Long ago, in ancient times, there was a rebellion. An angel turned against God and rallied an army to wage war against heaven as they so often seem to do once they decide they no longer want to be part of the cool crowd. In any event, the angel and his demonic armies were sealed away with the help of humans who fought and died in a desperate war until finally an angel descended from heaven and granted power to a saint whose sacrifice made such a thing possible. Nevertheless, history was doomed to repeat itself and the fallen army eventually broke free over modern day Tokyo, bringing with them vampires, humans who bore the blood of the fallen angel. Opposing them was humanity's first and last line of defence, girls trained by the Inquisition who wielded powerful magic that could match the demonic commanders at the cost of most of their lifespan. They were likened to the bullets of a gun. Thus the stage was set for the first game by doujin
circle FLAT, eXceed: Gun Bullet Children
, and it was good. But not that good.
A sequel was released the following year called eXceed 2nd: VAMPIRE
, which added a dual-polarity system similar to the one used in Ikaruga
. Instead of the Gun Bullet Children, the protagonist was a vampire fighting for survival as power struggles within the Church left a faction that rejected any form of human hybrid in control of the Inquisition. After seizing control they initiated a worldwide purge and employed the Gun Bullet Children to hunt all vampires down.
Then FLAT stopped working on the eXceed series and eventually shut down in early 2009. In the meantime, ownership of the series was transferred to another doujin circle called Tennen-Sozai who threw out all the established story material and rebooted the franchise with eXceed 3rd: JADE PENETRATE
. The third game tells the story of a young girl named Raine Lindwurm who seeks to become the Demon King of her world. Standing in her way are many obstacles, including her own older sister and heiress to the power of dragons Celestia.
Iwakura Productions and Nyu Media have released Gun Bullet Children, Vampire REX and Jade Penetrate Black Package overseas on 29th March, 2012, for download at their website, Gamersgate, the Capcom Store, the Gamestop Digital Download Service (Former Impulse) and Steam, with pending releases on Gametap and Gamefly. While the two latter games have English localization, Gun Bullet Children couldn't be localized since its code has been Lost Forever
, so it has instead been released in its original Japanese with a translated script available from the distributors (and a fan made mod that uses said script to translate the game linked on the game's pcgamingwiki page here
). They are also available from Manga Gamer
here: http://www.mangagamer.com/allages/Titles/Details/74F7802C-CE53-4E54-860F-ADFC7DB00CDD/the-exceed-collectionFull Disclosure
: The majority of this article was written without knowledge of Japanese and from guesswork using machine translation. As such, it
is almost certainly missing important details or has gotten things wrong. If any helpful tropers come along and wish to assist with revising this article, data and resources can be found:
- For Gun Bullet Children, here.
- For VAMPIRE, here.
- For JADE PENETRATE, here and here.
Tropes associated with this series include:
- The Ace: Meet Celestia Lindwurm, the Academy's number one. When she first came to school, she challenged all the other strong fighters and put them in the hospital.
- All There in the Manual: While 3rd may be a separate universe from Gun Bullet Children and 2nd, elements do show up connecting the two universes — Gilles de Rai is a Cardinal Lord and principal of Belphegor Academy while one of Remedy's monikers, the Undead Lord, is similar to the title used by the leader of the Vampires.
- All Your Powers Combined: Giee is more powerful than all her familiars combined, thanks to...
- Asskicking Equals Authority: ...the nature of summoners, who dominate their familiars through strength.
- Aloof Big Sister: Celestia.
- As Long As There Is Despair: Implied to be the source of power for Remedy's final spell.
- Autobots, Rock Out!: A bit in VAMPIRE REX but in full force for the third game. BEHOLD!
- Especially noticable in the Black Package.
- Ax-Crazy: Brunhild and Siegrune.
- Batman Gambit: The Church intentionally pulled out their forces to lure the vampires into the Holy Land in order to blow them all up with Anhel.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Especially Miyabi Housen. Her fire powers can turn ANYTHING into ash.
- Bonus Boss: Remedy in Black Package.
- Brutal Bonus Level: Hyperboreios, the Extra Stage of Black Package.
- Bullet Hell: Naturally
- Black Knight / Magic Knight: Gilles de Rais fits for both of these tropes, due to being an expert in ancient magic herself.
- Breast Plate: Gilles de Rai.
- Calling Your Attacks: Raine calls out her Dragoon Detonation and Burn Air Raid attacks while Irias calls out Gloster Meteor.
