Emmyrea #3 Finale?: Whoops~ (Both in Game and Out)

So I’m setting a procrastination record with this and writing the post ~7 months after beating the game! Whoops. Last year was pretty stressful, and I ended up dropping the blog because of that. I’m trying to better balance things this year, and I wanted to bring back the blog since it’s a great creative outlet for silly writings, so here we are!

Apologizes in advance for trying to remember what happened, so this might be a little scatterbrained of a post, but thankfully, I take a lot of screenshots. My Emmyrea folder has 477 photos (!), so hopefully we can figure this out.

Let’s jump in already!

Lulu:
“Right now, she’s safe in a special location.”

Last time, we had learned Calkram (Philia) is Emmyrea’s older sister. Emmyrea was taken from her family to be the princess, since the king couldn’t have any children, then that family was slaughtered. Philia, as the only survivor, wandered into the woods to die, only to run into the previous Calkram, who took her in and raised her. (That’s the short version, check the end of post #2 for more details.)

Now, everyone’s having awkward cave dinner time going “well… now what?”

“Go to Emmyrea”
“Go to Elina”
“Go to Merian”
“Go to Lulu”

In what seems to be the direct “what route are you going for” prompt, you get to choose which girl to console. Considering the princess just learned a horrifying truth about her sister, I went that way.

At this point, I was a little too lost and went to boot up the game, proceeded to brick my MemCard Pro, unbricked it, corrupted a few saves, but thankfully Emmyrea was spared and has a few dozen save slots I used all of. Thank you past self! So now I can speed read this scene that I can’t remember~ (I’ll try not to overdo it though, where’s the fun in that~)

Turns out I couldn’t remember what happened because nothing leads up to this anyway! We walk up to Emmyrea, accidently step on a loose rock, alerting her to our presence. She turns to us, tears full of eyes, then she jumps into our arms before we can even finish our apology.

Emmyrea:
“This is an order! Stay as you are!!!”

After she cries for a while, she calms down, then asks you to keep this a secret from Elina. Apparently Elina yells at her for crying, saying it’s un-princess-like. She then goes on to explain that it makes sense to her now why her Mother always avoided her despite her Father loving her. Though, he only pampered her and never scolded her. She felt more like a possession than a child.

Following that, you have a long brainstorming chat about how you can convince Calkram to undo the curse without killing her until Emmyrea gets sleepy and falls asleep on your shoulder. You stay there awake, more determined than ever to protect this girl you’ve barely talked to! I’m not sure what our affection levels are route-wise right now, probably all over the board.

The next morning, Lulu decides to lead the party to Calkram again as long as they promise to keep the stabby things in their stabby holders πŸ™‚

Lulu
“This bell emits a sound that monsters hate. As long as we keep ringing it, we won’t run into anything dangerous.”

Lulu pulls out the plot bell of “just get on with it,” which honestly, I wish more games did. Emmyrea sighs, apparently hoping to finally see a monster. You mention it’s a good thing to have a safe journey, to which Emmyrea laughs at you for not being confident. Merian tries to defend your awesome dental-worm-killing skills, but Emmyrea outtalks her and makes her admit your progress was all a miracle.

Suddenly, Bitch feels a strange presence. He mentions it, but everyone dismisses him because of the plot bell. “Huh, there’s no birds or animal noises at all,” Emmyrea notices without a hint of implication behind her thoughts.

Lulu suddenly rushes by your side when you hear a sound, a soft thud as she swiftly intercepts an incoming sword with… her torso.

Someone broke the stabby promise~
Emmyrea
“Redrick! Do you have any idea what you’ve just done!?”
Redrick
“But of course I do. I only put down that filthy slave of Calkram’s. Or am I wrong?”

Seems Redrick planned on murdering you and taking the princess back himself, but that didn’t quite work out. Apparently he’s really glued to you this entire game and overheard your whole conversation last night. He declares Emmyrea a false princess and uses that fact as blackmail.

Redrick
“It’s all very simple, really. If you don’t want me to release this information to everyone, then you must marry me.”

Blackmail wedding sounds like a great way to get stabbed in your sleep. Emmyrea’s done it once before, she’s got the stabby touch!

Partially related, but Redrick’s VA sounds like he’s trying to record a seducing noble “blackmails you into marriage ASMR” video, including getting way too close to the mic and quiet breathy talking. Not sure how I feel about that…

Redrick: “Be quiet, will you? I’m talking with Emmyrea right now.”

See what I mean?

Around this time, Ballnog comes nogging out of the forest, bloody sword in hand.

Redrick
“Ah, it seems Ballnog has just finished slaying the Great Witch Calkram!”

With news of her sister’s possible demise, Emmyrea shouts at him that she’ll never marry a guy like him!

Redrick
“Are you sure that’s a wise move? If that’s your answer, then you might as well dig your graves right here. If you won’t do what I want, it’s more convenient if you all perish here.”

He may not have the princess’s hand, but that’s one less noble in his way to becoming king. Or something.

The moment Bitch grabs his blade, Lu BuBallnog steps between you and Redrick.

Bitch
“Why!? Why do you listen to a guy like this!? Do you understand what you’re doing!?”

Ahh, are we about to get into my least favorite villain motivation of all time?

Ballnog
“It’s simple. I just love murder. The face of a man freshly stabbed is just so refreshing. Redrick allows me many such opportunities, so that’s why I follow him.”

Aaaaaand there it is… Ugh. “I’m evil because murder boner” is just the worst.

Like get this shit out. Anyway, stupid motivations aside, Ballnog just went from potentially interesting Lu Bu clone to generic villain we have to dispose of. Considering how soundly we got wrecked by the 6-armed monkey early on that he one-shot, we’re pretty screwed.

I’M SURE WE’LL BE FINE!

Cue the ridiculous battle music! How will we possibly triumph over the Black Knight himself!?

He places the pressure on you as sweat coats your hands. The moment your foot shifts on loose ground, he flies in for the kill. However, you’re spared from Death as Eliana jumps in and blocks his sword.

Ballnog
“Hahaha! How pathetic for a man to be saved by a women.”

Now he’s just adding villain points to make his death more satisfying.

Ballnog
“An easy victory is not an enjoyable one. I don’t mind if you all attack me at once.”

Though Bitch, his masculinity in shambles, tells the girls to stand back since this is his fight.

The game proceeds in its odd “let’s actually have a fight scene in a novel” angle where you have to choose an action. First you only get “swing from above” or “swing from below.” Selecting below gets you a new option, “swing from the side.” So of course you go for the new option since the previous ones wouldn’t work! After that, stabbing opened, which worked. Then it loops back to the previous choices, which we know side swinging worked, so let’s repeat that. Same dialogue, though now he’s vomiting blood!

You win! That was… not that hard? I’m curious if you can lose that fight, but yeah. For all his badass hype, he kind of just eats your sword and dies. Whoops.

Redrick
“B-Ballnog…! My Ballnog is…!”

Yes Redrick, your Ballnog is all warm and dried up. Realizing how absolutely up shit creek he is, Redrick panics.

Redrick
“N-no…! S-stay back…! I-I know! You can take the credit for killing Calkram! Please, just spare me!”

Probably not the best move to be like “you can say you killed your sister, good deal, huh?”

You approach slowly, drawing out your sword, when suddenly from behind…!

Marian is chanting something. I-is she casting a spell at Redrick!?

Bitch worries that, while astronomically low, if she does kill him, she’ll be a murderer and murder is bad if you’re not male!

You were too late, however, and her spell is cast, flying right at Redrick. His body flashes in a bright and violent light.

“AHHHHHH!!!!”

*clown nose honk* (no really)

…well, he’s a frog now. Cue zany music 30 second insanity loop.

Merian
“Whaaaa…! Why’s he a frog!?”

Oh that Merian, cue laugh track.

Emmyrea
“You get what you deserve. Now stay as a frog for a while and cool off.”

