this is dealt with in schools, in the context of Omori the school could also play a marginal role but the point is that with continuous references to life that they would have pursued as adults a starting from the confrontation that can also take place in a school would have created very credible atmospheres of conflict.

Do you want an example of the above? Let’s take the same Aubrey we told you about earlier.


Here, let’s look at each other for a moment: why should the band follow Aubrey’s directions? What interest does the group have in stealing the album by photos of this poor guy? Normally a group of bullies or a gang can be “incited” with much more trivial and superficial comments.

Do you really want me to give you an example?

… “Does this guy really have flowers on his head? He must be one of those effemminate guys….”
“Ohh how cute he lets his friends defend him, see how he takes refuge!”
“This must definitely be gay” …

(…)

Do you want to use the photo album? Do you want to detach Aubrey from her past?  Well, let’s suppose that to detach from her he decides to exploit these photos. For example, you can force Basil to do any “torture” or humiliation in public which if not performed involves the burning of one of the many photos present with a lighter to show its strength to the group ; to the point that when they return the photo / album “safe and sound” Basil himself will throw them in the garbage for the trauma they caused him.

But how could a scene like this, specifically, have worked beyond the more urban context? Here, try to remove for a moment the image of the delinquent and replace it with a sort of “evil extension” of what she was as a girl (that is, a little bit smirky and a little crafty who tried to be at the center of the attention of his group) … You ask me where this is headed, don’t you?

Well, I’m just trying to make you forget the “street thug” stereotype for a moment to get used to the “queen bee” stereotype in groups of teenagers.

I’m just telling you to try to visualize it in your head. The usual long hair, perhaps with a pair of hoop earrings, with a look that can come close to “shirt-shorts” or “shirt-miniskirt”.

(I just made an incomplete sketch to give you an idea)

Before you send me any kind of insult for having “ruined” your favorite character I want to try to convince you of this narrative choice that I would have applied instead of Omocat … And to the list that I am about to represent I want you to accompany us this song in particular from the musical of Mean Girls based on the film of the same name.

 

Feel the explosiveness in the melody and the lyrics! Here, now let’s go back to the logic and explain why on the narrative level it would have worked much more.

  1. This growth path of hers would have been more in-character.  Because as a child she always showed herself on the front line, with cute little eyes, a sly smile and her headband.
  2. A much more interesting character who could bring to life loud and disturbing scenes (here, imagine what I told you earlier about bullying poor Basil). She could create a sea of conflicts that would make the plot much more interesting ! Let’s see just a few examples…
  3. To begin with, she would have clashed in a much more natural and dramatic way with the other members of the group of her “former friends” and would have pushed them to question themselves by being able to intervene on the weaknesses she saw in them starting from how she remembered them. as children, to give an example to intervene on the state of Kel, in a certain sense always second to Hero as she “was always second to Mari” if we want to see it in terms of a context full of ” social competition “. In fact, she would have even made more sense about depression than Hero himself! That is: the construction of a social image with which (and against which) to fight , Aubrey in this sense would have been that active character that embodied in itself this theme.
  4. she would have been an excellent mirror-character for the figure of the “little saint-schoolgirl” Mari proposing an example of “toxic femininity” if we want to call her that; but not only this. It would have represented even more the divider that has been placed between childhood and adolescence since the girl died, since Mari would have almost represented in this case the death of innocence itself when compared to a character who is for real much more sneaky and mischievous.
  5. She would also have been an excellent mirror-character for Sunny’s “repressive” character (and Basil too, if desired) for the search / non-search for her own role in the world. on the other, aggression. Violence towards oneself, violence towards others. Wait, obviously with violence towards others I mean it in the most subtle sense of the term: that is, continually pushing people to self-hate. Do you say that you play this role of opposition even in the context of a criminal? I would say not really, it is not that he has to continually show a certain facade to build the approval of a social group (here also to return to the examples of characters like Pierre), so in this version does not have a “hard social role to build “. Her “her minions” respect her as she is because they approve of her ideologies that she developed all by herself in her period of crisis. She is not in those situations where he has to prove something to someone.
  6. She Could have represented , in Sunny’s distorted vision of dreams, Sweetheart with a perfect cadence, creating a connection between the world of dreams and the real world.

Here, and with that, you have come up with a beautiful and potential work to develop in which we have both the fights and nostalgia of an exploratory J-RPG in the world of dreams, and a complex plot in the real world, full of material to be able to develop in the dramatic tones that are most preferred to speak, in the most general way, of the harsh issues of youth growth today in the new increasingly individualistic and increasingly urbanized context (ah, and in all this it would not be I missed the fucking narrative gimmick of Mari’s murder / false suicide, or if there had been there would have been much more basic narrative material to contextualize it).

“All very nice Pao, now you can stop dreaming.”

“Damn, but I can’t ignore that here we wanted to tell a dramatic story with characteristics very close to the teen-drama genre, therefore the remote country as it may be more familiar in terms of nostalgia in style. … An emeritus has nothing to do with the issues they wanted to tackle, come on! ”

“But that’s what I’ve said so far too! But unfortunately this is the harsh reality, resign yourself!”

Here, speaking of reality. As Pao also said before with his cabbage-anxiety-lists, to give us a nice contrast between what is considered “the hard and effective reality” against what is the imaginary world in the protagonist’s head, you have to change the air, you have to change music, you have to change something and make reality interesting with events, given that you move to the mentality that the player, after being in a fantasy world, “must put his feet on the ground” to understand real human actions and problems.

In this way, if we see both worlds as beautiful, cheerful and with beautiful saturated colors … There is not even a real contrast. Real and imaginary world become the same.

And then, going to something more thorny, that he has to do with what he wants … In fact, he pretends to deal with Omori.
This lack of differences between the imaginary world and the real world is not only from a stylistic point of view, oh no.

As “lack of realism” in fact I meant precisely from the point of view of events. I could give too many examples, but I will consider the simplest: the total lack of some kind of therapist and the mother never received in 4 years in which the protagonist was locked in the house because of a so-called “depression” (which, as we will see later, is in reality only a great sense of guilt, not associated with chronic depression in any way).

According to the game itself, this woman lost a daughter a few years earlier to DEPRESSION.
With what courage has this horrible mother never called ANYONE for the case of this poor boy who for four years found himself fighting her inner demons COMPLETELY ALONE ?!

This is a very serious thing to omit. It means that in Sunny’s life (the canonical name of the protagonist) there can be parental denial, if after the first month of isolation he has not been brought to therapy and even quickly (no, I don’t take into consideration the fact that they were about to move: at least the first treatments I think can be done in a more timely manner), or …

Yes, they didn’t want to introduce “too realistic” elements into a game that wanted to have a completely different kind of aestethic.

But for a game that …

And, therefore, who wanted to deal seriously with this issue, this is one of those things that makes me understand very well that you have not even thought about what it entails to put certain plot elements in your story, like a 4-year isolation.

“There is something you missed.”

Sure, the game is about depression. But in any case, this is simply a story about friendship. What is striking is the suggestiveness with which all the themes have been treated, it is the direction and the staging that make a good effect.

“… Ah, let’s talk about directing now.”

Except for the fact that I could make a nice long speech about how this as a story about friendship is not worth a penny because of sketchy characters and relationships that are too superficial to be considered lasting for a lifetime …

But it must be said that the boy with the glasses … He’s right.

The direction in Omori is suggestive, indeed. This is very true.

(Parenthesis, the second scene I show is a gigantic SPOILER for Omori!)

Personally, the scene where Omori swims in the sea and in the meantime we have visions of Mari’s failure, which shows her forgiveness (here one can also ask if that is just a vision of Sunny to get her conscience right, or if would have really personato) … Really, no “but”, it’s really nice. From the music, to the interaction with the player because he himself swims to reach Mari in what looks like an infinite ocean, so you get lost until you find what can be “a foothold” given by the presence of a person like Mari.

Then, the scene of the discovery of the murder through the photos is very beautiful to see in general: even if the gimmick of the photos is done purely for aestethic and … I do not find the reason for its existence, due to the management of the single images to let us discover the crime gradually, I understand that in terms of images in succession to the game, those who have the experience worked on it . The crime is not blasted in your face with some useless flashback but through something more subtle … Although, I repeat, I do not really understand the gimmick.

 

But what doesn’t make me praise it at all is another problem … Iconography.
By iconography we mean practically the symbols that are used in the game to say certain messages or for any other reason. In general, how do you try to enrich what is a direction that after all is also good. From this point of view, that of symbols, the game was very lazy.

The only thing that was interesting in terms of symbolism and that was used as the main way to do some kind of eye-catching marketing for this game was White Space.

The title screen, the logo, the very first scene… They all make us think that we will have to deal with this so-called white space, very isolated and that at times reminded me of the first chapter of Hello Charlotte, another Horror RPG.

… And also OFF by Mortis Ghost …

But I tell you, this could have been the only way a little more suggestive to treat “depression”, “anxiety” and all these beautiful terms. If you really wanted to focus on a “unconventional”, or whatever, White Space was perfect for an isolating atmosphere that could reflect more individuality in general.

Too bad that this one particular place in the game appears very little , compared to the screentime it deserves for how much it has been pushed into the barbine marketing operations made for this game!

Furthermore, White Space, in its few (yes, I consider them very few compared to the amount of time we have to be in quite different places, much less inspired) is the only place where you try to create some kind interesting atmosphere, which could have given the game points.

And even if the “Black Space” is a gigantic bullshit made for a “grand finale” …

In these parts we could use the logic we used in the Pocket Mirror article in Back To The Future:

“It doesn’t mean shit, but it’s cool!”

But my God, Pocket Mirror was really over the top! So over the top that you could even fool yourself in the slightest that it was a game meant to be weird intentionally, even though it had its own gigantic problem of all-too-linear progression, which we’ll talk about later for this game as well.

I don’t like that game as I don’t like Omori, but I saw some “creative sneezing” (yes, I call those flashes of creativity without context), I saw something that at first friction could enchant me.

I much prefer something really over-the-top, compared to something that claims to be a “delicate” product with beautiful and inspired scenes, but which at the same time also wants to be the most “by the book ”ever!

(Helping random people, useless dialogue … I say this as a J-RPG fan, for those who feel hipster to say that they “appreciated the amount of text in the game, which many players can define as boring” … I think Any lover of heavily narrative J-RPGs should feel special, according to your logic.)

These two registers also don’t really mix together . Omori follows the rule that “oh, a story arc is over … Ok, you have to go back to the real world”, without actually THINKING to give a real trigger to this awakening and we go back to the real world because the goddess Omocat wanted it so. We don’t have a build-up, we don’t have a reason. Let’s go back to the real world because we have to change from J-RPG to DRAMAA. We switch to horror because we want to do psychological horror now , with disturbing scenes, monsters and dark colors!

& nbsp;

And here we get to the heart of the problem. To the demonstrations of why the iconography that is used in Omori to treat depression fails on all fronts.

The scenes that wanted to be “beautiful”, horror or so on and so forth … I have seen them acclaimed as masterpieces, but if you have played at least one other Horror RPG in your existence you can recognize all the symbols used by Omori in their own “suggestive” scenes.

I’ll just give you a few examples, and then get to one that connects with the main discourse.

-Eyes. I’ll put the case of Fausts Alptraum, but it’s almost sickening how much “eyes” as a symbol have ALWAYS been used in horror fiction.

-Use of hand sketches, usually for own maps.

(Fausts Alptraum)

(Imaginary Friends)

(Ib)

 

-Hands

 

(Ib, Yume Nikki)

Ah, sorry. I re-watched Coraline recently and this screenshot of the other Mother’s hand has stayed on my computer.

No, actually I want to construct another discourse starting from the Hand of the Other Mother , or more generally what the “hand” can symbolize in the work of fiction. And this is to better explain why Omori’s iconography is really lazy.

We have seen this gimmick in about 2 different games and a movie. Tell me, was this hand symbol used with the same intentions as Omori had? To represent fear, something much more internal and psychologized?

No. The hand as a symbol is used to indicate danger, in general . We have seen this in the case of Ib and in the case of something that comes from a totally different medium: a movie. It is at work to give the single “hand” we are talking about a nice context that can hold it, but the symbolism of the hand is clear: it indicates in a very general way a danger or a simple threat.

I also mentioned Yume Nikki in this speech because Yume Nikki, believe it or not, in its initial intentions had no pretense of narrative, so even here the hands are purely for aestethic horror, so they are something external here too, no matter how much you are. imaginative with theories!

(No, I will not consider a theory that the hands are almost an “invitation to take the knife.” For that, I think the shining blade is already doing her job.)

So the hand as a danger from the point of view of the symbol, if not used in the correct way, if you don’t build a good speech around this symbol and throw it like this … It becomes interchangeable with anything else that indicates “danger” in general.

In fact in this scene they are shamelessly replaced with… Wires?

So do these really seem like creative ways to deal with what is called “depression” or simply treat fear or guilt in an original way?

“Even if he is not the most creative, he has his own context, that of phobia. The fear is felt, the hands can be something that ‘pulls back’ Sunny from going down the stairs .. . ”

“The last sentence you said might be true, but …”

Much more effective methods have been used to represent other problems.

Or, again speaking of stairs, the fact that these are very long was much more exaggerated. You could point the representation of the phobia on the fact that, since Mari died right on those stairs so they remind Sunny of her trauma, the stairs seem endless!

In short, to represent the phobia as what it is : a distortion of reality on our part, which makes us reluctant to face certain types of things, which we see larger and more frightening than they are. They did it while they represented a useless stomach ache: that effect on the screen gives me the idea of ​​nausea … Why not do it with what the game is really about?

Since you are more likeable than all the others, boy in celestial, I will leave you another example of useless symbology in Omori. This way we will understand the problem more easily.

Again to compare Coraline and Omori, let’s study them from the point of view of another symbol.

The spider.

In Coraline, the spider is used to represent the other mother in general , but what connects this character with what a spider can symbolize is the concept of deception. The Other Mother tricks children into her attraction trap, from sweets to fun events, as do spiders with their prey when luring them into their web. This comes from a desire for survival on the part of both: in the spider the food, in the Other Mother … It can be the affection of a child or simple souls to eat on his part too .. So from this concept general, the whole character has been constructed , starting precisely from the role of deceiver she has in the plot: therefore in the film in its “true form” or final form it becomes the very concept it symbolizes.

In Omori … Well, there is not the same kind of depth and / or study that can be done on the symbol.

Although that of spiders is the most classic of fears, so it could not be omitted … Because there is an entire game area dedicated to spiders, a representation of the sense of guilt (so-called “SOMETHING”) that takes the form of a spider? One scene also shows the downstairs of Sunny’s house full of spiders!

I mean … Sunny is not a deceiver , she is just a kid who has done a big fuck for which she also feels guilty; Mari never sees herself connected with the concept of the “spider” because she is too holy to be connected with something like a spider …

So what do you want to tell me with the spider symbol, Omocat ?!

Do not make useless theories, for this game of theories I really have enough.

NOTHING . Omocat with the spider symbol does not want to tell us NOTHING !

Just like the stairs: Omocat with those hands doesn’t want to say NOTHING!

She used a good effect for a useless STOMACH PAIN, but for the truly horror phases of the game she pretty much used this logic:

“Hmm, this symbol looks quite sinister to me! It’s a lot of horror, let’s put it! “
-Ilenia Zodiaco, #LibroDiMelma – “Shatter Me”

In fact, the same generic symbols that we find in Omori Omocat also represent them in a very simple “horror brainstorming”.

So … I hope I have opened and closed this discourse, with this last test.

For a work that takes a very long time to keep up with the “Horror” moments … We expect some kind of connection with everything we are seeing, with the pieces we are joining together.

We’ll have a thoughtful link between the symbols used for the horror and the “well-curated” story, right?

Surprise: NO!

With all that we have gathered we can conclude that the symbols of Omori WERE NOT THINKING for what the fiction meant.

Do you know the only two things that relate to the theme of the game what they are?

END. At the level of important symbols to take into consideration, we can see these two and then all go home, because they are the ONLY ones who strongly connect with Sunny’s problems.
(No, that useless way of wanting to look at all like a 2004 masterpiece and climax that is “Black Space” I don’t even count if you throw darts in my eyes.)

For the rest all the symbols it has can be part of the head of a boy with depression, a simply neurotic boy or even just and simply a crazy  edgelord !

And therefore, this big mistake adds to this problem, which in the end is always the same – due to poor execution, the issues are poorly covered . I don’t care if they are called “creepy moments for their own sake” or “panic attacks”: one name or another, the substance does not change ; because a monster from the world of dreams or a representation of a sense of guilt …

They are treated the same way. They are literally the same, because the game has not been good enough at making what is a true evil something adaptable to a work of fiction aimed at leaving the audience glued to the screen.

Do you realize ?! Treating depression or treating external dangers with more artistic flair is the same for Omori!

They went totally surreal, putting monsters to represent internal evils, because as always, even on an internal and mental level it is always someone else’s fault … And then we went on a lunch break, calling this type of laziness “abstraction of true evils “.

Abstractionism is like … This one.

Not “Horror Game N ° 640”

And yes, this comparison is also to say that the next one who considers Yume Nikki and Omori similar for only half an hour of Black Space I do catapult down these stairs:

“… And these were personal opinions”

“No, I think they are done, because we have seen that other works have done a good job of representing real evils in a powerful way and-”

“But the issues with those scenes that you consider trivial so much were dealt with. Panic attack is shown, and depression is shown. ”

“… You really want me to tell you about the writing problems, huh …?”

This thesis is easily refutable, if you think of Sunny’s character himself, added to the already banal scenes I have already mentioned.

Sunny suffers from the same problem as Goldia in Pocket Mirror, if not worse: is a puppet. Goldia, at least, was a little saint and is simply a character who has not really given a real development but just the basic characterization … Sunny is nothing. Sunny is THE COSMICAL NOTHING.

But, even with this subtle difference, for both games if you think about their plots, everything loses context precisely because you don’t have a strong characterization of the protagonists.

I explained this in a bad but quite understandable way in the article on Pocket Mirror, talking about Goldia:

“… We don’t know shit about the” original personality “of this system (there was a case of DID in Pocket Mirror). We are in her head, but she is passive for EVERYTHING, as if she were in a cursed OUTSIDE environment, when that is HER HEAD of hers, which should be conditioned by her thought processes. 

BUT THIS GIRL DOES NOT THINK, HAS NO MENTAL PROCESSES.

What happens is not dictated by her thoughts, by the subconscious, by NOTHING, because they are random fucking magical environments, which have no connection with a possible reality in which she lived, so it’s all very alienating and NOT CREDIBLE: if a personality “dies” in the scene we see “the symbol” but if we pay more attention we can say:

“Hey, this doesn’t make sense in Goldia’s head.”

I mean, it’s all so external that if a person gets a fever it’s not because, I don’t know, Goldia wants to suppress a certain part of herself as much as possible … cold. ”

I don’t think you need to explain anything else, these exact words fit Sunny perfectly. Representing guilt, feelings and panic attacks when we can’t even get attached to a finished character … What the hell is it for ?! What we see, which I translate as “hallucinogens” as my sister and I did for the Astralshift game article, what is it? Is it character psychology as the game pretends to tell us, or is it just entertainment for us so we get a little chills?

If the game was meant to be an experimental title to extravagantly represent the problems a (real) hikikomori can have, the game would have been totally different… And with less drama. He could be a hikikomori who was perfectly in line with the elements of this social phenomenon and be in a noisy town, so as to give a sense of estrangement of the person in her room; therefore simply represent the phenomenon of self-isolation and all the problems that derive from it, with few elements to give you only an interpretative framework in which to move.

Instead NO! Omori wanted the plot! Omori wanted the story with the twist!

These two elements, as in Pocket Mirror, really clash: the protagonist is a puppet, he has no reactions to what his head should be … And an interpretation would be that the game wants to make the player and the protagonist experience certain sensations. is only a means …

(To say, he is not even happy to be with his friends so his neutral expression may have a little more life. No. Pure stoicism and scazzo for a person who is, in theory, in the world where everything should be beautiful for him, where everything is MADE to make him happy. Okay …?)

(Here Goldia is surprised because everything has become bigger … Even if that is her head, because she is surprised as if she were a newcomer in a magical world ??)
But the protagonist, without personality, is the same involved in a complicated plot and context.

So, are all of Sunny’s fears actually ours? Are Sunny / Omori a representation OF THE PLAYER in the game?

NO! And it’s all the fault of the “plot twist”.

Spoiler for Omori: it turns out that Mari, Sunny’s sister, was killed by her brother … By accident (returning to the fact that the characters never have conflicts or defects …) and Sunny, with the help of Basil (a kid of their group of friends, which for some reason is more important) organized a crime scene that could allude to a false suicide, pretending that Mari actually hanged herself.

Does it make sense?

No.

But that’s not what we’re going to talk about because, as I said, if we start talking about Omori’s writing problems, another three-part article comes out.

So throughout the game, we commanded a guy who eventually committed murder.  And he had the sick mentality of hiding the body, instead of being paralyzed with terror.

In theory, this murder discourse was supposed to give some kind of reason for what is called “depression” …

BUT THIS IS IN REALITY WHAT GIVES YOU EVEN LESS SENSE!

Let’s start with a fact. Sunny IS IN NO WAY DEPRESSED, whether you like it or not. Given this damn of plot twist that is neither in heaven nor on earth, at this point it can actually translate into a great sense of guilt: however strong, however serious, but simply a great remorse!

More details in this part of the post “ Omori has poor writing ” by user Peppermintbee on Tumblr.

SO THE GAME IN WHAT IS THE MID-POINT GOES TOTALLY OUTSIDE THEME , making any discourse on depression ridiculous and less credible than it already is because of confusing symbols and non-existent motives!

… And what is called “shame” is precisely one of the effects of depression itself. True and constant self-hatred.

And also the theme of fears to be overcome, from which “being a gray person in a purple world” and “murder as the last terrible act that made Sunny’s self-hatred grow beyond belief”. ..

So … His friends are telling him to do it … But they’re actually imaginary, so he’s self-empowering himself? 

Because of this heck of a plot twist, everything becomes truly decontextualized : Since we know that Sunny developed these problems after Mari’s murder, we have no basis for Sunny to overcome his fears and the “greyness” of his “personality” . From her past we have only happy memories and a little anger because she did not want to play the violin … But in any case, nothing that could cause something serious to develop.

So… What is left of depression?

And finally…

In general, the focus was on two things for the promotion of the game:
-Nostalgia

-Contrast between J-RPG and… Talk about serious issues at the same time.

But … Noticed?

“Depression” is all talk.
All label, all branding .

We have seen well how the game treated “depression” and how it tried to explain it …

It’s all reduced to the bone, it’s all very, very vague. There is no mature discussion of the disease or even the slightest talk about it. We have seen it before: the game has never been able to represent real problems in a way that really gives an impact, but it is gone. for the total surreal and with symbols that we have all certainly already seen and that we recognize from the first to the last pixel.

Is this depth?

Do you think this is an accurate, realistic and “brave” way for its kind to touch on mental health?

Tell me if you know a little about what it feels like.

… And don’t tell me with clichés, over-analysis of game scenes… Tell me with what the game SHOWS. Not with your shitty interpretations. Because Omori had to talk about her topic alone, in a good and understandable way.

But he doesn’t even know where the hell he wants to go.

The plot is neither about murder, nor about mourning, nor about depression. He wants to talk about everything, but he really talks about nothing. He just combined many, many things that people like and … Somehow he wanted to make it work in a finished product.

But they are all incipits, it’s all a trap for mice. A trap in which we then find ourselves stuck and we have to find a way out, with far-fetched interpretations (such as the one on dissociative amnesia, the most popular, but we will not talk about it).

And here we go to the real problem.

A general vagueness , which demonstrates topics never covered at 100% but only many, many small whispers of important topics to tell us that “the game is actually profound” … Combined with a branding entirely focused on a blog about a “depressed” person (because, don’t want to, I have my doubts a bit …) and, in general, a label for the game as “horror about mental health so realistically that it breaks you internally ”…

What did it left to its players?

Improper recognition, that’s what. And this in my opinion … It really sucks.

Why do I say “improper recognition”?

I compare a pseudo-deep positive Steam review with a negative review (or rather, a response to an extremely negative review)

… Who are you most willing to believe? To the cheap poet, or to the person who actually seems to have suffered?

I, I don’t know about you, I believe in the second person. But far too many people have the same way of playing the game as the first.

If you see all these types of reviews, or so-called “video essays” (which, I don’t know about you, many of these just seem like a nicer way to present a format where you just talk and talk on video. That is, there are exceptions. , I follow UrickSaladBar and respect him, but … I don’t know, maybe it’s me but I’m never inclined to take them seriously) on the game, you’ll notice one thing.

When we talk about Omori, we talk about it in a nauseatingly felt way.
Why do I say “nauseatingly”?

– “This game has helped ME as a person because I’m sick …”
– “I have suffered from these things…”
– “This game helped ME to endure — …”

Am I saying this is bad?

Yes.

But not because of the simple and INNOCENT comfort factor, like what you can also have with Animal Crossing according to many (and also according to me). The problem is another.

Notice how I pointed out “I, me…”.

We never talk about the game ITSELF, in its true and insipid essence.
It spins everything around us, every single devil at a time. A game that has the premise of dealing with real problems we make it a chance to talk about us, OUR real problems.
In the end, we only think about ourselves. Because the work is vague, all its themes are distorted.

Distorted in the way they are applicable to everyone. And everyone interprets on their own terms what he wants to see.

The vagueness and lack of clarity on the THEME of Omori leaves all the free interpretation to the fans who are in trouble. The work in this way gives more the illusion to everyone that we can be poor victims even suffering from DEPRESSION when in reality it is a very complicated disease.

Depression, anxiety, panic attack, thoughts of death … They are treated vaguely, with images common to all. I am repeating these concepts to the bitter end, because this gives a single, really damaging effect:

The game also makes phenomena “relatable” that want to be called and put down as much more complex things.

And therefore, because of this, it gives everything a false impression . This gives us the justification for using even clinical terms to explain simpler things, things that certainly cause pain, but that are not connected in any way to what we think it is.

This makes diseases only labels for even minor evils, which can cause minor effects. But since the scenes are vague and relatable, we project them into our mental situations and onto ourselves without think about it.

Because we are selfish. Because we want to be protagonists of who knows what.

Sunny is not a strong enough point of reference to detach us from the idea that WE feel those things.

Because Sunny has always been a puppet. Omocat used it in 2012, we also use it in 2021.

It is because in the game itself there is no reflection on diseases and on the topics covered. It is all put down with a disarming immaturity.

And we have seen that suggestion is not enough to deal with a theme alone.

And this superficiality and childishness that the game has given us gives the audience a false impression of what it really is like to endure certain types of problems. It gives the false impression that “we are all Sunny”, therefore “we are all depressed”, when it is actually something much more complicated. Omori teaches us to use big words, when in reality what is there may be something different, with another name. So it teaches us to label ourselves and talk as if we know what suffering really means.

And this also helps us justify ourselves, even in our bad deeds.

