Japan's Edo Period was drawing to a close.
The shogunate, who'd held power in the country for more than 200 years, found itself challenged by the imperial court, and by several domains who had chaffed under shogunal rule.
In this midst of this political unrest, an organization rose to prominence: The Shinsengumi. Originally formed to protect the streets of Kyoto from masterless samurai, they came to represent the last, tragic bastion of the honor-bound samurai culture that had defined much of Japan's history.
A young woman by the name of Chizuru comes to Kyoto in search of her missing father, and soon encounters danger and the Shinsengumi in quick succession. When it becomes clear the Shinsengumi are also searching for her father, Chizuru is put under their protection.
But odd things are afoot in Kyotopossibly even supernatural things. Can Chizuru navigate this maze of mortal danger and political intrigue? Amidst so much misery and death, can she find romance?
The 'otome' is a bit of an odd duck to US audiences, even in the already niche genre of the visual novel.
Rather than play as a male character with an array of women to win over, otome games star a female protagonist out to win the heart of a male character.
Some noteworthy examples include Tokimeki Memorial(Girls' Side), Princess Debut(technically), and Hatoful Boyfriend(sorry).
Aksys are taking a heck of a gamble in bringing this title to the US, so here's hoping it pays off. (If only for the benefit of the ladies.)
After coming to Kyoto in search of her absent father, Chizuru stumbled onto one of the Shinsengumi's secrets, and was consequently taken under their "protection."
Once Chizuru's search for her father resumes, she begins to uncover secrets long buried. Secrets about her father, the Shinsengumi...and Chizuru herself.
The men tend to call him the "The Demon," and not always behind his back.
To maintain order and unity among his ragtag group of warriors, he is very strict and deals out harsh punishments in accordance with The Code.
Very few know his true nature or guess at his internal strife.
Okita is considering to be something of a genius with the sword.
He like to make jokesfrequently at the expense of his comradesand often wears a wry smile, but in battle he holds nothing back and his devotion to the Shinsengumi and Kondou is unparalleled.
(No, not that Sanosuke.)
Harada has something of a quick temper, and he's a little rough around the edges, but underneath it all he's a compassionate man with a strong sense of duty.
His weapon of choice is the spear, not the sword, and he has no equal among Kyoto's spearmen.
A cheerful man from Edo, Toudou is the youngest captain in the Shinsengumi.
He's quick with a grin and tends to jump straight into things before thinking them through, even if what he's jumping into is a lifeordeath battle.
Saito is know for being reserved, solitary, and loyal.
Unlike most other swordsman, he fights with his left hand. He is a master of the art of iai, and his swordsmanship is toptier even among the Shinsengumi.
A mysterious warrior hired by the Satsuma Domain.
He seems to have a special interest in Chizuru Yukimura.
(Not like there's anything else of note happening on that day, is there?)
I doubt you'll see a huge influx of reviews for this game, but I'll add a section if it proves necessary. (And of course, mad props to Vally for the banners!)