A cute and sparkly game by Hanako Games about dressing up a pretty little princess and preparing her to become a great queen...... and watching her be assassinated.Try this again.A viciously evil game about the cutthroat world of politics and intrigue, with you in charge of a woefully underprepared princess facing dangers on every side, frantically trying to train up her skills while absolutely everything is trying to kill her. Rule the world or die trying.You can buy this game on Hanako Games' website, Steam and GoG.com.Spoiler Warning: While we'll try to mark major spoilers, just about everything in the game is a spoiler to some degree. Read this page with caution if you want your play experience to be unspoiled.
Adults Are Useless: Despite supposedly being available as an advisor, Elodie's father, the King Dowager, never provides help to his daughter with any of the problems that get dropped on her. Until the end, if Elodie never gets her Lumen gem, when he is forced to fight and die in her stead.
All There in the Manual: There's a lot of background information in the flavor text for Elodie's classes, which may or may not come up in game depending on skill checks. There's more information (such as names) in the character reference biographies. Many names only appear in the reference biographies, like the Duke of Kigal's children besides Linley.
And Now You Must Marry Me: Subverted in the endgame—the Big Bad is already married and has no interest in a fourteen-year-old. Earlier, this is a possible goal of the Duke of Maree, if you surrender his lands to Ixion or punish his sister for her attempted power play.
You can also spin the circumstances around. If your skills are high enough that you realize the Banion is trying to suggest you have a secret relationship, then play along with it anyway, you have the option of informing him he fits your type, and you intend on marrying him. The epilogue details that Elodie takes special steps to ensure it's known that she has the power in the relationship.
Anachronism Stew: Elodie's costumes are a mishmash of clothing styles from many eras, including modern clothing.
And Man Grew Proud: While not quite on a world-ending scale, bits of lore that you can uncover in the game indicate that Lumens were responsible for the destruction of the old capital and for monsters like the keythong and the kraken.
Annoying Arrows: Mostly averted. Getting shot is a great way to end up dead, especially if Elodie foolishly tries to push the arrow through to the other side. On the other hand, if she lives through that, there are no lasting consequences to having been shot.
And Then What?: Elodie can bring this point up with Togami, if you're on the save the day with the power of music achievement path.
Elodie: "When you've killed me and taken my crystal, what do you do then?"
Arranged Marriage: Played with in that you must arrange your own marriage, but otherwise played absolutely straight. There is simply no time to think about romance in the deadly world of political intrigue and military threats you are cast into. A correctly arranged marriage brings alliances you desperately need.
If you survive the game without becoming engaged or expressing interest toward anyone, Elodie may decide to wait for romance and winds up with an unnamed Earl who's good at baking.
A lesbian Elodie can choose to avoid marriage and shack up with a female companion instead, if she plays her cards right.
Elodie can also arrange someone else's marriage to stop a war.
Asshole Victim: It's strongly implied that the Duchess of Lillah killed her stepson and her second husband. The former abused and possibly killed a number of his servants, and the latter "seduced" her son (and his stepson) Kevan and may also have raped a teenage girl.
Authority Equals Asskicking: Elodie's mother was one of the few remaining magic-users, and Elodie can inherit her Lumen crystal in turn. Her father, the King Dowager and a duke in his own right, also possesses one and the ability to use it. At the height of Nova's power, all of the dukes and duchesses were Lumen along with the royal family.
Ax-Crazy: The Earl of Io has an incredibly short temper and a tendency to go berserk, regardless of the consequences, on anyone who even looks like an enemy of the family. He doesn't bother to make sure his target is actually guilty, either.
Badass Bystander: If Elodie has gained enough approval from Nova's commoners, a young man may tackle an assassin sent after her in public, killing him at the cost of his own life.
Badass Princess: With the right skill set, Elodie can personally fight and win against all sorts of would-be assassins. Her duel against Togami stands out in particular. If you have a high enough naval warfare skill with a high magic skill, you can personally lead the Novan navy against Shanjian, using yourself as a magic cannonball to sink ships.
The Bard: Elodie can hire a court musician who writes songs in the royal family's honor. Her music isn't actually that great, but she's quite a talented spy if Elodie figures out enough to utilize her skills.
Berserk Button: Being too blunt in asking the Earl of Io if his late half-brother actually killed the brother of the woman who tried to poison his sister leads to him cutting the woman's throat in front of you and shouting that nobody hurts his family before storming off. This is despite the fact that passing a Court Manners check suggests that he didn't actually like his half-brother. This isn't even getting into what he can do later.
Big Screwed-Up Family: The Duchess of Lillah's family and various stepfamilies. Featuring sexual abuse, incest, incestuous sexual abuse, killing the perpetrators of the foregoing...
Lucille is such a nice and sweet aunt to Elodie. She also wants Elodie dead.
Banion is friendly and courteous, but he's also using Elodie to get his way, and he won't appreciate it if Elodie doesn't back his sister's power play.