Because we don’t want to recognize ourselves in any problem that could affect us too closely. Because we; public, developers or anyone… We always want to feel understood. Always and in any case.

And in this case, I would add, we want an excuse to be understood. Hell, I thought the days when depression was a fucking aestethic were over.

Because, my God, this game has built a brand identity behind it . An important theme (or a series of important themes) has been used as a way to give minimal importance to what is actually pure venting. Nothing has changed since 2012, Omocat simply got smarter and used it for marketing.

“I wouldn’t mind getting out if everyone wasn’t so stupid”
If I were to interpret all this, it doesn’t seem like something really profound to me but just a serious problem of narcissism masked by a nihilistic pseudo philosophy.
(Original “Omoriboy” cartoon series from 2012)

(“A Comic About Nothing”, Omocat)

As we said …

“And here I will speak for a moment.”

Here, for example, from this comic we can see the mentality that is more or less behind the “Omori” brand. The image it wants to launch is that of a cynical type of behavior, but leaving out aside from the discourse of “everyone sucks apart from me, that will express through art” as if in this case the author was the only person in the world who can develop a kind of deep thought that deserves to be shared, why are we showing it to you?

This attitude that would translate into a sort of cynicism towards the outside world, a kind of imitation of nihilistic thought as we mentioned before (Nietzsche was not only “cynical”, he also spoke of the super-stage-man in the moment in which a new phase of evolution would have been reached, but apparently no one wants to remember this detail) is not exactly what I believe it represents to have a disease as complex as depression.

Depression primarily involves aggression towards oneself, not towards others . The fact of no longer finding meaning in what one is or what one does is often aggravated by the role it occupies in the world, so unknowingly one always faces a heavy phase of self-evaluation and self-criticism in one’s place in the world. There will certainly be different facets, but from the research we have seen and the material we have brought you you should have seen it too.

For the sake of completeness, I would like to give you some examples in which this condition has in our opinion been represented a hundred times better.

A) Sayori – Doki Doki Literature Club

Yes, I wanted to start immediately from this case study because so don’t say that we neglect the videogame universe from our comparison cases. This was certainly the most striking and viral case and there is a precise reason why I put it … The evidence that confirms my thesis.

These two screens seen in succession should make you understand one thing: Sayori is continually compared with the others.
Between the “beautiful mystery maiden”, “tough Natsuki” and “perfect Monika” how could a simpleton like Sayori not feel out of place?

…I’m mean, isn’t it?

She is the childhood friend, the “escort”, the one that is now worth less because she represents something a of old / already seen unlike the other three options.
This, as I was telling you, can be a facet of how depression is viewed.

If I had to take another example, it would definitely be Heathers.

B) Heather Chandler – Heathers

(Heathers The Musical, 2010, Kevin Murphy, Laurence O’Keefe)

Many times we have (especially Ele) compared a game like Omori to Heathers, an over the top musical, coming from the darkest 1988 film that takes up adolescent problems in the context of the high-school.

In the specific moment of the screenshot Veronica (the protagonist) and Jason Dean (supporting actor) are writing a letter in which they pass the accidental murder of Heather Chandler (the “queen bee” of the school) as a suicide.

“Here, now you understand why the comparison comes naturally to you”

” Already..I can’t blame you on that. ”

Back to us, before returning to Heathers let’s do a little re-cap.

Try to follow my reasoning.

Does Sayori commit suicide also because it is instigated by Monika? Did the game take some half action to clear it from the system? Certainly.
But the sense of illness is perfectly enclosed even if the script is innovative, because it experiences the meta dimension in the fullest sense of the term in its linearity!

She doesn’t want to wake up, she comes less and less in school (and other signs) …

(…)

And on this sentence: “Sayori was a cheerful person!” on which the general “public shock” of why a person unexpectedly commits suicide would be based …

Let’s try to compare her for a moment with Mari, for example.


Heck, even the sun mourns her! Come on!

Why, according to the great evil geniuses of Sunny and Basil, Mari should have committed suicide ???

 

Now let’s go back to Heathers.

The starting image is excellent for explaining what I intend to talk about. She is pretending to write a suicide note of the school “mythic bitch”, a rich and popular girl who held power and combined bullying of all kinds. And yet, even if depression is never mentioned as an illness in either the film or the musical, she pretends to be a dimension of the girl’s self-hatred in satirical terms , thus assuming that she is a superficial person, because “she is a queen bee, she could never have such cruel feelings towards herself” putting us in front of a paradox: and if it were really like that?

(Heathers, 1988, Daniel Waters)

Let’s try to give reasons why she might spit at herself in front of the mirror. Behind the dimension of “keep the stronger face”, there is it is also a level of sexualization that she undergoes from peers who already see her as “a grown woman” rather than a girl.

And, as a small gem, the theme of self-acceptance of oneself in terms of appearance was also beautifully treated by Mean Girls that we had already mentioned before, scripted by the great Tina Fey!

Returning to Sayori, let’s remember that she is the “most insignificant” of the group of girls, compared to the others she can only feel more and more insipid. Does Mari have any of these problems?
She was the “team leader” of a group of GREAT FRIENDS in a happy family and probably of middle class because of their state of well-being (clothes the children in a certain way, education in musical instruments, rules to be respected ect). What did she have to complain about? Everyone loved her and understood her for who she really was! 

Why should she commit suicide?
While it was meant to be just a way to divert the trail and in turn create the reason Sunny is depressed by going into a series of ongoing contradictions, it was extremely important to make this point believable as well, it should not be underestimated. Let’s remember this for a moment.

But these are very obvious cases in which the development of a “hatred” towards oneself in which one thinks that not being in the world would be “better for everyone” is the guideline that leads / could lead everyone to suicide. Of course you could also feel a certain mistrust and nihilism of the world, I agree that it may be a facet of depression, but think about it for just a moment: there must be a reason why a person does not see the time to get out of the way, right?

If you believe that life has no value it is often an extension of the thought that your life has no value , otherwise there would be no reason to be so critical of comparisons of the world if you do not have a high enough self-esteem to believe that you have the power to change it or to be able to influence events to change things in some way.

“Are you done? Wo-oh, and to think that I thought it was me between the two to freak out the most today.”

” So much … it was just this one time. ”

So, the “Selfish Confort Dilemma” is just that. It means asking yourself this question:

“We want to give comfort and justification to the characters … Or do we want to give comfort and justification to ourselves?”

In recent years, we are veering more and more towards the second option… Through the first option (and not). I realize that in this article I have said many bad things, I was about to insult Omocat’s person personally

But I don’t care. Because I do it too. All the little teacher’s speeches that strike more “personally” … I am also doing them to myself, as a person and not just as a character representing a certain type of audience. I’m among the judged, guys.

I too, deep in my subconscious, do not want the characters I love to have “inconveniences”, something that can prevent me from creating content about them. Something that makes them more “uncomfortable” to look at or treat.

And this for myself too, applying the same law for me as a person would be really, REALLY comfortable.
In fact, I’ll just try to do it.

Let me give you an example: I most likely have some problems controlling anger.
“I have anger problems, it is totally justified for me to snap towards those who love me and make them suffer, even if for no reason.”
“Actually I suffer when I get angry, let me do it, because I suffer when I get angry!”
“But don’t you realize? At the end of my bad moment I feel guilty! ”
“I get very angry, screaming left and right … But it’s for a good reason, come on!”

I would like very, very much to think like that. It would save me a lot of internal hassle.
And indeed, in my outbursts of anger I never learn.

But reason in those moments speaks to me, tells me no. As a developer and… Criticism, yes, I say that this is wrong . From every point of view.

We distort how we see these types of themes, as we distort our personal situations and the situations of the works we like in our favor. We see them wrongly, with our excuses, when there are objective factors to be taken into consideration every time: for example, the pain that can be caused to others.

If we applied this logic of “we all deserve love and respect”, we would have to justify even the most horrible of acts.

Bullying…

Manipulation…

Rape.

“Tsk. Do you really think we’re so naive. Of course you notice these things in real life. See Twitter, they complain about anything-”

“So why these games were never bashed by Twitter?”

I mean … Things that are SERIOUSLY hurting others and are real problems that fly over our heads and we don’t even notice.

If we continue in this way, we will begin to focus more and more on cheap problems, such as when a work for illogical reasons is defined as “toxic” or “of bad quality”, just because it does not respect the unwritten guidelines that are certain types of communities exaggerate …

But if reasons are revealed why for certain types of characters or works all is forgiven … All is forgiven. And not for understanding what has been done, for example, or any kind of reason more profound and / or inevitable, or even just simply a true settlement of the problematic situation …

But for what we have been talking about all along: external faults, suffering as an end in itself.

So we’re going to end up being judges, for anything, but underneath the bloody hypocrites.

Because if in the end we have comfort, if in the end we have something we can cling to to excuse our negativity from which, being human, we cannot escape …

We’ll be fine.

“…”

 

 

“…”

“…Ele, you’ve gone too far.”

“I know. But I wanted to tell this one day.”

“There will be many people at our door, if whoever has come will speak …”

“As long as there is flame, there are people, huh …? Pao, they should read your article.”

“This speech is far more interesting…”

 

“… I just hope the message is clear enough.”

____________________

1 – “Plot holes …” Further information : Especially for how a curse works … That is, its goal is destruction, it cannot directly kill and then move on to another host, like a parasite? It’s not that his goal is to spread despair, we’re not in Danganronpa!

Angels Of Death – S.A.L.S. AOD-2

Angels Of Death – Severe Acute Laziness Syndrome (SALS AOD-2)

Good morning! Here we are back with the Back To The Future column, EleRantula writing!

As those who follow us know, in this column we retrace step by step, from game to game, the history of the current Horror RPG (abbreviated to HOR-RPG many times) …

This will be the last article. For us, the Storytelling Focus Generation ends here. There will be many questions from you, including:

“But there are and there will be many other games that will make Horror RPG history, you can’t stop at 2016! For example, there is Omori who- “

 “ That will be discussed in due course… ”

(On the Tin Coffee Pot Time, where you’ll see these cute little faces!)

 

All this paraphrase is to say that the time machine of Back To The Future stops at Angels of Death because, even if you surely say no, many (if not all) other games today take inspiration from this title. 

So, whether it’s for marketing methods or from the point of view of the actual development of the game… Angels Of Death was a blueprint.
The one from which many now take inspiration and that even authors treated here in Back To The Future use to rejuvenate themselves.

What, however, we consider a “virus” (citing, even improperly, the pandemic in progress) for this current.

Let’s use the time machine for the last time: due to all our travels it got a bit bruised, but this is the last effort it will have to make to take us to …

2015.

Product History

Yes, to 2015.

“But Google says 2016!”

As if we were to trust the Steam releases as the beginning of the entire Product History …

If you search any Wikipedia, you can find this information:

And therefore from this we can draw only one conclusion, which we also found in the case of Cloé’s Requiem …

Guys, we have to resign ourselves: the era of the “game published individually by an independent lil’author that then became popular because of its value!” is OVER and also by quite a piece.

Let’s see for a moment what the … “Denfa Minico Game Magazine” is.

Or maybe we should say “Den Fami Nico Game Magazine”!

(The page this screenshot comes from was created to advertise the manga about the game in 2017, but it takes you back to the original Den Fami Nico Game Magazine page, where it appears to have been advertised for the first time, even before release. of the multilingual version on Steam)

Ok, so Den Fami is an indie game distribution site…

As you can see, it also initially released games that are now leading the way in the current “Indie-RPGMAKER-Horror” in Japan, including The Case Book Of Arne and Noel And The Mortal Fate…

But let’s see who works on this… Magazine.

The company appears to be called Vaka . Let’s see their “About Us” page.

That’s how mafia indie game developing works.

So, back to how Angels Of Death started…

Yes, even in this case it went forward because of contacts.

This method is not new to Sanada , we learned from The Forest Of Drizzling Rain case that he was acquainted with those in the manga field.

But above all, this way of working is not even new to the creative field in general. Contacts are the basis of everything , you have to meet people, get involved, make affiliations… In short, a big mess if you ask what I think.

So, certainly for the Japanese public, the sponsorship of this game, initially released as free (you can still download an old Japanese version in fact) has existed since 2015 …

And from this all my prelude derived, which was also meant to confirm what we mentioned in the article on Cloé’s Requiem and which we will deepen later …

But as we all know Angels Of Death was known around the world in 2016 via Steam.

And here the interesting things to say about the game’s development history are over.

Really, it’s almost boring how much this game has gone on normally.

Positive reviews …

Negative … (Yes, I filtered the negative reviews because there are only 193 compared to the positive ones, more than 2000)

But, in general, its release did not cause much sensation in the public : it was a normal game that for was popular for some time and it was liked by many.

At least, in the West …

As far as I know, in our slice of the world we barely had the Collector’s Edition of the Switch version of the game, complete with action figures.

But in Japan… Oh mom, in Japan.
Here we are dealing with a COLOSSUS.

And you know that when I mention the reception in the outside world, if I don’t take interesting comments from videos or reviews I quote all the accolades that the game has had, to give you the slightest idea of ​​its spread.

Today I will make this list in a much more excited way first of all because it is the last time …

But above all because it is the most incredible and sensational case to date.

MANGA! 12 VOLUMES !!

MANGA PREQUEL! 4 VOLUMES !!

COLLECTION OF PARODIC STRIPS !! (in the genre of “My Hero Academia: Smash !!” or “One Piece PARTY”) 5 VOLUMES !!

NOVEL !! 3 VOLUMES !!
(With the second volume that has the same subtitle as the second Deadly Premonition …?)

These … Two more things here … So NOT ONE, BUT TWO ARTBOOKS !!
(Even if one is a Fan Book… I don’t quite understand how it works…)

And at the end…

AN ANIMEEE!

We are at the highest points right now!!

Do you think it’s over with the anime ?! Did you think AoD hasn’t grown even more ?!

But of course not! The anime has brought all the benefits of having an animated series from an established studio in Japan …

(In the photo the voice actress Haruka Chisuga and the voice actor Nobuhiko Okamoto, voice actors of Ray and Zack in the anime)

And I didn’t count the merchandise shops!

So guys, after discovering this whole empire that created what was not a very virtuous indie game (as we saw with Pocket Mirror) with too many contacts to support it … It seems almost strange to me to talk about THIS GAME on a column in which it was written about that little fish that was Cloé’s Requiem, about Mad Father and The Witch’s House which after the release on Switch remained in a very long stalemate at the level of fandom.

This is the longest list of… Acknowledgments? Let’s call them this, that I’ve ever done in this whole column.

I should, generally, pass the ball to my sister asking you how, in your opinion, Angels Of Death became such a large commercial giant so malleable by large corporations … But, since it is the last article, I would like to conclude sort of the last time you’ll ever see this section of Back To The Future.

“Product History” in these… How many, two years? Went through ups and downs.

This I would consider one of the downs, actually. Really, before the development of the game … There was, honestly, nothing. Or rather, nothing that I can find or that I consider interesting. It started as a project after The Forest Of Drizzling Rain, Sanada had contact with Vaka who thought about the distribution… And it ends here. I have not found anything that would make me theorize like in the case of Cloé’s Requiem, nor a mixed reception like Mogeko Castle or even some kind of track from years and years before the game was released, like in the cases of Pocket Mirror or Corpse Party.

Yes, the Product History section has often been short and I bet anyone who reads these articles may have skipped it many times.

In the introduction to the Back To The Future column we say, about this section:

Sometimes it could include research and analysis of the history of the work from its creation to distribution, but in most cases it will be analyzed (often for lack of data) the impact it has had on the public – large public – and in what context it was launched. We speak of “general public” when we mean all those types of spectators or players who have nothing to do with the RPG Maker community, who often don’t even know what this tool is. The audience therefore becomes for us a yardstick for measuring the impact of the work in the “outside world”, analyzing what types of fandoms were born from the titles that have become an icon of the current, then in some cases become real media phenomena .

And in general we always ask ourselves this question:

Is the RPG Maker universe really relegated to being an amateur phenomenon? Or could we invest in a new market?

To answer we cannot just relegate ourselves to analyzing the strengths and weaknesses of the game and / or analyzing it internally together with what we call the “Author-Work Relationship”, that is how they treat their work.

To find out if you can invest in new markets, if you can go further from the indie RPG Maker, as Undertale did in the case of Game Maker … We need to know the whole context behind it ; the beginning, development and conclusion of the history of development of what we will then analyze. It’s useful to understand in which situation the people who “did it” to do something complete , or it serves to understand why “certain titles did not have the success they deserved” without necessarily giving blame it on the “strong corporations who only want their things” or the “idiot sheepish crowd who gulps down only cheap or commercial products”: we have seen in the case of Mogeko Castle that, even if it was really a valid title for a great commercialization (at the same level of Angels Of Death, I bet it!) … Nothing has ever been done, because in my research I have not noticed a really large or intense distribution of the game.

Because to analyze a phenomenon you must first spend hours and hours on the PC on various Wiki, Japanese Wikipedia with a translator, official sites, forums, Japanese indie game distribution sites (until I have written in this column I had no idea of ​​sites like freegame.mugen and Freem!, even though some people might have known them for years) …
Descend further and further down the rabbit hole until you say “okay, I think that’s enough information to write!” even if you know that you will never have absolute knowledge , you know that you have certainly missed a detail or two because you were not there to analyze the phenomenon while it was happening and you arrived late or even just because of linguistic or cultural barriers…

But these searches, in the end, must always be enough to construct a discourse . To know why the hell “this game went like this” in the market or even why “this game IS like this”, because you will surely know that many times the substance of a game derives strongly from the context in which it was made , to give a basis on which everything written in the other sections of the articles in this column can be founded.

In my opinion it is the most tiring of Back To The Future, not to brag or play the victim (Ele wrote all the paragraphs on Product History), because there is a lot of research to be done and information to filter, know which ones are still valid, interesting, useless, evaluate what is worth talking about and make a case study interesting and what is actually normal to do, know if any sources are still reliable and / or how to do it one can construct a discourse on all the researches made.

But I’ve never regretted researching. I discovered a lot of scoop writing for Back To The Future, delving into this current as much as I can through all these “development histories “. They made me learn a lot about how a market can work (and you will hear some good ones in the next sections, I tell you!), How you can sponsor yourself, how far you can go and many other things that I will surely treasure during the work that the Ludi Tarantula team is doing for his game, which we have mentioned a few times here in the Archives.

I still don’t say goodbye to you , because I will certainly be in the next sections of this other great article that will mark the end of the Back To The Future column and possibly the end of the Ludi Tarantula Archives together with what will be the article on the “Selfish Confort Dilemma” …

But in any case, as when the day comes to an end in the streets and the first shops start closing, the Product Story of the most influential Horror RPGs ends here, with one of those games that has managed to rise to the upper floors that we have. never known here in the Indie game field.

At this point, let’s explain why corporations have been able to give Angels Of Death so much space!

Let’s face it right away …

It is because it is the RPG Horror that comes closest to the anime product. Really, even those who liked it think so!

We’ll talk about why later in this paragraph, but let’s think about this very thing. Why has an anime-like product become so popular?

The reason is more trivial than you think . We had already discussed it when in the reviews column we talked about Midnight Train and we will bring this out to the last part of this article …

Unfortunately, from what we have noticed, above all the current of Horror RPGs is mainly followed by passive spectators , despite being videogames.

(…)
So we started to evaluate Horror RPGs as if they were just their stories, as if they were for example an anime or similar.

The Angels Of Death phenomenon is a direct consequence of this, simply . As we said in that article, this “passive-invasion” (yes, I take inspiration from the British invasion of the 60 ‘) or the invasion by passive spectators of the videogame world has led to the exaltation of types of products that have great passive works as masters !

So Angels Of Death was able to take a very large slice of the public … In fact, to PLAY Angels Of Death you don’t even have to be a player anymore! So much so, it’s a B-rated shonen / seinen done on RPG Maker, in the end!

And that was a good trigger to make it what it is today.

But what actually made it a bit more edgy anime and done on a video game engine?
We will divide this answer into two points, as we did for the Mogeko Castle’s narrative registers.

-The characters

If not the plot (even it is fully marketable too), many say that the strong point of Angels Of Death are the characters.

From a personal point of view, I can tell you that they are, from first to last, stereotyped and also very annoying … But this is actually the point.

They are weird. They are crazy killers, but since they are put down in a certain way they are glamorous.

Let’s talk about this guy, for example.

Zack or Isaac Foster. Even before entering the … Building of the Angels? (It doesn’t exactly have a name, I made up something on the spot) he He’s always been a killer because of a troubled past, which also brought all those bandages on his body.

(From V For Vendetta by James McTeigue, 2006)
Yeah, the reason why Zack has those bandages is this, right?

So we, as sane people, take it for granted that a killer is someone the game is supposed to “distance” from us , someone we can’t sympathize with or, in any case, would have the role of an antihero or similar characters.

Just a little parenthesis …

I appreciate how he is almost more of an idiot in the game, compared to the manga and the anime.

(Some of his quotes genuinely make me laugh, I admit) 

While it doesn’t make too much sense with his killer nature at the moment, this contrast could have created a good character in my opinion: example, the anti-hero role I mentioned earlier.

But speaking of practically all the serious scenes of the game and all the adaptations of this title…

What is emphasized about Zack?

Literally a “bad boy” with a heart of gold who has the questionable hobby of killing people and generally being a PSYCHOPATH, impulsive and problematic!

…But these last three traits are only brought up when the narrative requires it.

Otherwise, Zack doesn’t seem to have any “disagreeable” or unjustified traits.


So his calling himself a “monster” does not become a demonstration of self-awareness for which, however, Zack refuses to improve himself … But simply the tropos that the abusive educator brainwashes the child who then brings these ideas about himself as an adult .

And in this scene, totally contradicting the psychopath that he is, Zack feels some kind of empathy towards Ray. In fact the distorted view that Ray has of him as “God” sickens him.

Okay, but why does he care at all?

IN THEORY Ray is no longer useful for his purpose, Zack should just … Leave her there. I don’t want to be evil or anything, just trying to get in the mind of someone who should be insensible to these things, given the fact that he is a serial killer, so something similiar to a full-on psychopath.

Well, that’s in theory.

But Angels Of Death in its characters needed these elements:

-A design that is… Flashy, to say the least.

-Something that can at least resemble ambiguity …

In the case of Zack a crazy side, which makes him “sparkling”…

But he is still able to feel empathy.

-But, in cases like Zack’s (and, in the manga and anime, Eddie) a dramatic and exciting story to accompany him, so that we can understand him (in our opinion) at 360 °. This topic will be explored in the article on the “Selfish Confort Dilemma”

-Instead for many other characters, attitudes so extreme that they always keep the audience awake.

Cathy is one of the most “trashy” and extreme characters in the game: she has one of the most dramatic and longest chapters and her personality is literally “HAHA! Torture to whom I consider scum is so great! ” I mean… Um, no one knows exactly what kind of people she refers to exactly, but shortly you don’t have to get on Cathy’s nerves.

In fact, she is another of the most popular characters.

I tell you, it is not even a bad thing to deal with or even just create certain characters . Even series like Danganronpa use the aforementioned expedient for many of them to make themselves recognizable.

Nagito Komaeda is one of the more twisted characters in the series, even more than Kokichi Ouma from Danganronpa V3. And guess what? he Is one of my favorites and his sudden actions entertained me during Danganronpa 2 Goodbye Despair.

Genocide Jack (or Genocider Syo) another personality of Toko Fukawa , killer of “cute boys” becomes one of the main twists of the second chapter of the game. she is one of the most iconic characters of the first Danganronpa and is explored further in Ultra Despair Girls.

Angie Yonaga , the girl at the center of the image, revolves around the stereotype of the extreme religious girl, in general. In chapter 3 she becomes the main reason for “movement” and conflict.

So we can conclude that the “personality” of the game is all about the characters and how extreme or even just weird they can be. It makes them objectively more appealing and their being eccentric convinces the viewer of their unpredictability , so that they are more convinced to follow the work just to see how the aforementioned will act. This title has only extended this concept to all characters in the game.

So the characters in Angels Of Death may or may not be written well, but you have to admit what the heck, they work really well.

Another element that many seem to ignore in a game since it is taken for granted, when instead in my opinion it is CRUCIAL to make it marketable …

The direction.

We have already talked about directing with Mad Father and Cloé’s Requiem, and we will talk about it in what will be the latest article in the Ludi Tarantula Archives.

Direction is practically one of the means to mark whether a work is suitable for a large audience or whether it is an authorial product . Directing a marketable product gives the viewer as much as possible in terms of emotions: for example, a sad scene has saad music, whining from many characters (in the most extreme cases or even, in the negative, over-dramatic) … In short, the emotion is exaggerated to communicate it to the viewer at best. This is what a more typical direction of an authorial product, or simply a drier direction does not do.

As a person who has been involved in directing the cutscene for a long time, I tell you that it is very difficult for some (for example myself) to be able to do the first type of direction. You are afraid of falling into the ridiculous, in the simple over-drama, make the scene look fake …

(I took this scene as an example because it is dramatic and flat of pathos thanks to the music)

But my God, I have to learn that DRAMA WORKS!

We already talked about the inspiration from passive works in the case of Mogeko Castle …

And we have already talked about dramatic direction in the case of Mad Father. I still consider it one of the greatest exponents in the Horror RPG field who has managed to do a dramatic direction… Called “cheesy” by many.

Heck, just say you don’t like Mad Father, because Angels Of Death has some pretty good drama spikes too.

While the use of pixel-2D graphics doesn’t do justice to what an anime shot can be, we understand that in terms of directing, Angels Of Death really does its job.

This is also due to the fact that I really like Makoto Sanada’s drawing style, but I liked how the two “Show image” appeared in terms of rhythm…

Like this part where the action scene is over and Cathy is dead: in short, when you exit plan B3. You can feel the whole atmosphere of an “aftermath”, the music makes a lot of atmosphere while you discover the latest info on Cathy and do the last things to go to the next floor.

For this second case, after the excited scene Sanada does not let the music go into fade and / or leaves us in complete silence for these last parts, which for example I would have done a long time ago, when I was learning to direct cutscene, but  still accompanies us with music.

From the types of scenes that are created (the so much action that the story gives helps in this, that’s what I mean by “marketable plot”), the various gimmicks and even the music used that, even if we will discover in the Author-Work Relationship a bad enough thing about the Angels Of Death music that will make us drop the magic a bit, they are really spot on and, again, this thing is not easy to accomplish

It’s all so anime, so positively dramatized to the extreme that the scenes , even by those who didn’t like the game (like me) are always and anyway impossible to ignore and strike a lot in terms of impression, even if the concepts they communicate can be part of a problematic writing.

Everything I am saying will seem very little , or for some it will seem stupid notes … But we have seen with Pocket Mirror and other games with disastrous direction that creating a “classic anime scene” I repeat that is not not at all simple and getting something like music and rhythms right is something to appreciate every time.

So, we talked about what makes Angels Of Death work. I have written relatively little , compared to what will be in the Defects of the Opera … But let’s face reality.

