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z827's Shingetsutan Tsukihime Game Review

Shingetsutan Tsukihime

Shingetsutan Tsukihime game Review

Shiki Tohno was severely injured in a large accident in his childhood. After miraculously surviving the event, he was sent away from the family to recuperate. As a result of the injury, he is now able to see "life lines" on objects and people which, when cut, will destroy them.

After years away from home, Shiki moves back following the death of the head of the Tohno family. While walking home from school, he meets a beautiful woman whom he is inexplicably drawn to kill. At firs he thinks her murder was all just a nightmare - until she reappears in front of him.

It turns out the woman is Arcueid Brunestud, and a vampire princess! She promptly recruits Shiki afterwards to help fight Roa, the antagonist vampire currently on a killing spree.

Story & Playability

Story Introduction
It's been eight years... Eight years since Tohno Shiki had stepped into the Tohno Mansion.
He had lived with the Arimas for that duration - but suddenly , the Tohno household wants him back.
Shiki heard that his old man had died and Shiki only returns to the mansion to make up for his sister whom he had left behind.
But that is also the start of a new life as he gets drawn into a sequence of unnatural events...

Main Character Introduction

Tohno Shiki
Tohno Shiki is a high school student with athletic abilities but is plagued by anemia and headaches. He also can see the "lines and points" of which things can easily be cut - which was hidden from sight by the special glasses he was given as a child by a person whom he met as a child.

Arcueid Brunestud
A True Ancestor vampire whom can be extremely cheerful and dense about the ways of human society.
Whilst she can be really cheerful at times , when angered , her intent to kill is so great that anyone whose human whom look upon her at such a time would probably lose their minds.

Ciel
A mysterious third-year student that appeared around Tohno's school.
She is beautiful and have a comforting aura about her.

Tohno Akiha
Shiki's dear little sister , though Akiha tends to resemble an elder sister more at times as she constantly worry over Shiki's well-being.
She may appear cold at times , but that is only the exterior.

Hisui and Kohaku
They are the only and remaining maids of the Tohno household.
The two twins bears a polar differences in personality - one is as expressionless as a statue whilst the others bear a smile bright as the sun above.
Hisui is in charge of taking care of Shiki whilst Kohaku takes care of Akiha.

Story Overview
Tsukihime - Meaning "Moon Princess".
Indeed , this game is as beautiful as the moon and yet it can be as dark as the night.
Impulses , bloodshed , life and death - but it can also be beautiful , tragic and heart-breaking.
The beauty of the game is like a soft illumination of the moon , ever present and light - but is inexplicably beautiful in it's own way.

Each and every single "route" of the various heroines bear their own emotions , their own tragedy and their own unique plotline - it is interesting to see how differently things went if Shiki decides to go down a different path - or decides to love a different person.
Things tend to not go at a pace which one would expect it to go and it is interesting to see how power comes at a price in this story.

If there is a certain flaw , the flaw would be that some of the "shared events" of the routes have contradictory lines - perhaps owing to the fact that it is irrational to link several different plotlines into a single event.

But it's strengths comes in a horde.

The way the characters are realistically human - how they succumb to simple things such as lust , how they succumb to fear and how powerless they feel. Doing everything they can to save those that they love and doing everything they can to destroy what obstructs their happiness. The protaginist is not the usual "want-to-save-everyone" types , he feels every weaknesses of a human and yet have strength beyond the most of us.

The storyline is intriguing , beautiful and dark , pieces and pieces of the entire plotline seperated into various routes and as you piece everything together , what did not make sense before starts to become clear and the characters whom appear firm or strong before is actually weak. How the characters struggle through their own pain - that in itself is a beauty to behold.

Indeed , this game is a game as beautiful as it's name itself.
I officially state that I had shed manly tears over Tsukihime.

Realism of the Characters
The way the characters were depicted was so well made that I simply have to start another sector to explain it :D

Firstly , I'd like to say that the protaginist is truly human.
Denying something bad he has done by escaping reality , succumbing to desires , making up his mind to protect the one he loves , laughing like a maniac to protect his sanity and even with all that - the player simply can not find themselves to hate him.

Because at other times , he proves to be so much stronger compared to us whilst having traits which is undeniably human , he kills to defend himself or something he believes in , he have contradictory thoughts and actions but at the same time he does all he can to defend the people he wants to protect.

There are characters whom succumb to bloodlust owing to their nature , there are those whom loses their minds , there are those with a tragic past - so many characters with their distinct backgrounds and displayed in a manner of which they have their own human-like desires yet we can not hate them because of the beauty of their emotions.

Rating: 7

Graphics

Artwork Review
Considering that this is an old Visual Novel , the artwork is good enough as it is - when you compare it to other works of that age.
the lines are generally smooth and the artwork is actually still quite comparable to modern day artworks.
Though the general design of the characters may prove slightly old-fashioned and plain - particularly in Visual Novel standards.
Still , some of the CGs are still beautiful in their own way - perhaps it is due to the storyline itself which enchances the CGs , or is it the other way round?