If you choose to court the affection of the Duke of Sedna, then he appears to be charming and courteous in every way. If, however, you make it clear that you'll be marrying someone else, especially Adair (with or without antagonizing him first), then he'll raise tariffs on the border, making things quite difficult for your people.
Elodie herself can become one with the right education and dialogue choices.
Bittersweet Ending: If you're unable to stop the Shanjian fleet, but were able to defuse the Sedna incident and were betrothed to the Duke, you're able to escape, with the help of Sedna spies, and the game notes that you will be plotting a counter-attack with Sedna.
There are several. If you refuse to get a Lumen crystal and don't find another way of handling the endgame, the King will die protecting Elodie from Togami, anyone suspected of being a Lumen will be severely prosecuted for generations to come, Togami leads the Shanjian army to invade Borealis in the north, and is hinted to still be plotting against Nova. Elodie lives and Nova is relatively stable, however.
Black and Gray Morality: The nobility of Nova are ruthless in the pursuit of power, and many are rather unpleasant people, but only a few are truly evil. Meanwhile, Elodie herself is likely to make some very tough choices to keep her throne and protect her kingdom. Even the most moral Elodie has her ransoming soldiers with rich families, should Nova repel the Shanjian assault.
Bond One-Liner: If the Earl of Io challenges Elodie to a duel and she is already a Lumen, she can burn him to death and then reply, "I decline."
Broke Your Arm Punching Out Cthulhu: If you fulfill a particularly difficult Guide Dang It, Joslyn can defeat Togami when he comes to challenge Elodie to a Wizard Duel, but it will come at a great cost for Joslyn: He will remain unconscious for weeks after the fight, and even after he wakes up his physical and mental integrity will be severely and permanently dwindled.
For bonus Squick points, this follows a case of step Parental Incest between the Earl of Io and his mother's second husband.
A strongly-implied case of stepsister and step-Parental Incest can occur if you marry Banion at his sister Brin's urging. Brin will marry your father, but become your lover as well.
Bullying a Dragon: Make no mistake, Julianna let herself be imprisoned because she hoped Elodie would have a change of heart at some time. If Elodie decides to execute her, however, she will have no qualms to kill the princess in cold blood.
By the Power of Grayskull!: "Illuminate!" Played with: one of Elodie's Lumen mentors teaches her to say this to activate her powers, the other doesn't. It works fine either way. Her father uses it, too.
Call Back: Early in the game, this exchange occurs—
Kevan, Earl of Io: Your Highness! This slattern dares to beg pardon, when she admits that she tried to poison my sister under her own roof!
Elodie: Which sister?
Kevan: Corisande, the Duchess of Mead.
Later, depending on choices in between, it's possible to have this conversation—
Corisande, Duchess of Mead: Elodie! Where is my daughter?
Elodie: Which daughter?
Corisande: You know very well that I only have one.
Cataclysm Backstory: About six hundred years back from the game's "present day," the Lumens of Nova went a bit overboard with their powers and ended up wrecking the old capital. The place in question is still overrun by monsters, and the kingdom has basically written it off as a loss. Elodie and another character can go on an adventure there, but surviving requires passing multiple high-level skill checks.
Note: You don't even get anywhere near your destination. You barely get 50 feet inside before you get overwhelmed.
The Cavalry: If the Ixion conflict was solved by suggesting an alliance, the Ixionite fleet will come to help you during the naval battle against Shanjia.
Character Portrait: Given to named characters with dialogue (which means that a number of characters, including several love/marriage interests, don't get one). Elodie's is one of the few whose portrait differs according to mood (as well as according to what she's wearing). This used to lead to small incongruities like Charlotte's cheerful portrait coupled with her telling Elodie to stay away from her after killing Charlotte's mother, but this bug has since been fixed..
Compliment Backfire: Briony can tell Elodie "You're smarter than I remembered," much to Elodie's exasperation.
Culture Blind: Elodie knows nothing at the start of the game, not even things the crown princess might reasonably be expected to know, like court manners.
Cyanide Pill: The assassin that may go after Elodie at the Festival of the Good Lady will die from poison before he can be interrogated... but will leave behind a coded message that, once decrypted, leads Elodie to the duchy of origin.
Deadly Decadent Court: And if you neglect Elodie's social skills, she will find herself in over her head at the next grand ball.
Deadpan Snarker: Your father can sometimes come off as this, especially with his usual reluctance to openly judge you.
Elodie: Throw her into the castle dungeons and let her rot!
Joslyn: Well. I suppose she won't be a problem anymore.
Elodie can do it too, after receiving a dirty poem and showing a sense of humor about it:
Joslyn: There is a woman here to see you. She is a musician and wishes Crown patronage.
Elodie: (Which means money.)
Musician: Your Royal Highness! If you accept me as a member of your court I will immortalise you in word and song. I have dabbled in musical styles from many countries, and can entertain your guests and lighten your evenings.