In today’s times, captivating characters and dramatic direction that gives exaggerated emotions are the only two things that matter. We’ll get a better look at this through all the flaws Angels Of Death has but…

In the Archives, many merits of many different games have been written. We have certainly given context to the words we wrote many times: the merits we listed were also given by the common opinion that people had in games …

Now for the puzzles (Ao Oni), now for the suggestiveness (Pocket Mirror), now for the depth of the characters (Cloé’s Requiem – We have dedicated an entire appendix to the characters of Nubarin and Nanashi No Chiyo!).

As the introduction to the Back To The Future column also says, the aim of the Trump Card section was to find out how the game treated itself positioned itself in the Horror RPG timeline , why it was a more iconic, shiny or whatever you like compared to so many other games that are considered minor. In short, how it makes itself recognizable in the boundless sea that is this videogame current.

With Angels Of Death we have reached the end. The only reasons why a game is now appreciated by the public is a direction that works and that gives what it has to give in terms of emotions and captivating, characters that are problematic but at the same time perfect enough so that they can cause various positive effects on various audiences. And this is one of the reasons why the Horror RPG story ends with Angels Of Death for us.

Because if we were to describe their way of building a recognizability line for so many other games today, we would have to list the same two things every time.

But now, with this second category of Back To The Future concluded, let’s go to what we can define …

Thermometer of… Professionalism?

Thermometer of Professionalism

Compared to the other articles, where PaoGun was passing through the points that make up the Thermometer of Professionalism, for this last article … You will spend even more time with me!

…Of course, that’s not a good thing at all.

 

Here, we are already starting very well with a nice black smoke instead of the usual Thermometer…

As you can see, over the course of the last few articles it has taken quite a few hits, up to this point.

Very well…

As in the article on Cloé’s Requiem, the sections will have a different order.

You know that we usually follow this order: Packaging -> Author / Work Relationship -> Defects of the Work.

Again for the sake of convenience, even today we will overturn these rules.

There will be the Defects of the Work , then the Packaging will come and then, in the end, the Author-Work Relationship

Thinking about it, this increasing importance of the Author-Work Relationship compared to the Defects of the game itself really makes us think about how much, in today’s market, an interesting story or even the personality of an author behind a product matters more, than judging the work itself.

But we will talk about this in the Packaging and in the Author-Work Relationship, all together.

For now, after saying why Angels Of Death works …
Let’s say the things that actually as a product, although it suits us in the market, does not make it a complete videogame “blockbuster” , because they impact on the overall quality of the game.

Defects of the Work

Yes, I’m still in this section too! I really don’t want to get out of the way, huh?

We will also go through the flaws of Angels Of Death together, so …

Let’s say right away that I’ll be objective: I don’t like A LOT of things about this game , but I will also objectively comment on those that, although I find them very annoying, are considered minor defects , such as the last one we will talk about. These types of defects have little impact on the overall gaming experience and only if you go to re-play, analyze or even just re-watch the title a second time, can they be seen.
But Angels Of Death also suffers from two problems which in our opinion, both members of the Ludi Tarantula Team, have a huge impact when playing even for the first time.

Let’s get rid of the most painful problem now.

You know, illogicality (which we will talk about at the end of the Defects Of The Work) is not the worst thing that can happen to this game.

This is actually a big flaw my sister noticed , but I agree with her that it’s the biggest sin and mistake of the whole game, along with the gameplay (more on that later) .

Unjustified changes in tone.

From floor B6 to floor B3 we have a rather linear tone. The captivating storyline that we have described above, with the direction we have described above. All okay, a fairly edgy dark work, but also enjoyable, I admit.

From the B2 floor, I don’t know what the hell Sanada was thinking, a long phase starts…

Very long…

VERY VERY LONG…

“OH MY GOD, WHEN THIS WILL END” KIND OF LONG…

PHASE OF HALLUCINOGENS AND MENTAL BLOWJOBS ON GOD WHEN THE ONLY THING WE HAD TO DO WAS FIND A DEVIL OF MEDICINE FOR A CHRISTIAN (We thought we’d make this joke because in the Pugliese italian dialect people are called “cristiani” so “Christians”), WE CAN TRULY SAY IT, THAT IS BLEEDING TO DEATH!

Really, these phases serve NOTHING for development of the plot , the medicines (since from the beginning of the game we have Zack who knows that this is an assassin structure) could be taken right away when we were still on floor B5: you know, just to be careful!

So, in addition to the total uselessness of these phases, which only exist to offer a minimum of puzzles and “gameplay” that we didn’t have FOR THE ENTIRE GAME (but we’ll talk about it later) …

No…

No, no, no…

Why… It… It doesn’t make any sense…

(Notice how Gray at this point, before the next screenshot scene, VICTIMIZE those who are actually murderers for blaming Ray without any heck of a sense. Should that be something that makes this work controversial? Provocative? When in reality it just sends a disgusting message to those who are multiple killers because the narrative … To be brief, it sucks at sending a controversial message that should be the one of the whole game. But back to us, if I continue it will get nighttime before I even expect it.)

Sanada, I thought you grew up from this…

Exactly! A total change of tones that makes the part of the game dedicated to the B2 floor unnecessarily abstract in a sinister attempt to try miserably to make this work profound, intelligent or in general that wants to deal with big themes!

Hell, we went from cutting off a woman’s hand with nonchalance and indeed, this action is even glorified and / or made “cool” and action …

To a courtroom scenario? With the JUDGMENT OF GOD ?!

Seriously? The whole game up to B2 was a GLORIFICATION of breaking one of the 10 Commandments of the Moses tablets: Thou shalt not kill. We said it: the characters of the assassins have been made beautiful, glamorous and captivating with the mad scientist with the story of the double eye: ooh interesting! The gravedigger child who is in love with Ray even though he wants to kill her: what a beautiful contrast between childhood love and wanting to kill! Wow, duality between something childish and something serious and IMMORAL! Cathy treats torture as something to be spectacular! Wow, so sick!
(Monokuma had been doing it since 2012, but I’ll leave this out …)

Zack himself … Basically a “killer with reasons” with which we should LIKE him because dear spectator, you too want to kill anyone you think is of deplorable morals …

Now YOU Sanada , who have kept the game going in total action edgy, have made assassins beautiful in our eyes , making us assume that Angels Of Death is one of those over-the-top works that sometimes simply ignores even those that are the common morals when one is from the point of view of sick people (or in any case not so stable folks) …

Example: In Danganronpa V3 Killing Harmony, an incestuous relationship is involved between Korekiyo Shinguuji and his sister. This is wrong and Korekiyo is always seen (even before and especially in this moment) as a creepy person.

You distort us ALL THE VISION WE MUST HAVE OF THE WORK, to make a nice speech about the will of God, about “our will”, about what is right, what is wrong …?

But wait, to give us these kinds of complicated and real beautiful speeches, or even just make us think about these …

Isn’t the job of works that start out as COMPLICATED already?

Hell no, Angels Of Death! Commercial “trash” (with “trash” I mean something more “light”, I don’t know if I explained myself) you were born and commercial trash you stay! That’s not how the tones of a narrative work are made!

What the hell is now, at the last moment, this pseudo-ambiguous symbology (but which actually has little or no meaning) of the killers as “angels of death” and which therefore need to be justified?

Was Kira also an angel of death then, Sanada? Is this the vision that the game wants to provide on those who commit damn GENOCIDES?

Damn! Light Yagami existed to be opposed by L! Light Yagami represented man’s temptation to have power over the life of others and how man can be CORRUPTED by it …

Death Note on this topic creates a whole speech, from the first to the last episode !
There are constant symbologies to the church, to God… But that’s okay there.
Because the entire opening and concept of the work starts from an interesting human paradox and that paradox is studied, even without giving any answer … Because there is no universally accepted certain answer to these issues, at least not totally.

Really Sanada, what the hell is this your habit of putting big themes into pure entertainment plots? In the Trump Card I have been really tame, your characters work well, I have understood the mechanism (if I didn’t make that seen enough, I’m a Danganronpa fan, so I’m also used to these “extreme” characters) …

But these changes in tone are not justified with a “hmm, you’re too critical”. They also bothered me a lot the first time I played Angels Of Death. What did you expect? That I would not have been there skipping the dialogues throughout the philosophizing of Gray and the other characters about who God is, what God wants, the impure, the pure …

I didn’t open the game for this! I didn’t come here for this!

So, heck, how should I take Angels Of Death?

I’ll never know! Because on the one hand we have the first 3 floors that show us that it is an over the top, sparkling, action-packed work …

On the other hand, we have the last two which are full of mental jerking on major themes…

So: Angels Of Death is deep or not?

(Uhm, yes, I would say no to you because the “big themes” are limited to kilos and kilos of useless dialogues from the characters and no serious discussion, because the game always has the “trash” frame of the first three plans, which makes this title unsuitable for dealing with the big issues … But well, I leave the question open!)

And as if that weren’t enough … There is also the gameplay to discuss. Yes, even that is not safe from my perennial wrath.

… Although many other people have had the same feelings that I have.

In other games we have seen the gameplay was done well, with communication problems (Akemi Tan, Ao Oni), very forced and fallacious (as we have seen here on the Ludi Tarantula Archives in the very old review of “A Figment Of Discord”) or a lot standard to have nothing to say about it.

… The gameplay in Angels Of Death is not there.

The experience is practically this: after a long cutscene, FIVE STEPS are counted … And another one immediately starts!

Look, without further ado, ssince we’re talking about gameplay let’s compare Angels Of Death with another gameplay we’ve analyzed:

We have seen with Mad Father that the way in which you get to the main scenes works really well: always provides obstacles consistent with the plot and / or the context in which we are, together with an integration of the exploration of the immense mansion of the Drevis through which we find the means to move forward. This creates a huge phase in which the player is free to practically do whatever they please, even though they know that the goal is to move forward in the story by eliminating the obstacle (which can be a puzzle, or even just something that doesn’t keep us going in general as a spirit). Although, in any case, the player does not feel that they are lost in a “gameplay phase” totally detached from the story, because the phases in which you play are connected in a very strong way with what, if not, would have been a very long and boring cutscene.

This keeps the player active, this makes them sense that they exist because they are doing their job: helping Aya to counter the effects of the curse. It is literally what a game has to do and the main reason why you play a video game and not watch a passive work! The player’s interaction with the game world, the IMMERSION also given by “feeling like a protagonist”!

“The plot has to go on somehow”

But can it really be done only and only with stupid cutscenes?
Mad Father tells us no, despite being as story-driven as Angels Of Death.

But even if you don’t want to do a gameplay like Mad Father’s…

I can really give you a lot of examples of how you could keep the player awake, even if a story was being told, but I’ll just mention one.

This is the opening scene of “What Remains Of Edith Finch”, winner of a 2018 Best Fiction Award at the British Academy Games Awards.

In fact, the game focuses on a rather busy narrative and as far as I can understand (as a game, mea culpa, I still have to play it!) there do not seem to be more “free roaming” moments where the player is totally alone. The game itself was considered a walking simulator.

But even just looking at this opening scene, I can understand that someone capable worked on this title. It was all about the art department and the suggestion, making the player walk in an environment that, even if it is known to Edith, is new to the player.

I know very well that this scene, compared to those shown in Angels Of Death, should be an initial, very evocative, presentation scene. But I particularly care about one element …

The game with the girl’s narration slowly presenting the context in which the story will then move, lets the player interact with the environment from almost every point of view. As players we know that there is a linear path that we can follow, but in any case we can look around, go back… And the game doesn’t stop us from doing it.

The narrative is driven BY THE PLAYER.  The game waits for the player to move forward, lets them go for their own time. In the end, it is the player who has to lead Edith, what’s the point of blocking them?

We can conclude from this that in well-done titles you don’t put rockets on your back because without cutscenes or massive scenes in general, the atmosphere is lost.

The person who lives the experience is not tossed left and right by the game because “the plot must go on” , it is not pulled away because the characters have to do everything. In good titles, the game trusts you, because in the end YOU have to lead the protagonist.

And a well made title does that.

And this gives the experience a beautiful effect: you always have a certain type of control over what you are doing, you always have the brain active, even if you immerse yourself completely in the game and in its narration (for story-driven titles). I consider this the beauty of video games and that, as a game developer, I tell you that it is very difficult to do: if you do not find the lazy expedient of the “phase with the puzzles” you must have a monstrous ability to integrate everything without letting the player go too out of the way but at the same time don’t make them feel constrained.

And I got all these nice words out of what is considered a walking simulator. Then, automatically, a very simple gameplay. But a gameplay is there and you can feel it from the point of view of the immersion.

So does it still seems acceptable that a narrative can only go on in cutscenes and that the only reason for you to walk around a bit is to solve some puzzles or even just give you those five minutes to save, because after five steps the narration still goes on?

Because really, I don’t consider this to be driving players, but dragging zombies!

“Employee #427’s job was simple: he sat at his desk in Room 427 and he pushed buttons on a keyboard. Orders came to him through a monitor on his desk telling him what buttons to push, how long to push them, and in what order.
Although others may have considered it soul rending, Stanley relished every moment that the orders came in, as though he had been made exactly for this job. And Stanley was happy.”
-Introduction to The Stanley Parable, 2013 game developed by Galactic Cafe

Really, every time I play Angels Of Death I feel exactly like that.
Am I exaggerating? I don’t think so.

But why is this a problem?

I already made this speech during the review of Midnight Train, a minor title by author Lydia.

Let’s start by saying that the various difficulties to be overcome in the game are not directly connected in a certain way to the plot … But they seem a mere outline!

There is a reason for this, though.

Unfortunately, from what we have noticed, above all the current of Horror RPGs is mainly followed by passive spectators, even if they are video games.

Thanks to the youtubers, mainly, they were able to approach these fan titles, for example, of anime, TV series, movies, etc., because even if the videos were about video games … The spectators were passive always and in any case, since someone was playing other.

So we started to evaluate Horror RPGs as if they were just their stories, as if they were for example an anime (eh, how many times have we seen attempts to make Ib cutscenes animated, for example?) or similar , but this is also thanks to a gameplay that in many cases (including two of the “masters” Ib and Mad Father) was closely linked to the story and the environments, therefore indivisible from it, and also an integral part of the atmosphere.

This “gaming devaluation” of RPG Horror, this almost lowering it only to “a good story” and that’s it has led to this: people who have never been gamers who “pretend” to make products for gamers.

But the problem here is even bigger.
Lydia was an independent author who, alone, gave birth to the deformed baby that is Midnight Train. But, in fact, Lydia was a victim of the devaluation of RPG Horror in general and, in unconsciousness , gave birth to a really lazy gameplay.

But, in fact, she did it unconsciously.

Angels Of Death had professionals behind its publicity, so I assume it was overseen by a sizable team of people even during its development: resources were not limited at all and knowledge of the market and / or knowledge of how to behave when developing a video game was not limited. The people behind Angels Of Death were perfectly aware of everything they were doing , but whoever took care of the game didn’t care about … Making it a video game.

And this is one of the reasons for the title of the article, why “laziness” was brought out. Those who want to establish themselves as professionals are literally saying, while developing a VIDEO GAME that it is not important to play!

So, in short, they disrespect the video game in favor of a passive work, such as an anime.

So, even more briefly, (I dare to say it) they have given the shit out of the media and used the video game not as the primary way to tell their story, but only as a stupid means of getting to what they really wanted: an animated series!

And do you know the problem?

This mentality is not limited only to this title.

… But we will see this in the author-work relationship.

Before moving on to that, let’s talk about the last problem.

Writing.

Let’s face it, anyone could tell us that the writing of Angels Of Death is incomplete, problematic and is based for many elements on insights given by the manga or in general derivative works.

Really, Eddie was really foolishly defeated in the game but the writer wanted an excuse to show his face … So it shows in the anime and manga.

But… Yes, from the fact that we put this point in the end you will understand that this is not the worst , although I will be very, VERY angry also on this point.

Since we have to speak for indicative examples, we will explain this… Not excellent writing (which is actually found in multiple parts of the game) with one of the more serious examples.

So through the link between this…

And this.

I … I don’t even need to explain it to you. Just looking at these two screenshots you can see this gigantic plot hole.

“It is said that Ray has been lying all this time!”

Well no! It wasn’t Ray who told Zack that she is a sacrifice and even if it was, we are explicitly told that RAY IS A SACRIFICE. There are not even any clues , any elements that could lead us on the way to which Ray is not a normal sacrifice in the … Construction, but a owner of a floor!

No, we are told for the whole game that she is a sacrifice and she is treated by EVERYONE as a sacrifice! I challenge you to play Angels Of Death again and find a minimum element before plan B2 that can in the least lead you back to an origin of Ray as the owner of a floor!

“What if it was all concocted to make us believe she was a sacrifice too? What if Ray had “made an agreement” with the whole system to have her treated as a sacrifice? “

My answer remains the same: there is no indication that she is a master of the floor …  EVEN WHEN SHE IS ALONE. Why should she pretend when she is alone ?! Why isn’t there any kind of foreshadowing either? At least to show that Ray’s is not a normal case, it’s an anomalous case, something!

I don’t care if these things are “explained in the manga”, “explained in the prequel”, explained who knows where. A PLOT HOLE remains in the game , the largest in the entire title, which already does not boast excellent writing, as we said before.

Packaging

Okay, we have a menu that I personally don’t like.

But it must be said that a logo of THAT DIMENSIONS and simple “New Game” “Load Game” “Exit”, with a bloodstain that immediately immerse us in the “edgyness” of the whole game immediately give the brand idea , which we must become attached to , because we must BUY , the games that have that logo!

Okay, hysterical delusions aside, we’ve talked too much about such a meager menu.

Let’s move on to the UI!

Okay… It was held the same since The Forest Of Drizzling Rain, but this time you can’t see the map behind…
I thought the move to more established teams and publishers would make the game upgrade from this point of view as well …

You know, for a game played by professionals at least I expect more, right …?

Instead, they wanted to keep it simple , with only the half-body of Ray dominating the screen, to compensate for the once again sparse menus.

Come on guys, Angels Of Death is a professional game… Let’s see the maps!

Those, even if not much mentioned by my sister in this paragraph, are also part of the packaging because they have a very important role in the style of the entire title that is then played, it is precisely where the player will move, where the scenes happen, literally what makes up the scenography of the events-

Um… I mean…

Photography and certain sporadic scene elements, such as the reflections of the windows and the moon in the maps of the last few episodes certainly dampen the effect …

But if we take the photography away, we get this:

And… And my reaction always remains this one…!

“12 euros? 25,000 lire for this shit here? But it’s madness! ”
“Madness? Don’t you know this map is from Makoto Sanada? One of the greatest living developers in the current Horror RPG? ”
“What developer is that, my map designer with 5,000 lire does it better!”
(Values ​​appropriately changed to suit the situation … Because 30,000 lire is little more than the price of the game.)
-Three Men and A Leg (Tre Uomini E Una Gamba), 1997, Aldo Baglio, Giacomo Poretti, Giovanni Storti, Massimo Venier.

And in fact, I can show you that games that have had half the visibility, success, MONEY AND PEOPLE that Angels of Death has had and earned demonstrate much more commitment to dealing with game scenarios!

Accha, as madlad that she is, totally changed the perspective of RPG Maker: because she DID NOT LIKE it, she wanted the side scrolling game because it looked good, and she did! In fact the maps are beautiful!

Now, moving on to another title, let us see some maps of The Witch’s House without lighting, please!

The Witch’s House, even in its first version, has some beautiful maps: even in this game some of them can’t stand comparison with many titles today, but I see a certain taste in the general composition of these environments …

Or at least DECENT window tilesets!

(What are these drawn with? Paint ?!)

Hell, do we want to talk about Sen?

Dudley and The Mysterious Tower was not successful, let’s also say it was a colossal flop… But in the maps it immediately put down a clear style, with well customized and stylish tilesets, as well as sprites.

And the Mad Father remake?
… And at this point we also count that of The Witch’s House, since they did the same thing.

Sen and Fummy heard that the maps of the free versions of their games WERE NOT SUITABLE FOR A COMMERCIAL GAME, so they made a commitment (perhaps along with others; I sincerely hope they were helped) Presentable on the Nintendo Switch and Steam the game, with graphic upgrades that don’t joke!

Do you see? In the case of Sen … He could leave Mad Father as he was, he could distribute it for 10 euros on Nintendo Switch like this, regardless of the appearance of the maps (to say, The Crooked Man was put on Steam for a fee with all the old resources used by Uri …). But Sen is a good developer (really, we renew our esteem for him, even with all the weird things he added to the Mad Father storyline …) and he THINKED about how the environments are presented and the impact that these have on the player. Because Sen cared about the project and the fact that he wanted to improve the experience for those who paid for the game … In my opinion it shows that he respects us.

Makoto Sanada instead , compared also to his namesake Kedouin (whom we also mention because he too accepted a way to modernize his very dignified game, for what could have been a more modern Corpse Party), he didn’t care about his project . And he didn’t care about us and our money either.

But let’s see these thorny relationships now, In the Author-Work Relationship… And above all why this is so.

So let’s get ready for one of the biggest provocations we’re going to do here … Which has to do, again, directly with KADOKAWA, Enterbrain and all these beautiful names.

Author-Work Relationship

Then…

We finished the packaging paragraph with a not bad accusation.

“Makoto Sanada didn’t care about his project and he didn’t care about us either.”

Do you think I summed up the Author-Work Relationship that concerns this latest game of the current Horror RPG as we know it, right?

Not really. In this section, compared to all the other articles, we will not talk about “an author”, through interviews or anything like that.

Really, the one interesting interview with Makoto Sanada only made me feel an absurd amount of cringe when it was said that his cutscene direction comes “from theater” and not from the more classic anime mixed with classic RPG Horror directing, just for a damn black screen scene where only the two characters are seen…

And then, in general, all the things he said were so generic that if I were to base this section on this interview I would spend a few lines on it, then I would go directly to lunch break.

Heck, we only know about him in particular that he graduated in theater  (and this seems to give him the right to say that his cutscenes are attributable to the theater… Okay…?). For the rest, always the same things.
“I used to play since I was a child”
“I discovered free games thanks to Ao Oni”
“I’ve always liked making stories, I used to do it since elementary school”

Boooring…

In any case, there does not seem to be any “relationship” between Author and Work for Angels Of Death. We have already seen it also for The Forest Of Drizzling Rain.

So … Today we don’t care how the author approaches his work.
In this case, the author is cold , irrelevant and with generic statements about it.
I don’t feel any attachment between him and his works. And this is neither good nor bad . It’s just very strange for an indie title, where we all feel like we are “putting ourselves completely” into what we create.

Sanada’s seems to me, however, how someone from a larger company would behave.

Ah, the big companies. Every indie developer wants to make an affiliation with someone who can export their work to a huge audience.

In the movies we see the “company” or even just any person who has to do with marketing as someone / something big and bad, who just wants to make dirty money through the work of “young artists”, which they exploit with inhuman conditions and abuses …

(The first example that came to mind is Uncle Ian from the Alvin and the Chipmunks series, when the Chipmunks become famous and when he wants to make the Chipettes successful he shows every time, as a good caricatured villain, his avarice and attachment to success through exploitation)

We always see them as tyrants, of which we always understand every bad step but which we cannot beat, because they are “too strong”.

But after doing this nice little speech …

I say that in reality we have neither done nor will do a good job of giving the message not to completely demonize the figures related to marketing.

(Cloè’s Requiem PT2 “Six Characters In Search Of An Author)

But in any case, this statement still stands:

“In fact, we wanted to make one thing clear: We would not want you to think that we are satisfied with the conclusions we have brought to you in this article. We are not satisfied because generally we do not like simplistic formulas: what we want to tell you is not: “Kadokawa is Satan!”, there are so many dynamics to take into consideration and then, damn it, if it is a corporation there may be an important reason, who knows how many “departments / fields” (I don’t know the professional term) it is divided into. ”
(Cloè’s Requiem PT2 “Six Characters In Search Of An Author)

So … We know that talking about large corporations like Kadokawa-Enterbrain is risky , given that we also don’t have the resources to study them completely from the inside.

(…)

But there is a reason why we said these phrases and introduced this topic.
We are quite sure of what, for many, could be a reason not to take ourselves more seriously, to give us conspiracy theorists and denigrate whatever we have to say, when and if this article will be shared enough to reach a certain number of people.

But we don’t care. We felt that all the pieces fit together.

So, at this point, let’s deepen the great phenomenon that struck Cloé’s Requiem and which has Angels Of Death as its representative, the reason for this sentence in the History of the Product:

“Guys, we have to resign ourselves: the era of the” game published individually by an independent autorino which then became popular because of its value! ” it’s OVER and a long time ago too. ”

And above all, why Angels Of Death with all this brought with it what we consider a virus, which has expanded for all future titles:

The Severe Acute Lazyness Syndrome.
Coded “SALS AOD-2”.

 

From the beginning of this article you will have noticed how we have always emphasized that those who worked on Angels Of Death consider to have been professionals.
For Sanada’s previous title, The Forest Of Drizzling Rain, we didn’t speak in those terms.

Although it must be said that what differentiates him from other cases is that he did not start from nothing. It is known that he already had some minor contacts to help with the distribution of his title.

And this distribution, as we saw in the game article above, gave it a good reception in Japan.

You think it can end here.

“Sanada already had contacts, he used the same with Angels Of Death!” 

It may even be that he used them. It is possible that he managed to come to this …

Through the contacts he already had.
In fact I don’t take it for granted that, together with what we will say later, Vaka has helped a lot in the “recommendation” of the game to larger production houses.

But in these cases, in my opinion, the case of Cloé’s Requiem has to be re-brought out.

In Cloé’s Requiem there is in my opinion an even more sensational demonstration of Kadokawa-Enterbrain’s operations on indie games.

Nubarin and Nanashi No Chiyo were two relatively little girls who, using RPG Maker, had made a… Pretty mediocre game.

As far as I know, it didn’t have all this great reach to even get to two interviews and the Tokyo Game Show invitation.

So now we have to get the tool out and how it has been used in all the projects that have had this “sudden success”.

This is RPG Maker VX ACE, the engine on which Angels Of Death was created.

You can see that in this image there are already sprites, trees and a road.

This is because, from RPG Maker VX onwards, Degica established itself as the publisher of the various versions of the engine.

“Degica not only translated the engine, but also gave it a nice boost: he undertook to build a community around the product.

(…)

But Degica also imposed new rules that were fairly strict for the community back then to follow.

You no longer had such a wide sleeve for pirating and exploiting other people’s resources, which meant “no more fan games using copyrighted material”. The days of glory and plunder were over.

RTP (Run Time Packages) given by Degica came in “help”, encouraging the community to create games that could use these resources, to fill the lack of tilesets and sprites.”

This piece comes from a pretty old article about the history of RPG Maker that I wrote when I was writing for the online magazine ICrewPlay.

Here, these are the files that make up the RTPs of RPG Maker VX, engine of Cloé’s Requiem:

Notice a similarity?

It has practically used all RTP assets.

Cloé’s Requiem for his development therefore used ENTIRELY tilesets provided by Degica. The only original assets are the sprites and images, along with some music (apart from classical music).