The party proceeds to forget about him for the rest of the game, essentially meaning they left him to die in the woods. Is that worse than the spell killing him? That seems worse. Oh well, it’s Redrick, who cares.

Merian
“N-no, (he won’t be stuck like this forever). My magic only really holds for 3 days at best…”

Alright fine, if, and that’s a big if, Redrick can survive for 3 days in the woods as a frog without getting eaten or starving, then I suppose he lives. Assuming he can then crawl his way back to civilization.

I feel like we’re forgetting something…

Elina
“Bitch, hurry! Lulu’s…!”

Oh right, someone’s been stabbed and was bleeding this entire time. Whoops.

Marian runs up and attempts to cast magic, something which no one should let her do given her track record. Bitch prays to god that her powers actually work for once.

And they do! *gasp*! She manages to close the wounds and stop the bleeding, but she still needs serious attention. But where will they find a doctor!?

*CRASH*
With a thunderous roar, a giant teacup flashed into existence from the bag.

Well I guess flying tea cup is on the menu? Magical flying device she’s had the whole time? Huh. Oh well.

Only three people can ride the teacup ride at a time, however, so you must make a choice. Essentially you choose which girl to be with, which feels like the game forgot they wanted to have girl-specific endings and they need to force all the choices here and now.

Committing to full Emmyrea at this point, we choose to stay with her.

Bitch
“My duty is to protect the princess. Until she’s safe back at the castle, I cannot leave her side.”

Emmyrea immediately responds:

Emmyrea
“I’ll be fine, Bitch. Elina’s here too.”

Bitch goes on about how it’s his knightly duty, with Emmyrea telling you that she wants you to save Lulu who was nothing but a good friend. Bitch asks Marian if she’ll be fine with Lulu, who respond with a “Y-yes!” With a yes that just bleeds confidence as much as Lulu is, Bitch is happy with his decision and lets her fly away alone with Lulu. Hmm. I hope she lives…

Marian says she’s going to return right away after she drops her off at the hospital, so we shouldn’t go anywhere! I’m not sure why we don’t just meet her at the town, that’s kind of weird to just ditch a stabbed person.

I feel like we’re forgetting about another stabbed person…

Oh right…!

Elina runs off ahead with the plot bell to check on Calkram, suddenly knowing where the shed is. Also not really sure why they didn’t run. Not like Bitch couldn’t carry Emmyrea there. Instead, Emmyrea breaks down the moment she doesn’t have to appear strong before Elina, then begins to question who she is if not a lie.

Emmyrea
“What’s correct? Who can I believe in, Bitch…?”
> “Yourself.”
“Me”
“Don’t believe in anyone.”

Apparently this went more of a “the world’s a bitch and you can only believe in yourself” angle instead of a “don’t give up, believe in yourself!” version that I hoped for. Time traveled back and flipped that to “Me”.

“Believe in me. I’ll never betray you. No matter who you are, I’ll always protect you. So…”
“But you… You serve the king! If I don’t have royal blood in me, then what reason do you have to protect me anymore?”
“I didn’t come here and risk my life for a simple reason like that. Same with Elina. She’s be hurt if she heard you say that.”

Emmyrea finally calms down, remembering she has friends~ (But really, would we protect her if it wasn’t our job? Elina maybe, but we’ve barely talked with her? Oh well.)

Emmyrea
“If I ever waver, please correct me as you always have, Bitch. I’ll believe in you.”

Elina finally comes running back, but her face is grim. Seems the news isn’t good, but Emmyrea begs her to lead the way.

Calkram laid against the wall in the back of the shed, her body still apart from labored breathing.
Calkram
“Emmyrea… is that you…?”
Calkram extended a shaking hand towards us, but… it seemed her vision had already left her…
Calkram
“Even without hearing your voice, I can tell it’s you… Emmyrea… I can feel your gentle presence beside me… You’ve become a beautiful lady…”

Even as she lays dying, she warns Emmyrea about the black knight coming after her. Emmyrea reassures her that her valiant knight has defeated them.

Calkram
“Emmyrea… There was never a day… where I didn’t think of you… I wished we could be together…”

Calkram passes shortly after. They dig a weirdly vertical grave, that or they balled her up, then said their goodbyes.

Soon a flustered Marian finds you, complaining that you left the spot! You explain that a lot of things happened (not to mention it was a silly idea), and she understands once she sees the red eyes of the recently crying Emmyrea. Though that doesn’t stop her from complaining that she thought everyone left for home already.

She reports back that Lulu is doing fine. Her injuries are grave, but the emergency first aid was able to keep her alive. For some reason, everyone decides to stay the night in the shed where Calkram just died. No one says anything, and no one is able to sleep. Really whoever suggested that idea needs to be left behind. Anyway, sleepless morning~

Bitch asks everyone what they’re going to do now. Merian asks if it’s okay for her to come back to the castle with them. Can’t break up the friendships~. Emmyrea plans on talking to her father directly about everything. I’m sure that’ll have a smooth and meaningful resolution.

Everyone sets off on the road, and cue the happy travel music! We’re over the dead people, only sunshine and gags the rest of the way!

You reach the city of Sephils, which is about a day’s journey from the castle. If it was you and Elina, then you could reach the castle by daybreak, but you don’t think Emmyrea and Marian can make it. So you decide, why not, hang out in town and leave the next day. Gotta have some social time! It’s odd, the game’s resolution has pretty much happened. We had the climactic fight, both the villains and not-so villains are dead, so all that’s left is an epilogue/saying hi to the king. But the game keeps going!

The inn’s bottom floor held a dining area, with all the rooms on the higher floor.

You ask the inn to use their telephonelong-distance magician to contact the castle and report the princess’s safety. You don’t know who might be magic listening to the call, so you choose to just say “Mission Complete” and slam down the mage’s receiver staff.

There’s still some time, but I’ll head back to the inn. On the way, I think about:
“Emmyrea.”
“Elina.”
“Merian.”
“nothing since I’m too worried about Lulu.”
“nothing (but like actually nothing).”

I’m actually confused since I didn’t have the Lulu option in my original screenshots but I do now. Ehh, let’s press it and see what happens!

I can’t help but worry that we left that brave girl all alone at the hospital. If time allows, I’d like to go visit her. I’d like to tell her about Calkram’s death myself.

I’m glad he finally had a realization that “maybe someone should have stayed with the stabby sponge.” Last time, I didn’t have this option and she was just forgotten for the rest of the plot, so I wonder what I did differently.

Either way, you incremented relationship values as the inn comes into sight. You sit down at the table, but it’s not quite dinner yet. You debate what to do when Merian drops by and asks if you’d like to go shopping with her. Before you can answer, Emmyrea busts in.

Emmyrea
“I’ll be going shopping. Bitch, I order you to accompany me and carry my purchases.”

I’m surprised kidnapped Emmyrea even has money, Calkram was really considerate when she nabbed her. Also earlier Emmyrea whined that she couldn’t walk anymore and that they should stay in town, but now she’s denying ever having said that as she wants to walk around. You insist on calling her Miss Emmyrea instead of princess, having to explain that she just got kidnapped, and we really don’t need to go through that again. She’s delighted, mostly because she’s being all sneaky and undercover~

Emmyrea
“Bitch, make your choice. Do you accompany me or this girl here?”
Go with Emmyrea
> Go with Merian
Chill with Elina

After much catfighting, the game makes you have a decision. Apparently I’ve unlocked a magical fourth option of “I’m too worried about Lulu to go shopping,” so I’ll save here and try that later! For now, Emmyrea’s being too stuck-up, so we need to let her lose now and then, so we go with Merian.

Emmyrea
“Name one good thing about this girl! She’s a stumpy idiot who fails at everything without a hint of refinement.. You call yourself my sister’s disciple, but you can’t even cast a single spell! Ahh, I feel for my poor sister, being stuck with someone like you…”

Emmyrea’s taking this about as well as any princess whose ever been denied anything.