Elodie: (I wonder if she also writes naughty poetry?)
Deliberate Values Dissonance: Since nearly all of the characters are nobility, there tends to be an according contempt for commoners as well as suspicion of those who rise above their original station—such as the Duke-Consort of Lillah and the King of Shanjia. Those two do turn out to be genuine pieces of work.
Depraved Homosexual: It's strongly implied that the late Duke of Mead was one, i.e. he was briefly "lifemate" to the Duke of Ursul, he had a habit of hiring "attractive young servants who had to be frequently replaced after injuries and 'accidents'", and a woman accuses his family of killing her brother. Compare the supposed Depraved Bisexuallate Duke-Consort of Lillah, who was rumored to have raped the Duchess of Elath and is confirmed to have "seduced" his stepson.
Novans in general to a lesser extent. Lumen are by and large feared, though Elodie's use of Lumen is seen as acceptable because she's the Queen.
Double In-Law Marriage: One possibility for Elodie. She marries Banion, and Banion's sister Brin marries her father. This is done to facilitate Elodie and Brin's own lesbian relationship.
Downer Ending: The nature of the game means there are a lot of them. Evening reaching coronation doesn't guarantee a cheerful ending, as any of the following can happen: both of Elodie's parents are murdered, the murderer is a Karma Houdini who's moving to conquer another country, Elodie has been poisoned by her "loving" aunt to keep her from having children, and her rejection of her Lumen crystal leads to a rise in violent prejudice against magic.
Emperor Scientist: Depending on the choices Elodie makes, she can end up sparking a scientific revolution in Nova after her coronation.
Entertainingly Wrong: When an assassin is revealed to have come from Merva, Elodie reluctantly concludes that her uncle Laurent, the Duke of Merva and her heir presumptive, is probably behind it. It's most likely Laurent's wife, Lucille, spurred by Elodie's demonstration of her powers in the dispute with Ixion.
Erwin, the Earl of Ishtar, has an unfortunate tendency to have family die around him—including one of his previous wives and two of his daughters. After the death of his grandson Adair, Elodie can blame him for it and order him imprisoned or executed, especially if she doesn't know about the political situation with Elath and Talasse, and that those dead family members were part of Elath's ducal family.
Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Part of the process of "saving the day with the power of music" is reminding Togami of his children.
Chopping his head off leaves his wife in very, very angry mourning. Angry enough that she threatens Nova and sends the head of one of her ministers trying to ally with Nova.
Everyone Is Related: A number of the duchies of Nova are ruled by people who are directly related to each other (to say nothing of the numerous cousins), i.e. Caloris and Mazomba (brothers Joslyn and Armand), Hellas and Maree (siblings Brin and Banion), Mead and Lillah (daughter Corisande and mother Arisse). Indeed, part of Arisse's power derives from being the mother, wife (then stepmother), and mother-in-law to the rulers of three other duchies besides her own. Also, Briony is the Duchess of Ursul's niece and possible heir to her Lumen crystal, and Brin and Banion's brother Bennett is the stepfather of Elodie's friend Gwenelle (as well as the father of her youngest marriage prospect, eight-year-old Anciet). And speaking of which, most of Elodie's marriage and romance prospects are related as well—Briony and Linley are cousins through their mothers, Kevan is their uncle, Thaddeus is Kevan's half-brother while Adair is their stepbrother, Talarist and his brother are distantly related to Adair, Anciet is Brin and Banion's nephew...
Evil-Detecting Dog: If you boost your skill with Dogs high enough, you may receive an important warning this way.
Evil Overlord: Togami. He rules an overseas kingdom that has enough resources to raise a massive army and supporting fleet that are both capable of overwhelming Nova through sheer numbers. And he's a Lumen to boot.
The Evil Prince: Lucille is trying to get you out of the way so her daughter can inherit your throne and your Power Crystal. You can, however, buy her off. The technical heir presumptive is Laurent—the late queen's brother, Lucille's husband, and Charlotte's father—but he isn't involved in his wife's scheming.
Evil Uncle: Subverted. If you get a certain event, it looks like Laurent tried to have Elodie killed, but that was actually Lucille's doing. According to another event, he's actually Lucille's next target.
Fantastic Racism: There's an undercurrent of tension between Lumens and non-empowered commoners due in part to a tragic event that happened in the backstory. As a result, any Lumens outside either the royal house or the Duchess of Ursul keep their abilities a secret for fear of inviting persecution.
Fiery Redhead: Kevan, the Earl of Io. To a violently unstable degree.
Fission Mailed: A small case with the "evil minion" ending a few weeks before the normal end of the game, as the screen irises out like Elodie's death scenes and then goes straight into the epilogue.
Elodie may come across a half-dead flower arrangement in the palace and grumble about careless staff; with enough skill in Divination, she takes it as a bad omen (and with enough skill in Decoration, she'll rearrange it to her satisfaction).