Good Buriki Clock, good.

Let’s go to Angels Of Death…

These are the RPG Maker VX Ace RTPs.

Do you notice a certain similarity?

Hey! I know what you are thinking!

“Ugh! But that’s only 10% of the map! ”

Sure, sure …

Now I’ll show you one of the most popular maps of the game, to explain myself better.

Beautiful huh? It was also complimented during the interview we mentioned earlier.

“It can’t be one of those tilesets.”

You will tell me.

No, in fact it isn’t.

Do you see more similarities now?

Here it is.

Do you think those are tilesets taken from the internet or in general some free resource that you can use freely, which would make the Angels Of Death case totally detachable from Cloé’s Requiem?

Sanada just used DLCs.

And if we also see in the game files, 90% of the game tilesets are all DLC released by Degica.

“tilesets” folder of chapter 1 of the game.
(4
墓 場 It seems to mean “4 Cemetery”)

My theory gets stronger and stronger when we see what types of tilesets are currently being designed by Sanada or someone in the game’s development team in general.

These only have Japanese names.

Quite out of style, compared to the detailed tilesets we see for all game maps, right?

So we can say that, for a good 90% of the game Sanada religiously used ONLY material that Enterbrain / Kadokawa paid for from a tileset point of view…

(Joel Steudler is one of the composers I can recognize that he worked on the BGM pack distributed by Degica)

And some of the music also seems to come from dear Aunt Degica.

Are you having any doubts?

Well, these can be confirmed by the Mogeko Castle case.

For me this title, with a few tweaks, could have outclassed Angels Of Death without any problems.

The graphics in general are really beautiful, accurate and above all stylish and captivating, from the drawings (from the CG, very professional in terms of design, to the immediately recognizable potrait style) to the tilesets and sprites made entirely from scratch in pixel art; the plot is adventure with a lot of action, is based on a storied structure and has many different registers (as we have seen in the article on this title always in Back To The Future) and above all different characters, strange, never boring and ambiguous exactly like Angels Of Death (if not better, I consider Moge-Ko much better written than Cathy) and also has a whole world and society to explore with sequels and prequels – highly anticipated by fans of the game is Mogeko Castle Gaiden!

…But the Funamusea games, unfortunately, only have merchandise and manga made by the game’s author.

I mean, it’s a good thing, it’s not a bad thing if people buy them … But in my opinion this creator hasn’t achieved all the success she deserved.

Yet the game is done with RPG Maker VX ACE. We are not talking about Mad Father (done with Wolf RPG Editor). It would have been perfect for advertising…

But no, Funamusea was able to create all the resources of the game on her own and Degica did not see it as a good chance to make it a phenomenon as those thugs like Buriki Clock (in Japan) and Sanada.

And do you know why?

It is because Sanada and Buriki Clock have used the engine “as they should have done” , as it has always been expected by those who created RPG Maker: do something creative … But with the packages given by the reference companies .

Just as they desperately tried to do in 2007 with far more clumsiness and far fewer artists.

So, given that it was realized that in 2007 this thing brought the tool to ruin, they took advantage of the fact that the Horror RPGs had partially saved RPG Maker from total mockery (which it still suffers today …) by users of other engines and it was decided to reward those who, in Japanese soil of course, were able to use the resources given by the program itself or by Degica via DLC to do something that at least resembled a nice narrative RPG in the least (but really minimally, considering the case of Cloé’s Requiem…) marketable , to show the world that “we can all be artists” with THEIR engine.

I have already stated this. I don’t know anything about the internal dynamics of supporting certain types of projects . So I don’t know exactly what happened to reveal Angels Of Death and … Cloé’s Requiem, compared to Mogeko Castle.

But it seems to me that they wanted to show us that 60 euros (and more, including DLCs!) were worth spending on their product…

Because it gave us the possibility to be the new viral phenomenons , even if we don’t have the means and / or the skills to create what is becoming one of the most powerful modern storytelling mediums of recent years.

And here we go to the title of the article, which is directly linked to why the Thermometer of Professionalism is now destroyed.

Let’s compare the two thermometers of Cloé’s Requiem and Mogeko Castle.

Apart from the fact that one is drawn better, one is drawn worse …

With these judgments it could be predicted that Mogeko Castle would do much more success , at least in Japan. It could be expected that some publishers would consider it, at least to put it on Steam.

Instead…

And, in the case analyzed today…

Here we are not talking about cases like Pocket Mirror, where there is a sensible reasoning why it should be highly marketable, where (even if not in the narrative) there has been a great effort in the development of the game to make it as palatable as possible. to an audience.

Here we are talking about titles that get the maximum result from what is considered the least effort , compared to types of authors like Astralshift, Funamusea and … Yes, it burns me to say even this name but I have to say it for strength, even teams like Omocat’s in the development of OMORI.

Again for our own motivation, namely that we do not know the precise dynamics that exist in these huge rounds of money and contacts, we do not know how common this phenomenon is in Japan or on the part of KADOKAWA (and / or collaborators) in general . We don’t know exactly how many games in Japan have been treated with this method , so we don’t even know how much it is used compared to other marketing ploys that a corporation as big as KADOKAWA can afford. So we can say that we don’t speak as professionals or totally knowledgeable on this matter…

But I can tell you that even from our eyes, those of simple gamers … Which eventually became the same kind of developer that Funamusea was … (Not in terms of quality, we would never allow ourselves to tell us ourselves, but from the point of view of how customized the game’s assets are, so a purely technical factor)

We are honestly afraid.

Literally an expanse of black wood, with a bookcase and two chairs right in the corner. In general a very empty map, with tilesets that I recognize for a mile (they come from the first RTPs of RPG Maker VX or VX ACE), covered only by the two potrait and the dialog box.

Do I really need to comment? Here, too, an empty map, one-color and one-theme, columns just to frame the mess of stone we are seeing, in the scene a fire that has the same quality of in the same quality of the explosions of the first seasons of South Park, potraits that are CUT and have empty space beneath them, tilesets that are totally out of style compared to the sprites and in general I don’t understand where the hell the scene takes place.

 

The effect of the sun practically makes the whole scene and gives it a bit of atmosphere along with the photograph. Here, too, the sprites and potrait deserved totally different maps, but with tilesets (although I don’t quite understand where they come from, unfortunately) they REALLY went on a budget and without even doing a certain type of work with goddamn proportions: the lamps are tiny compared to the sprites, as are the machines, the tree and the large building on the left. Kanawo, you didn’t make such bad maps for Blank Dream!

 

And for a moment I look out too, PaoGun, to point out something to you.

It is almost ironic to think that many authors boast that they “exceed the limits of RPG Maker”, “offer beyond what are the possibilities of the engine” (if you want to laugh, such a concept is also told in the Sanada interview we mentioned), and other similar phrases when it was probably all meant to be so from the beginning . Now, going beyond the split between our hypotheses and reality, I want to launch this provocation and let the imagination flow…

Let’s imagine these producers are telling us, “Yes, yes, we are wrong! You can remedy this if you test us, experience how good you can be!” using what may have been a bad reputation to turn the omelette and make it your own marketing strategy regardless of how bad a title may be or not. Who cares, in the end audience expectations for a quality work are lowered! The important thing is to pamper your consumers well and spoil them.

So now I talk to you authors, yes yes, to all those who continue to think they can be the new “great creatives” of the century showing themselves as the heroes who revolutionized the engine: the Enterbrain, Degica and Kadokawa totally hosed you. They hosed all of us.

Conclusion

(This time forever, or maybe not?)

And with that, our journey ends.

And it is precisely in these circumstances, in the last article of Back to The Future, that we realized that we have not actually concluded anything relevant, if not to open even bigger doors. Probably with all our instigations at this time we are making your hands itch, perhaps because you would like the topic to be gutted properly, deepened, and not left to mere spectacle as we did in this article.

We reveal a small confession: in the future, our great desire would be to create a nice article-investigation on this topic.
But they are those projects that take time, it takes data, it takes resources. We don’t know if we will ever be able to achieve something like this, but it would be what we feel we need to achieve. But not getting lost in small talk, perhaps you might have asked yourself this question if you have followed us since the introduction of Back To The Future:

But in short, has a market been consolidated or not?

Well, how do we define it … Indie game market? Market of the current Horror RPG? Indie fiction market ..?

Well, what do you think? We have shown it to you all this time, we have described it in the articles of this column …

The answer is yes.

It was not even born and has already developed over the years many facets and all very complex. Can we say that there is still the possibility of being able to live of this, that is by being a developer without having special programming knowledge? The facts would tell you no, or that the odds today are slimmer than in the past and that the only cases in which it seems that a road has been opened to build a relevant business (and from which significant sources of revenue can be expected just that) were the Corpse Party case in ’96 and the Anges of Death case , almost absurdly exactly 20 years later, in 2016 .

I would like to insist on one thing, it just amazes me that such a phenomenon has been created .
We live in an age in which linear paths are visibly flaking off , I have mentioned this topic several times in some articles and especially in the one on Astralshift and Pocket Mirror. Many times you may have heard these words: “if you study this means that this will correspond to your profession”, in our case, “you become creative only for recommendations from the environment or you become a video game programmer only if you study that and we specialize “.

Now, whether we have criticized these authors or not doesn’t matter, because all the people we talked about in the Archives (and not just in Back to The Future) have built a product by becoming responsible for numerous areas of the creative sector to be able to publicly use it to other people . Some of these people have managed to obtain a more relevant result than you could have imagined, just try to scroll through the images of all the titles that have passed in front of us during these fifteen years and think about how this thing has become more and more obvious in our eyes over time.

Impressive, isn’t it?

Among all the insults we have launched at these titles and the people who made them, we are still talking about finished and finished works that have reached an audience, have generated fandoms, and these we have spoken of are only grains of rice respect to much bigger phenomena and in different fields.

We have complained many times about different things, but we still believe in the possibilities of being able to generate new drivers in this environment, in this so unusual market . And since this is the last article for the column and we’re feeling romantic, John Bon Jovi sang: “Shot through the heart, and you’re to blame. Darling, you give love a bad name “.

The authors of the past and the producers of the engine have formed on the one hand a dream, the one that every narrative work already offered by giving us experiences, then stories and characters with which we can escape from our daily life. Then this dream became bigger , deluding ourselves that we could become something in our turn , become famous by talking about us, our words and our ideas through their tools. They showed us something and made us believe in some possibility, we do not believe that this is impossible. What we have shown you during these articles I simply define it as a “bad name”, but the lyrics are clear: we always talk about love, as always about art we will talk about , who boast of its appearance more sophisticated or more exuberant for entertainment here we are referring to the art of communicating , a possibility that presents itself before our eyes at no cost (more or less) , in the round, being able to exploit all the possibilities that a creative videogame work can do.

For this, we tell anyone who wants to jump in and has been discouraged by what we have written, grab this wave and build your way because we are the first deluded to believe in these last possibilities and we could not forgive ourselves for having shot down someone’s hopes.

And with that, we turn off the engine and get out of the car. The lights go out.

Once again, thank you for spending your time with us.

-PaoGun & Ele, Ludi Tarantula Team

Pocket Mirror – “The cake is a lie”

Welcome back! After three articles dedicated to Cloé’s Requiem we will return to talk about a title that you actually care about!

We left the theater …

Or rather, we left the more classic theatrical masks that we demonstrated and removed during the analysis of the title of Buriki Clock …

But today we return to using the word “spectacle” thanks to the Astralshift Pro team.

In previous articles we have almost always talked about a solitary developer or a duo … But today we will expand our field of action to an entire team. About 8 people worked on Pocket Mirror.

But why do we go back to using the term “spectacle” with them, as we did with Mad Father and Cloé’s Requiem, albeit in two different contexts?

Well, guys, to answer that question we have to look at each other in the eyes.
Why did you like Pocket Mirror?
Look at the protagonist’s potrait, the frame, the map, the lights…

My God, they’re almost sickly.

Already from this simplistic analysis of a screenshot we can guess that we have arrived at the title that in the current Horror RPG represents an era that goes on until today. It is cursed by many and at the same time acclaimed by as many, unconsciously or not.

It is the era of the purely visual spectacle, of the so-called “graphics”, which have now become the main element (together with metaphors, let’s not forget those!) to evaluate a video game as “art” or as rotten trash to throw at the dogs! In this article we will start talking about this, guys!

But let’s skip these introductions now.

Let’s face it, all this texts introduces everything we will deal with in an all too generic way …
In the end they only serve to attract you, to force you for one reason or another (who knows, someone even to see how far our probable pretentiousness reaches) to sit for hours to read this whole article, and then earn only our analysis in your head, and thoughts that can be right or wrong …

I don’t know about you, but in all of this I find some similarities with …

Pocket Mirror.

 

PRODUCT HISTORY

But now, let’s start the dances!

Given my fiddling with the Wayback Machine, we can say that development started around 2013. The first signs of life on the internet of the Astralshift team are on Tumblr, where they were already starting to make weekly updates.

… And some sneak peeks of what exactly the game would have been about.

(… The writing continues, click on the image for the link)

So the team behind Pocket Mirror, compared to other developers we’ve covered here in the Archives, didn’t start their business with the game’s release, making players make their story. Astralshift has started to hype since the game was at 10% development.

While it doesn’t seem like it, as the “pre-game-hype phenomenon ” is new to the generalist Horror RPG panorama, this makes Pocket Mirror’s Product History very important to our study of the current in this column. This game in our opinion gave a more professional boost to the team of developers who would come after them. But we will deepen how much and why Pocket Mirror was important in the current in the Asso Nella Manica, which today will be a little different, as well as in the Author-Work Relationship.

Back to 2013 and the white and blue ask blog.

They posted information about the game and answered questions from fans, who were already waiting for more content …

But it is possible to make some theories about exactly how they have grown so much from Tumblr since the first asks they had.

(Yes, for completeness I have reported the entire exchange)

“Anonymous. We are asking for VOLUNTEERS.”

It may be a theory that the dissemination of posts or anything that had to do with the recruitment of volunteers has made the team famous, given that for some platforms they had already proven to have very capable artists on their first core team in an early development state; even if it is not excluded that after an initial rise on Tumblr they asked for the help of volunteers only there, the hypotheses are only these two.

So, in general, it is possible to imagine that they went on like this for a while, with highs…

And some lows…

Until 2014.

January 22, 2014, the Pocket Mirror demo is released.

For the aforementioned graphic quality, for the premises that for many seemed interesting and for the fact that we could already get started thanks to a demo, Pocket Mirror already earned mostly positive comments from that year.

As well as various gameplay videos, and in general all the progress that we have already observed, studied and re-studied through many other titles that have become popular …

And all this already from its demo.

And here we return to the speech I mentioned earlier, on the previous hype and popularity of a game even before it comes out, totally abandoning the canons of the “independent developer who publishes a video game out of nowhere”.

So Pocket Mirror, due to these more elaborate distribution operations, becomes very famous… But the authors don’t vanish into thin air.

Oh my God, I’m crying!

Indeed guys! The step taken by Astralshift is bigger than we think! Given the great opportunity to create content thanks to the good number of people who worked on the project, the team has always kept active on social networks between content created by themselves and by fans, who have always kept close with constant posts and even streams!

They therefore behaved like a big production company.

Their work has paid off , with fans considering the game a “masterpiece”, the “best Horror RPG of our time” and other similar absolutistic phrases that, as we will see in the Work Defects, can be safely denied.

This huge success led them to create a prequel to Pocket Mirror:
Little Goody Two Shoes, still in a state of development, but who already wants to show us how Astralshift has brought out even more the big guns , and will demonstrate concepts that I will present in the conclusion of this Product Story .

So guys, as Little Goody Two Shoes is still in development, so it can’t be fully judged, this very short summary of a success built in about 4-5 years ends here.

I can tell you that the Development History of this game I consider to be a bit borderline . Astralshift was not as anonymous as the various Japanese developers we have covered here, but Pocket Mirror was not even a mediatic case as big as the title we will cover for the end of Back To The Future, Angels Of Death.

So … Think of this game as a big bridge between two different game development perspectives in the current Horror RPG.

In our timeline we chose Pocket Mirror as a post after Cloé’s Requiem and before Angels Of Death due to the fact that in the story that includes the most significant titles of the current HOR-RPG (how long had I not used this abbreviation?) This was the title that brought this current closer to something less niche, something closer to the indie game landscape in general, and further away from the imagination that was created around these horror titles made with RPG Maker (mainly) with all their features.

But I won’t be the one to analyze this great step forward.

Pao, to you!

Okay, I’m here.

So we have said that this paragraph will be quite different from the one we have discussed so far; why?

Just know that right now I’m sadly listening to Keith Mansfield – Funky Fanfare to strengthen myself while I regret the crap that was the “Trump Card” paragraph I wrote for Ib. At the time, I made a speech on context that really went too far, taking away a lot of space from the internal analysis of the title… I think I overlooked it a bit.

In any case, in short, I couldn’t help but get nostalgic because you know that the “Trump Card” paragraph for Pocket Mirror will be treated in the same way. Really, it was an important step guys.

Now, it being understood that this game makes me nervous in various ways and for this there are various reasons why I do not support the project, but I can not fail to recognize that they have thrown new expectations in the public .

I will spit it right away because it is useless for everyone to go around this: Pocket Mirror’s Trump Card, the feature that made it unique in the eyes of the audience, was the spectacularity of the graphics.

Here, and now that I have finally produced a sentence that can be as clear as possible from the first reading, we can squeeze ourselves and chat together a bit about the historical context.

Generally we must consider how nowadays the types of titles that depopulate are those, for example, that use the most sought-after tilesets (more or less, this is a bit of a thorny topic in reality) but above all in potraits (busts characters) display anime graphics that are somehow recognizable as normal marketable products.

Let’s just take a look together and try to give a before and after.

2011 – 2013

(From top to bottom: Paranoiac – Original version, Hello Hell … O ?, Seven Mysteries, Sukuttee)

2012/2014
(Original version / Remake we all know)

If you remember, we talked about how the first generation was characterized by a certain variability in the titles, with for example always different drawing styles …

While the older games, or those that became classic in the same period, were concerned with keeping up with progress and started “commercializing” more, as we will see shortly.

2014-2020 (Present)


(Angelic Syndrome, The Case Book Of Arne, Noel And The Mortal Fate, Claroscuro. We are currently not sure if Arne is an actual Horror RPG of the current, but is considered such, as is Noel And The Mortal Fate.)

Here, we had anticipated this talk with Mad Father. Mad Father we can say that he was the pioneer in this sense, Pocket Mirror was a worthy successor.

We can say that this was another important step that started to define the tool as “a good way to tell your own stories” ; and above all this happened through the current of Horror RPGs.

We will see the consequences of this in the future, the last article will be on the anime game par excellence in this panorama, Angels of Death , a title also finished under the wings of Kadokawa who made the most of it. the idea to instill hope, to young developers, “to be able to produce low-cost anime with the Enterbrain tool!”.

For the moment we certainly cannot blame Pocket Mirror, which wanted to push its resources to the maximum trying, according to the authors themselves, to produce “pieces of art” . So let’s try to re-cap the situation: not only do we have to thank Pocket Mirror for having shown, once again and with the evolution of graphics, to be able to produce titles of great commercial value, but we also have to thank for the aesthetic quality of these renovations.

Now I speak to those who use the RPG Maker tool. Come on guys, let’s be honest, how many of us envied them seeing how they raised expectations for indie video game graphics?

There are some imperfections that make it a rather amateur title in reality and they are the reasons why it has aged really badly , we will see it in the defects of the work, but for the nature complete of the project, for the professional identikit that its authors have built and for the unusual creative outlet of the artists who worked on it have contributed to ennoble the nature of amateur videogame titles, in 2D at least (no, I don’t know so good the landscape of independent 3D titles).

The spectacularization has invaded the main narrative structure a little too much , but the general impressions on the qualitative revolution of the work certainly did their job. To reward the raising of the bar that has been achieved, I will limit myself to to mention the memorable moments that characterized Lisette’s arc, which represents for us the best summary of what we think has stood out in this game and of which we certainly imagine the authors are very satisfied.

Here, I mentioned this screen in the previous article. Even if it doesn’t mean shit in its meaning, it is certainly commendable to include an animation of this type within a Horror RPG; they refer me to the experiments that Disney conducted with Fantasia to try to revolutionize the common conception that we had towards animation.

To anticipate the times: the giant Lisette in its context makes little sense and then we’ll see why; in Fantasia by Walt Disney let us remember that there was musical accompaniment as the basic idea; that was the real red thread of the film, animation was mainly used to enhance classical music.

For example in this part as well as others (although it is a transitional part between the Harpae and Lisette arcs) there are generally examples of a beautiful animation given only by the use of the images on RPG Maker.

And speaking of mentions regarding the arch of Harpae, this area deserves one.
I wanted to mention this explorable area because I personally consider it one of the most beautiful in the game’s most beautiful narrative arc on a visual level; and then here is one of my favorite pieces from the soundtrack.

Another special mention goes to this moment.

Here, yes, the chase scene. I mention it because it was considered by some to be a real plague to deal with. In other contexts you might get angry at the apparent inability to solve it, because it was really impossible to understand at first glance how to orient yourself; but in this case it was meant to be a mere excuse to do something different and stimulate the player to try a different kind of experience than normal, you have to give him credit.

This paragraph concludes with two final remarks.

First of all I will mention here for the first time the concept of Market Driver , I will inaugurate it with this article for two reasons.
The first reason is that it is a term that I learned this year (quite simply, a cultural upgrade); the second reason is that in this generation it will be more and more frequent to find paid titles, so we can in fact begin to define a market in the most theoretical sense of the term: exchange of services or products in exchange of money .
In reality we could reflect on this and retrace the other contexts in which we have treated the Author-Work Relationship in terms of merchandising and actually understand the years or periods in which the practice has spread. even for relatively older titles, to try to contextualize it.
Here, let’s start by reminding you that in 2014 the Pocket Mirror demo came out and in 2016 the official release took place. Let’s take a look at what happened during this time.

I mean … Nowadays you can see this one on sale.


Really Fummy? What the fuck- I mean, how the heck did you thought about this?

All this to make you understand that, waiting for mutations that can extend and professionalize this world even more, we have come to speak of a current that, born from random authors distributed on platforms for free, has now come to have referents on which you can do some merchandising above , which for the moment in the Archives we had limited ourselves to making lists which now, if you think about it, acquire a meaning </ strong >.
Before moving on to the second consideration, you have probably guessed it yourself, but I’ll explain what we mean when we introduce a term like “Market driver”: this refers to the new indicators that characterize a market and Pocket Mirror has been an active agent in this sense because, as we have said, it has changed the audience’s approach to the current . Before there were random, anonymous authors, now there are production teams that come up with clear logos to be recognizable . Before, titles like Ao Oni or Akemi Tan were fine in which it was enough to play and run away from a monster to have fun; now we want the centrality of a character to follow the stories BUT NOT ONLY: the product must be packaged in a certain way and possibly must boast a certain depth , because nowadays there are players who call the Mad Father cutscenes “cheesy”.
We will speak once again of the productive context to make other reflections, because for the moment we will dwell on this second aspect to make our second consideration.

… And this is about depth .

Perhaps some of you may have been perplexed that the “symbolism” that this title claimed to have has not been inserted as a Trump Card: my answer is, first of all, that here there is no kind of symbolism to begin with.

Hey, down with the pitchforks, we had already gotten there a long time ago: we are mainly talking about “a shattered identity”.

Indeed, I’ll tell you more: as much as the authors or fans might come here to talk to me about the meaning of a scene, as much as you could tell me about the meanings of the video-presentations of the characters or say “heey, look! She made the promise to Harpae because she didn’t trust her growing hysteria represented by Lisette! This is a great metaphor for social constriction and the construction of our identity! And Goldia is a little saint because the side of her in “Fleta” as a child was repressed! ” I will never be convinced that there is symbolism in this game because primarily has NEVER been contextualized .

There is no form of coherence between one arc of exploration and another, everything is an end in itself . To try to make you understand I take it a bit like the subplot of Kotori Obake in The Forest of The Drizzling Rain : that the story is about motherhood and the abuse suffered is of no use to the main plot ; but this is not the section to talk about because Pocket Mirror problems we will address later. The reason why I propose this second consideration is because we noticed with Ele a growing demand from consumers of the current to follow “plots” of titles that manifest themselves through symbols and details to be discovered; it seems that on the one hand we are looking for a “beautiful experience so as to spend beautiful hours, without commitment” and on the other hand we are looking for “the great work with multiple facets and meanings that WE must understand so that WE do the our theories and WE use OUR fantasy with a basis given by someone else. ” You can see that Ele got a hand in this part, huh? Geez, so aggressive …

Well, you have seen the word “we”, “our” underlined … No, it is not for some kind of pro-communist tendency, but it is for a discourse that we will discuss in more detail in the article dedicated to the Audience-Work relationship … We will also talk about a title that is gaining momentum these days.

So, in short, Pocket Mirror has satisfied a very recent desire today, that of “thinking about a work”: the authors have always treated it as a metaphorical game and the fans took their word for it, so they tried to pick up what they could, they found a kind of profound meaning… And suddenly the game became a masterpiece. As I said, we will return to this entire speech, but for now we can only say …

Well played, Astralshift. Well played.

 

PROFESSIONALITY METER

Very high.

Very high because, as you know, when we approach the thermometer of professionalism it refers not only to the individual titles but to the way in which everything that comes before and after of these is treated …

And in this sense it must be recognized: they are professionals who have made themselves . So for this occasion the thermometer is not destroyed. We have put some scotch and bandages on it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As Ele had observed in the Product History we can realize the truly professional approaches Astralshift has of their creative personality . We just have to look at the way they use social platforms: they know that they have made an innovative product for its times and recognize it , they want to enhance it and they know how to do it well, they know how to sell </ em >.

It is something that we wanted to value because we realize how hard it is to build a public identity. But we will talk more about this in the Author-Work Relationship, because it is a rather hot topic nowadays.

 

PACKAGING

Obviously the packaging is a summary of what we have said so far.

Perfect: already from the menu, spectacular graphics invade your screen, complete with flying glass fragments , Goldia’s eye that opens …

Although in my opinion this menu is not very suitable for a video game simply because in this way the choices become “not very visible” and not very pragmatic in their use. So nothing, in short is really impractical. Yes I know it is a script, but used in this way it is almost infeasible in our opinion. That is, it really is all dominated by the image that is placed in front of you.

As for the main menu and the item menu …

It’s funny that they used scripts here too, to which they only added some graphic enrichments. Look, the script they used is Moghunter’s. Do you see? Midnight Train has it too.

 

I mean, that’s it really, they enriched it with frames. I recognize they have a nice aesthetic sense but at this point why didn’t they make a menu with variables?

Just asking. Because since this is a title that wants to push its limits, I took it at its word.

AUTHOR-WORK RELATIONSHIP

Here we are; lately I have to say that this paragraph is more and more … “Lit” from some article to this part.