- Church Militant: The Catholic Church in the first two games.
- Darker and Edgier: VAMPIRE.
- Dark Is Not Evil: Found in the half vampire, Chinatsu, who uses dark powers and swords to fight enemies, and Ria File, who can switch to both light and dark attributes.
- Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Several times in the series. The Angel in Gun Bullet Children and both a humanoid Angel and Fenrir in VAMPIRE.
- Eldritch Abomination: Anhel in Gun Bullet Children and Fenrir in VAMPIRE.
- False Friend: Lugh Ciel seems to be a friendly, obedient little girl at first, but she's actually a Turn Coat that associates with powerful people one day because it benefits her, and betrays them when they're no longer useful.
- Familiar: Sowel fights with one in Gun Bullet Children and VAMPIRE.
- Raine uses little dragon familiars called Mini Tiamats and Giee, being a summoner, uses familiars that take the form of Mini Bosses throughout the game.
- Freeze-Frame Bonus: The arcane text that accompanies the splash screen at the beginning of 3rd's stages is actually the text of Jabberwocky, in English.
- Freudian Trio: The Gun Bullet Children, no doubt.
- Chinatsu Kagaya: (Ego)
- Miyabi Housen: (Id)
- Sowell Divosiana: (Superego)
- Gratuitous German: All over the place.
- Half-Human Hybrid: The vampires are half-human, half-fallen angel. Raine and Celestia have both dragon and demon blood and yet look like angels.
- He Who Must Not Be Seen: The Cardinals. Also the Undead Lord, until it turns out to be Remendy in JADE PENETRATE.
- Heel Realization: There's really no other way to describe Sowel's reaction to seeing Anhel's true nature.
- Hero Antagonist: The Gun Bullet Children in VAMPIRE.
- I Just Want to Be Normal: Invoked by Ria for Anhel's enslavement.
- I Just Want to Be Loved: What the twins wanted all along.
- Knight Templar: The antagonists in 2nd, who are xenophobic to vampires.
- Kill 'em All: Depending on how you look at the games, many of the characters suspect to have died in the end.
- Lady Looks Like a Dude: Chinatsu Kagaya from Gun Bullet Children and VAMPIRE would be a good example.
- La Résistance: The rebels and Undead Lord's forces in VAMPIRE.
- Lets Fight Like Ladies: While Raine is friendly towards Giee, Irias, and Celestia she treats the two weaker bosses with contempt (although Lugh was a favored underclassman until she decided to bet against Raine).
- Lighter and Softer: The third game is more humorous and lax in tone.
- Light Is Not Good: Some bosses in VAMPIRE use a "Holy" white attribute. Ria File can switch to both light and dark attributes.
- Little Miss Badass: The GBC in 1st, Ria File in 2nd, Raine Lindwurm in 3rd.
- Meaningful Name:
- Gilles de Rai was Joan of Arc's right-hand man who was claimed to be a mass murderer of children.
- Brunhild and Siegrune were the names of valkyries.
- Sowell Divosiana apparently is a pun to Thomas Sowel, who covered the topic on Diversity. Ironic, isn't it?
- Mercy Kill: What Ria does to the twins in the end, as there was no place for such out of control monsters like them.
- Mooks: The Killing Dolls, the commons enemies found in Gun Bullet Children and VAMPIRE.
- My Nayme Is: Although spelled without a few vowels, Sriabell's name is actually prounounced "Sariabell Orphanight"
- Names to Run Away From Really Fast: "The Undead Lord", "The Immortal King" and "The Demon King" to Remedy.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Nice job, Ria. Not only did you kill Brunhild, you also made Siegrune absorb her body and mutate into Fenrir.
- Nice Job Guiding Us, Hero: In Level 5 of VAMPIRE (REX), Ria actually leads Gilles to Angel's altar.
- One-Winged Angel: The twins are only showed in human forms. When coupled together, they are really one entity known as Fenrir.
- Our Angels Are Different: Both Rain and Celestia are technically half dragon and half demon despite looking like a angel.
- In Gun Bullet Children, the Angel is an Eldritch Abomination
- In VAMPIRE, Gilles de Rai states that angels only obeyed God, but artificial ones like Anhel can freely choose not to.
- Our Demons Are Different: Exceed 3rd takes place in the demon world of pandemonium.