Foreshadowing: Lots of information pertaining to things which happen in game are foreshadowed either in the flavor text for Elodie's classes, or during conversations with other characters. Some points are more obscure than others, for example:
With high enough Lore, you uncover a theory suggesting that Bad Things happen when enough powerful Lumen get together. If you use Lumen powers to sink the Shanjian fleet, you either create a freak wave which drowns Elodie, or cause a sacrifice demanding sea monster to awaken.
The ONLY competition Elodie can win during the tournament is the music one, which suggests she is an incredible performer. A few weeks later, her music skills become vital in the Save the Day with the Power of Music ending.
If you become engaged to Adair, the Duke of Senda will always cause trouble at your borders, not matter how kind you've been to him in the past. While at first glance it may be because you've spurned him, having good internal and foreign affair levels will reveal that he's actually Adair's next of kin, and therefore the very strategically important Duchy of Elath will pass to him if Adair dies. If you do not marry Adair, he'll send assassins to eliminate him to ensure this succession, and furthermore it's heavily implied that he killed the rest of Adair's family to reach this end. However, Elodie marrying Adair and therefore taking him under the protection of the crown has completely destroyed his plans. It's a small wonder that he's a little bitter.
Fourth Date Marriage: Since many of her possible marriages are arranged, Elodie doesn't interact much with a number of the prospective grooms during the course of the game. However, one Up to Eleven case is Talarist, the Duke of Sedna. At the beginning of the game Elodie doesn't even know which country Sedna is in; a few weeks, a letter of condolence, and a pretty necklace later he visits in person, flirts, and suggests marriage. Elodie can promptly accept, much to her father's shock.
Freudian Slip: Possibly deliberately. Elodie may suspect an auditioning musician of being a recruitable secret agent. When she asks if she can juggle, the musician replies, "I can keep a set of dangers in the air."
Gambit Pileup: Everyone has something they want out of you, and everyone can potentially be your enemy or ally depending on how you deal with them. Also, unlike in many games, you may or may not ever find out who was behind a particular scheme.
Gay Option: Brin, the Duchess of Hellas, can send Elodie flowers after dancing with her, and Elodie can later choose to marry her brother to be closer to her, or even refuse to marry and take her as a companion. Depending on the choices made before the ball, Elodie can also dance with Julianna or Arisse, but this doesn't lead to a relationship. Also, Briony falls for her if they both survive the forest adventure and Elodie can reciprocate by making her "Lady of the Royal Bedchamber," though it doesn't stop their eventual marriages.
Gender-Blender Name: Elodie's father, Joslyn (a variant of Jocelyn, which can be a male name) and Jael, the late Duke-Consort of Lillah (whose perhaps most famous bearer is a Biblical woman).
Genius Ditz: Because you only have so many weeks' worth of classes and some stat checks get pretty high it's likely you'll end up with a queen who's got near-perfect knowledge of some subjects while being completely clueless in others.
The queen of Shanjia is an utter bitch, not helped by the addition of her husband. When one of her ministers attempts to cut a peace treaty with Elodie after she kills said husband in a duel, she sends Elodie his head].
Gold Digger: A variant with Lieke, the Countess of Dis, who only married the elderly Duke of Sudbury for long enough to produce a heir to the duchy; she then served as regent in the time between his death and her daughter coming of age. Judging from an argument at the latter's birthday party, she's reluctant to hand on her power. No royal likes her for this, except for the Duke himself.
Golden Ending: If Elodie is educated enough to allow the creation of the printing press and centralized hospitals, hasn't been unnecessarily cruel to anyone (and even saved others from cruelty, such as convincing one of the dukes to not slay the woman who attempted to poison the royalty out of revenge for her brother's death), and doesn't kill her mother's murderer, she goes on to become a good and wise queen, known for forwarding technology and peace.
Guide Dang It: There are a lot of intricately connected events in the game and the relationships between them will not be apparent at first. Working out who is trying to kill you at which points and why requires serious note-taking. If you haven't been following all the subplots, angry relatives may suddenly show up and challenge Elodie to a duel to the death... for an offense she didn't even know she committed.
Also, some of the bonus achievements are downright impossible to get unless you plan your route from day one. Notable examples are the 'save the day through the power of music' bonus (which requires ridiculously high stats in Voice, Instrument, Foreign Intelligence, Public Speaking AND Presence), as well as the 'Naval Victory' bonus (which requires VERY high Naval Strategy, you not losing ANY soldiers at any point during the game and accessing very specific events.
Has Two Mommies: A possible ending for Briony, if Julianna and Selene marry and Julianna adopts Briony as her heir. Also, if Elodie takes Brin as a companion, her child will be this by default, even if he's also her brotherandher nephew as well.
Heel-Face Turn: Of a sort. You can recruit Lucille as your Lumen Minister, after which she stops trying to kill you unless you try to harm her daughter, though it's unlikely, if not impossible, to both do this and realize she's the culprit in one playthrough.