Here we are really doing nothing but emphasize the “linear” approach that Back To The Future has: pick up on a discussion that we had already done with the first titles of the first generations. Do you remember, no, how many paragraphs spent on Ib and Mad Father to talk about the new production contexts in which they were born and the new features that led to the current HOR-RPG?

When we talked about the Author-Work Relationship, they were mostly quite complicated relations, mainly linked to the fact that after the first title, their “name” died . We had talked about the problem of sen and the super nova effect you can have on the Internet, especially of something that is not well stabilized; we also talked about the effect it can have if a developer relies on a more powerful distribution company: here the tenacity with which the brand tries to survive is really valid.

These comments were posted under the title trailer submitted to the contest – AstralShift, by the way: this one is what I would just call a great marketable game </ strong>; come on, there’s nothing wrong with not calling it artistic. Really, it’s not artistic it’s … Just very very professional and I already congratulate you on that.

Eh, what to say, guys: why do you think they would have participated in a competition in the first place?

These are activities that are normally done to be noticed by a publisher , you participate to seek more visibility of course but above all to obtain external support: for distribution and above all to look for a sort of stability (and this is another reason why we thought it important to take an interest in the world of publishers)… And we know very well what this means.

This historical period is different from all the others, it is an age of change where new professions appear that are not always known especially if you face that phase of your life in which you try to understand what it will be your professional identity. In the creative field then, boy if it is complicated.

As we said before, it is very difficult to become aware of your product and understand …

“But me, someone that is distributing this thing in public, what do I want to communicate to others?”.

It is not a predictable procedure, in the new description of “What are Archives” we have declared it: we too, to have the awareness we think we have now… The Archives have played a fundamental role for it. Because they have always forced us to deepen other realities that we are not in. And then generally experiencing the experience first-hand: also understanding how to best monitor the media tools that you have at your disposal and being active on them in order to try to maintain a facade as professional as possible is not an easy thing to do at times.

All this talk can lead us to an interesting reflection on the relationship that AstralShift had with Pocket Mirror, as well as it could lead us to discover together with what intentions they produced the game …

Like a psychotic escape from amateurism.

The search for volunteers, the high quality graphics, the drawing style manifested in the videos, the constant attempts to produce a title that was exaggerated and not least was accepting the misunderstandings and misunderstandings by stating that this is a symbolic title in order to keep all the elements of immersive spectacle within it .

In short, what I can interpret from these attitudes is that Pocket Mirror doesn’t really really want to tell something, it doesn’t want to tackle some kind of theme within it but it is a simple desperate attempt, to be is clinging tooth and nail to show that you are capable of revolutionizing the independent gaming landscape. A game created to prove something to someone .

The number of people involved also seems a point in favor of my thesis; which, reflecting with you on all that depressing speech we have faced, can only make me look at them with great admiration. They want to show us that it is possible to treat the independent creative landscape of audiovisual and videogame works as a decent job and from which it will be possible to create a profession capable of giving us stability.

Ele in the history of the product had already said what he meant to say:

“This was the title that brought this current closer to something less niche, something closer to the indie game landscape in general, and further away from the imagery that was created around these horror RPG titles. Maker (mostly) with all their characteristics. ”

For this, for our part as developers, we extend a huge thank you , although we will be very, very strict in the section “Defects of the work” and we will have our reasons for being so.

WORK DEFECTS

Okay guys, before passing this part of the article to Ele who will tell you some very very important things, I prefer that for this time we can immediately pluck our hurting tooth out and reveal the main flaw of Pocket Mirror.

Well … The biggest flaw was in the structure .

Ohh, you know what it means when there is a defect in the structure  isn’t it? When there is a defect in the structure there are the most serious types of consequences, you never get out of it; it’s like injuring an artery : these range from simple confusion to real complete misunderstandings.

Do you know that sense of emptiness with which you found yourself confronted with the ending?

Try to guess the reason: this is nothing more than the outcome of a story, vaguely defined as such, told in fragments filled with phases made of empty explorations .

So what’s the main problem? Where is the misunderstanding?

Well, in this case the misunderstanding lies in expectations. In fact, a good part of the players and spectators who followed Goldia’s path expected a development of the events.

And finally we get to talk about the main problem.

It’s a really curious question, because the way they sponsor their products seems to want to reach the infamous “general public” : marketability, affection for the characters, “lovely artstyle” and so on; many premises that have not been respected in practice.

Here, I mentioned the problem already from here. Now we will dissect it together.

Let’s start with our premises.

So, as I had already told you recently, always in the second part of the Cloé’s Requiem article, a narrative structure, or in general the structure of a product has to do with our use , therefore with the emotions that we make available in the consumption of that title . It is the skeleton that supports the logic of our tears or our laughter, it is the heart that pumps the blood and brings the work to life to then reach our heart and is as responsible as good direction. The arteries are the direct one; that carry emotions towards us. Emotions are that blood.

Okay, forgive me this little quote and no, honestly I don’t like Coppola’s movie adaptation that much.

Then…

As we said before, we said that Pocket Mirror’s main problem, the reason for the “big lie”, is that the game betrayed certain expectations on the part of the audience … In fact, the authors tried to justify themselves in this way.

Okay, okay EvilHairBrush, let’s review together what’s going on in this game . Okay?

Therefore. Here we are, we are players in the third run who have reviewed this title after some time to be able to write an article.

To begin with we have certainly ascertained that we are traveling in Goldia’s head, right? We await confirmation from the game …

Ahh, yes, of course, the demon who should have stolen her identity-

Yes, yes, poor martyr Lisette who gets mad at her …

(This and other screenshots were taken from Soldier-Puffs “Walkthrough | No Commentary” videos on Pocket Mirror)

Yes, the quotes to Alice in Wonderland but dear God, but you want to answer the question or not?

Are we or are we not in Goldia’s head?

Oh, okay. Thanks a bunch.

Just being sure.

Can you confirm that you talked about her and her pathological illness? 

Ohhhhh, okay! PERFECT.

So, please, tell me why, to begin with, we haven’t seen this girl evolve not once in the course of the plot!

“Noo, she evolves !!

She weeps for Lisette …

she reconciles with Harpae …

She faces Fleta! “

Sorry, I would like you to focus on another thing instead. Try to follow me.

Fleta’s Arc

Harpae’s Arc

Lisette’s Arc

(In Lisette’s arc, a CG is dedicated to Goldia’s sadness, more than just a single potrait … But I think it’s a good equivalent)

Here, and here comes the theme of coherence . Once again, we had already talked about it in Cloé’s Requiem, for what concerned the very crude and careless link between Michel’s crazy behavior and normal behavior.

But the point is that there is a variation between behaviors that we can compare. Do you remember?

Badly done, but it’s there .

And…

This moment in Cloé’s Requiem values ​​a change in the plot: this image was shown only after we saw such a change . It was an image that represented relief because of the end of the tiring path of redemption that Michel and Cloé had faced.

To explain to you even better than what I’m talking about:

If I first see these three sequences of images I am moved, because I know that something has been dealt with, that a conflict has been resolved . You can also see here that it is possible to intercept a before and an after interspersed with a position and awareness . Here the stance is given by the reading of Cloé’s diary for which the vision towards her changes.

On the other hand, if I see this sequence of: hallucinogens followed by a random subspecies of comparison in which always the same expressions are used and not even a form of change in what should be being the main protagonist as well as the mastermind who first and foremost, together with the demon perhaps, created this fucking world of wonders , I honestly can’t move. Yeees, we may be surprised by the graphics but honestly: now Goldia is now mourning Lisette’s death, but why should I care? She was just a bully towards us, but we have to feel a little pity for right at the end , there are not enough reactions or positions taken by Goldia that can enhance this change .

To explain it even better: in the image above you have this.

BEFORE: Michel breaks the bookshelves at Cloé’s house, Michel reads the diary that makes him change his vision of things and cries; and AFTER  his growth path is rewarded with a “spectacular” image . In the image below we have this other situation.

BEFORE: We have Goldia wandering from map to map with the vague intention of facing Lisette, hallucinogens, hallucinogens, some background reveal, hallucinogens, some vague dialogue… Did I mention hallucinogens already?

AFTER we have the scene where she is crucified and they confront each other and finally Goldia’s crying who says she loves Lisette like her other personalities.

Do you think this is a decent development of a character?

That’s why I mentioned coherence.
In this story arc, Goldia has very little interaction with the situation she is facing!  If you notice, she becomes a toy in Lisette’s hands. We do not have a reflection, not a stance, nothing that justifies the presence of this central scene (“I want to look at you with my eyes, I want to understand you” ) ever happened, but above all I would like to point out that first of all there is no narrative expedient that should justify this change in their relationship . In short, total emptiness until the final pity-party.

Furthermore, in addition to the problem of coherence between behaviors , which we have already seen to be a key point for stories driven mainly by the actions of the characters, there is, once again, another big problem which is the release of information.

So what are we going to do now? In fact, as we did with Cloé’s Requiem we will take care of rearranging the information that during the game we got to a excessive distance from each other and completely randomly.

 

Ready, set, GO! Here is explained on the fly the plot of Pocket Mirror.

A)  This girl… Mother … Girl-mother sold her children to a demon.


If you had not understood there is the crucifix turned to make you understand that THIS IS SATAN.

B) So she went crazy after the deal , presumably, because tormented by guilt.

In fact this error made of her in her youth led to serious consequences …

So, either because of the repressive context of the 19th century, or because she is a child of Satan , our little Goldia could not grow so healthy mentally: rebellious personalities have been born since she was little. That’s why Goldia generated Harpae’s personality to stop the mess that Fleta and Lisette were up to . Harpae has thus become a sacrificial victim to submit to good manners and etiquette, striving to pass Goldia as a good young lady while Lisette has been repressed and hidden in Goldia’s subconscious.
PS: We are talking about the sacrifice that Harpae makes; and thank goodness she wasn’t born in a poor family! Note the black swan as a detail … We’ll come back to you later.

For the moment we continue with the plot.
) When the game starts; Goldia begins her psychedelic journey where she has to try to deal with all her personalities…

D) And after finishing the narrative with Lisette, Goldia is ready to face the final big boss and confront Enjel, specially created by the demon according to what her video presentation tells us.

(I pause to point out how insistently the theme of the pact with the demon returns. If we’ve learned anything from the old article on Cloé’s Requiem we know that when authors put several times, in a decontextualized way, the same plot detail means that it was an important element that they did not know how to explain . In this case we can shift this difficulty from understanding in the strictest sense of the word, to memorization . In fact AstralShift constantly tries to remind you of the fundamental things to memorize on the plot trying desperately to put them back in the middle in various points of the game even when you are talking about something else, as in these scenes that are contextualized in the middle of the clash between Goldia and Lisette and repeat phrases said in reality from the beginning of the game.)


… But returning to the meaning of the pocket mirror and to the evil plan of Satan

(This son of a bitch destroyed it!)

WOOSH, and like this the adventure is over: we defeated the artificial personality and Goldiancina woke up from a coma. We went around these few plot points for seven whole hours.

Here, this was the plot (we have excluded for the moment the other possible endings to try to make a summary as linear as possible). Did we miss something? Probably yes, but the point is that these are minor elements compared to what should be “the main plot”.

Can I say something? Is it normal that Cloé’s Requiem was much clearer in terms of issues for me?

CLOE’S REQUIEM. CLEAR, CLOE’S REQUIEM : two text boxes and summed up the main problem for you, let’s be aware .

-And from here, Elerantula at your service!

To deepen the theme of coherence in Goldia’s behavior and better explain why Pocket Mirror’s narrative structure does not work, let’s try to take a break, breathe a moment and expand.

Let’s start with the discussion of DID, Dissociative Identity Disorder, which we had already had the opportunity to deal with in Cloé’s Requiem.

In summary: Enjel is an intruder element in Goldia’s head, created by the demon to “take control” of her head / soul, so that she can control her as it was done with his brother (so it seems).

… And it was created to exploit the dissociation that Goldia made with her other personalities who wanted to take control of the brain through the mirror.

So what we should try to extrapolate from the plot is the battle for the conquest of one’s brain for a demon, and to do this it was necessary to face a path of cure from one’s disease.

“Dissociation”

Okay, so, let’s start by talking about this “dissociation” …

Guys, I didn’t think of returning to this disease from the appendix on the characters of Cloé’s Requiem.

Why do these girls “fall asleep” or even die, as if to give the idea that they will never come back?
From what I know, one path for dealing with a case of DID is to make all the so-called personalities live in a peaceful way within the same so-called “system” , that is the person who originally had the body (before traumatic experiences or, as the case may be, whatever has favored the development of the disease). In short, it is a path of pacification between personalities to ensure that they cannot harm others. In short, to see these girls die … It makes us misinterpret the treatment of the disease.

Furthermore, the discourse of “taking control” on which Lisette goes so much does not make the slightest sense, if we really talk about a case of DID, because who has this disease must be treated professionally precisely because, after a phase of mental dissociation, other personalities can take control suddenly, without warning . There is no hierarchy, there is no philosophy of “taking control” as one usurps a throne. This is exactly the thing that can make the life of an untreated patient very difficult.

Now I’ll show you a nice quote from a symptom of DID, with a maiden that we have already had the opportunity to study:

What she calls a “curse” appears suddenly, without her remembering any conflict . There are no phrases like “Oh, she’s taken over!” or similar. She simply does not remember a few days, because (also being Cloé untreated, poor thing) the so-called curse appeared abruptly, “without passing ‘go!'” we say in Monopoly.

(We bring you these images again to make you notice how disturbing it is to see always the same person on the screen, which in this game instead we have never seen)

It just doesn’t work the way it is described in Pocket Mirror , it’s not that simple: it’s not like these other people never show up again after a treatment path that is also so half improvised! The DID does not cure itself in a so complete way!

Let us all remember: Cloé had to die in order not to suffer anymore.

“But there is the supernatural factor, Cloé suffered alone, Goldia had the opportunity to confront her personalities thanks to the … Mind palace created by the demon!”
(Yes, I allow myself to reference Sherlock)

All right. If you wanted to show how the intrusion of a demon allowed Goldia to face herself in such a direct way…There had to be more contrast with the real world, in which Goldia was dealing with a real disease, and her path in the… Mind palace to finally get cured.

But the fact that for the sake of classic horror all girls actually have a side “with glowing red eyes” makes it all the more confusing!

They are all possibly dangerous personalities then !? Wasn’t it just Lisette the unstable one?!

So the game itself doesn’t help, if Astralshift wanted to go in this direction! We never know how disturbed Goldia really is and how much the demon in her head is doing, except Enjel.
And no, if Goldia is a sick girl, I don’t think every bad thing that happens in her head is the demon’s fault.

So, first of all, as a “lesser sin”, we would say that the disease has been treated roughly. But what we are left with is a mental journey anyway; in fact, you might find that disease or not-disease we cannot expect to see some sort of clarity of exposition of events if we are in a person’s head . In fact, what Pocket Mirror tells us is this: “You are in Goldia’s head, DUH.”

Very interesting. So we are dealing directly with the functioning of a “system”.

But here we return to the element of coherence that we had anticipated before.
Why are we talking about coherence of behavior? Simply because we do not know the so-called “true Goldia”, not even in the most intimate or internal moments in her personality.

I’ll copy-paste this whole part from my notes … Very brutal, don’t take them as totally lucid thoughts as a way of speaking, but I think they are more meaningful than any formalization I can do by writing one day after.

…We don’t know SHIT about this system’s “original personality”. We are in her head, but she is passive for EVERYTHING, as if she was in a goddamn EXTERNAL environment , when that is HER HEAD, which should be conditioned by her mental processes.

BUT THIS GIRL DOESN’T THINK, SHE HAS NO MENTAL PROCESSES.

What happens is not dictated by her thoughts, by the subconscious, by NOTHING, because they are magical fucking random environments, which have no connection with a possible reality in which she lived, so it is all very alienating and NOT CREDIBLE: if a personality “dies” in the scene we see “the symboooll” but if we we pay more attention we can say:

“Hey but in Goldia’s head this DOESN’T MAKE SENSE”

That is, it is all so external that if a person gets a fever it is not because, what do I know, Goldia wants to suppress a certain part of herself as much as possible … No, it is because her personality had it for a cold wind or cold weather.

Okay, okay, let’s explain this seemingly idiotic example by getting a good dose of sedative, the one we use for elephants.

By that half-delusional reasoning I meant this: yes, we always take the example of the so-called “cold wind” that gives one of the personalities a fever.

We players / spectators must not consider that one and only as a “scene that is superficially useless but that hides a very deep message that I cannot understand for now, because it takes a second run”. Absolutely not , I venture to say that by doing so a developer does not respect the player.

Simply, if something happens, it is because it must be functional to the narrative.

In a lot of works, of course, you want to give a certain message with scenes, but you have to have a context, you have to have a base , you have to make sense of these scenes.

Returns once again this paragraph which we have always told you about in the course of many other articles.

First of all, think about the narrative structure on the surface, how compelling but above all how logical it is.

Here, to present this problem have you noticed that I have not made examples of particular scenes?

It is because unfortunately, if we want to exaggerate, this big mistake spreads throughout the entire Pocket Mirror! I am not an expert, but as a player I had a bad experience, that is, the one for which I felt I was not moving forward and therefore wasting time!

And the worst part is that all these errors, especially the correlation between events and Goldia’s behavior, have been masked as “unconventional storytelling”.

…And here we begin to deal with a burning issue, but to do so we will begin with an example.

The name of the girl we command throughout the game, Goldia.

This problem to be solved is presented to us, like many classic Horror RPGs, from the first minutes of the game. So we have to “find out the name of this girl”. But why do we have to? Shakespeare said that “a rose by any other name would smell as sweet” …

Okay, no more chatter. I’ll help you for a moment. In fictional works, “discovering the name” is to actually discover a real identity: a particular past to which the name / surname is linked , or of which noble you are the lost daughter.

But the name “Goldia” is not connected to anything.

Don’t get me started on the nobility of mind: so was good and good she remained, that she has acquired the awareness does not change anything from the beginning to the end of the game . This here is not presented to us as a different character from how she appears, not even through others who tell her, so that we can (if we are smart) already make connections between this elusive “Goldia” and our protagonist. Showing us other girls who are supposed to represent her doesn’t really matter nothing if we don’t find confirmation of this through her behaviors.

A good example is not difficult to find, but since with my sister we are recently reading Les Miserables, the classic by Victor Hugo-

Okay guys, I’ll let you sing: Do you hear the people sing? Sing the song of angry men … Okay, let’s finish this little theater.

And let’s take Jean Valjean .

In the book, to hide his identity, after a series of events he calls himself Pére Madeleine: this Madeleine guy is described as a good man, who gives everything to everyone, in general a saint. Quite the opposite of what we saw with Jean Valjean, presented instead as a dangerous ex-convict who in the last chapter in which he appears with this name is desperate because he has understood his condition as a “miserable”.

To put it down more generally then, in the novel we first met Jean Valjean for quite some time when he was a convict …

… But then we have people who describe Pére Madeleine. Those who know the story already know that Valjean changes his life … But according to the functioning of the work, which in my opinion has originated what is now a stereotype, the one of “making a character change life in such a radical way” …

(Personally, I really don’t like the 2012 musical adaptation, but it’s to make you familiar with who we are talking about)

Here, the “stereotype” says that we should be surprised that Madeleine is actually Valjean … But because there is a whole discourse on identity in every point of view of him that he carries with him!

Who is Goldia?

And the girl we command throughout the game even before we know the name, who is she?

If not the exact same person!

And so…

“Ok, she’s called Goldia, it’s written on the gate”

“Hi Goldia, I’m Jared, I’m 19-”

This small example will actually serve us to talk about another important theme, which is the presence of symbols throughout the story. As you may have seen: this game can’t be symbolic, because it doesn’t even carry a basic theme .

-Okay Ele, from here I return, PaoGun. Let’s calmly return the reader to our premises.

Let’s say that I choose a key for reading and I can give a meaning to all the narrative arcs: the maturation of Goldia, as we said.

The world of Egliette and Fleta is the world of games , where as a child she felt like a princess; the world where Harpae lives , in a mainly closed place that goes from underground in the attics, represents the repressive and hypocritical society of the time (especially in the puzzle phase with clothes) while the painter’s room, the one where school problems can be solved, were the activities that Harpae carried out so they were intended for Goldia’s education in good society, and to top it off the “world” of Lisette is in is … Well, it says “Hell” at one point. I suppose it is Goldia’s subconscious that ended up in Satan’s hands then: I deduce, therefore, that it is simply a nightmare considering the rhythm of the scene. Enjel’s arc doesn’t count because she has a subplot of her own. 

But, if we consider that in the specialized critique of works of fiction people always try to correlate all the elements in order to find a theme that connects them , because attitudes and Goldia’s behaviors seem more relevant to an external adventure? As if it were a horizontal narrative line (events) instead of vertical (character actions) ?

Goldia is not nostalgic for the world of games, she does not frown at the hypocrisy of the dressed-up guests, she never screams and is not terrified of the nightmare she lives with Lisette.

This inconsistency cancels any type of theme if we start from the simple concept, as we said before, that we are in her head.

On a theme that does not exist, what symbols should be included? These only turn out to be just a weird jumble of ideas.

Having given you these examples we can begin to better understand what we meant when we talked about the conflict between text and paratext. That is: if you wanted to make a game that is only symbolic and in some way destined to narrow niches of the public first of all you would not put it in such a linear story and you don’t promote it as a sort of “event game”, because that is usually an operation that is done with “blockbuster titles” , you know, of titles that have for real the goal of speaking to everyone and therefore the blatant approach is a hundredfold more justified.

This is why I take this opportunity to make this little digression: however “cheesy” the Mad Father cutscenes may be, or however “trashy” the characters of Misao may be, at least sen is an author who in our opinion knows what it means doing entertainment first of all, we like them a lot in their pragmatism, and this was a concept I had already talked about in the Cloé’s Requiem article. Entertainment is something that comes before symbolism even in a great profound work: entertainment really means knowing how to speak to more audiences and making them PARTICIPATES of a “unique” experience, unique in the sense “equal = understandable for all” .

And so…

Oh yes? Are you sure? Damn, we had the new Tarantinos in our little current and we didn’t know that.

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Now, assuming that the “storytelling revolution” in cinema is a somewhat difficult topic to talk about because “storytelling” is an element of films that changed to depending on the historical context and function of the film; so… Well, I don’t think we ever talked about storytelling as a “revolutionary feature”, it was more something that belonged to Hollywood. However, the reason why I’m quoting Tarantino is Pulp Fiction: I can say that there is an unconventional narrative because the events that led to the development of a story were told in a non-linear and continuously fragmented way.

Storytelling is done with time, with a timeline at your fingertips, okay? Not with spaces . Yes, space is a central element because it contributes to how certain information can be grasped, but it is mainly with the distribution of information over time that a story is built . A story is a consequence of events, isn’t it?

I would like to take a moment to talk about the structure in the most general terms: I now understand it as the intentions of the game and the genre in which to define it.

We take Yume Nikki, we take Ao Oni and we take Mad Father. Okay, are we there?

Yume Nikki: I know that I have to explore environments to have an alienating and hallucinogenic experience: my experience depends on me.

Ao Oni: I have to solve puzzles to finish the game and in the meantime escape from the blue demon: I expect jumpscare and chases.

Mad Father:  a very long introductory cutscene makes us understand that our goal will be to satisfy Aya’s wishes and help her free her father from zombies. We will go past obstacles, we will explore the house and in the meantime we know that we will have to do all this empathize fully with another character .

Am I too deterministic? I do not think so.

Look, I want to give you an example of a true Italian: do you know La Dolce Vita? For cinema fans not knowing it is practically a heresy.

Here, even there in the fragmentary nature of the structure (because; hey, an art film knows how to talk to its audience) we talked of a character whose actions over time were consistent with his characterization and path of inner corruption.

We have the party where Marcello goes after the VIP, Sylvia.
“Marcello, come here!”. To make you understand who we are talking about.

We have the church as an immediate contrast in which he meets in the church his friend, writer, father of a family, the most holy Steiner-With a crucifix on the side of the frame that highlights the nature of him as a saint.

The friend commits suicide.
“Maybe he was afraid of himself” says Marcello, before going to another party.

Final party.

Poor Marcellazzo is no longer able to hear the voice of the little girl he had met at a certain point in the film, the voice of innocence.

And here is La Dolce Vita explained. What a good critic I am, huh? Yeah, this is why I don’t call myself a film critic.

I wanted to bring you this example because this film in the common imagination is considered one of the forms of the most complete expression of individuality . Something relegated to the idea that a few true lovers of the genre and “chosen few” can understand , with all the symbols within it . How the movie deprives its understanding to an extended audience? By changing the direction, drying particular moments on the stage, avoiding telling a linear story with an open conflict that needs to be resolved because of course, an author’s work is not a Hollywood title; it has to change the way something is communicated to you .

But can you see that here too the coherence between the various elements, the red thread, the structure that gives life to the work is not lacking?

So this is mainly the reason why I believe that arguments like “a game that is to be rediscovered in multiple plays” in this area really doesn’t make sense. The replay value is an enrichment in such a product: you should discover information that you did not know, not try to understand something that was not understood well from the beginning ; nor should one try to understand only at a later time where the work would end up and with what kind of language .

So, let’s answer the question together: why did Pocket Mirror have every intention of telling a story without having a clue how to do it?

Because for information that came to us only at the end of the game what we have lived all the time is a story that took place in Goldia’s head and we faced some kind of inner journey to make her mature, for recurrent background; but also for the fact that Goldia had an identity to discover and this detail we knew from the beginning of the game helps to fuel expectations for a narrative development . The point is that there is not even a silent protagonist in the game, or a particular relationship that is created with the player as in Hello Charlotte, that should give us some idea that this was meant to be an experimental title. NO, this is the personal story of a girl who must discover herself told in a linear way, through narrative arcs

When in fact there is no development that is clear . We should continue playing this title as if we were on a sightseeing trip.

Because, I repeat, Ele got very frustrated playing, but I re-viewed the videos to look for screenshots for the article liked it all in all . If we take off the filler elements some of the scenes after all are beautiful and evocative, I talked about it in the Trump Card of the new expectations that have risen for those who try this title and it is a very valid ground of comparison for the creators of tomorrow.
BUT the game had to be clearer with itself.

… Let’s take another example of decontextualized symbolism through which they tried to cover the absence of plot development.
Let’s take Lisette’s crown of thorns, which was inserted instead of explaining to you concretely what she suffered : it seems to me a bit exaggerated as a symbol for a personality that is all in all hysterical .
Not to accuse you, my girl, but you are a martyr but up to a certain point, that is, the sense of the Bible is that Jesus was a pure person who took on sins that he did not do , am I wrong?

I do not know if in these cases in bothering the Bible you will find the ridiculousness that I am finding there.

And so with the other examples we have done: Swan Lake, the work of Pëtr Il’ič Tchaikovsky, a work that spoke of something else used here to tell us that Harpae was the black swan because it was not “the real Goldia “, in the midst of many other pure white swans shown in the image … Or they meant that she got dirty because she was getting stressed and was less and less pure because of it.