Emmyrea
“Garururururu…!”
Merian
“Fuuuuuuu!!!”

You know the argument’s getting intense when the sound effect grumbling starts. You’re given the option at this point to ask them to behave or to rely on Elina. You decide to handle this yourself, but they both in unison tell you to shut it. The words escalate, the tension flies, what will happen now!?

…Emmyrea shouts “SPOON SHOT!” and throws a spoon at Merian with a tiny thud and ahh!

Merian relatiates by throwing her cup, all while shouting “CUUUUP ATTAAAAACK!!!” with yet another tiny thud sound effect

Emmyrea goes for the gold, unleashing a “CHAIR BOMBER” assault on Merian. Not to be outdone, Merian flips the table with her patented “TABLE BARRIER!” reflection technique!

Dishes are flying left and right, patrons are scattering, all cowering before the wake of Emmyrea’s “SOUP CRUSH!” Merian dodges the soup, but…

Elina
“…hehehehe… You seem to be having fun here…”

I’m shocked they drew a new sprite just for this!

cue battle music oh fuck

She steps into the ring, but the others are quick to make amends as fast as possible. That’s too bad, for Elina has a new game she wishes to try with them. While Merian and Emmyrea are stuck prostrated out in front of Elina as she lectures them, she commands you to clean up the inn and apologize to everyone else since you were too incompetent to stop this from happening.

After all that’s wrapped up, you still have time and end up shopping with Merian anyway. She takes you to an accessory shop and spots some earrings. She asks you to pick one out for her.

I don’t know anything about fashion, but she’s looking at me with a serious expression. What should I do?
> Pick one for her
Tell her to pick one herself

Obviously we pick the non-dumb answer and pick an earring with a red gem for her. Delighted, she buys it and immediately puts it in. Outside, she asks if you’ll stick with her a little longer and walk around. It’s crowded here, so you grab her hand and walk outside to the field of flowers nearby.

She’s happy about the beautiful scene and the gentle breeze, but sighs sadly as she notes this is the end.

wait a second.

Obviously confused, Bitch inquires further. Without responding, she begins singing a gentle, low-sampled song, just the best the PS1 can handle. You can’t understand the words, but the melody warms your heart. She looks like an angel, but the loneliest angel to be (man write that on a twitter bio).

Merian
“I don’t remember what the song’s about anymore. But a long time before I met Calkram, the person who made me would often sing it. I can’t remember them anymore, but for some reason the song sticks with me…”

She tells you she doesn’t have much longer. She’s an artificial human, similar to the beast tamer girl from earlier, given power by Calkram’s magic. Now that Calkram’s gone, she’ll soon fade away, to whatever she originally was.

Merian
“I had a dream… I wanted to talk with friends, even get into arguments with them… I… wanted to go on a date with a boy too. I’m glad I met you. You… made my dreams happen. To think I’d have memories of this in the end… is really a miracle from god…”

She wants to you think about her for a while longer, even if it’s just until you get back to the inn. Bitch asks how long she has left, to which she says until probably tomorrow night. The only mage powerful enough to sustain her life just died, so there’s no way of saving her (well, unless we were on her route o _o?). Rather than mourn her coming death, she asks you to keep her final moments happy and fun with everyone. You’re the only boy she’s ever met and probably will meet, but she also fell in love with you at first sight by the river back with the dental worm.

“I’ll make a memory here and now so that I’ll never forget you.”
After saying this, I swiftly embraced her and gave her a kiss.

Back at the inn, Emmyrea and Elina ask what took them so long. Merian just smiles and says it’s a secret. Meanwhile, Emmyrea enjoys a parfait, a mysterious delight not found in the castle. Merian orders one too, but Emmyrea steals from hers since she ran out.

This goes about as you’d expect. They compete, eat 8 apiece, then wallow in agony until morning.

The next morning, the party walks with pensive music back to the castle.

King
“Relax. It is just us here, no need to be formal. I wish to talk with you as Emmyrea’s father and not as the king.”

Oh right this guy’s voice sounds like a bored and tired person talking through gravel.

Emmyrea
“I met with Calkram. She hated you greatly. I’m sure you know why? She was my sister and you… killed our real parents.”

Without denying it, the king laments that “oh she really was that girl.”

King
“Do you wish me to deny it? I won’t deny the truth. Any lies I attempt to hide behind will just fall before the truth. So now what?”

I mean, I’m glad he’s not denying it, but the “cool now what” attitude is kind of weird. His character is as unmotivated as his voice actor! As he elaborates, however, he calls himself a coward whose dead wife is the one who ordered the family murdered. “Not my fault!” She was jealous since the king still had lingering affections for their mom, so she killed them all.

Merian
“If you realized that was Emmyrea’s sister, then why’d you form an attack squad to kill her!? Did killing their parents mean nothing to you!? You should have gone to her yourself and apologized for everything!”
King
“I should have, and I was prepared to die. But I had something I still needed to do. I regret what happened with their parents. I built them matching graves, and promised to love Emmyrea in place of them. It’s true that if I died, maybe Calkram would still be alive. But I couldn’t die just yet.”

Ohhh, so murdering their parents was okay because you felt a little sad about it, that’s good. Glad we solved all that.

Emmyrea
“…how cruel… If you say something like that, I can’t be mad at you…”

Yes, you can. In fact it’s easy, he hasn’t even apologized! All he said was that he couldn’t die and let Emmyrea be with her sister since he still had the job of loving her, which apparently Calkram wasn’t allowed to do. The hell is this resolution??

Now, everything is out in the open. The king asks what you’re going to do now. You can tell everyone the truth if you’d like.

Bitch
“We won’t tell anyone what happened here. No one will know Emmyrea’s not truly a princess.”

Yeah, glad we– wait, what? No repercussions, just “man that sucks?” Oh boy. The king asks if it’s to keep the kingdom together, to which Bitch replies it’s to keep friends together. To keep the family together.

So essentially, “you’ve found out the awful truth. Want to get dinner?”

And thus the banquet started.
But soon I slipped out and returned to my room and drank alone.

WHAT!? This game just ends with us drinking alone!? I must have gotten no one’s ending and just got the miserable one. To make matters worse, Henry and Eddy, the short-lived party members from earlier, find us and and drink with us. “It was fun being with those girls, but it’s nice to relax and crack a cold one with the boys.”

THE END

Would you like to save?

Man this game gives me whiplash with how fast it goes. Merian basically said “I’m going to die tomorrow night and I love you,” to which you go drink in your room. What happened to any of that!?

I tried every combination of choices back at the town, but I couldn’t get the ending to change at all! I must have been so wishy washy that I somehow locked out of everything before the town of flag setting??

I tried to find a guide online, but all searches for γ‚¨γƒŸγƒΌγƒͺγ‚’ are poisoned by Bloodborne by Vikar Amelia being spelled the same way.

Probably a not as good game.

I did however, find a route guide for Sleeping Princess in Forest, aka the original PC version of the game! Speaking of…

I tracked down a copy! I can’t show you what the back looks like, the Playstation ratings board would hunt me down…

The bonus disc comes with all sorts of really random treats, like

…a desktop clock!

Coloring book pages! Also two screensavers, one where Emmyrea gives you a present that explodes, and one where Merian tries to cast a spell but drops a pan on Lulu’s head.

But my personal favorite…

…the Windows system sounds.

The above has become my Windows system error sound for several months now.

Merian: “Activation magic, go!”

This one plays when I plug a device in.

Lulu: “Okay, I’ll tidy this up then.”

And this one when I unplug. There’s several for each of the four girls, ranging from Windows waking up, going to sleep, email, away message, error, trash empty, etc. It’s an oddly cute addition I wasn’t expecting!

Also since the game disc includes all the music as open tracks, I was able to put together the OST!

Unfortunately they were all Track 2, 3, 4, etc apart from the first, so I had to make up track names. “Unrelenting Friendship” is my absolute favorite dumb track name. I have listened to this OST more than I should have.