If you achieve the Save The Day with the Power of Music bonus, the epilogue strongly implies that Togami has one.
Heroic Sacrifice: If Elodie accepts the duel with Togami even though she isn't a Lumen, her father will become one on the spot to take her place.
Joslyn: You want to fight the Lumen ruler of Nova? Illuminate!
Elodie herself can choose to do this to get rid of the kraken, which obviously ends the game.
Heroes Prefer Swords: While you can train Elodie in archery and lances as well as swords, during her climactic duel with Togami, she can create a magic sword to chop off his head.
Hoist By Their Own Petard: Two of the possible fights with other Lumen can end this way with enough Resist Magic skill, as Lucille expends all her power trying to take control of Elodie and the wife-strangler's magic rebounds on him. To a lesser degree, it's possible for Banion, the Duke of Maree to call for a vote of no confidence and discover that nobody will support him. On the other side, if Elodie forces his sister into marriage, Banion will try to trick her into a compromising position with him to force their engagement in turn.
Hot-Blooded: Brin, the Duchess of Hellas, conquered Ixionite territory without your mother's permission, possibly starting a war.
Human Sacrifice: An Eldritch Abomination can be pacified with the sacrifice of a Lumen or potential Lumen that has not yet reached adulthood. That means that Elodie is a viable sacrifice... And so is her cousin Charlotte.
Idiot Hero: It's entirely possible to go through the game by surviving plot after plot and never discover who's behind any of them.
Iron Lady: Arisse, the Duchess of Lillah. Next to Elodie, she is the most powerful noble in the kingdom, nicknamed the "Eastern Queen" because of her influence over multiple duchies, and absolutely not to be crossed. It's strongly implied that she had her stepson and her second husband killed when they went completely beyond the pale of acceptable behavior. If Elodie completely mismanages the kingdom, she'll declare civil war to set the kingdom right.
It Will Never Catch On: If ignorant in the relevant subjects, Elodie will automatically turn away petitioners asking for funding to create a movable-type printing press and establish a hospital (in the latter case, she'll think putting sick people together will just make them die faster).
Karma Meter: The hidden cruelty statistic; its level indicates if you're eventually willing to do things like kill your father and cousin.
Kick the Dog: One late-game hint as to the status of the aforementioned Karma Meter is when a servant dies from sneaking poisoned chocolates meant for Elodie. Normally, she's frightened; with high enough cruelty, she's happy it wasn't her.
The Kingdom: The term 'kingdom' is avoided in-game, but it fills the same trope niche.
Knight Templar Parent: Elodie's aunt Lucille is trying to kill her so the throne will pass to her daughter Charlotte and she can gain the royal Lumen crystal.
Living Emotional Crutch: In Kevan's "good" marriage ending, he eventually confides his past to Elodie, but this doesn't entirely cure his trust issues. Instead he falls so madly in love that he swears he can't live without her. Fortunately, there's no mention of it being put to the test. Also invoked with regard to his half-brother Thaddeus, who has issues stemming from some of the same events; see below.
Love Martyr / Love Redeems: Invoked with the Duchess of Lillah's desire to marry off her troubled son Thaddeus, believing the right marriage would be good for him; Elodie notes there's nothing about it being good for her. There's also a hint of this in the ending where you successfully marry her other troubled son Kevan (which necessitates knowing about his incestuous relationships), in which you eventually successfully shift his fanatical loyalties from his family to you.
Magical Girl Warrior: There are several around, the late Queen was one, and Elodie can become one during the game. So can her father... well, without the girl part.
Magic Knight: Julianna is deadly with both her sword and her magic. Elodie can follow in her footsteps, and this is one possible way to win the Wizard Duel.
Mandatory Motherhood: Motherhood is one of Elodie's duties; if she's a lesbian and refuses to marry, she'll sleep with an unknown male to produce an heir. In one ending, if you both marry Talarist and name him the Duke of Elath, her health will be ruined by the effort to provide heirs for both the throne and the duchy as soon as possible. Julianna averts this trope, mostly because nobody can force Julianna to do anything. Julianna can adopt an heir instead.
Massive Numbered Siblings: Arisse, the Duchess of Lillah, has six children from two husbands—not counting her stepchildren. Her daughter Charmion is the Duchess-Consort of Kigal and has a bunch more.
May-December Romance / Old Man Marrying A Child: Appears in the backstory between the Earl of Titan, who dies of old age during the story, and the late Duchess of Elath, who suffered Death by Childbirth while not much older than Elodie in order to provide for the succession as soon as possible. In-game, Elodie's oldest marriage prospects are in their thirties, as is one Gay Option.
According to Word of Godhere, most of the duchies of Nova are named after impact craters (in the sense of "Boom!" and calamity), while Nova is named in the sense of stars going nova. The exceptions are Maree (after lava-filled lunar basins), Kigal (after the death goddess Ereshkigal), Lillah (after Lilith), and Elath (meaning 'Goddess').