You know the real story, don’t you? Odile, the evil daughter of Rothbart or the magician who transformed Odette into a swan, had managed through a spell to deceive the prince who would have believed her Odette and would have therefore declared her love for her, as a consequence Odette dies for the ache. Here instead how should we interpret it?

Or to give another example, the theme of gold and the name “dipped in gold” which indicates nobility of soul, the nobility of the “original identity” treated as some sort of discovery for a girl who in the end remains the same before and after having discovered it …

Yes, yes! All right! The demon had stolen her name because of the pact but then why doesn’t this ever intervene? I repeat: what kind of demon are you? Ellen’s black cat was more efficient than you at deceptions, he kept a closer eye on the witch than you did on your victims, damn!

This is why the question that some may ask: Is this an overrated game? No , or we won’t even have talked about it as a historical piece in Back To The Future. The merits must all be recognized. But I repeat these are things that should prompt greater reflection on what to call a masterpiece or not: in my opinion a masterpiece does not exclude its audience from its understanding. A pact is always established between reader and author, spectator and authors, players and programmers.

Caroll’s Alice in Wonderland also uses the white rabbit trick to lead you down the hole to indicate that a story is starting here . Even in Yume Nikki we see that Madotsuki goes to sleep before we are transported to her hallucinogenic world!

For example, why didn’t you show us from the start of the game that Goldia just went into a coma? Maybe with hints that she wasn’t breathing well, that she had nightmares, I don’t know maybe a close relative worried about her.

And so we know that this girl fell asleep in an asylum room, first of all, and that we entered her head.

Come on, how distressing this scene would have been if we had known everything from the start? I would have had the chills personally, assuming the possibility that she would never wake up. I took this as a reference because it’s pretty much the same asylum room from the finale, we’ve seen it together before.

… Maybe, why not, the adventure we lived took place in the course of one night. A troubled night in an asylum.

Anyway, nothing, now I’m dreaming too much.

In conclusion, this was our explanation of Pocket Mirror’s deadly sin , “the big lie”: adopting an identity that did not belong to it.

And this has had consequences , because every action corresponds to a reaction, because if there was someone who praised the lived experience totally ignoring the narrative premises and trying to forgetting that she was going through a story; there were also people who, even from the very beginning of the game’s production history, were frustrated by the lack of clarity of this project .

(Ah, speaking of coherence and consistency in intent, I honestly wonder how they will make the fairytale universe of Little Goodie Two Shoes coexist with the coexistence of elements such as mental hospitals and medical realities of a certain historical period that were in Pocket Mirror) .

To which was added the very powerful Trump Card given by the desire for renewal ; in short, what we talked about before.
Associating such a noble intention with such a huge mistake makes the consequences even more serious, for a progenitor of this type, in defining the new “market drivers” of the current Horror RPG; that from pushing to renew oneself becomes a: “let’s look for artists, who cares if you don’t understand anything”, or said in a more formal way we are less and less concerned about understanding what kind of skeleton we want to assign to our products  making these much more confusing or weak. Or… Jumble. In any case, the important thing is to collect as many audiences as possible (isn’t it true, Omocat? -Oh, you see that we will have our reasons for talking about her video game as well). The essentials are no longer represented by phrases like: I want to talk to this public . The important thing becomes this: “I want to make myself known to everyone ; and to involve as many people as possible I have to surprise them (I add: I have to surprise them since I don’t know other ways to make my title more captivating ).

Let’s say that here we can officially say that the generation of the “story-telling focus” has begun; or wanting to create narrative structures even forcibly if they work to attract audiences. This is the downside so we will now talk about the various minor flaws.

Did they damage the game in any way? Absolutely not.

The experience you live with this title is in itself very enjoyable and the music does its job well . This series of points that we will list are to be considered more as a list of reproaches that we place at AstralShift with the harsh severity that is made towards a model student who still has, in our humble opinion, so much arrogance to leave behind.

Did you want to play a game “artistic and with a rich sensory experience?” . Well, let’s look at various minor flaws that make this title light years away from the label of “excellence” that is assigned to a true work of art.

-The word to Ele.

Here, the spider explains! You have no idea of ​​the poison he has to inject when he replayed Pocket Mirror for this article!
Yes, I have a lot of poison in my pincers and it never goes away… I’m fun at parties, I swear.

Let’s go to the beginning because, in fact, I criticize everything apparently without criteria so we don’t even start playing that I have my nonsense to say.

Apart from my personal directorial nitpick, where in my opinion the music had to stay for some time before showing … The only two dialogue boxes for which this music is in the scene, before we sink into total silence. Yes, the music that fades with an unprecedented bluntness.

Let’s see how these first premises were put down.

Writing with a black background at the beginning presenting us with a situation unknown to the player?

Oh, man! I wonder where I already saw this kind of introduction!

(Games pictured: Ao Oni, The Forest Of Drizzling Rain, Dreaming Mary, Ib.
And with the latter two, together with Pocket Mirror, we have 3 mothers talking to their daughters about … Things.)

… The conclusions are yours.

Guys, not to be unprofessional, it’s the only time I’ll probably use a reaction video but …

This was my reaction to replaying Pocket Mirror a week ago.

And I had this reaction not only at the beginning, but for the whole part that I re-played, especially in the field of directing . Therefore, in the context of the sensory experience that the title boasts.

Yes, I am permitting to say that for a “metaphorical” game, Pocket Mirror has an extremely average direction (except in the arc of Lisette, where it simply went for the total show because Astralshift got better at using RPG Maker, and thus leveraged its artists even more; and in the gramophone scene in the library, where simply the library atmosphere and sound made everything less dull); indeed in the early stages of the game bordering on mediocre and in certain scenes with elements that have been taken and pasted from passive audiovisual works!

Wow, I’m pretentious today. I even talk about directing, when I didn’t go to any kind of school or anything that has to do with directing!
I tell you, as a mere consumer of fictional works I can give you a fairly insignificant example in itself, given more than anything else by the lack of control on the part of the authors. It is an example that makes me understand that there is some underlying problem, especially in the criterion in which to put certain directorial “clichés”.

I will directly post videos of the single scenes with some of my notes, which will also be taken up in the writing of the article itself … But these other directing details, first of all for their quantity, will connect to the final discourse on the directed by Pocket Mirror in its entirety.

So … Here it is. It’s a very stupid example, but one that made me laugh personally.

 

It’s just me? Only I have noticed something strange … Especially in the rhythm of the scene?

It will be my philosophy, but when directing a scene even on RPG Maker, it’s all a matter of rhythm: if the rhythm cannot be followed, it falls in amateur.

Here the rhythm breaks, because the right timing has not been given to the sound effect, so Goldia’s potrait appears while the latter plays, when it was meant to emphasize the doll moving by itself (come on, there isn’t even a camera pan? ).

Here it is. With this inattention (which, as I said, can also be caused by simple carelessness) and, in the scenes that are not “buggy” a rather classic direction … They wanted to make “great scenes”, because this is the “great game”.

… Well, on the following topic I wanted to open a little parenthesis.

Here, this scene seemed normal to you the first time you saw it. But for The Rebirth Of Franklin Albrecht we are constantly looking for free sound effects that we can use, so we understand very well the problems in finding sound effects

… So knowing that we too have various problems finding the right sounds etcetera: it was too much to find a BGS (Background Sounds) that had more to do with a whole environment of more or less aristocratic girls?

Come on guys, you have so many people, so many resources, you could have found something better!

Here we are. With this occasional inattention (which, as I said, can also be caused by simple carelessness) on the one hand and a rather classic direction on the other … They still wanted to make the “big game” , or concepts like that. All this also gives me the idea that not all the scenes have been treated in the same way.

Apart from the sound sector, let’s go to another problem in detail: more constant and even more serious if desired. It has to do with a directing gimmick widely used by Astralshift in general, including in the Little Goody Two Shoes trailer:

The lights that, for no reason, fade when they have to show us something.

Nice presentation of a new environment, right?

No.

Don’t look at me like that, I too had believed Astralshift at the beginning, I just said: “very anime presentation of the magical place, lol.”. But when I thought about it for five minutes, after running my brain with some healthy caffeine, I realized that something was wrong.

But where were the lights before? If Goldia fell and then she woke up and the animals were already dancing … What’s the point of giving us this kind of presentation?

TYPICALLY , in an awakening scene after a fall the environment is introduced with music , because the character has passed out, and then when she opens their eyes there is a situation that has already begun.

The situation was dominated by the direction, who did not know how the hell to introduce the atmosphere of the ballroom in a spectacular way (for some reason, because really, it was very easy to do such a scene).

Here we return to the discourse on the meaning of the scenes and all the elements you put in them.
This expedient of moving / thinning lights is used when a light is actually turned on, so that there is a “surprise” effect when something that is new is presented to the viewer …

… But a light must always come on, or the protagonist must always have a transition between dark and light that makes sense on a concrete level.

It took me so long to be a fu… Too many bad words? Are we unprofessional? All right…

So, I wanted to cross all the “t”s and I did, albeit in a short time and not as well as Astralshift could afford, with a kiind of storyboard on how the scene could be rendered.

It is not mandatory to see it, it was done in a very short time, but in the meantime I hope it gives a general idea.

But back to us, why is this directing problem more serious? Because first of all it is not caused by distraction, there is a problem in the basic idea of ​​how the presentation of the ballroom should be rendered …

And then because it is continually used in the game without shame and, I repeat, without any sense …

(Note: in my opinion, in some cases a simple camera-up would have been fine, as was done in the scene of Egliette’s death)

And finally, because it’s not considered a bad gimmick by the developers themselves. We see this in the Little Goody Two Shoes trailer, minute 2:34

So generally speaking, as a game it doesn’t have too unforgettable narrative scenes, if we take away the artists and the wonderful music. If we think only of the content and how it was directed, Pocket Mirror is, really, an interchangeable game with many others who want magical atmospheres and things like that.

Just saying: if Lydia, author of Aria’s Story, had had the amount of artists that Pocket Mirror had, she would have had very similar (if not identical) ideas in directing for her story.

But let’s stop pretending we’re Kubrik.

With gameplay and experience for the player… How is this game?

I won’t even waste many lines: after all, this isn’t a real review. Both are disappointing for me.

Although Pao highly praised the immersion work done by the game, for me the so-called “sensory experience” that describes Astralshift in their various bios, I didn’t feel it very much …

Since the maps we interact with have blur used many times , according to Pao, (our game’s map designer, so she already had to deal with parallax editing) hastily , and a photography with warm tones in most cases (see the splendor of the dress room in the arch of Harpae or the magical world of Enjel) which aims to be a union between Alice In Wonderland and Dreaming Mary, in an even more “magical” version … And if I can say it more trashy, in the successful attempt (because many liked them, Pao in the early development of The Rebirth Of Franklin Albrecht had the Astralshift maps as a reference) to be eye catching .

The exploration phases have atmospheres that are the same as other games : you change music, you change context and you can have, I always use this example in a very derogatory way (I do not give this title not a shred of respect for my reasons), Aria’s Story.

So as an experience, we can say that a casual gamer can be very attracted to it, one who has seen many times typical “magical” atmospheres in many different works … A little less.

The gameplay… It’s a “cutscene discovery” with puzzles decontextualized from everything else. Period. And during the cutscenes you passively undergo events as much as Goldia does. And this is not even an extra point for “identification for the player”, because we remember that we are in the head of Goldia herself.

It’s basically the Angels Of Death gameplay , which is quite criticized on Steam.

“But with Little Goody Two Shoes they have done things big, in fact in their bio Astralshift says they want to bring innovative gameplay!”

Okay, let’s review the trailer together, maybe we introduce some kind of new mechanic!

Ah-ha. Ok, typical exploration that will surely be in the forest and someone’s house to keep the plot going , “mysteries to discover”… Which is a nicer way to say once again that the plot is great, character routes that we will have with the various characters like visual novels… For some reason…? And the various endings that we bring with us from Ib which will be like a true, a bad, a good ending and maybe if the “relationships” with the other characters are developed you will have certain types of route endings…

So also combining items …

Although this thing makes me doubt, it may be ok to have some crafting : it’s the only thing that I actually don’t know exactly what it will be used for and I’m curious.

Then there are also cited “strategic choices” and once again the relationships with other characters.

And in the end…

… The trailer ends like this. With … With lights that show us these pumpkins like this, to make us have a heart attack.

… “Aridaje”, they say in Rome.

So what to say?

Um… Considering that I’m pretty sure of all my theories about the context in which all the features presented in the Little Goody Two Shoes trailer will be used…

What do you want to focus on? What mechanics do you want to innovate? To make gameplay rich, you don’t just need to put as many features as possible: it is something that many very minor indie games (some that are on rpgmaker.net or other portals) have been trying to do for years, without reaching any really satisfying result …

So, as gameplay director of team Ludi Tarantula I recognize that it is impossible to create new mechanics out of nothing . I also wander in the dark sometimes when I have to offer as much interaction as possible to the player in a very, very story-driven game. I recognize that standing up for groundbreaking gameplay is not easy at all, I have to say this by in their favor.

But in my opinion this problem can sometimes be solved by putting certain mechanics in a nice particular context , reinterpreted in a certain way just because of what they serve to the story … In general, make special very normal mechanics because they are in your project, which has a certain very strong imagery that reimagines the same functioning but in different lights.

But, perhaps it is also because it is only a trailer, I have not yet seen by Astralshift such strong contexts as to totally re-imagine the mechanics, “revolutionizing” them as they say.

To be honest, for now I have only seen many graphic improvements from Pocket Mirror: the drawing style changed, as well as the engine, therefore also a different type of perspective in terms of maps, lipsynch, frames for dialogues, totally personalized menus…

So every time I see this new project I always have one feeling:

It seems to me that no matter how much they evolve with engines, mechanics and all … Something tells me that even the prequel to Pocket Mirror will be, in the end, all entertainment for its own sake.

So, now that you have heard all this criticism of absolute graphic beauty, and beauty of the genre, you will scream …

“If you think this doesn’t make sense, then we have to be with the shotgun pointed at whatever spectacular element we see ?!”

NO.

We have repeated this many times.
In my last sentence “spectacle for its own sake”, I wanted to tell this concept, which we would also like to communicate to all the aspiring game developers out there:

The yardstick must be the criterion of choices . Because what differentiates a thing done well and done badly is that in works done well everything is functional; when something is spectacular and you just realize it because things are there because God wanted them.

 

And a question that arises spontaneously is:

Why? How good is it to do what you are criticizing, that is to create spectacle without saying a linear plot “like normal people”?

Well gentlemen, it is because today we are in the era of visionaries.
Yes, we are regressing to the 60’s, I dare to say, even if the next game we will cover in Back To The Future will reflect a completely different reality …

We are all unique, we all have special and beautiful ideas that deserve to be valued and supported by as many professionals as possible!

Ah, how many times have you read such phrases said in good faith?

In theory they are to give more security to those who are not sure of what they are doing and have actually good ideas …

But everyone wants to feel comforted and complimented in life , let’s face it. These suggestions, these concepts in general are taken into consideration and internalized by anyone who finds themselves in more or less similar situations.

A more … Social and from the public’s point of view will be made in the article dedicated to the Audience-Work Relationship, so get ready.

But speaking of authors … I introduced this acid conclusion of the Work Defects by saying that “we have returned to the era of visionaries”.
That should be a good thing, right? The visionaries are these so-called “geniuses” who create products for which the consumer asks “but how did they come up with that?”.

In this context I would like to interpret the term “visionary” from a very contemptuous point of view, unfortunately. I will summarize my point of view with the phrase of a youtuber that I respect a lot, Uricksaladbar.

“If David Cage has an idea, he’ll get it in!”
(speaking of Beyond Two Souls)

David Cage, you know? Beyond Two Souls, Heavy Rain, Detroit Become Human…

What by now a lot of people, especially American audiences, is criticized for its narratives with sometimes questionable qualities, and similar to B-movies.
Just the one who wanted to make “the video game industry more mature”.

Present?

Ah, sorry. I have the wrong biography. Or maybe not?

I used Urick’s phrase to introduce you to this parallel view, which the more I discover about Astralshift, the more honestly I find fitting.

“… And in this jumble of confused narrative schemes we find the decontextualized symbolism with which they wanted to patch up the narrative holes.
Let’s take Lisette’s crown of thorns, which was inserted instead of explaining to you concretely what she suffered : it seems to me a bit exaggerated as a symbol for a personality all in all hysterical .
Not to tell you anything my daughter but you will be martyr but up to a certain point, that is, the sense of the Bible is that Jesus was a pure person who took on sins that did not belonged , am I wrong?”
-Ludi Tarantula Archives

“The story of Beyond Two Souls, when put chronologically, exposes how meaningless the artistic choice was! Faux-artistic choices like that make a game mature? Christ!”
-Uricksaladbar

For me these two people, David Cage and EvilHairBrush worked the same way.
They have a great idea to develop, they think about the other narrative elements to introduce , a general story with elements and themes probably seen by some worthy work … And an artistic idea to “make their game “compared to others of the same genre, which otherwise would have the same vibes, the same types of characters, the same narrative choices.

Both of them therefore, to enhance their great idea as much as possible, took care of the charm to give to their games, to make them more similar to actually mature products that they value, so they took care to find as much support as possible, financial and staff…

Because they are geniuses. They are “visionaries”, who “have seen” what a work needs to be considered profound, poetic, unconventional, particular, to be considered ART!

… They know how to distinguish a “mature work” from the plethora of childish works, which are less cinematic than theirs or which do not make the player say “wow” as soon as you see the title screen … Works that do not have the same depth as themselves, of them who dealt with strong themes in an incredible way and with a truly enviable sensitivity!

Here is the problem.

It is as if these two projects did not really understand the concept of “editing” the basic ideas , to make them accessible to outsiders who do not live in their minds… It’s like they didn’t thought about editing ideas that they deserved a very heavy editing job. From every point of view. The “ideation” stage is never passed for these types of developers.

And it is so because …

“Art is subjective!”,
“If you don’t like it, go away!”,
“How can you judge so harshly !? What do you know what the author meant ?! ”
“They put in so much work!”
“You don’t understand it!”

Let’s go back to what I said at the beginning of this ending paragraph in the Work Defects. These morals and concepts have now reached the developers of today, and will continue to be passed down to those of tomorrow.

This is exactly one of the reasons why there are products like Pocket Mirror.

Because there is not a minimum of self-awareness when it comes to our artistic ideas.

CONCLUSION

This was a very important and inevitable step in our time machine journey.

Now that we are nearing the end I almost feel compelled to talk to you more with an open heart, because for the final title, Angels of Death , we are going to do a spectacular article and for that I don’t know if we will stop to chat together as we always have, so I take advantage of the conclusion of this article to draw my last observations.

Today we have said so much, in my (PaoGun) opinion indeed we have even exaggerated … But this is because everything must be looked at in its context . In fact, before arriving at the conclusion of Back To The Future, with which we will close the season, we will dwell for a while on other columns such as the Tin Coffee Pot Time (because as we gradually reach the ” contemporary era” we can reflect more and more on the surrounding production reality ).

Even if we seem like really bad and sour people when we write for the Archives, know that in reality we always feel so much bitterness when we talk about things that make us angry, this is when we work on the internal analysis of the titles, both in talking about realities external to a product; because actually it is really sad to realize the difficulties that must be faced in a context in which one could apparently say: “Hey! Today it is different, everyone can emerge with their creativity! ” and yet it is not like that at all.

But it is precisely for this reason that instead of burying you we would like so much to push you into research and information. Because we are the first to bring up numerous topics without going into them all in depth.

If we resume for a moment the reflections on external contexts and return to the topic on the publishers that we had introduced in previous articles … In my opinion we have never thoroughly investigated the path with which it all began: “How did it go for Kedouin? What was his relationship with the publishers? ”.

For wanting deadlines to be respected, for wanting synthesis (associating the word “synthesis” to our articles makes you laugh, we know, but we refer above all to the human brain’s need to “synthesize concepts”); we ask ourselves limits on many topics that generally deserve more in-depth analysis.

We would like to convey this concept: the Archives are just the beginning; it’s the kind of mindset we’d like to see more prevalent (get pissed off at others? No, the behavior we’d like to see more prevalent is asking questions ), and if we have the arrogance to say so it’s simply because we have become accustomed to seeing that normally, in this panorama it is not spread enough as a model of thought.

This is because, at least according to our life experiences: being objective changes you forever. Seeking objectivity in everything changes the way we see things especially in the case of investigating something, in our case, for example, that we are trying to investigate the fate of a market in which, all in all, we are pouring our expectations for a professional future.

In short, we are anticipating our greetings here, hoping that living this long journey with us started in 2019 will remain in your mind and stimulate you to seek more and more information. And so …

Thank you. Thank you so much for making it this far.

We will meet again shortly with you in the Tin Coffee Pot Time, which Ele is pawing to have a chat with you.

Cloé’s Requiem (2nd PART) – The business of children, four characters in search of an author

Good evening and welcome back.

Please go to your designated seat…
Your chair. Or sofa, if you have paid for the priority ticket.

Here is the infamous second part of the article on Cloé’s Requiem … The one in which we had to spit out facts, the one in which we had to expose all the rottenness surrounding this game!

Excited? I hope so!
… Because we, in reality, were somewhat stained by the time gap between the first and second part of this duology of articles.

“… So you didn’t even want to write?”

It will be unprofessional to say it in the article itself, but … More or less!

You know, we lost … The fire, if you know what I mean : we put off a lot of time before we started writing (to say me, Ele, I’m writing this intro on February 21st, and the release date will be between February 27 and February 28 …) and a lot of past notes saved us, they reminded us of those sleepless weekend evenings when we commented on the whole context of this title and how much we scraped the bottom of the barrel to get there to our “shock conclusions” with statements that not even the worst afternoon talk shows can give you.

But fear not. We had lost our enthusiasm simply because we hadn’t talked about it for a while …

But we are back on track. to hear about Nubarin again, Nanashi No Chiyo, their slips … You will see that we will return with all our energy , and I solemnly promise that we will satisfy all the hype we put in the previous article for this part.

… Above all, we’ll satisfy the hype for of our anger.

We are done looking at overt psychopaths, mentally dissociated people, just insanely jealous mothers, or whatever kind of person the asylum would be home to! We finished reading diaries to get information, analyze in detail dialogues to notice the good part of genius that this game has!

The anger begins! Start from THIS ARTICLE (yes, I’m not afraid to put the caps lock) what for me is the last, painful … And entertaining, for these sick bastards with a thousand eyes 1 , macro part of articles of the entire Ludi Tarantula Archives!

From this game we will go further and further down … But you will see the obvious effects of this general decline (from every single point of view) as time goes on, until the last article on Angels Of Death.

For now, with talking cats, dry expressiveness, correctors for dark circles, contradictions to the messages given by the works themselves …

… And very, very French school uniforms …

(Wow I never thought I would see Michel with a Japanese gakuran and Pierre with a cardigan.)

Sit down once again and watch us flay the ideas you can have about this game as an “innocently soared to the top of the charts”, of “oh, two such young authors made it to the top!”

Watch us skin the entire mask that has covered and still continues to cover Cloé’s Requiem!

Cloé’s Requiem – The business of children
Second Part: Four characters in search of an author

But after this arrogant introduction, let’s take a chill pill … Before we get to the hottest revelations in the article, we need to have a basis for these, right?

Let’s start with a statement:

Cloé’s Requiem, since its first show of popularity, has had outside help left and right.

“Yeah, right! And the crop circles prove the existence of UFOs! Couldn’t this damn title go on alone? You always see rottenness and marketing in everything, I knew it! ”

Thank you! You made me arrive very smoothly to the question I wanted to ask, and to which Pao will answer shortly …

“Why couldn’t this game go on on its own in the first place?”

“Wait, what about the author-work relationship?”

Oh, I forgot! For this article only, to leave you the best at the end, the categories will be swapped , so …

Pao, get the list out!

WORK DEFECTS

Okay, here I am finally back to work to face together, once again, the innermost analysis of this game to begin the second part of this journey!

And also … Hahah yes, Ele mentioned a list. Yes, a list … In fact, as we did from the first Midnight Train review, we decided to draw up a small ranking of the defects that have marked Cloé’s Requiem.

But before introducing it, I’ll give you one of my usual premises.

I know it. I know that somewhere you will be cursing me for having once again this damn piece from Mad Father article

And it’s time to do the reckoning:

“The clarity of the main plot is essential and the preferable starting point to trace the main path […]”

So far we have in fact seen in the titles that have passed through the Back to The Future to make for most of the cases the great ascent to the red carpet for the category of games that have made the history of the current and which for the most part had the two aces in the sleeve essential for the success of a narrative title: narration and gameplay .

We have therefore seen for most of the cases positive examples to which we always refer as models of inspiration from which to take; from the gameplay exploited to expand the background in which the plot moves (this both in The Witch’s House and in Mad Father , as well as the potential unexpressed by Ib ) to a clear and linear script from the beginning on which the gameplay could support , I speak of Mad Father and in a some sense Misao.

Guys, you know what? If you “stick” to certain titles it is not just for the style , on the contrary I believe that today it is a yardstick that must be overcome if we want to start digging and aiming on the value of these works and treat them with dignity like any other fictional work and not just nostalgic hobbies that take us back to childhood, given how they have evolved. We cannot remain anchored only to the lights that decorate the Christmas tree and let slip the majesty of the fir that lies right in front of us, little noticed compared to the glow of the electronic gadgets that should enhance it and not obscure it . We cannot afford it and neither can you; at least here, with us in the Ludi Tarantula Archives. Think for a moment of Ib as something beyond the “sophisticated and elegant style with an unforgettable experience” or The Witch’s House as different from the “creepy gameover game. and full of animations “; Mad Father is not only in the dramatic content it expresses inspired by family melodramas.

What made the titles we have talked about so far unforgettable, perhaps you know inside you better than me or Ele, was their internal quality . They had a solid, homogeneous structure with clear intentions, they always knew where they wanted to go and everything that wanted to be communicated was communicated. Nothing was left to misunderstanding, or very little; indeed: this consideration has almost always turned out to be true in our eyes for most of the games we’ve talked about well .

The key is structure . Always.

And with this we are actually anticipating one of the themes that will then be dealt with in detail with the article we have planned immediately after the one dedicated to Pocket Mirror ( “Style: The Ultimate Trump Card? ”), so you know I’m giving you a huge spoiler with just that premise.

But back to us.

Maybe you too will have turned up your nose to see “Cloé’s Requiem” in the Back To The Future time-line, it was not treated exactly like “all the other games” especially for what happened since the First Generation onwards in terms of fame. People screamed about it but not too much, the youtubers played it but apart from being a bit influenced by the “final depression” they did not seem particularly active emotionally, the brand was carried forward but the news does not seem to have had any kind of feedback, the history was really circumscribed and “closed” and often there were moments in which, for better or for worse, everyone approached to interpret them as he could.

He looked a bit like “the bastard son”, the one out of place among the other titles in Back To The Future: even The Forest of Drizzling Rain could at least be connected to the author who produced Angels of Death .