Onto a quick look at the game:

Such a nice resolution~

You can quickly see the resolution difference of the PC running at 480p or better vs the PS1 at 240p.

Surprisingly, the hair is still oddly jagged in the transparent parts. I’m kind of surprised. Also I think the font is actually worse somehow. Green?? At least the PS1 font was large!

So now I need to find the actual route endings, but I might as well save that for another time on the new version! I do really want to translate this game though it would be a fun one to have other people see how silly it gets. One day!

Thank you for reading this far! Hopefully I can bring the next series of blog posts for whichever game comes next sooner! I’ve been playing through Que – Fairy of Ancient Leaf, so that might be a good next one. I gotta write about Twin Way someday too… Let me know if you have any game suggestions as well!

Emmyrea #2: Oh We Found the Princess, She Was Behind the Couch

I’m finally getting time to write this post! May was a crazy month powering through the last of my part translating CCC and preparing a cosplay for Fanime. Now dead from the convention on a quiet holiday morning, it’s time to finally write up the next Emmyrea section! I, uh, played immediately after the last post, which was a tad more than a month ago, so here’s hoping I remember everything well enough. I take a lot of screenshots, so hopefully they’ll jog my memory enough. Without further ado, let’s try to remember what the hell was happening!

I’ve never seen fog as thick as this before. I could only see five meters– no, two meters in front of me.

Our heroes wake up the next morning from their cave sleep, only to be surrounded by impenetrable fog. Elina and Bitch try to wake up Marian, only to find she’s an absolute disaster first thing in the morning:

Her hair was a disheveled mess. Her eyes couldn’t focus on any one thing. Drool dripped from her half open mouth.

Stuck in the thick fog in an unknown forest, our heroes had no choice but to shake the tiny mage girl awake.

Elina:
“Earth to Marian? I hate to admit this, but we need you and your magic right now!”
Marian:
“Ahh… sorry… Mistress Calkram… Five more minutes…”
Elina:
“You’re supposed to be guiding us to that Calkram, not being woken up by her!”

Once again she openly hints at being close to the evil witch, but our characters can’t see the plot through all the fog. Either way, once she’s woken up enough to focus her eyes and fix her hair, she lets the party know her plan.

Marian:
“We just gotta use this Magic Compass, and we’ll reach Mistress Calkram, no problem!”
Marian:
“All mages make a pilgrimage to visit Mistress Calkram once in their lives.”

Bitch and Elina hadn’t heard of this fact before since they’re removed from magic as warriors, but it sounds like it’s not a tradition for their kingdom at least, considering no one has entered her forest alive. To them, Calkram is known as the Grand Mage who protects them. Until the whole princess thing of course.

Marian:
“…ah! Ta-da! This is my Magic Compass, Paa-kun!”
Elina:
“…can I cut this girl, Bitch?”

These two screenshots were taken 20 minutes apart, so presumably they weren’t connected, but they just fit too well not to juxtapose.

(I’m falling asleep at like 2pm due to con fatigue x _x. I have coffee now, hopefully that’ll carry me through this~)

I’m tired enough I just realized “Paa-kun” is because of compass… I guess we could call it Rose for compass rose or something like that, though that’s not really cute enough. Rosey maybe? Or Compy like the tiny dinosaur. We’ll punt that issue for now.

Marian leads us into a not-dark cave, to which Bitch and Elina express their surprise at the incredible luminescence. Elina is weirdly confused.

Marian:
“Ehh? It’s common sense? What do you mean it’s common sense that caves are dark!?”

The cave should lead to where Calkram lives and Paa-kun can guide them down paths without monsters. Marian boasts that everything will be a-okay!

I was worried, but Marian struck a dramatic, confident pose.
Marian:
“It’ll be great, just leave it to me! You can both just rest in peace!”
Elina:
“S-she means rest easy, right…?”

However, Paa-kun seems to be having issues and isn’t getting a signal. Apparently the compass has a feature where if the guest isn’t invited, it won’t show their house on Magic Maps. Damn that’s useful. Since the party will have to fight through monsters now, Elina and Bitch have reservations about bringing Marian along. Not so much that she’ll cause problems, but that they don’t want her to risk her life for a cause no one’s even bothered talking about yet. Of course, she protests this:

Marian:
“If Bitch is here by my side, then I can pull through, no matter how dangerous or scary it gets!”
Marian:
“I know I could be killed! But it’s safer for me by Bitch’s side instead of returning to the forest, right!?”
Marian:
“If I end up dying, I’ll only haunt you a little bit!!”

Surprisingly, the decision is left up to the player.

Bitch:
“Er, I understand you’d be worried about being alone, but…”
“But we should part ways here.”
> “We need her if we’re going to rescue the princess.”

Of course we bring her along! Almost certainly a bad ending if not, but I’m a bit curious.

Marian:
“T-thank you so much, Bitch!!”

Elina argues with you, to which Marian calls her an old hag. Elina shouts back that she’s barely twenty, to which Marian retaliates with bad Japanese puns:

Elina:
“I-I’m barely twenty you know!!”
Marian:
“…could you read this kanji for me please?”
οΌοΌžγ€Œι―–γ€
Elina:
“Saba”
Marian:
“I rest my case.”
Reading saba. Basically, she’s trying to say “you’re lying about your age, aren’t you?”

It took me a minute to puzzle this one out, but ι―–γ‚’θͺ­γ‚€ (reading saba) is an expression that means “to manipulate figures to one’s advantage; to count wrongly on purpose; to inflate or deflate one’s age.” So by asking her to read “saba,” aka the word for mackerel (not to mention breaking the fourth wall by having her read a floating kanji), she’s making her admit to lying about her age. How I would actually translate this, I have no freaking clue. I need way more coffee for that…

Elina flared up as if someone threw a torch at a gasoline tank.

Remember that gasoline tanks don’t exist in this world, but just ignore that, neither do convenience stores.

Elina:
“I-I will fucking end you!!”

Some liberties with that line, but only so many times I can translate ちざけγͺいで as “don’t fuck with me!”

Anyway, they finally get started on their dungeon exploration adventures. This section took a while, so I’ll probably paraphrase it a bit. You’re given options on where to go without any basis for your decision.

> “Let’s try right.”
“Let’s go straight.”
“Let’s try left”

Various different events happen, such as finding monsters:

Or having Elina and Bitch fall into a trap:

Elina:
“AHH! Watch where you’re touching, Bitch! Ugh there’s something slimy on my leg! I told you to watch where you were going!”

One of the traps drops a washbasin on you in the classic anime trope, complete with the perfect sound effect. It’s a weird tone mix.

Marian:
“Hahha… y-yess… I-I’m glad you’re… *pfffff*… Elina, you… shouldn’t laugh… hahahahhaa”

If you take the wrong way, it’ll actually just loop you back to the start, so I ended up just saving before decisions and time traveling.

When you’re far enough on the correct path, Marian asks a silly little question that’s on her mind:

Marian:
“Um, I’ve been wondering this for a while now, but you’re not magicians, right? Why do you want to meet Mistress Calkram anyway?”

FINALLY. Like, this conversation should have happened hours ago!! Bitch and Elina look at each other awkwardly before telling the truth about Calkram:

Elina:
“I’ll never forgive her. To kidnap the innocent princess and curse the king… I’ll never forgive Calkram!!”

To no surprise, Marian is in a bind for her love for Calkram and for her friends.

Bitch:
“Just as we swore loyalty to the King, she must respect Calkram the same way as a mage.”

Oh don’t think too hard about this, it’s time to punt the problem down the road again with monsters!

This monster’s different though since it’s a magical beast! The only way to kill it is to break the gem that gives it life. So they do that and poof.

However, the next room is rather dicey:

The weird bug things are scared of the rock lizard guy, so they’re just watching from the distance. You’re given the option of either fighting the rock lizard while the others are at bay, or running past the stunned copy-paste eyeball monsters. I chose to fight the lizard.