"Elodie" is the French rendering of the name of Saint Alodia, a child martyr honored by the medieval Catholic Church. In keeping with the astronomical themes, it's also the name of an asteroid.
Sedna, a duchy in neighboring Talasse, is the name of both a space object and an Inuit sea goddess.
Misplaced Retribution: Early in the game a woman tries to poison the Duchess of Mead, blaming her family for her brother's death ten years ago. With enough knowledge of internal affairs Elodie can point out that the likely perpetrator—the Duchess's half-brother and predecessor—is long dead as well, and the Duchess might even have been sympathetic to her case. This prompts the woman to go to prison quietly out of remorse. Later, if Briony dies, her uncle may blame Elodie on the evidence of Briony writing to her a few times talking about her search for adventure.
Missing Mom: Elodie's mother, Queen Fidelia, dies before the beginning of the game—hence Elodie's hasty ascension.
Mistaken for Cheating: If you both marry Thaddeus and talk down Togami, the former will assume you're having an affair with the latter, though he doesn't accuse you so much as storm off to brood.
The Mistress: Either Brin or Briony can become this to Elodie, if Elodie decides to marry after taking a female companion. That's an "if" for Brin, but not for Briony.
The Needs of the Many: Can be repeatedly invoked by Elodie, as she claims to do things like using her cousin as a human sacrifice "for the good of Nova."
Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Sinking the Shanjian fleet with synchronized magic wakes up a kraken, which requires either human sacrifice or years of painstaking rituals to keep from going on a rampage that kills hundreds of thousands.
Nintendo Hard: Unless you're using a walkthrough, Elodie will die. Repeatedly.
No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Charlotte may use her fledgling Lumen abilities to save her cousin Elodie from a snakebite. Elodie may repay her by feeding her to a kraken.
Nonstandard Game Over: While getting Elodie killed is the most obvious way to end the game, there are a few situations where she can get away with her life but not her crown. These include being forced to abdicate by a peasant revolt and fleeing the country in the face of a foreign invasion.
Noodle Implements: Elodie may receive an anonymous poem describing her committing unspeakable acts with a squid. She can be outraged or amused.
No Sparks: How almost all of Elodie's marriages seem to wind up. The marriage with Alair in particular is always described as "a relationship more like close friends than lovers."
Not So Different: Elodie can calm the Earl of Io's rage over his sister's attempted poisoning (as indicated in Briony's subsequent letter) by pointing out the motives of the perpetrator.
Elodie: She acted for the love of her sibling. Surely you can understand that? No one else needs to die.
Off with His Head!: If you've maxed out Wield Magic and Resist Magic, and are fast in the reflexes department, this is Togami's fate if you decide to summon up a magical sword and end the duel. In the epilogue, after the Queen of Shanjia's far less conquest-minded ministers try to curry favor with Nova, she sends Elodie the head of one.
One of Us: The game's Steam Greenlight page links straight to this very page.
Only Sane Man: Arisse, the Duchess of Lillah, is the only sane, non-juvenile member of the catastrophe that is the combined Mead-Lillah ducal family who we know much of anything about.
Passive-Aggressive Kombat: With enough Conversation skills, Elodie can engage in this. For example, when driving off a woman making a move on her father, she can compliment her on a brooch—saying that it reminds her of one her mother used to wear. Banion, the Duke of Maree, is also a practitioner; the toast he gives at the ball if he's unhappy with the handling of the Ixion situation drips with so much sarcasm that an insufficiently composed Elodie may be spurred to kill him. A sufficiently composed Elodie may repay him in kind.
Pay Evil unto Evil: Subverted. Elodie can feed Charlotte to the kraken without a high Cruelty score if she discovers that Charlotte's mother sent her the poisoned chocolates, in which case she considers it part of punishing the family, even thinking that the seemingly-innocent victim might have been in on the plot (According to Word of God, she wasn't). This doesn't horrify her father any less, nor does it make the people of Nova any less unnerved.
Perfectly Arranged Marriage: The Duke of Sedna is an interesting case; it's possible to either become engaged to him near the beginning of the game or decide to pursue him after Elodie's coronation (if you didn't burn your bridges), but only in the latter case do you get a description of how well the marriage works instead of how fancy the wedding is.
Pimped-Out Dress: Onscreen, Elodie's Royal Coronet outfit. In one ending, Elodie asserts her dominance at her wedding to the Duke of Maree by wearing one while dressing him in a ballet outfit.
Portent of Doom: The Divination skill allows Elodie to identify these and react accordingly.
Power Crystal: Lumens are empowered by special stones called Lumen Crystals. Whether or not Elodie chooses to recover the Lumen Crystal passed down from her mother has a big effect on how the plot can unfold.
The Power of Rock: The Big Bad used to be a musician. You can take advantage of this. Foreshadowed somewhat in that the music competition is one of the few tournament categories you can actually win, suggesting that a fully-trained Elodie is truly exceptional (as opposed to good for a fourteen-year-old).