So, draw your own conclusions.

Think about the 200 pages we wrote to talk about this title, on how much enthusiasm we have put into talking about it and on the in-depth study dedicated to its characters …

… And now try to welcome with me the sense of inner anger in imagining this game that did not best express the potential it had due to its failure for both of the two pillars that should distinguish these products. Every player or spectator understood one thing for another, something that could be revolutionary was underestimated even by the authors and publishers themselves. I will talk more about this when I address a speech in the paragraph dedicated to the Author-Work relationship, I can promise and assure you that I am not using this term inappropriately.

Storytelling and gameplay. Gameplay and storytelling.

So, my friend who still reads, follow me once again in exploring the ruinous structure of this game by trying to take these words literally: like a visit to a beautiful, unsafe house, because it could collapse from a moment to the next .

– Ranking: from 3rd to 1st place on the podium of the main defects of Cloé’s Requiem –

Actually this part of the paragraph, as I have reiterated so far, could be summed up in a very simple word which is stability .

Stability is built with all the elements that come together, so that is why we will almost inevitably have to try to talk about it in more depth.

3rd PLACE: NO CLARITY

This defect is therefore the first component of its instability . But … Why is Cloé’s Requiem an unclear game?

You could tell me: “hey sister, look, there is no problem in terms of structure! We know that we have to free Cloé from the curse with good feelings by playing together, it is a narrative structure organized through the discovery of the floors of the house as in The Witch’s House and we even discover the reason why Michel ran away at the beginning of the game! “.

Here, but the problem is where the game wanted to tell about the characters. For those lost in the first part of the article remember this: this is a character driven story , so first of all the actions that accomplish and define the characters we could all agree that cannot be unclear to the spectator / player .

This problem I would relegate to various factors, first of all …

  • Consistency between informations

For example, the problem that I have already mentioned in the first part of the article, we see Michel at the beginning of the game, and  it does not seem at all that he has just committed two cold-blooded murders! 

If the game had been a little more coherent, it would have had to be represented with disturbing elements that could characterize Michel right from the dialogues and not show this side only in game overs, as if it were an accessory feature.
Because if you treat what was for the character a very important turning point for his personality or perception of the world as an element to be overshadowed and then instead in the main scenes you just show him to me as a normal kuudere  the player gets confused. You, the author, are thus deflecting the perception of the character in the public eye because a scene like this:

And immediately after a scene like this:

Placed one after the other, they are truly disconnected from each other, when compared with the context we have seen so far!

I will make you understand better what I mean:

If the diary scene is the reason why there will be no more scenes like the game over one then you have to put them on the same level !

We have to see clearly the contrast between his attitudes in the course of the plot!

To take Ellen as an example: many people reasoned about the cruelty of the witch towards other living beings and creatures of the house or about the famous clue of the red icon in the dark room. But all this was always supported by the underlying apathy that was shown in the character ; here we cannot consider disturbing the detail on the protagonist who easily deprives a girl of her eyes if these elements are not found in the main plot. 

So my question is: why didn’t you highlight this disturbing side of him in the first dialogue with Cloé ? He seemed to be a really nice guy to her! A little off-putting, of course, but it was exactly the saving vision that Cloé had of him in her diaries.

So, going back to The Witch’s House, it would have the same problem if Ellen didn’t have an apathetic face from the start and the game showed us an image of her as the sunny and kind girl that was Viola for the sheer sake of inserting the shot on stage in the finale.

Well, I’ll tell you something about twists: these have the ability to make us feel really stupid , because, as I said maybe in other circumstances, they just toss the truth in our faces. that had been in front of us all that time .

An excellent fictional work that has this characteristic is the honest one, which never betrays the viewer and nor ever contradicts itself . It is simply based on elements that we take for granted and for this reason they create in us beliefs that seem obvious at first friction and for this we do not pay attention anymore: we avoid explaining a detail because the viewer can fill the gap with his assumptions, and then all he does is show the clues that he will ignore a priori because he is already self-convinced of his own ideas .

For those who missed it, I refer you to to the article about The Witch’s House in which we spoke abundantly of its narrative structure: the diaries of the witch constantly accompanied you to each floor to make you perceive this story as something separate from the character you commanded; you assumed that “you were guiding Viola, a simple house visitor ” simply because the game starts with this quiet girl walking into a house .

Instead, we always had the revealing detail at hand thanks to the character icon , which we took for granted as a personality trait of Viola, and it worked alone as a revealing detail. That’s why this game , not wanting to adopt a traditional or linear narrative form, did not insert dialogue until the twist (excluding the cat as a save point that serves as another telltale clue).

So, given this explanation, returning to Michel: his behaviors are among the most interesting elements of the game; but the most disturbing aspects of her are layers treated only as an accessory, as I have told you so far.

Let’s take a look at narrative facts for a moment. In short: to kill an adult man and woman with that frail body he has, Michel had to land a lot of stabs before seeing them dead – think of the facts of crime news: killers inexperienced with edged weapons find themselves raging on the victims with numerous stab wounds before killing them-, that is; this child had the fury to inflict who knows how many stab wounds on two people one after the other .

I mean, really, try to imagine the blood bath in which Michel was immersed.

The lack of coherence with what is seen in most of the time goes to directly undermine the perception that the public has about the character , however, so the game becomes a waste. I mean, what’s the point of writing such complex characters if they don’t have to be understood by the audience?

In reality there is another problem that has constituted the lack of clarity in the exposition and to talk about this unfortunately we would have to show the other side of the coin of what was one of the most unique features of the game, but at the same time we could almost define as the reason why this title could never have remained on the “crest of the wave” for long, that is …

  • The text

Choosing a purely textual narrative mode prohibits the presence of visual elements on stage , which help to remember certain scenes a hundred times more than textual ones!

Add to this …

  • Time

There is too much time between clues and this will cause the spectator / player to get distracted . In fact, I would say that the problem is the arrangement of information in the game timeline

It is wrong and generates inconsistencies.

I remind you that in order to make such a long article in the first part my sister and I had to rely on our memory, only in this way were we able to make the necessary connections for the analysis .

To give a very, very subtle example why not take Alain’s line in the Moonlight flashback at the beginning of the game… Do you remember it? We had the opportunity to deepen the subject in the analysis of the characters. Recall that we associated the Alain-Cloé relationship with the Michel-Cat relationship: in the game the information about this animal only reaches us at the end of the second act! Furthermore, when the Michel / Alain association returns in a clearer way it is only for a game over , i.e. a variable that may not even be discovered by the player and the association much more difficult .

Let’s remember the appearances in chronological order: start of the game

Then the phrase obtainable in the gameover, close to the first midpoint (so in this case in the middle of the story) 

And finally the explanation of the line that becomes obtainable in Michel’s flashback which comes much more later than the gameover described

(Speaking of abandoning the cat “in such a desolate place” I think it deviates a little too much from the intentions that were intended to be given in the game; especially if this concept is taken up again – indeed, anticipated – in such an ambiguous moment as the gameover in which Cloé is killed due to a spurt of violence

A little experiment. Try reading the lines in this order and you will see that the correlation will be even clearer:

You see? Reading them in succession next to each other has a different effect, they give more the idea of a possible forerunner of a Corruption Arc than the random arrangement they have in the game .

Ah, and consequently to all this…

Hyde: “Lucy, You were pleaning on leaving without saying me goodbye won’t you?”
Lucy (scared): “I’m not going anywhere”
Hyde (approaching): “That’s right, you’re not going anywhere”

FHS – Live performance of Sympathy, Tenderness (reprise) and Confrontation
From the Frank Wildhorn musical Jekyll & amp; Hyde, Opening Night, March 2015

Like this. Just to fish out a trauma together with you and understand together why cases of femicide are still very widespread (and in most cases by men very close sentimentally to the victim). Oh yes, another note to consider: I would like to clarify how in the version of “Con Amore” we will talk about and in the same promotion of what was this Cloé’s Requiem all these disturbing details regarding Cloé and Michel’s relationship have been totally censored .

However, keeping on the same theme and returning to think about the problematic narrative structure there is a scene much more important that we can take as an example….

… That is the diary scene REPEATED after the flashback.

Here it is again. This scene returns in this article as many times as it does in the game: in this case its “reprise” occurs after Michel had just finished telling us about his “first murder”.

… Let’s proceed in order.

If you remember well this scene where he apologizes to Cloé and feels guilty after destroying her house it happens BEFORE Michel’s flashback, so before we could understand that all this time he had somehow associated Cloé with his cat.

So the first problem, first of all, is that much, much earlier was anticipated to us a detail for which at present we cannot make any connections.

But what could be an even bigger problem?

The main problem we encountered was its own repetition : we see it twice in the course of history in a completely decontextualized way .

You remember how long the flashback that explained Michel’s life was long, more or less, don’t you?

In the flashback we learned about: the conflictual relationship with his father; the conflictual relationship with his brother Pierre; the ambiguous and generally conflictual relationship with the maid Charlotte and then the object of comfort represented by the cat Cloè.

Now, the point is that, as I said earlier, the two authors have inserted the scene from Cloé’s diary twice throughout the game to explain to you that the comforting object represented by the cat , was transferred from the cat to the co-star, that is from an animal to a person .

As I said before: the two authors, at the time they developed to the game, have not been able to create immediate links between the main plot elements , you can see it above all in this scene that they wanted to bring you back TWICE just to explain it to you. This is where you realize that no matter how hard they tried to explain the game’s storyline they failed .

Why did I come to this conclusion?

We can see this in the flashback itself .

A lot of elements go between one important detail and another even within this flashback: after we know about the cat that was abandoned by Charlotte we have the quarrel with the father, then the plot moves back to the parent-child conflict ; then there is the scene in which Charlotte is gossiping and even her death/ her accident.

I have prepared an outline for you to understand:

We have the opportunity to get the choice of doing “pat pat”, we can understand that more or less from there that the arc of “Cloé as a cat” is starting. Let’s say that opens definitively with the reading of her diary; because it is here that the problem is revealed to us for the first time through a forced cutscene followed by the excuse made to Cloé.

Then, after the filler gameplay session such as the murder of the cello and dinner, we finally discover Michel’s flashback in which after the presentation of all the elements of his depressing life there is a direct consequence the continuation of the “confort object” theme , because we are clearly shown that the cat is the only comfort element he has left in that house and losing him is it was evidently a hard blow. Then there is the murder of Charlotte with all the explanation relating to the fact that Michel was losing empathy for human life and finally this bloody cat arc closes with a RETURN TO THE DIARY SCENE, a remnant of something old with the addition of the CAPITAL AND RETORICAL EXPLANATION in its textuality which wants to reinforce the meaning of this difficult scene.

So I would say that the problematic element that was randomly inserted here in the structure had to be patched with as much text as possible to badly reconnect the pieces of texture to each other like when trying desperately to stick pieces of paper with tape.

 

That is really is a mess: between the points that should be part of the subplot on the association of human Chloe with the cat and the overcoming of this infantile vision is in the middle the subplot about Charlotte and her murder ( aka the beginning of the curse) . This element creates real interference!

Do you see? I propose the scheme again!

Whether this plot element had to be explained,  this wasn’t the moment, because it completely distracts from what is another plot detail relating to Cloé’s objectification .

Let’s try to remove for a moment the scene where Charlotte was killed and try to propose an alternative solution .

  1. For starters, once we got this revelation in the flashback that the cat was abandoned in the mountains, I would temporarily stop the flashback. One could take advantage of the fact that Cloé had been standing there watching the performance to immediately make a visual link.
  2. Then you could show HERE how he had overcome his attachment to the girl , maybe he gets an epiphany, he has a panic attack in which he takes refuge in Cloé but then realizes he being making a mistake; he moves away and isolates itself : so we are shown in a scene in the present and not re-proposing a scene already seen that was created for another plot point.
  3. And then from here numerous solutions would open up to be able to face the third act: after the interruption of the flashback in fact the opening of the redemptive arc of Michel . It started with the guilt he has already overcome (Cloé’s objectification which he interrupted just in time) to face “the red eye” – perhaps from this plot point it became more and more recurrent; as if to represent a “reminder” to indicate that reminders have been interrupted.

So in short they coould have exploited the focus on “minor” guilt  to reveal Michel’s “major” faults all through gradual discovery: you gradually discover what happened in that flashback and then the crime concerning the murder of his father .

So starting from this new proposal try to imagine this tormented boy wandering in the basement, the most underground and darkest place in the mansion, who since his epiphany is surrounded by the vision of red eyes until he reveals the crimes to us, spectators of him. So we could tell here about Michel’s growing insensitivity : from the beginning of the curse (the first murder), up to all the animals he killed in the meantime, up to the release of final violence for which he killed his father . A third act of the kind focused only on this reveal would have given a nice help to the gameplay that would have been more focused on this theme ( and made the l flashback of the Nocturne, or the first meeting between Cloé and Michel, in my opinion still more powerful and poetic in my humble opinion; because you see a boy treated like a saint who has recently rediscovered himself as a monster ) …

… And it would have replaced everything that third act useless and rambling which instead took place in the basement…

Tell me what the fuck these puzzles are supposed to represent and when they are enjoyable.

It, however,  was a third act concentrated mainly on Michel  (since it focuses on the subplot of the instruments to which blame is assigned; and the place where we have the reveal on the murders ; the place where Charlotte is seen in the form of a curse; and finally it is also the place of the final battle against Alain -we have already seen how here the defeat of Alain can be strong on a symbolic level -) : at least it would have had bases more solid!

Like, the whole mess we described could have been avoided simply by delaying information about a particular plot event to reveal it at a later, more appropriate, time. Unfortunately, this did not happen and we all replayed the reprise of a scene we had already seen due to interference…

I want to highlight once again how these two particular events come one after the other and the alienating effect they give

And to which the consequence, reviewing the scene in the diary and passing again to the point where it speaks of “having treated Cloé like shit” triggered a reaction like this in all of us:

“But what does that mean?” / “Why does it matter now?”

 

To conclude this first point, let’s say this too.

Perhaps someone will remember that, even without the section dedicated to deepening the characters, we already knew that the article would be divided into two parts. This is because we had already foreseen that talking about this game would be a really long operation for the work of dissecting and interpreting the themes: the reason is, as we have taken the liberty to consider, that nobody understood this game.

Returning, therefore, to our premise: they never wanted to discuss the innovative themes it brought up, even too thoroughly .

Over the years this work has been increasingly mistreated and superficialized, we will see it in the following paragraphs, however, we do not want to assign the blame only to the operation one promotion that followed, you can see here that a good percentage of this fault is the work itself .

And, in reality, there is another flaw inherent in this great issue relating to stability to be considered. I’ll call it like this:

  • The text, PT.2

In fact, in the last act, especially following the flashback of the Nocturne and the approach of the “final big bosses”, there was a great excessive presence of the text .

 

[…]

[…]

[…]

The text prevailed over everything and overwhelmed the feelings it wanted to tell, ending up in a spiral of retorical mental blowjobs.

In general I could say that from a certain point in the game the plot became more and more synthetic by closing badly the arcs that had been opened and introducing elements that only confused the ideas, this did not help the narrative plot already incomplete in itself.

But all this… All this actually reveals to us the sincerity and transparency in the production of this title by those who could be called true random authors. A great commitment certainly, but little experience that deserved to be acquired over time.

2nd PLACE: THE FILLER  GAMEPLAY IS HARMFUL

Gameplay? Did anyone say “Gameplay”?

Yes, I’m back, EleRantula to report!

So, before going into the details that also concern the narration, which my sister will take care of, let’s analyze how the story of Chloé ‘s Requiem makes us play.

Good. As I mentioned in the appendix on the characters I wrote together with the first part of the article, this is one of my favorite Horror RPGs …
But I definitely didn’t replay it twelve times because I really liked “playing” it.

Simply because, guys, the gameplay of Cloé’s Requiem … It’s harmful.
Yes, you read it in the title. But let me explain better.
Hey, back there!  I see you, what is it now ?!

“… If the gameplay is so ‘harmful’, problematic and all you want … Why don’t you put it on the same footing as Midnight Train, huh? What, do you like the characters so you ignore a gameplay totally detached from the plot and badly done? “

Ah, here it is, a classic.

It is obvious that Midnight Train is a much more serious case.

If you have seen these errors in Cloé’s Requiem …

You know what? It is comprensible.

But let’s cross every “t” : Midnight Train’s puzzles are completely decontextualized from everything we are experiencing, even if it tries way too hard to tell a “great plot”.

In Cloé’s Requiem, simply … Except for a few cases (the eyes of the dolls, the murder of the cello and the parts in the third act), the puzzles serve to introduce subplots , or in any case elements connected to the context (the various phases connected to the waitresses, which form a large part of the second floor, the introduction to the red eye symbol to indicate Charlotte and many other examples.)

Introducing subplots through a first encounter with characters / contexts /… through a playable phase is a good system to adopt.

… If only these subplots were ever developed or continued in some way!

All these ideas to create a stronger context, a more complicated plot and a larger cast… They disappear. They dissolve.

Poof. Gone With the Wind.

“Buriki Clock, if you just introduce me, without developing me… After my introductory cutscene, what will become of me…?”

“Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.”

Oookay Ele, after this introduction, let’s go back to the base.

So here I am, I’m Pain-In-The-Ass-PaoGun. Perhaps someone will remember what I wrote in the first part of the article for what concerned the subplot of Cloé’s mother.

Given all the premises that Ele kindly gave us, I believe that the time has finally come to confront ourselves in the round with this arc. We try to understand exactly what the problem is and we tackle everything step by step.

First of all I propose here the scheme that Ele made, cause she remembered the game unlike me. Yes, I suck.

(The red wiriting are “personal notes” in Italian language that my sister used for help me…I’m sorry guys, we don’t have time to correct them)

“Well?” You must be thinking now.

“What is problematic about this scheme? It is the management of a counter-clockwise second floor gameplay! It is very geometric and clear… ”

You have no idea how confusing this game is.

We had already mentioned in the Mad Father article about the variety of actions that must be taken before moving from one area to another, however these were situations and puzzles that you could deal with from the beginning without waiting to finish the ‘previous riddle . This was Mad Father’s greatest asset.

But in Mad Father the elements correlated well with each other . There was a manageable zone and a clear division between the elements that were needed to tell you a part of the plot (see Aya’s mom perfume unlocking you a flashback, and it came back a second time when Coron stole it from you and when Aya used it to make mice escape) and those needed mainly for gameplay; you were perfectly able to understand and carry with you the crucial elements for the entire gaming experience .

Let’s take an example: the chainsaw.

It is introduced with a flashback to make you understand immediately the role of that particular object in the plot and then sen makes sure that you cannot forget by letting you use both to break free-wheeling barrels and to solve a puzzle .

Instead, for Cloé’s Requiem we needed a scheme to try to remind us how the gameplay was structured. Because it was hard to remember , making associations based on memory alone was impossible , if we want to exaggerate.

What we have realized from this diagram is that can be used to summarize all the flaws we have complained about so far

… But let’s get our hands dirty right away and see how the narrative arcs were presented on the second floor of the house .

1 ° – THE MAID’S ROOM

So, it all begins when you finish playing the Moonlight and get the key to enter this room . The theme of maids and the association with teddy bears is introduced.

We find a note on the maids who worked in the house: therefore you have to cut the bear to unlock access to the new room, the mother’s room (this part of the puzzle could be translated as a reference to the puzzles of The Witch’s House now that I think about it, as were the dolls in the first floor).

2 ° – THE MOTHER’S ROOM

What can I say, we commented on this scene at length in the first part of this epic quest which is the article on Cloé’s Requiem.

We have described it as the best scene in the game and we can now define what is the opening of a subplot: we are in fact delving into the fate of the maids in the Ardennes household.

EVEN IF: Yes, in the first part of the article I called it “Mother’s Arc”, okay, I was wrong, but this is because it deepens a lot on the thoughts of this woman, but let’s say that at least towards the end of the diary you return to talk about the abuses suffered by the maids.

The vision of maids as teddy bears is strengthened: in short, this form of objectification of people is passed from a mother towards her daughter to a mistress towards her servants.

Thinking about it now, it’s not that it feels terrible, technically in chronological order the maids were the first to be represented as teddy bears and therefore diminished in their identity as human beings …

…But I repeat that on the one hand, for what we read in the diary, I would have preferred that the theme linked to the figure of the teddy bear, something so “cute and innocent” had been maintained towards her daughter because, I repeat, it would have not only spoke of a much stronger and more twisted bond but, also given the girl’s design , it would have been a much more impactful detail.

 

3 ° – CLOE’S ROOM ’

And here we have a break.
Why am I saying this? The mother killed the waitresses okay, we saw it from both points of view.
Yet I am using this term, “interruption”, because after we have already delved into a new plot aspect linked to Cloé’s past, we will unlock another maids room that we will need. to close their subplot .

But. B-but but. Sorry. But uh, just do it first?

Anyway, then we’ll get to talking well about the last room.

What I mean is that their story eventually stops suddenly before we can be told the details or have some kind of conclusion . It’s very strange because by now Cloé’s flashback should have caught all the attention of the player ; among other things, in the meantime we saw another digression because we had received some music scores and it became known that the piano broke ; then the player should be ready to go on with the main storyline … And then instead from the third floor we find ourselves back in the second , where they will go through the story of the maids again!

… And their story, so to speak, had no impact on the perception of the main flashback . That is, their fate, whether we knew it or not, made no difference . Do you remember the mother’s diary? At least there was more connection between the two topics.

About elements that will never return never again in the course of narrative development and to which it will be very difficult to attribute a precise meaning to them : in the screen of this third point we mentioned one ….

Yo, too, bro.
(Yes, we know that’s a type of greeting used in Japan)

4 ° – THE ROOM of the maids (conclusion)

Of course. We had not removed them from us: their story had yet to be finished , because they had to make us understand that their bodies had been burned and we will have to burn the teddy bears in turn to find out.

After this last action that must be performed for the gameplay only now we can define the arc of the waitresses concluded, with an important piece of the main plot which meanwhile moved on without them .

I want to anticipate a probable objection that might come to your mind: with the fact that they come back even later as wisps who prepare dinner perhaps I should doubt the narrative structure that I assumed it was meant for them and think again about the possibility that it was a purpose-built subplot so fragmented , but …. I would prefer to see that point of the game it as a sort of epilogue of their bizarre story: that is, now they are spirits; is no longer something that concerns them as closely as the deaths they suffered .

So, in short, I can say that my rage quit can be justified:

Why the fuck was the flashback to Cloé’s past if before we still had to close the story arc on the maids?

That is, I repeat, it is obvious that their story thus takes a back seat and it becomes much more difficult to remember .

And another factor not to be overlooked in this great mess that is this little arc is this

Why are you already anticipating Charlotte’s presence in the same room?

“Ehhh because she’s a maid too!”
But what kind of crappy justification is that? No, I can’t accept it.

But damn it, we haven’t even been introduced to the character so obviously the player can’t make any connections . But we hadn’t even been made to understand that had something to do with Michel’s past!

You look at these eyes and you think they are just scene details to make the house more creepy , you think they are something to overlook , when instead you go on in the game and you only discover that they are a representation of the curse from which the main character suffers! I mean, nothing important, really.

So: the association with the cat / diary scene; the narrative arc of the waitresses on which Cloé’s flashback is superimposed, the bad presentation of Charlotte within the game; all this has to do with the very technical world of information distribution in a story.

Returning once again to Charlotte, to make you aware of the gravity of the situation I would like to shift the subject on the temporal level. Look, I try to give you an approximate time.

Considering what our playing times have been (with Ele we replayed on purpose to be able to do the calculation…Even If I admit we chatted a lot during the playing) four hours (or three…) pass before we are finally explained what the fuck the red eyes mean!

And then the point is that the red eye , something so important related to the murders that Michel committed, is not even that recurring in the game . Indeed, it appears in a room where a subplot is already closing, as you have seen.

“You’re a jerk! Those red eyes are just maids!”

Ah. So how does it work? Every maid in town when she is hired also gets a passport to the afterlife: “when you die you will acquire the eye of Big Brother”? That is, if I had to choose to picture this (that the maids are so present in the house , through eyes, teddy bears and wisps more than the mistress herself at home … Not the excuse that they died with hatred and for this reason they have “a shape of their own” I do not accept it: in how many ways they would like to but show these women?) or make a nice plot link and associate the red eye with Charlotte (which if she says “I’ve been watching you all this time” it would be nicer to imagine that from the beginning of the game those eyes were referring to this sentence)… I prefer to link to the main storyline and link the red eye only to Charlotte.

On the one hand, offering you even a minute of the title as I did in this article, it might seem at first friction an analysis of a person who gets angry for a while and “you can’t enjoy a work of fiction like a normal person ” . No, that’s not it, really.

Because these defects such as coherence within a narrative STRUCTURE deserve to be treated . The narrative structure will also be something invisible in an audiovisual narrative work compared to, perhaps, the graphic style; but it is actually the logical basis on which we build the emotions for which we will remember that work . They have to do with our experience , with what we live.

I am getting really angry about this type of flaw because, as I told you, are those types of flaws so internal to the structure itself that risk too much of altering the perception of the spectator / player compared with the work , so if they do not understand the intentions of the work itself or of the author it ends up in some cases that the spectator / player adds their own interpretations or in the worst case that they forget what they see simply because they do not understand it; and do not want to try too hard to do so if the work is not as collaborative.

So, here is a wasted opportunity; especially in cases like this game where such interesting and current topics have been dealt with.

And so I want to conclude the gameplay analysis. You saw it from the diagram we presented to you on the second floor: it is dispersive , really. And we tried to prove it to you.

1st PLACE – The supernatural content

Believe it or not, so far we have discussed two major flaws in what was just the form . That is, the way content was narrated .

This one that we will put first is not a defect concerning the form, but a very serious defect concerning the contents themselves . Nor is it a content like any other, but an element through which the entire supernatural subplot of the game is supported.

Gentlemen, we are talking about THE CATS; or the supernatural subplot that was supposed to sustain all this acid trip-

That’s right, let’s talk about these little things now. Attach the bell to Noir, Attach the bell to Blanc, good sister and bad sister and the bad sister who becomes a cat. Mew Mew, amiche vincenti…(first words of the italian opening of Tokyo Mew Mew)

Ah, no, sorry, not her.

Actually with these screens I have already partially anticipated the main problem that these cats bring … (I am referring above all to a screen in particular).

Apart from the fact that it is a background which is explained little and badly : the idea of ​​curses taking on their own form is nice, but why a person should transform themselves right in a cat together with their own curse? I mean, what twisted point is this? But this would be part of the first two flaws on the writing and therefore on the narrative structure that we have already discussed extensively.

So … Apart from these problems, the reason I put this point in the first place is only one and it is very simple . That is, simple even if you followed Ele’s article on the characters and on the educational path that Michel pursued. And this also concerns Cloé to a large extent.

… I remind you of the screens.

(She know everything)

Here, now that we’re at it. I remind you once again the two screens of the apocalypse that we have been discussing for a long part of the duration of this article!