Effects Review
Special effects doesn't come quite as plentifully in the Visual Novel , but it is interesting to see how skilled the developers are in making a disturbing scene truly disturbing.
Shading the screen a deep , sickening red - blacking out the screen to let you know something is wrong or perhaps some of the nerve-wrecking glares from some of the characters - it was unusually well-executed.
Indeed , just by playing this game , I think I had a closer understanding to the meaning of "standing near death" from a safer point of view XD

Rating: 8

Sound

Music Review
The music generally makes use of simplistic soft , gentle tunes and at times tunes which brings about a heavier atmosphere in matching to it's scenario.
Whilst the music is certainly old - it is still beautiful and illuminating in it's own way - though certainly , hearing the same tracks play again and again from start to finish can be quite a bother.
Still , whilst you may have grown bored of the music , for some reason , in emotional scenarios , the music seems to have regained it's meaning once more.
Well , all in all , this game only have ten tracks which you have to listen to for over fifty hours of gameplay time.

Still , the Main Menu theme and the theme song of the game , "Tsukihime" , is a beautiful song indeed.
( Yes , the song is called Tsukihime )

Rating: 7

Fun

This is a Review of Tsukihime
Is it wrong to shed manly tears over such a beautiful game?
I believe not , Tsukihime is like a roller-coaster ride , tossing you into tears , fear , anguish and pain.
In deep contrast to it's spin-off , Fate/Stay Night - Tsukihime is no where near the levels of epic in terms of plotline standards.
But it does bear one thing which Fate/Stay Night never had - a deep , saddening beauty which enshrouds itself - no , a strange , soft happiness but also a deep sadness which grips firmly upon it's plotline.
The game literally plays with your emotions - letting you feel calm , then throw you into the state of near-death , lets you understand the disturbing lust for blood and later binds you to some emotional plotline

Overall : Others

Age Recommendation : 18+ ( 16+ if you decide to download the Non-Eroge Patch )

Console : PC

Romance
Romance... was brought to an exceptionally beautiful level.
Right , I know I have been repeating the words beautiful for a long , long time , but there is no better word for it.
Shiki may feel dark desires from time to time , but when his truly himself , he dedicates himself to protecting the person he loves and likewise , the heroine in question does all she can to keep him safe.

A simple action , a simple dedication and yet it is so beautiful , captivating , mesmerizing and yet - painful at times.
It is not the typical style of romance styled solely for neither male nor female audiences - it is true love , the strong desire to protect someone you care for even if it means it comes at the cost of your own life.

It is not a flowery romance solely suited for females - nor is it a convenient romance solely suited for males , it is - indeed - something as beautiful as the moon itself.

Impulses
Well , it seems that various characters have various... impulses and desires owing to their nature.
Particularly Shiki , whom suffers from unnatural bloodlust and lust owing to certain plot elements - and depending on the player's choices , Shiki would refrain himself from doing anything against his morality or succumb to it and perform something horrible.

Too Easy?
Well , the choices to be made in this game is inexplicably obvious compared to other Visual Novels.
It is clear which choices you have to make - you may make mistakes at times and that may cause you to go down the route for sometime before you hit the dead end - but otherwise the choices tend to be clear as day.
Knowing what you ought to do and knowing what you ought not to do - minimal thinking is required.

Still , the routes get slightly more blurred out as you unlock more and more routes and the choices become more and more difficult - would you choose death or sacrifice yourself for someone else?

H-Scenes
*Facepalm*
Can't believe I've forgotten about this one.
Anyways , H-Scenes tends to come near the conclusion of the entire route and well - their more or less the typical kinds of H-Scenarios you'd see.
Nothing too much and nothing too little - the typical sorts.
Still , there are elements of... nnm... "forced interaction" in the game if the player chooses to do so.
Though it tends to cause a Bad Ending at the end of the plotline.

Trivia
- Melty Blood is a fighter based off Tsukihime
- Melty Blood was originally a PC Doujin work but is continued on by Type-Moon
- There is a "sequel" ( Not exactly one but.. ) called Kagetsu Tohya
- There is a PLUS DISC for Tsukihime
- There is a spin-off called Alliance of Illusionary Eyes
- There is a parody from Mirror Moon called Fool's Errand
- In the English Patch by Mirror Moon , you can install an optional Non-Ero patch
- Tsukihime was pretty much the basis for other works like Kara no Kyoukai and Fate/Stay Night
- Type-Moon had mentioned a remake - but so far there wasn't any signs of a release
- There were suggestions of a sequel but that is just a rumor for now ( As when this review was written )

Rating: 9

Final Verdict

7.83 (good)

Reviewed by z827, Jul 23, 2011

Comments

  1. angelxxuan Jul 23, 2011

    another nice and detailed review, I have encountered this in anime form and knew of the game yet never actually obtained the ability to play the game, from the sounds of it, by reading this review I find myself possibly interested in it, that is if I ever encounter it. for some odd reason I like the vintage of things, and tend to enjoy them more than the newer stuff in existence, or it could be I'm just in that mood :) you've been busy with granting mt with these reviews keep them coming !

  2. CyanideBlizzard Retired Moderator Jul 28, 2011

    Tsukihime is one of those H-VN's that you don't feel guilty for playing afterwards. With such a wonderfully told story and H-scenes that aren't simply included for obvious reasons, it's no wonder why Type-Moon is so insanely popular. Tsukihime, the anime, is what introduced me to Type-Moon and then I played this and fell inlove with it.

    You did a wonderful job, as usual Z. A great job elaborating on the necessary parts and a good coverage on plot, characters, voices and sound. Excellent work!

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