- Our Elves Are Better: Irias, an elf, is second only to Celestia, a member of the Dragon clan, in terms of power at the school.
- Our Vampires Are Different: Vampires are half-human, half-fallen angel and can possess a variety of magical powers.
- Person of Mass Destruction: A large variety of characters, but the twins are the biggest.
- Power Gives You Wings: Chinatsu sprouts wings only when she starts fighting Ria but seems capable of flying normally without them. Gilles de Rai is shown with wings only after revealing that she is no ordinary human.
- Members of the Dragon clan in 3rd only gain wings after realizing their true potential. Also, after powering up, Celestia gains even more wings.
- Power Limiter: The twins and Anhel have these.
- Punch Clock Hero / Punch Clock Villain: Ria File in VAMPIRE REX likely fits for both, by being employed by the Undying Lord in fighting for the evil forces suffering from a genocide. The Gun Bullet Children is another example, except for Sowel, who appears to be very loyal to her Church masters.
- Pyro Maniac: Miyabi Housen
- Really 700 Years Old: Remedy from the 3rd game stands out being 5000 years old while looking like a 10 year old.
- Reverse Polarity: Like Tresure's Ikaruga, polarity reversing is a major gameplay feature in 2nd.
- The Runaway: Ria File from 2nd, who left her oppressive human society and was rescued by the Undead Lord.
- Sequel Hook: Celestia points out that beating her won't make Raine the next Cardinal Lord, only a contender for the throne against all the other schools in Pandemonium.
- Sibling Yin-Yang: Brunhild and Siegrune in VAMPIRE.
- Singing Simlish: Increasingly prominent as the series went on.
- In VAMPIRE, The Catholic Church is launching a worldwide purge and a major rebellion fails to stop them. The rebels eventually try again with a polarity-switching weapon. This story and the gameplay are very similar to that of Ikaruga.
- The twins, Brunhild and Siegrune, have very big resemblences to the Scarlet sisters from Touhou.
- It's very like that Angels (based on the Anhel in both GBC and VAMPIRE), with their destructive power and being very hard to kill, has to be a direct Shout-Out to Neon Genesis Evangelion.
- Actually, the stories for the first two games have serious resemblance to it. Monsters known as Angels? Check. Artificially making such monsters? Check. Ancient Conspiracy? Check. Children made to defeat enemies only they could fight who are more of anti-villains? Check.
- Stripperiffic: Celestia's incredibly revealing outfit.
- Theme Naming: The original version of 3rd was chock full of themed names. For example:
- Arms And Armor Theme Naming: Irias' attacks are named for various weapons and weapon-related things — Strayer Voigtnote , Derringernote , Limpet Minenote , Gloster Meteornote , and Fliegerfaustnote .
- Musical Theme Naming: ...while Sriabell's attacks are named after metal bands and albums. Black Package diversifies the attacks to somewhat different genres.
- Stellar Name: Lugh is an Irish deity who is thought to be a sun god while Ciel is french for "sky". Lugh also has several star-themed attacks: Stardust Layer, Zodiac Star, and Genostar.
- Theme Twin Naming: Brunhild and Siegrune are both valkyries from Wagner's famous opera.
- Tournament Arc: The plot of 3rd.
- True Final Boss: Fenrir in VAMPIRE, Celestia at full power in JADE PENETRATE.
- Updated Re-release: Tennen-Sozai released one for eXceed 2nd called VAMPIRE REX and one for eXceed 3rd called BLACK PACKAGE.
- Villain Protagonist: Ria File.
- Voice of the Legion: Fenrir in 2nd.
- Walking the Earth: After being from the Church's clutches and the twins' wrath, Angel goes out on a long journey.
- We Will Meet Again: Ria promises to Miyabi that the two would meet again.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Sowell and her familiar, Silvestre, were said to be found missing after Ria's battle with them. Though Ria says they have likely been killed, their confirmed fate is unknown. But what happened to Miyabi after her defeat? And what happened to the Cardinal after the Church's defeat in VAMPIRE?
- Worthy Opponent: Raine and Irias. The two speak to each other respectfully and politely, and each wishes the other a good fight before they go at it.
- Would Be Rude to Say "Genocide": Type C in VAMPIRE by the Catholic Church.
- X Meets Y:
- You Killed My Father: Sowell has a hatred against the vampires because her parents were killed by them.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: As Gilles de Rai says to Ria after arriving in Anhel's lair.