|EPISODE ??: I AM THE BONE OF MY SWORD
||[May. 20th, 2006|09:19 pm]
Steel is my body and fire is my blood!
I was shown this game a few days ago, and I thought it would be fun to take a break from Complete Box for a moment and look at a SRW derivative. It's a doujin (fan-made) game by the circle Werk, and it's called Battle Moon Wars. Like Super Robot Wars it's an SRPG compiling beloved geek characters for a battle royale, but the subject matter in BMW (lawl) is quite a departure from robots. The game is based on the works of otaku-beloved doujin-turned-pro h-game company Type-Moon. The previous sentence sure had a lot of hyphens. By their works, we really mean the h-games Tsukihime and Fate/stay night.
On the exterior, you've got dorky protagonists surrounded by women who are hot for them, but below that Type-Moon writes fairly complicated fantasy storylines about vampires, magicians and such. There's more fighting than one would expect to see in a porn game, and it's because of this that so many doujin groups produce games based on Type-Moon's material. Chief among these is one you might have heard of; another doujin-turned-pro game, Melty Blood (with which Type-Moon themselves were somewhat involved).
So Werk gets this great idea, which is to just drop these crazy kids into a SRW-style engine and see what happens. The results are pleasing!
Remember when we talked about those Raidens of the SRW world, the originals? That's what's going on here. These characters don't appear in any Type-Moon product but they are the hero and the heroine nonetheless. Upon starting we get a choice between a male "super" type and a female "real" type. For fear of boring people, I haven't gone too far into gameplay in my SRW writeups, and I haven't even explained a concept as important as this. I guess now is the time. Mazinger Z, strapped head to toe with bizarre weapons, heavily armored, and slow, is a Super type. A Gundam, (relatively) lightly armed, thin-skinned, and fast, is a Real type. Don't think about it too hard, because if you do it'll fall apart. As shown here, I picked the Real type.
And then they get in a fight! You'll note that the menus owe more to Final Fantasy Tactics than they do to SRW.
Who they're fighting is a bit of a gag; it's old Getter One, except here he's Geta One, because that's what he's wearing. Two and Three appear, of course, in later missions. Battles are handled in the style of the later SRW games, which is to say they actually bother animating the characters. The animation isn't extensive, mind you, but it's there. The sprites are well-drawn, though obviously not on the level of a Melty Blood.
Poor Getter! He just got F91'ed for serious!
Eventually we run into some actual Type-Moon characters. This is Rin Tohsaka, from Fate/stay night. (Insert Credit types will remember her as the heroine of the famous "No Homo" incident.) Even the dialogue is handled in the same way as SRW.
Hell, this game is such an SRW derivative that to actually discuss its systems any further is pretty redundant, so here are some more battle cutscenes. Thankfully, this game also takes after the later SRW in that the battles are skippable. This is not a luxury I have when playing old-school, Winkysoft-era SRW, which is a serious "sit your ass down and wait" endeavor.
Here, incidentally, is Saber, the costar of the aforementioned "No Homo" incident.
Following in the footsteps of the Doom movie and that Narc remake that nobody played, Kohaku delivers powerups by way of mysterious chemical injection.
In the middle of this one fight, Type-Moon's first heroine and mascot of sorts, Arcueid Brunestud, makes this bizarre Sailor Moon appearance out of nowhere. She's not Arcueid, she says. The name is PHANTASM MOON.
See the game is Tsukihime, and that means Moon Princess, and Arc is from the moon, so she's probably the princess in question, and God what a groaner this gag is. Doesn't she look really weird in this screen? I wanted to say "Tetsuo Hara's Tsukihime" or "Ryoichi Ikegami's Tsukihime" but let's face it, this shot doesn't look anywhere near that kind of quality.
This is Arc's big attack, which is kind of like the Inazuma Kick from Gunbuster, except it's the Inazumoon Kick, which gets us right back to the groaning. I'll wait for you to finish.
Internet, did I ever tell you that if a couple hundred grand ever fell in my lap, I'd open an arcade and call it Arcade Bumstead? It's true, and if you give me a couple hundred grand I'll do exactly that! Let's talk, ladies and gentlemen!
Anyway, the game's got barely an ounce of truly original material in it, obviously, but it's a well-made SRW knockoff all the same, and I've been having fun with it. Out of a scale of one to twelve stars, I give this game "cute." Recommended!