It immediately fucked me up.

Elina:
“Let go of Bitch!!”
I called their names. No, I tried to, but my voice wouldn’t come out. …please, rescue the princess… without me…

That was rather bleak and dark, not to mention sudden.

Time travel back five seconds, instead we fight our way through the bug guys. Marian nods and says she’ll help us, preparing a grand magic attack…

…that ends up being a nabe pan falling from the ceiling and bonking a monster with the perfect sound effect.

Marian:
“Whaaaat~, that’s not right~”

With much better luck than the rock snake, the party manages to make it out of the cave alive!

But not without unwanted attention:

I’m not exactly sure what her orb communicator is held up by, but the sub balls are held by chicken feet, which means the center is… Anyway, evil-looking character!

Gilma:
“…hmm, I didn’t expect Mary to be frolicking with the enemy. I’ll be sure to punish her thoroughly after this.”

With that threatening interlude over as fast as it appeared, the party reaches their destination.

An underground castle in the cave?

Before they can soak in the sights, Redrick appears out of the literal blue with his warm glass of Ballnog:

Redrick:
“Oh my, you sure have been working hard haven’t you, Miss Elina.”

Marian’s a bit confused, having never seen this trash— person before, so he politely introduces himself.

Redrick:
“Remember the name, Redrick! Sharp, handsome, and the man who everyone gossips about being the next in line for the throne!”
Marian:
“God, he’s saying all that nonsense while dressed like an idiot. And his laugh is just awful! He’s scaring me~”
Marian:
“I’ve never seen a narcissist as self-absorbed as you before. If I was your friend, I’d be absolutely embarrassed just being around you.”
Marian:
“Oh right, a weirdo like you couldn’t possibly have friends to begin with.”
Bitch:
“Marian, please be more careful. If you get close, you’ll catch his stupid.”

I’m glad the party collectively knows how to deal with Redrick, especially with Marian’s savage support.

Redrick, responds with whatever this face is:

and takes his warm Ballnog with him out of your sight! Apparently they followed in your wake and probably will be tailing you again, but for now they’re gone, allowing you to enter the castle.

Into the dark and cold castle we go. What horrors lie in this seemingly empty hell where our princess lies trapped?

A cute maid of course!
Girl:
“Oh, Marian, you’re rather late. …who are these people you’re with?”

We get a rather warm reception waltzing into enemy territory. She notices Elina is wounded and tends to her without hesitation.

The girl pulls a handkerchief out of her pocket and wipes the wound clean, unphased that her pure-white handkerchief is now dyed a deep red. After, she gives the wound a small kiss before wrapping it with a cloth she pulled from somewhere I couldn’t see.

Elina smiled back at the kind gesture, but her eyes showed no laughter, only the cold sharpness of a blade.

Marian on the other hand, is realizing the gravity of the situation.

Marian:
“Did… I betray Mistress Calkram…?”
Marian:
“To tell you the truth… I’m actually Calkram’s disciple.”

Not that this is particularly shocking, though the most striking part is that she’s a grand mage’s disciple while sucking at magic very badly.

She introduces the maid as Lulu, who takes care of Calkram.

Lulu:
“Calkram said that anyone from the castle is a bad person and should not be allowed here. What will she say when she finds out?”
Marian:
“I might be Calkram’s disciple, but I didn’t intend to fool you guys or catch you in a trap!”

You try to explain how you’re not the bad guys and that Calkram is the bad one, but Lulu isn’t going to believe you that easily.

Should we forgive them? Or cut them down here as the King ordered?

“Cut them down.”
“Only forgive Lulu.”
> “Forgive them both.”

Like really, why would you ever pick the first two options? To be fair, εˆ‡γ‚Šζ¨γ¦γ‚‹ can also just mean “cut off and abandon,” in addition to “cut someone down or slay.” I don’t fully remember the previous line, so it might not be as threatening, but the “as ordered by the King” part implies a heavier toll. But yeah, looks at those two tiny adorable faces and tell me you could cut them down ; _;

Bitch:
“Stop apologizing already, okay? It’s not my style to make girl’s cry. I’ll believe you.”
Elina:
“I knew you’d forgive those two with how gentle you are with girls, hehe.”

Elina seems to be in agreement with us, which means she might have stopped us if we tried to do anything bad.

For now, Marian decides to stick with us:

Marian:
“I’ve… decided. I’m going to confront Calkram myself and hear it from her!”

Lulu still doesn’t believe Calkram could do wrong, so she runs off on her own. However, the mysterious dark elf has something else in mind:

Gilma:
“Just hang out here for a while and wait for your friends to arrive. Okay, Lulu…?”

Somehow all this happened in front of our party as they went forward as they run into the room with Gilma.

Gilma:
“You’ve finally arrived.”

Things have taken an oddly sexy turn with a dominatrix elf with a latex-like top, a collar, and a whip with a captive maid trussed up to the dungeon wall.

Lulu:
“Mistress Gilma, please… forgive me…”
Gilma:
“You girls have all been very bad. Girls like you need a strict punishing.”

This was a porn game, you’ve got to remember. I can feel the threatening eyes of the Playstation rating board glaring daggers from just outside. So Gilma does what she can while keeping an eye on the game authorities.

Without any hesitation, Gilga slapped the bound Lulu across the face.

The rating board nods in approval as she explains the whip is not really a whip, just an obedience motivator.

Around that time, a magical beast rears its head and snarls at the heroes.

Marian:
“Gilma’s always been Mistress Calkram’s beast tamer assistant!”
Magic Beast:
“GRWAAAAWAAWA!”

Oh hey, copy paste monster! Now just remember everyone, you’ve got to break the crystals or the beast will just keep coming back!

No that’s not right, Elina, good try. Marian is a gem, but not the right one~

Bitch confronts Gilma, cutting down the magical beast just to watch it come back.

Gilma:
“Both me and my beasts hate men, so you won’t get any mercy from us!”

Bitch quickly scans the room, noting several possible gems. Without much to go off of, you’re forced to make a decision!

Which gem is the important one…? I’ll have to choose between the blue one on the pedestal or the ones in the wall.

“Blue orb on the pedestal.”
> “Head for the wall.”

You break a few on the wall, but then she screams at you to stop at a certain one. The evil villain yells at you not to do something, so of course you do it!

Gilma:
“I even told you not to crush that one… It’s your own fault, blame your own stupidity.”

Apparently that one was a paralyzing poison for some reason.

The last thing I saw as my consciousness faded was Gilma licking her lips as she bound the other two girls to the wall as well.

>///<

Okay so time travel back, we don’t break the orb that kills us and instead break the one that kills the beast. Now without her fangs, Gilma escapes from the room. Before we give chase, we take a minute to free Lulu from her shackles and head out.

However, the party hears a bloodcurdling screen just outside the door. As they look out, they see the shadow of someone running away.

Bitch:
“Was that Ballnog!?”

Bitch didn’t get a good look, so he can’t say for sure. But it’s possible Ballnog is tailing them and finished her off for reasons unknown. However, something strange happens with her body:

Right before my eyes, Gilma’s body began turning into a wild flower you’d see in the forest outside.
Marian:
“Gilma… She’s returned to her original form… She was a being created with magic by Mistress Calkram. Now that she’s dead, she’s returned to what she was.”

So you’re telling me Calkram specifically turned a flower into a sadistic woman that ties up girls and has her way— slaps them in an age-appropriate way until they’re good again? I feel like we’ve learned more about Calkram here than anywhere else in the game to be honest. Good for her, good for her.

Anyway, you find Emmyrea.

Oh the princess? Oh yeah, she’s just in that room eating cake.

“Hello!”

We find Princess Emmyrea happily relaxing in a weirdly nice room with a sunlight window despite being in a cave. We run up to her, tears in our eyes, but she’s utterly confused. Elina tries to explain to her what happened at the castle.