Primal Scene: Played for trauma in one of Kevan's marriage endings, which reveals that his younger half-brother Thaddeus walked in on him in flagrante delicto with his stepfather. Foreshadowed in a different story path when their mother mentions he saw something unspecified as a child, which she blames for his current rebellious nature.
Princesses Rule: Elodie is Crown Princess until she comes of age, but in the meantime she's tasked with things like approving loans and judging criminal cases. This is a plot point in certain interactions with her father, the King Dowager, who reminds her that she's not the queen yet when she asks after her mother's Lumen crystal or protests him taking her place in the duel with Togami.
Psychic Powers: Really advanced Meditation unlocks a low-level ESP sense in Elodie, allowing her to see with her eyes closed and sense what's happening in nearby rooms.
Puppet Queen: The Duke of Maree and/or the Duchess of Lillah can try to make Elodie into one.
Pyrrhic Victory: In a naval battle, it is possible to join with two or more other Lumens and use magic to inflict heavy losses on the enemy fleet (if not outright sink it). If Elodie is not adept enough in wielding magic, her ship is forced to get closer first. At this point, with four magic users on your ship, winning the next magic check knocks back the fleet but leads to a freak wave. This kills you instantly, and other than bringing only moderate magical force (or a less experienced Elodie), this can't be avoided.
Rage Against the Mentor: The Duchess of Ursul tends to dispense information on a need-to-know basis; she doesn't even tell Elodie that the palace priestess is also a Lumen. Elodie is not happy when she finds out.
Rags to Riches: Togami was once a lowly court musician who only rose to power after marrying the Queen. This information is vital if you want to defuse the Shanjian debacle without anyone important dying.
Really Gets Around: If Elodie is cruel enough, she can refuse to marry anyone and just take whatever lovers she chooses, discarding them when they become boring.
Regent for Life: Inverted—Elodie isn't technically queen until her fifteenth birthday, but her father still leaves nearly all major decisions to her, the major exception being access to her mother's Lumen crystal—and once Elodie acquires it, he doesn't do much about it besides look reproachful when she uses it to threaten Ixion.
Rescue Romance: Rescuing Briony from a tentacle monster can lead to this. According to the game, being rescued is the most romantic thing to happen to her.
Romancing the Widow: Attempted by a number of women with Joslyn, the King Dowager and Duke of Caloris. He's generally uninterested, but may still marry again to produce a heir for the duchy (since Elodie, as queen, can't also succeed him as the Duchess of Caloris).
Royal "We": Elodie uses it on several occasions, i.e. "We are not interested" and "We must be circumspect."
Satellite Love Interest: Since the game is far more about politicking than romance, we know little about most of Elodie's marriage prospects beyond rank and family background and, accordingly, what they would bring to an alliance.
Sarcasm Mode: If you choose to accompany Briony to the Old Capital, the game's narration mocks Elodie's common sense and thinking that two little girls will be a match for hideous creatures. "True heroes," the game sarcastically christens the two.
Schoolgirl Lesbians: Elodie and Briony are the right age for this, but they weren't actually very friendly in school; their possible relationship develops after Elodie is pulled out in the wake of her mother's death.
Sex Slave: Implied in one ending. If sufficiently intimidated by Elodie's cruelty, Alice the maid can become the queen's lover, and is especially envied for the jeweled collar that she's required to wear.
Shoot the Dog: Elodie can prevent a civil war at one point by having a traitor poisoned.
Julianna or Selene will suggest killing Elodie's treasury guards to gain access to Elodie's Lumen crystal if Elodie can't get it peacefully. Julianna is more tactful about suggesting "drastic measures" than Selene is.
Sorcerous Overlord: Julianna wants to turn Elodie into this. Lucille wants to turn Charlotte into this. Togami, King of Shanjia, already is.
Succession Crisis: A two-stage one occurs regarding Elath. First, the father of the twelve-year-old Duke of Elath dies a natural death of age, and Elodie has to determine who becomes effective regent for one of the most important duchies in Nova. If you screw this decision up, then the young Duke will be assassinated. His next of kin is Talarist, the Duke of Sedna in Talasse, and agents of Talasse are likely responsible for his death as well as the earlier deaths of the rest of his family in Nova. Elodie may choose to give the duchy to a Novan instead, whereupon Talarist sends in an army.
Take a Third Option: Successful skill checks give you a chance to do this on a number of occasions. Examples include:
Mediating between Elodie's best friend and her mother without taking a side.
Deciding the custody battle over the underage Duke of Elath by placing him with his beloved stepsister instead of his stepmother, who already holds perhaps excessive political influence, or his grandfather, who can't protect him. There's another, easier "third option" of placing him with your maternal uncle, but this is more likely to anger his stepmother.
Inquiring further into the allegations of an attempted murderer who claims it was an act of justice.