Okay! Okay! We are in pool position. We are getting there … You may have arrived there …….

……Here it comes…!

THEREFORE. The reason why I put this plot element first is that IT COMPLETELY GOES IN CONTRADICTION WITH AN ELEMENT, equally important in the plot, THAT WAS INTRODUCED BEFORE!

And one of the most important and difficult rules to keep in mind in a work of fiction is: NEVER LET THE ELEMENTS ENTER INTO CONTRADICTION WITHIN THEM. Because this generates paradoxes from which it is then difficult to get out and find a solution.

That is.

 

As the good Richard Benson said:

“Are you fucking kidding me ?!”

That is… .Yes. Like Ichigo from Mew Mew, in this version of Cloé’s Requiem Cloé has been turning into a cat all this time!

The astral projection probably came from the cat. Yeah, as a “projection” otherwise where the hell it should project itself. By the way: why she turned into a cat and Michel didn’t? What exactly are the requirements to make this element true ?!

I don’t know if you are perceiving this as the colossal bullshit I am perceiving .

Let’s try to look at it a little from various points of view.

FIRST. As I had anticipated in the Appendix on the characters by sneaking a few sentences from Ele, the separation of Cloé into two cats has removed the possibility of having a development arc that could be as complex as that of Michel , never being able to confront his “cursed personality”.

If Cloé had dealt with this more frustrated side of her personality in a different and more human way, for example approaching her case as an actual identity dissociation disorder (therefore having only one “physical character” on stage that changed their personality), the moral would have been closed in a clear and explicit way and the message of not to pass from an excess would have been given to another in the vision of a human being (as a saint or as a demon depending on our personal advantage) , but to recognize a nuance in people between black and white which is gray , the more complex shade and would have been a great result for the Horror RPG genre, where now almost by definition people are deliberately demonized and made monstrous …

I’m not mentioning these two at random, we mentioned their cases just when we were talking about Michel

Once I had heard two Italian youtubers commenting on the “ How filthy ” scene. When asked by the colleague “what is happening?” seeing the protagonist break the furniture, the other replied more or less like this:

“Ah, well, it’s normal for it to behave like this , in Horror RPGs these things always happen …

I don’t know what you think, but what I think is that when you choose a genre you are actually choosing a linguistic code . A code for talking about certain facets of characters does not make these slaves the genre they belong to .

The reason why we think that the characters in this game, if re-evaluated properly by the authors and publishers, could be revolutionary in a context more related to the sphere of marketing is that they would overturned the canons of normal characters who in a great fandom come from the sphere of “gore” which are horror narrative works and would have done it with great maturity.

Moreover, they would have done this through a more traditional narrative form, therefore with the association of the themes that occurs indirectly (and with this advance partly what I said earlier when I mentioned the team game Salvato: not necessarily the stereotypes of certain types of characters would have fallen through more experimental products such as Doki Doki Literature Club; which followed a more fragmented narrative approach – the numerous variations based on route- and meta).

SECOND, the most important.

With the existence of this clause Michel’s arc of redemption becomes a joke, because we reiterate that it is really stupid to make him regret having treated Cloé as a object of comfort , in this case a pet, if you then make this plot detail true .

I mean, really, it’s stupid. Very very stupid.

To make you realize the gravity of the situation: wanna cry? Well, get this little summary of screens in succession.



Here, wipe away your tears and now think that they made her a real cat because of this poorly explained plot detail. Doesn’t it make you angry to think how little you get it right with respect to the whole tragic aspect of her story? Something tells me that this very serious contradiction was created because they did not know how to explain the existence of two Cloés in the house. Here’s why.

PLUS, beyond these two very serious points to take into consideration, let’s just try to think that, like a virus , these two beasts of the Devil not only infected the quality of the original game, but to explain their subplot, the authors were pushed to create this abortion…

So you have to be careful. “Simply” this. You simply need to have a little more awareness, so as to decide what to keep and what to cut to follow a logical thread of the single discourse.

Really, you can add all the themes you want in a work but it is very important that the points you want to deepen do not contradict each other .

But nevertheless, despite all this anger that exploded during the writing of this article, there is an even more important point that we would like to reiterate ….

And it’s that we really have a deep affection for this game.

We continue and we will continue to take up the cudgels for it : these are not mistakes made out of pretentiousness or malice, whim or laziness for that matter but simple clumsiness of the first experience .

PACKAGING

And to conclude this great “chapter” of the article in which we demonstrated how Cloé’s Requiem is a too amateurish game for the new needs narrative  drawn up for the Second Generation of Horror RPGs we will talk about Packaging in general as a further confirmation of this thesis… The Packaging will however be an appendix.

We want to treat the aesthetic style like an appendix , you got it right.

So let’s try to walk the end of our path by commenting on the graphic aspect.

I immediately start by saying that I will not bring you another screenshot of the game here to see the maps because by now, really, in terms of screenshots of this damn game I imagine that you are saturated with regard to our articles: if you rewrite a bit you can review them and realize for yourself that only the lighting of the environments is saved, because in themselves the tilesets of Rpg Maker arranged in that way are not all this marvel and make the title, unfortunately, really amateur .

On this I want to point out an important detail: certainly there do you remember the abysmal change of style of Corpse Party Blood Covered compared to the original CORPSE-PARTY (the ’96 one): you can see that a production company got its hands on it because there was an important modernization work also on the graphic level .

You see what a difference, the quality has improved a lot (even if these versions like this …. I didn’t mind the retro graphics at all I have to admit that to widen the target it was really necessary to modernize them).

Well, it doesn’t seem strange to you that for having had an external help Cloé’s Requiem -Con Amore- has kept the same bad quality of the maps?

In short, in this damn new version on which they will base a remake they have only taken care of to change the focus of the themes .
But …. As we always say: everything has its time. We will return to this topic.

So here we are talking about the packaging … On the cover I would not have anything special to say; there are the silhouettes of the characters drawn in an almost skeletal way, I am not particularly crazy about it but I admit that there is a good filling of the screen. The logo in the center, the two figures on the sides and the icons of the two instruments above and below; it’s good.

What some players have said is “unusual”, and so many of their compatriots on Freem! that released reviews also thought, is not so much in the menu (putting the character in the center with the features on the sides in my opinion is a good and very intuitive choice) as in the strange functionality concerning the equipment system of the objects .

As Ele might well explain to you, the equipment system is a default feature that the engine offers you when you start a random project; we know well that RPG Maker is a tool created to generally design fantasy titles in which there are battles to be faced and therefore weapons to be equipped, which give a certain percentage of attack, defense and other technical values ​​to be set in based on your battle strategy. Probably the two girls at the time will have seen this default feature and will have considered it useful to assign conditions in which having equipped tot object made something happen; removing any numerical values.

What does this make us understand? Once again this detail is useful to make us understand the nature of “casual game” that had this title that did not even bother to stray a bit from the default features, both for the maps and for the UI interface.

Perfect, you are now prepared. You have had all our justifications even if in case this article will ever be seen by a wide audience, the flame will always have for the minimum paragraph a biiit less argued than the others.
But you know… It’s also to keep our conscience clear.

So now we’re in the final sections.

Authors-Opera relationship, what can I say?

Thanks to the first part, we re-introduce Nubarin and Nanashi No Chiyo , the two cousins ​​ who worked on the object of our screams:

Left: Nubarin (scenery, drawings, character design), on the right Nanashi No Chiyo (music, outline of the story).

You have already seen this image: the two girls even made it to the Tokyo Game Show.

But heck, you have seen how many problems and how little marketable the game actually is! We had an entire section dedicated to the lack of narrative clarity, the harmful and dispersed gameplay in information, as well as the fact that certain characters are the total opposite of “marketable stars”!

So why? Why did they get so high in their boom period?

Keep glued to your sets, people, because here we will introduce a real trip of various points that, when I sensed them in the aforementioned sleepless weekends, stunned me for a week.

But let’s go very slowly … Let’s review what has been for them in the period of success , and take some information that, if analyzed better, can lead to quite uncomfortable conclusions …

(They are translated somewhat roughly in English, given my no knowledge of Japanese. But I’m sure of the concepts.)

Why did I underline these parts of articles? Don’t like the writers’ choice of words? Do I want to criticize them in some way?

Nah . Here we are talking about something much more external to the precise interviews, and more related to the image that was given in general of the two authors, which (possibly, this may be a conjecture) has also brought more people to the game.

I have personally noticed that in many interviews given by them it is always quoted or in any case emphasized that “These two girls are (they had, by now. Nubarin graduated, so to speak) only 19 and 16 and have created a video game!”

Here we begin to talk about a real case of marketing operation done on the person of the authors themselves .

Why guys, if you are asked what image do you have of the “game developer” what do you have in mind?

Exactly.

But let’s get to what I mean .

Let’s talk for a moment about anime / manga culture. Fans of these types of media (call them what you want: otaku, albeit a negative term, weaboo, weeb…) are the main target of HOR-RPG, whether the audience is Eastern or Western.

We know how popular is the attachment to the imagination of the young, pretty and pure girl by this community.

Artist: ク ロ (Kuro) on pixiv.com

(Something tells me this fanart will look much more disturbing to readers my appendix about the characters of the game …)

In one obviously very very subtle case, I believe that this was reflected in how Nubarin and Nanashi were treated in the indie gaming industry . And no, I don’t think it has to do with the fact that people ask thems how they organized themselves with school: even an adult game developer has to get organized with work, right? So, let’s get back to us.

Girls (I would add that in my opinion if they had been boys the impression on them would have changed radically…) which are very young have approached something as technical as creating a video game ?! ”

(As an Italian I had to, sorry)

What more do I need to say? The situation explains itself.

The youth  and … Even gender, it seems (this detail is often emphasized in titles or interviews) of the game’s authors has been largely exploited to get the title higher, even if this game is not at its own made for a large audience.

“Oh how cute, the little girls did a game.”

Yes, since I’m a damned sadist, I want to give you the sickest or most annoying image of this thing possible. Are my morals coming into play? Certainly. Can you consider it a “normal operation”, disagree with me and consider what I say a gigantic hyperbole? Obviously.

But as a girl who is the same age Nanashi was when she and her cousin released Cloé’s Requiem, these reactions, general shock and “ cute-ization” of what actually were two game developers like any other in the world …

Pull out the sociological analyzes you want, this discourse can be further expanded. I just say they honestly make me puzzled.

But after this first revelation, we can move on to another question:

If they had this type of popularity, given more by the idea they give the authors than by the quality of the title itself, how did it affect the future works of Buriki Clock?

Fantasy Maiden’s Odd Hideout , as good a thriller as it is, but it features many unclosed subplots, a few holes in the script given in part by them, and a pretty long filler subspecies that makes the game very long and, when the plot does not go on, also quite heavy.

Trauma Traum … I don’t know if the fact that we don’t know Japanese is a big issue, but playing it with the translator we noticed (in the early stages) a general lack of linearity and lack of clarity that made the game borderline tedious. And here not even the characters are good, as they are all walking and living stereotypes.

From these two very brief analyzes you can see one thing: no one taught Buriki Clock, no matter how old they have grown and how far they have progressed with their education, that their way of doing game development had huge flaws, if they wanted to expand professionally.

So simply … They made the same mistakes they made with Cloé’s Requiem . Indeed, they worsened with Trauma Traum .

But in those cases there were neither competitions, nor the “first debut” factor to save them from the great ditch that is being forgotten by the internet.

But to see what I mean, we enter the mud barefoot (not to mention another brown substance, smelly and with a soft consistency), let’s see …

…………………………… ..

…………………………… .. 2

OK then. Let’s talk about this .

For Cloé’s Requiem: With Amore there is a file with an incomplete translation of the dialogues, so we were able to better analyze everything during our confusing actual game play.

I start by saying that Con Amore is neither a spin-off nor an extra edition (as they want us to pass) … Con Amore isn’t even a game, come to think of it, given the total lack of stimulating gameplay.

Con Amore is … A bad idea. 3

Yes, many Italians will find the quote to Yotobi inappropriate, but at least I find many similarities with the case analyzed by him, the one that concerns the italian actor Beppe Convertini.

“Your characters are beautiful, girls, fangirls and fanboys love them! What would you say to doing something else together? Like an idiocy? “ 4
-Possible sentence said by a random member of KADOKAWA to Nubarin and Nanashi.

Guys, really, people who have seen that video have surely noticed that even Con Amore is a product that aims only at “fun, tragedy and romance for boys and girls ot all ages ”!

“-Walk around Michel
-Sit on his lap 
(I would like to point out the second choice that yes, some cats do, but … This cat has a human conscience. I mean. She thought about doing this with a human brain. Furry bestiality?)

“Aw, you wanna play?”

(Furry bestiality. How ambiguous all this is.)

Okay, I’ll stop with the analogies with The Ideal Boyfriend, I risk abusing them!

I hope that this case analyzed by Yotobi has helped you to understand what the structure of Con Amore really is: very simple “playable” clips of a non-existent (because, for all that the boys of Cloé’s Requiem have done and experienced in their lives, that life is really a utopia: maybe they could be angry just because some biscuits for breakfast 5 …) daily life.

It features the four main characters and …

Goddamn furries .

Period. Really, my description of Con Amore ends here.

“But plot elements are mentioned when you go to Cloé’s house!”

Ah? So re-playing Cloé’s Requiem from the point of view of the annoying kitten considered a real “plot”?!

“But there are adds-“

Oh, let’s talk about the additions Con Amore has made to the storyline now…

… Like the justification to a rapist !

This is a plot element that deserves to be explained, along with other ABYSSAL BULLSHIT (such as the resurrection of Cloé, a cat’s dream of becoming human; Alain’s plan to have Cloé cursed so “his beloved child,  sick from birth,  would live forever” ) , we needed a whole game, don’t you think, fucking goddammit?!

“I’m afraid of losing Cloé. He* seemed obsessed with it ”

* In the “game” you see a “demonized” version of Charlotte (this storyline is part of the so-called abyssal bullshit …) , a cursed version of her spirit. In the scene it is quite clear that with “Him” Alain refers to HIS personal cursed version. 

My God.

The curse! It was the curse that raped Chloé!

It was him*! The one who can’t be named!
Sure sure! Sick people do not exist, it is always something / someone else’s fault!

My God, I’m having flashbacks of …

SHUT THE FUCK UP!

Guys. Let’s be aware: in this product everything that must not be done is concentrated in something done for pure marketing.

A very serious thing like rape was justified to create yet another reason for “comfort”, so it was lightened (disrespectfully) in a huge way Cloé’s heavy backstory , also making her a less tragic character .

You would have found it uncomfortable to dress such a traumatized girl as a Japanese maid, eh?

(This stuff also has 91 retweets.)

We will discuss it later as one of the three case studies that we will address in the article on the “Selfish Confort Dilemma” …

But for now we can consider this recent catastrophe as a demon .

A demon that sucks out all the possible depth of any story, just because the audience has to freak out about how “keeewl” a generic hot character is in the game without fear of cheering on psychopaths, pedophiles, hysterics or just … Pieces of shit!

Moreover, to put salt on the wound of my poor and young heart, in this jumble of all that is wrong in the world they try to patch up the few clarity of plot with careless justifications by not telling any story and also joining in form of “videogame” the characters reduced to the bone and dried of all their personality, and have been used in vulgar marketing operations to beg for public!

“I’m afraid of losing Cloé. He * seemed obsessed with it ”

… Tu quoque Petro, fili mi…? 6

We are good, let’s try to explain to you what message they tried to launch with the new plot:

In short Cloé’s Requiem “Con Amore” already from the subtitle should make you understand that llllove is the central theme. Am I right?

“Warm”

Mh. Unambiguous word to say to the person who has just welcomed you.

“This whole world gives me warmth”

It’s global warming.

Many times Noir repeats in the course of the game that “ was loved by many people , everyone took care of her “, from the Alembert house to the Ardennes house in which we are covered with fucking cloying daily skits; instead…  Blanc became Alain’s scapegoat . Let me explain.

Because they added the subplot that “Chloé would be doomed to die because of poor health from infancy”, so by a certain age she would be dead anyway?! (In the original version she was weak because she hadn’t eaten and slept for days as she said herself; even the curse had weakened her) Alain realized that not even medicines could help her, so he inquired about the curses to look for a way to make it survive longer. And since curses take on a life of their own from very strong feelings he must have seen fit to beat up this poor cat to see how the phenomenon happened. And I swear, you see scenes where you see Blanc’s corpse covered in blood and after a few scenes it’s like nothing has happened to him, but he’s just very, very pissed off.

So if the concept was not clear I repeat: if in that house the father raped his daughter it was because of Blanc , who somehow had some strange side effect about this asshole beating him up.

“I’m back”

“BITCHES!” (Ele’s artistic freedom)

… But also Noir, when it looked like she was killed when the house was infested with curses here and there, was able to resurrect! As it is anticipated at the beginning of the game on the other hand.

So TAN TAN she came back just in time when Michel arrived at Cloé’s home for the sanitation- I mean, purification peration. Here basically we live the plot of the previous game where the two play and look for scores (indeed the cat helps them to look for them because “the music and the scores represent the dimension of happy memories”, let’s remember) and Noir, helping Cloé to resurrect when she seemed dead, gave her back “the love received” by bringing her back to life as Blanc returned the hatred to her father , managing to prove “to the viewer” that if you do good you will receive good in return and if you do evil it will go against you; and demonstrating instead to Blanc, probably, that hate will also be a strong feeling that it will survive for a long time, but love always wins over everything and even death; in the face of the old plot in which the black cat had to kill the white one!

 

All very nice, too bad that:

1. These WERE NOT the issues that the original game treated. That is, the story of Cloé’s Requiem was something much more “internal” and mature, we explored the different human facets as we had to see together. It was the story of this boy who had a growth path ; ideally moving away from a social context in which there was child exploitation (it is also mentioned in a dialogue between Charlotte and Michel to say – she was happy to sleep in a bed warm and get some bread every day, while Michel simply believed that they had hired Charlotte only because it was cheap given her young age-; so, to say, this theme was not so hidden ); a social context in which children like him and Pierre were used as a source of income , a social context in which there was silence where the girls became sexual objects , a social context in which there was the objectification of the same waitresses literally torn to pieces like soft toys, because used as an outlet for the frustrations of a high-rank crazy woman (it would have been too gore and unrealistic as an element, but it can’t be more explicit than that…).
…From all this context we have simply seen how Michel, destined to grow as a future executioner had the courage to become aware of his sins and then GO AGAINST THE CURRENT; and in all this it seems to me that in the world we live in, considering the easy distortion of the image that you can have of your neighbor a refresher on all these issues related to objectification can only do well.

In short: we know that probably following the epilogue of the game he will go to prison as he says he has to “go back”; therefore after the expiation of his guilt we can feel reassured that he will become a responsible and conscientious adult and , why not, who will be able to actively intervene against future abuses that he could witness during his life. Really, again, realize how important this experience he had was.

2. This is a message (the one Con Amore delivers) that we honestly perceive as very simplistic: surely there is some truth regarding the rotation of karma, if we want to put it this way, but to say that “if you receive hate you will cultivate hatred and if receive love you will cultivate love “, put in such an abstract way and REGARDLESS of the personality of each one … It puzzles us. In short, everyone faces the difficulties of life in his own way, again: see Michel himself from the original game that managed to detach himself from the abuses he suffered in first person! 

But let’s say that this second point “is a detail”, let’s not dwell too long.

Anyway, let’s get back to us.

Guys … This type of story, characters and justifications want to replace the original truths that we analyzed in the Trump Card.

“We have decided to make a remake of Cloé’s Requiem!”

And there are the two furries.

I need soda, I need to have the energy to give you the second big reveal about this game.

I go and come back.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VBlFHuCzPgY

…. Okay, here I am again .

So, guys … Let me put up with this umpteenth stab in the heart and answer this question yourself:

“Why are they doing a remake, possibly changing the whole tones of the story and the characters, because of these kittens making everything so much more beautiful and cute?”

Here, someone raises their hand … There, in the back row!

“For money!”

Eh… More or less.
If they only wanted to squeeze the product it had to be more marketable, and only then could they do remakes, releases on consoles and so on.

You see how sen did it, right? Their product left the road open for them!

In many promotional images we continue to see Alfred as a monster exactly as he was seen in the original game, there has been no work of softening, indeed.

That is to say: this is the actual header found on Steam .

In my opinion there is something else underneath.

Let’s see, in view of this remake, if there have been any promotional art on the game …

No.

Useless or without context art does not count …

Nothing, I can’t find anything!
Nothing… No cursed pianos, no murders of musical instruments, no cursed Cloé, no very disturbing Alain…?

Strange. To be the game they now push as a workhorse (or rather, how they clung with their nails to their previous successes …) there is little promotion of its true content .

Well guys, from this sudden remake and this lack of promotion of the Cloé’s Requiem that came before “Con Amore” … I can theorize that for the authors, given what they want to do now with these poor guys , it is very likely that the original Cloé’s Requiem was just a draft.

Or to be more exaggerated, an error .

A jumble of concepts that they have tried to put together in a plot, but which they have still felt incomplete, because many of these are not explained or left too much to interpretation.

But at this point, even with remakes, reboots and so on and so forth: in these times, people are fighting on who is best distributed …

“I’m afraid of losing Cloé. He * seemed obsessed with it ”

[…]

“Keep Cloé alive for as long as possible … How can I do that?”

Bad writers always come out no matter how cute and well designed the characters are. Buriki Clock wanted to make Cloé’s Requiem less “amateur”, but above all to make it something more marketable …

(FUCKING SHITTY CA-)

… But we have seen the effects of this.

But why, I asked myself?

WHY ?!

Why do they do…

All of this…?

Then, the epiphany.

Thinking about what we have said so far, and then move on …

Nearly everyone you see –
Like him an ‘her,
An ‘you, an’ me –
Pretends to be
A pillar of society –

(from the interview at Famitsu)

A model for propriety –
Sobriety
An ‘piety –
Who shudders at the thought
Of notoriety!

The ladies an ‘gents’ ere before you –
Which none of ‘em ever admits –


May ‘ave saintly looks –
But they’re sinners an ‘crooks!

(Famitsu)


(Promotional art for the novel “Cloé’s Requiem: Andante”)


Hypocrites!


Hypocrites! 7

Here.

Do you remember the first concept we introduced to you in this second part of the article?

“Cloé’s Requiem, since its first show of popularity, always had outside help.”

Eh, eh. We finally get there!

Notice that it will not be the first time we will talk about Kadokawa, who seems to be the cause of all ills regarding the commercialization of Horror RPG.

So, as always, we go very slowly, because only from these images the theory will seem to the limit of conspiracy.
Indeed, we explain just those.

What made me exclaim: “There is a very interesting and rotten system behind it!”?

In the reprise of Façade, as the first image I showed you this:

Where was the very first introduction of Cloé’s Requiem made to a larger audience, and where could it be more visible?

Comptiq, magazine published by Kadokawa!

With what competition did they become popular?

And what platform was this contest on?

NicoNico, platform of a subsidiary company of  Kadokawa !

After the initial distribution phase, where were the two authors interviewed?

ch.nicovideo.jp/ indies-game/blomaga

As you can see, it always has to do with NicoNico.

(This is probably my conjecture, but also the fact that on the aforementioned site the game was described as a “masterpiece” even though it didn’t have such a huge fanbase, and it wasn’t even so well received in the West, something that Angels Of Death for example had …
This makes this more of a marketing operation than a genuine interview.)

(Famitsu)

But in any case we can see that the two main interviews were released only on certain platforms:

Exactly, only platforms belonging to Kadokawa or subsidiary companies to it .

So, unless every single distribution company in all of Japan is somehow from Kadokawa … It didn’t just manage the publishing ion of the novels …

But the entire distribution and future marketing of the Buriki Clock brand . From start to finish.

(I defaced the photo of these two poor girls just to make you understand in a disturbing way what I’m talking about?
… Yes.)

There was no case. There is no genuineness in the “success” that this game has made in Japan.

And you know what?

It must have sounded strange to us from the start! In the West this game was forgotten after a year … Because there was no “Kadokawa” to cover the two authors.

For us it was an indie game like any other.

In fact, referring back to what I said, about the fact that this game is not made for a large audience, like what the products advertised and distributed by Kadokawa typically have …

* Update from last time!
The guy on the left is one of the characters from… Uh…
“Luciano Family”…? Something like that…? (The online translator is… Eh.)
Content is shared and created by Buriki Clock simply because Nubarin works on it. *


Remember the original designs, guys. Remember the style, the palettes, the types of expressions that were given to the characters.

Nubarin’s drawings have different facial expressions depending on the character . A bright character has a cheerful laugh, and a cool character has a modest laugh. It also depends on their personality. You can tell which character they are by just looking at their face without the hair. -Nanashi No Chiyo

Most likely the main features of the game have been changed to make them more relevant to the “portfolio” of the distribution company which took it under his wing.

Everything I wrote paragraphs and paragraphs about was something that, according to a major, would never, ever work.

So, returning to the “Author-Work Relationship” question in the case of Cloé’s Requiem…

Well, it’s an unnatural relationship, not 100% decided by the authors. It was chosen for them to portray the relationship between a title that could be a masterpiece (if only it had more capable hands to model it) and authors who were inexperienced at the time, and now corrupt, if we want to use hyperbole …

It is a simply “non-existent” relationship, and without any hope of recovery.

The only thing we can do now, we few fans of that messed-up videogame draft, is to wait for the most “complete” product, what it should have been, already having our vision reddened and with the irrepressible desire to destroy libraries .

And at the end of this I want to bring a little talk about the characters: again PaoGun is here with you.

I anticipated what I meant before and now I can express it:

They cannot be distinguished anymore.

Nubarin, Nanashi, do you realize what you could do?

You came from the current of “controversial games” par excellence and this feature could make your characters unique (since they are the only highlight that could be saved from this game ). But now they’re just like so many others. You have lost because without Kadokawa (and Enterbrain … We will talk about this company in the future) you go nowhere.

Return the dark circles to Cloé! Give Pierre his falseness, for God’s sake! In addition to being the most “guessable” character in the removal of all his muscular tension and mimicry that distinguished him in the character design …

You who had the courage to approach a main character to the figure of a rapist allowing him a path of redemption; you who made us understand how the heck was the “educational” system to which the characters were subjected in this era … An era that, although it may seem distant in many respects, is it is actually very close to today’s society .

You who have for this dismantled piece by piece a stereotype as old as the world of now put this mask back on him ?!

It’s the same character.

Yes; I know that type of examples, with those kind of chibis is not very brilliant because the key of type of marketing operation is the stylization and simplification of character design, I know perfectly well that there is a deep economic and cultural context behind all this… But we certainly wouldn’t be so angry if we didn’t have to confront this context in which the sense of content has been completely transformed with help of some types of “games substitutes”; provided that, as we say from the beginning, no type of promotion is addressed to the controversial issues of which the original game spoke. Let’s talk about a passage like Façade in dividing this case study into “game and market”. The more controversial side of the title was removed in order to be sold and paid with its identity.

A catastrophic change that can be summarized in two simple images:


From Michel facing Alain…