Emmyrea:
“I don’t believe any of it, it can’t be. Calkram has been nothing but a gentle host. She said that my father was aware of all of this and she just wanted to startle me by transporting me here suddenly with magic. There’s no way he was cursed by her!”

Something is definitely going on here, but who knows what at this point… After seeing the grave look on Elina and Bitch’s face, she begins to have some doubts that maybe the kidnapper isn’t the good person?

Emmyrea:
“I’ll go talk to her at once!”

We try to tell her it’s dangerous, but she stubbornly refuses to wait in the room as we confront the witch.

I mean, can you say no to that face?

As they walk further in the castle to Calkram’s room, Emmyrea keeps looking around curiously at things in the room. At one point, she spies a painting on the wall that for some reason she just has to touch. This triggers a trap that drops a rock on her, but Bitch manages to pull her away just in time.

Emmyrea:
“Y-yes, I’m fine. Just a little startled, is all. You really are our country’s top knight, aren’t you Bitch?”

After Elina scolds the princess, the party keeps walking, only for Emmyrea to once again be curious about a vase. You’re given the option to intervene or not.

If you don’t intervene, you keep walking only to hear the sound of it shattering on the ground. Elina comes stomping back and yells a storm at the princess.

sadness intensifies

If you do intervene, she goes full princess on you:

Emmyrea:
“Your job as a knight is to protect me in the event that anything happens and that’s it. Voicing your opinion is not part of your duty.”
I’ve never heard her talk so directly before. I always thought she was a gentle and kind princess… I guess she’s a tomboy like the others, huh…

Comedic scenes aside, we’re at Calkram! That was oddly quick, I think?

That room was different from the others. It was a large room that felt like it was used for various rituals. The ceiling was high up, and the cool outside air chilled the room.
I couldn’t convince myself that this was the same person with that cruel smile who cursed the king that night.

Calkram felt more like a mother confronting her children than an evil witch at this point. Most of this scene is this single portrait, so I’ll just translate them under one picture.

Calkram:
“I’m not mad at you, Lulu. I’ve been watching you from here this entire time. I know you tried to follow what I asked all the way until the end.”
“Marian, what a troublesome child you are. Sneaking out of my sight to go bathing in the lake like that…”
“I’ll forgive you, even after all this, if you come back to me.”
“As for you knights, I do apologize, but I can’t have you leave now. I don’t plan on killing you if I don’t have to. You may have killed my precious Gilma, but that was her mistake.”
“That detestable king’s life will end in just a few more days. You’ll remain in this castle until then. After which, you’ll be free to go. Well, except for Emmyrea.”

Suddenly, the doors come crashing down and your party is trapped in the room.

Calkram:
“Emmyrea. I’ll tell you everything once this is over. Once you know the truth, you’ll wish to stay here with me, I’m certain.”
Emmyrea:
“…you tricked me, didn’t you Calkram!? You were so kind to me, told me unimaginable tales, showed me brilliant jewels… Was that all a lie!?”

Naaaah, it was a friendly kidnapping! A surprise roadtrip!

Calkram:
“I did not lie to you, but… you wouldn’t understand, no matter what I say here.”
“I’ll at least say, that man committed a grave crime. Crime deserves punishment, so I laid a curse on him.”
“That man was a villain who used others as a stepping stone and threw them away after. I wished for that cold-blooded human to taste the anguish and despair those people felt.”

Elina, unmoved by her words, charges Calkram with her sword. However she repels the sword with magic, sending it clashing on the floor.

Suddenly, Princess Emmyrea grabbed Elina’s fallen sword and dashed at Calkram. The borrowed sword plunged deeply into Calkram’s left arm.
Emmyrea:
“Y-you’re the one whose evil, Calkram… My father is the most gentle, kind man I’ve ever met. Your slander against him is nothing but lies…”

Man, Emmyrea comes through in a pinch. For a character who eats cake and breaks pots, she took that flash of anger and used it. However, Calkram defiantly stood up for her actions.

Calkram:
“He had years to reflect on his actions and atone for his sins. Instead he just lived on like nothing happened. I do not plan on releasing the curse on someone like that. But if you kill me, you can undo the curse that way.”
She’s already lost the will to live. That’s the impression I got from her voice.
Calkram:
“…well then. Come at me, Bitch! My life is yours to take.”
…why did she curse the king?
…why won’t she just tell us what happened?
She wants me to kill her to dispel the curse while this web of mysteries still hangs over everything. Just what should I do…?

This tense scene gets more tense with the option on how to act. It seems pretty clear there’s some truth here. I’m not certain killing her would end the curse, or that she’s even evil. So I had Bitch stay his hand.

Elina:
“If you want to die that badly, I’ll kill you myself! Bitch, give me your sword!”

Elina steps forward during your hesitation, unwilling to doubt her king. She looks at you, demanding you hand over your weapon.

Calkram refuses to move from her spot, as if she’s wishing for death.

Second chance, once against I refuse to relinquish my sword. When suddenly…!

Nothing like a maid with a broom to break up the tension~
Lulu:
“Master Bitch and everyone else, I’m sorry, but I won’t let you kill this person!!”

A secret exit opens up and Lulu ushers Calkram to safety. The party tries to follow, but you end up back outside the cave and in the forest. Calkram is nowhere to be seen, but Lulu for some reason stays behind. It’s dark, so you head back to the cave where this blog post started for the night.

Marian didn’t do her usual badmouthing that night, and even Emmyrea, who probably never cooked by herself, helped scrounge up something to make some kind of dinner.

As everyone was eating, Lulu decided it was time to speak up.

Lulu:
“I’ll tell all of you the truth.”
“…everything started 10 years ago. At the time, the royal family had one young prince. He fell in love with a noble woman who would frequent the castle. But the king would not permit the prince’s love, so he forced them apart. The prince was then set to marry a foreign princess, and the girl a separate noble family. That prince is the current king. He married the princess, but no kids were born to him. However, he learned the woman he once loved had given birth to two kids. He asked his wife to let him adopt one of the daughters from her. Of course, his wife was bewildered at the proposition. The woman was happily married and loved her child.”
Lulu:
“The older sister Philia, who loved her baby sister very much cried in protest at the idea of handing her over. But she reasoned that her sister would be raised to be queen and that she’d be happy that way. In the end, she gave in and let her sister go. A few days later… her family’s mansion was attacked at night.”
Lulu:
“The ones who attacked were the country’s knights. They killed not only her parents, but all the servants as well, before burning the mansion to the ground.”
Lulu:
“It was proclaimed by the king as an execution for treason. She knew her parents did nothing of the sort. It was obvious, even for a child. In short, the king had betrayed them. Her parents were dead, her house was burnt to the ground, and the country blamed it on them. That day, Philia lost everything. She continued on without any life behind her eyes, like she was constantly sleepwalking.”
Lulu:
“And thus, she wandered into the Devil’s Forest. The forest was full of danger, but that didn’t matter to her. She was as good as dead, anyway. But, someone was there to save her. That was the previous Great Mage Calkram.”
Lulu:
“That’s about all of it. Philia trained under the previous Calkram, then when she passed on, Philia succeeded her title. And Emmyrea, you are that sister of hers… Mistress Calkram– no, Mistress Philia had to pull her precious sister from the king’s vile hands.”

My god this whole scene was so serious and captivating I had to capture it in full without jokes. This is where I left off like, more than a month ago and I wrote this whole blog post in several hours just so I can finally get back. I’m assuming this is the truth and that’s how the game will go, but I will lose my shit if it turns into another lie and the king’s actually got his own side of the equation.

AND WHAT’S UP WITH REDRICK AND HIS WARM BALLNOG!? I have to know!

If you’ve stuck around to the end of this, thank you for reading! I hope I can make your second-hand playthrough of Emmyrea worthwhile, for I’m invested at this point! I think I’ve been writing this for like, six hours, so I’m gonna face plant~


Emmyrea #1: A Fantasy Adventure I Wish I Could Fix the Spelling

This game caught my eye in a pile of EsperKnight’s for-sale games mostly due to how they managed to spell the name Emelia in the most bizarre fashion I had ever seen. Sensing only the finest koala tea from it, I did a quick search online.

