Video Game / Stellavanity
A Bullet Hell
game that is simultaneously the successor to Crimzon Clover
, by the absurdly detail-oriented
. The game is notorious for its development cycle and various trial releases, during which the game has changed from a simple Espgaluda
clone to an absurdly complex shmup with RPG Elements
A complete game based on trial versions 0.30 onward, known as Stella Vanity -Prelude to the Destined Calamity-
, was released at Comiket 81 in December 2011 / January 2012. It was supposed to eventually have an English translation by the developer himself, but he nixed those plans, as well as English-language versions of his future games, after catching wind of the game being leaked to Western Imageboards
, prompting complete cutoff with his English-speaking fans
, leaving the game to be available only through the Japanese version of DLsite. However, things have changed since and the game was released
on the English version of DLsite on November 13, 2013. Another game based on trial versions leading up to version 0.22, known as Stella Vanity D -Passage to the Isolated Moon-
, is currently in development.
This game contains examples of:
- Beam Spam: In Ethereal Shift mode, your homing lasers constantly fire at a rate of about 8 shots per second.
- Accelerator Drive drastically increases the charge speed of the Discharge, more easily enabling spamming during stages.
- Bullet Time: With the added advantage of being able to cancel enemy bullets by killing the enemy a la Espgaluda.
- Cast from Hit Points: Holding down the bomb button without having any bombs in stock allows you to exchange lives for bombs (at a rate of 4 bombs per life) without actually getting hit. If the life that's sacrificed is your only extra life in stock, you get a 5th bomb as well, allowing for a potential Death-or-Glory Attack.
- Copy Protection: The DLsite version previously required a DLsite account that has purchased the game in order to play it. Certain antivirus software could cause the DRM to fail and prevent the game from starting up. As of November 2013, the game is available DRM-free.
- Frickin' Laser Beams: Azerlete loves lasers, as her Discharge, Assault and bomb all shoot lasers of varying size and quantities.
- Guide Dang It: Figuring out exactly how the two item value counters are affected by everything else is very important to scoring and making the most out of Delayed Shift. Tris_gram has been mostly silent on this one, only saying that a balance of both gems and coins is needed for maximizing scoring.
- And then the current lack of English translations (due to TRIS-GRAM terminating contact with English-speaking players after the /jp/ leak) makes figuring out some mechanics mostly trial-and-error, with an extra helping of error. While there are buttons specifically for Blade and Ethereal Shift, nothing (in English, at least) hints that Overdrive is done by holding the bomb button down. And then there's the accessories...
- Harder Than Hard: The difficulty levels are as follows: Easy, Normal, Arcade, Hard, Nightmare, Pandemonium. Hard mode is already difficult enough that the creator of the game got hit on Stage 1, but Pandemonium... well... looks a lot like this◊. And that's the first stage.
- Improbably Female Cast: Averted. At least one of the characters is male, unusually for a doujin shmup.
- Loads and Loads of Characters: As if it wasn't hard enough to master one character, Tris_Gram has stated that he intends to have at least 5 in the full version, all of whom will control differently. Prelude to the Destined Calamity currently subverts this, though, with only 2 playable characters.
- Macro Game: After each play, the character you played as gains Experience Points and can level up, which increases their starting stats in Story Mode. You can also purchase accessories to use, up to two of which can be equipped in a particular playthrough. Rule Mode downplays this by locking your starting level at a difficulty-dependent point (10 for Easy and Normal, 15 for Arcade, 20 for Hard, 30 for Nightmare, and 40 for Pandemonium), but lets you use accessories. Strict Rule Mode does the same but disables accessories, averting this trope in the process.
- Money for Nothing: Overkill an enemy, and some of their bullets will turn into shiny gold coins.
- No Range Like Point-Blank Range: In the older versions, it was really hard to score without this.
- One-Hit Polykill: Killing more than one enemy with a single use of Assault and/or Blade results in a Multikill bonus. Type-C's Discharge also pierces through most enemies.
- Roboteching: Homing lasers, yay!
- Smart Bomb: Can also be burned to activate a Super Mode and a barrier.
- Spread Shot: Lemulene has a wide-reaching spread shot as her main weapon.
- Some Dexterity Required: Bombing right before pulling off a Raid is difficult but can skyrocket your score.
- Also, the controls. Default configuration for them gives you 6 buttons (the minimum, mind you), with both shifts on one button and your shot type determined by whether or not you hold the slow button down. You can up this to 8 buttons in the config menu, turning the fire button into a "tap for shot, hold for laser" button like in many CAVE games (or into a button that exclusively shoots the laser) and adding a button for autofire while keeping the regular slow button and having Ethereal Shift on its own button.
- Spin Attack: Lemulene's Blade hits everything around her.
- Super Mode: 4 of them, to be specific.
- The Type-S exclusive Delayed Shift, which increases shot power, slows down enemy bullets, makes the destruction of enemies turn any bullets they've fired into jewels and enables a screen-clearing Counter Burst that gets stronger based on how much you increase your jewel counter during it at the cost of preventing overkill on normal enemies, preventing any and all coins from dropping (most of them become jewels instead), and increasing the amount of bullets fired by all enemies and bosses (this still applies to Pandemonium difficulty, by the way).
- The also Type-S exclusive Ethereal Shift, which gives you a rapid-fire variant of the Assault Lock-on Shots that automatically fire on locked-on enemies, prevents the coin value multiplier from decreasing, prevents bosses from dying or switching phases (enabling massive overkill bonuses, but increasing the intensity of the patterns during the overkill phase), enables infinite usage of Blade and activates a shield that sacrifices a bomb and the mode to prevent death (except during a boss overkill phase, which just sacrifices the mode) at the cost of denying overkill on normal enemies, disabling Raids and increasing the amount of enemies that appear during stages.
- Overdrive is a universal super mode that consumes a bomb but boosts your shot power for a short while. Activation also causes a brief burst of invincibility and cancels bullets around the user, but it's not as good for defensive purposes as using a bomb normally.
- Type-C has Accelerator Drive as of 1.20, which increases shot power similarly to Overdrive, boosts the charge speed of the Discharge (except during boss fights), increases the amount of coins that appear when enemies are destroyed and turns bullets canceled by the Discharge into jewels instead of coins. It's even possible to extend the duration of the Accel Drive by using Overdrive during it, though the item-boosting benefits are lost when this is done.
- There Is No Kill Like Overkill: The basis of the entire Type-S scoring system revolves around overkilling most enemies. Including bosses.