It’s spelled that way on the cover, I can’t possible fix it…

PSX Data Center had an entry for the game with several screenshots and a really badly translated description:

This is the story of a small country but an incident happened.

The King's only daughter Princess Emmyrea are lost. The people suspect of the north country witch - Karakuramu, So who is a courageous choice, that will be up to rescue the princess Emmyrea ! The player will take the role of the knight that will try to rescue the princess and for that he will have the help of some girls: Irini (a woman knight) that is the best friend of the princess, Merian & Lulu.
Our charming girl characters unfolds, a fantasy adventure.
The characters, the excitement of the game with full voice convincing performance.
Make it easier to concentrate on playing, it is a simple operation.

(It’s bad that my biggest gripe about that description is the “convincing voice performance,” but we’ll get there, I promise.)

Really though, seeing a female knight was enough to convince me to throw it in my pile of games from Esper and forget about it for several months. Until now!! Join me as we embark on low-budget visual novel adventures!

The game starts out as any good game should:

There’s no way you didn’t see this coming

Actually starting the game, we get the standard fantasy beginnings:

“In a time different than ours, in a world of swords and sorcery, beasts and fairies, lies the world of Astoria.”

The game proceeds to have 3-4 dialogue boxes of set up before throwing us right into the throne room as the evil witch busts in, wasting absolutely no time getting this plot on the road.

Her dress patterns look suspiciously like Gilgamesh’s, but this game came first…?
How could he have the originals of all treasures when he stole from Emmyrea of all games!?
Calkram:
“I am known as the Great Witch Calkram. I live in the Northern Forest, or as you all call it, the Devil’s Forest. I’m here to participate in today’s meeting.”

To be honest, I’m not entirely sure how to localize “karakuramu,” so Calkram for now seems decent enough. Apparently she’s a legendary witch whose “been around longer than records have existed,” but no one had actually seen her till now.

But suddenly…!

In the blink of an eye, Calkram photoshopped a transparent version of the princess into her arms!

King Balshia:
“…E-Emmyrea…!”

In what I can only describe as mild disinterest, the King’s voice actor grumbled about the predicament. But that is not all. The Great Witch also casts a curse upon the King.

Calkram:
“You will suffer for several days before finally reaching a very painful demise.”

She goes on to describe how she’s most likely the only person who can remove the curse, and how she’s excited to watch him fall. That and with Princess Emmyrea (do I really have to spell it like that ; _;) kidnapped, there’s no true successor to the throne. Chaos will soon befall the country, and she’ll be laughing while enjoying some popcorn.

She never actually explains why she’s doing this by the way. She vanishes in a smoky middle finger at the King and silence fills the halls.

Just then, a toothpick of a young girl appears! Her name is written as “Iriina” so we’ll just call her Elina. At this point, I realize we’re sadly not the female knight and got a bit disappointed. Why do we have to be the boring guy? Oh well.

Speaking of generic protagonists, ours has to profess his classiness as soon as possible:

She’s got a nice face and great style, but she’s always wearing that heavy armor with a lack of sex appeal… wait, now’s not the time for that!

Any dude who doesn’t think a girl in a suit of armor is sexy is already a lost cause. Either way, she’s Emmyrea’s childhood friend, so she was assigned as her bodyguard when she became a knight.

Elina:
“I-I was in the Princess’s chambers reading her a book when a strong flash blinded me. When I could see again, she was nowhere to be found…!”

Elina immediately proposes to go after the witch, to which we have some reservations:

Hey hey, Elina… Do you really think a female knight with no combat experience can make it out of a forest filled to the brim with demons alive?

Female knight comment aside, he does have a point if she’s never actually seen battle and then wants to fight a witch that just utterly outclassed everyone.

After getting what was probably the King’s permission as he’s twitching on the floor in pain, you agree to join Elina along with three others:

I chose the young Eddy and the Veteran Henry to join us.
Andy, a newly-hired magician aide to the royal family, joined as well to guide us through the forest.

Our protagonist explains that without a magician, one will get lost in the forest and die a slow death. No one has come back alive from the forest either, so I’m not sure how that information came about, but hey, I didn’t write this game~

One small note about the voices here: Elina is great, she sounds normal. A bit compressed, but normal. Eddy on the other hand, sounds like a programmer picked up a paper tower roll and recorded his lines while eating lunch. It’s so starkly different and weird, it’s baffling. The tiny boy Andy’s voice actor is super deep as well and does not match the body. Henry at least sounds mostly normal, but I feel they focused 80% of the acting budget on the female characters and gave the males some scraps to fill the plot holes.

Why was Elina made the Captain of the rescue squad when she has no combat experience and little achievements? Word around has it that she begged for the position.

With the game really harping Elina for having no experience but being arrogant, I’m wondering how long until her disillusionment and realizing she’s not as invincible as she thinks.

The next morning, the party of 5 embarks to the Northern Forest, with nary a plan on what to actually do there! It’s odd we have a party of 4 guys, that’s really not how I was expecting things to go down.

A reasonable amount of time into their journey, the party decides to take a rest on the outskirts of the forest, but their Captain is having a powertrip:

Elina:
“Henry! I am not yet tired myself! We’re in a hurry here, this is not the time to be resting!!”

Everyone kind of looks at her, then to us. I selected the option to nicely explain to her that once we’re inside the evil death forest, we can’t exactly rest like we are now. It’d make more sense to be at our bests before entering hell.

Elina:
“You say some really smart things sometimes, Bitch.”

While they rest, Elina manages to shout some more since she’s really enjoying this leadership with no plan thing:

Elina:
“Are you mad that I’m the Captain? A woman with no combat experience like me could never possible lead us to victory, is that it!?”

Eddy calms her down between voracious bites of food:

Eddy:
“We’re not worried about that, please remember we’re fighting the Great Witch Calkram!”
And just to show you how bad this guy’s lines are, I opened up the game files to find this line delivery. All while stuffing down food.
I’m no sound pro or anything, but seeing all his lines nearly peaking like that really doesn’t seem right.

Before their argument can progress any further, their noise draws the attention of some new characters.

In what can only be described as “the red-eyed evil duo,” our hero recognizes them:

Bitch:
“Redrick… and Balnog…”

You could argue “barunaagu” could be read in a different way, but you could also argue his name is Balnog like the Eggnog drink but for balls, and it stuck too hard. Also Redrick!? It’s like they wanted to name him Fredrick, but then someone’s like “wait he has red eyes! Redrick!” and everyone who approved the name Emmyrea gave the thumbs-up.

Bitch explains to the viewer that Balnog is the fearsome “Black Knight” who has no connection to his feelings and never moves his facial muscles. With a single order, he’d kill woman and child alike without remorse. For some reason, he follows Redrick here, whose vying for the throne. His plan is that if he rescues the Princess, then he’ll be handsomely rewarded and step closer to royalty. Though if he saves the King and Princess, then they’ll be back in line. Maybe he’ll negotiate for the Princess’s hand? Either way, he’s an arrogant ass who can only haughtily criticize people while his Balnog supplies the bark to his bite. Balnog really makes me think of Lu Bu here, so I’m expecting Redrick to be betrayed and Balnog to join the witch or something. We’ll see.

Either way, Redrick tells us to be good little kids and camp here instead of going to our deaths. We give him the good ol’ finger and walk off into the woods without him.

Elina:
“Don’t fuck with me, Bitch!”

I don’t remember the context of the above, but I couldn’t not share it!

Anyway, shortly into the forest, the party is ambushed by their first monster!

It’s a weird, uh, six-armed monkey thing? I’m not sure it can really close its mouth with those teeth…

The fight immediately goes to hell when one of the guys is bitten from the shadows. The creature leaps back into the trees, hiding its location. A second guy is taken out in a flash. Bitch tries to restore order to the situation, but Elina isn’t having it!

Elina:
“Don’t order me around, Bitch! I’m the Captain!”

Somehow, their third guy is taken out, but Bitch manages to hold his own against the toothy onslaught. Just before death breaks through, a flash of steel from behind skewers the monster.

It’s Balnog.

Redrick:
“Did you really lose 3 party members to a single monster…?”

I’m with you on this one Redrick, I’m just impressed at the game’s ability to remove all the men from the party effortlessly. Like, why did we even have these party members anyway!? It’s been 10 minutes! This at least explains why their voice actors were so shoddy.

Redrick once again recommends leaving this to them. This time he asks that you watch their horses since they can’t take them further in. On the way back, they can have the honor of following his victory precession. Elina finally snaps after all the stress.

SMACK!”
Elina’s slap flashed through the air faster than my fist.

Ahh the joyous expression of an asshole getting slapped. Impressively, we aren’t immediately killed by Balnog, but maybe he was secretly happy as well.

Redrick:
“F-fine! Go ahead and get eaten by monsters for all I care!! Ow, ow, ow…! B-Balnog, we’re leaving!!!”

Turns out Henry, Andy, and Eddy aren’t dead, but Henry and Andy are too injured to continue, so Eddy escorts them back to the castle. Now alone, Elina has a moment of self reflection.

Elina:
“I’m sorry, it’s all my fault. I’m… not qualified to be the Captain…”

I mean, I knew this turn of events was coming, but wasn’t expecting it so soon. This game is really going quite fast!

Elina:
“That’s why… I want you to call the shots going forward. I’d like you to be the Captain.”

Good ol’ Captain Bitch, has a nice ring to it. We get a choice here, it’s a difficult call:

Urgh. When she looks at me with those eyes, I can only say:
> I’ll do it.
I’ll do it.
I’ll do it.

Really riveting choices, I’ll have to try the other branches on another game~

“Most of our friends are gravely injured or kidnapped, but I had character development! :)”

As your first order, you tell the group of Elina to keep going forward to an opening in the trees.

And then suddenly the game gets weird.

Side note: At this point is was pretty obvious this game was ported to consoles as an all-ages version. Shentok confirmed it was an 18+ title called Nemureru Mori no Ohime-sama (Princess in the Sleeping Forest). The VNDB page has this exact image but without the jacket above, so it’s definitely the same game. I wonder if the compressed-sounding voices were from trying to go from PC to PS1. The art also seems oddly blocky as well, so I’m wondering if overall they didn’t do the best job.

Also side note: Turns out this game got a re-release as a Simple Series game in the SuperLite 1500 Series. I’m assuming it doesn’t change anything, but it’s possible. For reference, I’ve got the original release PS1 version and not the Simple one.

But I digress.

We rush forward to intercept the… um… man centipede poison monster that can fly…?

This hideous monster brushes its teeth and sees a dentist, food for thought.

The game actually gives you combat options, though it’s really vague and disconnected. You get options like “swing upwards,” “swing downwards,” etc., but there’s no real indicator on what makes the most sense. After around three options, you fell the monster! Fast monkey thing, no chance. Poison centipede with perfect chompers, a-okay~

Elina:
“You did it, Bitch!”

The new girl rushes in to hug Bitch, wearing only a single unfastened robe the Playstation ratings board found for her.

A single thin robe clung to her body, dripping like she just got out of a bath. Yes, just one piece of cloth! Her body looked like it’d break if I hugged her too strongly. Her slightly pink uncovered legs and possibly still developing modest breasts pressed up against me.

My god this dude has to comment about boobs the moment a new character is introduced, no exception. Well, I guess he hasn’t mentioned the evil witch’s yet.

Girl:
“Huh? N-no, it’s nothing. Just that this is kinda nic–nonono, not that, I, uh, well–“

Seems she’s instantly fallen for the main character after he saved her, as expected from a visual novel like this.

Girl:
“I’m sorry about the trouble I caused. You may call me Marian Malsed.”
Bitch:
“She’s got a point (about your armor being stiff). Elina, you should try ditching your armor sometime and dressing up like this girl! You’ll feel so much better!”

Bitch, ever judging of the poor knight girl, keeps up his nonsense about how she’s not the coolest-looking character here (well, aside from the witch maybe).

Though Marian takes slight offense, saying she’s not dressed to look cute but wearing her profession’s clothes:

Bitch:
“Well, of course I know your outfit, you’re a…”
Waitress
A normal girl
> A convenience store employee

All of these are terrible answers, but of course I had to select the one that makes the least sense.

Marian:
“NOT. EVEN. CLOSE! What even is a convenience store!?”
Bitch:
“You don’t even know what a convenience store is!? It’s a… wait, what is a convenience store? That work just popped into my head for some reason…”

Alright, that was a good 4th wall break, 10/10.

Also, ever since this nearly naked girl (we told her to go put on clothes and come back) hugged Bitch, Elina became extremely prickly to her. Better get used to catfighting, because they do it for a while. After Marian tells them she’s a magician (oh hey we need one of those, convenient ce store), Elina shrugs her off as a useless little girl. Angry, Marian attempts to turn her into a frog!

Marian:
“W-whaaaaat, flowers weren’t supposed to come out~ Why didn’t you become a frog!”
Elina:
“HAHAHAHAA OH MY GOD, you use such cute magic. Hahahahaha…!!!”

Elina grew so much into a happy girl only to immediately channel it into being a bitch. Whoops. Probably shouldn’t have been hanging around the guy actually named Bitch.

We try to ask Marian on several occasions what she was doing in the cursed evil woods, but she just keeps answering “taking a bath in the lake, duh.” For now, she’s following us and helping us through the forest. We just tell her we’re searching for someone, since we don’t want to reveal too much.

Both girls for some reason are vying for your attention, so they compete over silly things like “do we go left or right?”

Elina:
“Bitch, really? Why are you taking her suggestion!? She’s clearly mistaken!”

I don’t know, maybe the clumsy forgetful mage whose at least been here before might have better odds than someone whose never been here ever. But no, Marian gets all happy I sided with her. Whoops. Does this game have multiple endings? We’ll have to see~

We decide to rest at a cave for the night as the sun’s setting. Still competitive as ever, they make me decide who will cook dinner.

Merian:
“We’d like you to decide which of us will be cooking…”

We were given 3 options: Merian, Elina, or both. I selected both, meaning they should have a competition! They, uh, sabotaged each other and we didn’t eat dinner that night ; _;.

Later, we go off alone to fill up water bottles at the lake, leaving Elina behind to protect Merian. On the way back, we hear some voices:

Elina:
“B-Bitch is just a close friend, come on~…”

Seems they’re talking about us~

Somehow five seconds alone has greatly improved their relationship! Though the moment we get back, they start bickering again as if they’re ashamed of being friends. Or something. I’m not really sure why.

Elina accidently lets it slip that they’re trying to find the Great Witch Calkram.

Merian:
“Oh in that case, I could guide you two to Mistress Calkram.”

For some reason we just reply with “wow that’d be really nice!” and not “this is immediately a red flag.” Oh well, we’ll cross that important betraya– bridge when we get there.

Tired after the long trip, we rest for the night. But not long after, our stomach wakes up back up and we rummage for anything we can.

Elina:
“…what’re you doing, Bitch?”

Elina can’t sleep either and offers to cook you some food. You accept, wary of her cooking skills. To your surprise, she’s really good! She glares at you, but you play it off like you totally knew she was good this whole time, yup!

The two of you spend a short time chatting about whatever comes to mind while listening to Merian mutter in her sleep about you. Eventually, you retire for the night yourself.

I wonder if we’ll be able to figure out all the mysteries of that girl. I wonder how the King’s condition is. And most of all… I wonder if Princess Emmyrea is safe…?

I’m sure Emmyrea is madly in love with you for no reason, but we’ll find out next time! See you soon!