After Togami storms the palace, instead of taking part in the Wizard Duel he proposes, Elodie can instead reason with him through song. Noticeably, this is the ONLY option that leaves everyone alive AND gives leaves Nova in a stable, if not improved, political state.
Teen Pregnancy: A number of cases, given that this is a medievalish society with a relatively low age of majority. A bit of calculation shows that the Duchess of Lillah was about seventeen at the birth of her eldest child, and Joslyn was about nineteen at the birth of Elodie (though we don't know how old Fidelia wasSpeculation We do know that she has a brother, Laurent, whose age is given. Assuming Nova runs on absolute primogeniture - oldest child inherits most senior title, regardless of gender - we can assume that Fidelia would have to be at least nine months older than 19, which is the age Uncle Laurent was when Elodie was born). Cayleigh, the Duchess of Elath, was also seventeen at her Death by Childbirth, but it's noted that her father pushed her into it and it's considered unusual to marry so young unless the succession is at stake (as with Cayleigh and Elodie).
Tender Tears: While attempting to talk down Togami Elodie is moved to tears after recalling all the happy memories about her mother.
There Is No Kill Like Overkill: If you refuse the duel at the tournament and dodge the first subsequent attack, your challenger will be promptly pincushioned with arrows by the skilled archers attending.
Thicker Than Water: This is the case for the remaining members of the Lillah-Mead royal family. Kevan of Io is Ax-Crazy about it, while the other members are relatively more sensible, and Arisse abandoned it on two occasions when her husband and stepson needed to be put down — though one could argue that even this still fits, as by sacrificing them she would have been keeping them from dragging the rest of the family down as well.
Title Drop: Shouted by the audience once you actually make it to the coronation, to which Elodie replies, "Thank you! I will!"
Too Dumb to Live: Quite a few of Elodie's deaths are caused by her simply not knowing that whatever she's trying to do is exactly the wrong thing for that situation. Since most of these are based on skill checks, this can be averted on a case-by-case basis depending on how the player has been guiding her education.
Trial-and-Error Gameplay: Inherent in the nature of the game, since you won't know what to prepare for on your first playthrough, but the sequence where you and Briony explore the old forest together requires practically perfect decision-making from the first week in order to get out of alive.
Troubling Unchildlike Behavior: Consistent acts of cruelty will turn Elodie into a truly vicious little sociopath. See the entry under Videogame Cruelty Potential for some of the specifics.
Unperson: Will happen to Elodie, if she joins Togami. Elodie's black-hearted, evil actions make Nova act as if she had never existed.
Vestigial Empire: According to history lessons, Nova used to be much larger and more powerful under the command of its Lumen nobility. However, even though it's not all that it used to be, Nova is not a weak realm, and if Elodie makes it to the throne, she can start working on inverting this trope.
Videogame Cruelty Potential: Among other things, you can force a woman into marriage, abuse the servants, ramp up punishments in hopes of discouraging assassination attempts, order your uncle executed on highly circumstantial evidence, reduce the Duchess of Mead to tears by blaming her for her daughter's death after deliberately sending her daughter into a monster-ridden forest alone, immolate her brother with magic after he calls you out (in the case where he's right in assuming that you're responsible for Briony's death), have your father killed so you can abandon your kingdom, and feed your cousin to a kraken—or order your uncle, aunt, and all your young cousins executed for your aunt's treason. This is even integrated into the game: there's a hidden Cruelty stat that measures just how nasty Elodie has become.
Weak, but Skilled: No matter how good Elodie is, there's no way that she can defeat Togami in a contest of pure magical power. She can, however, be more cunning than he is and defeat him by using her skills to the fullest.
What Does She See in Him?: You can express interest in marrying the Earl of Io despite, depending on story paths, your awareness of his incestuous relationship with his sister/his previous attempt to kill you. In the latter case, he tries to kill you again on your wedding day. In the former case, his niece thinks it's a terrible idea but goes along with it so he'll no longer be physically close to her mother; it actually works out fairly well.
What the Hell, Hero?: If Elodie goes with Briony on her foolish, life-threatening adventure and both of them live to tell the tale, they will get some serious and obviously deserved scolding from Corisande and Joslyn. Corisande in particular note that there are no such thing as "heroes", only reckless idiots who get themselves killed.
Wicked Stepmother: Arisse, the Duchess of Lillah, is implicated in the deaths of several people and is also the stepmother of the twelve-year-old Duke of Elath. However, it's ultimately subverted—his aging father would much rather leave him in the custody of Arisse than the boy's grandfather, and Arisse is also much more likely than the grandfather to keep him alive.
Played with by Arisse's stepson, the Duke of Mead. Yes, she had him murdered, but that was because he was a Depraved Homosexual and Serial Killer, and instead of gaining control of his lands, they go to her daughter.
However, Arisse's second husband Jael probably qualifies as a Wicked Stepfather, given that he "seduced" his stepson Kevan, who judging from the age of his eldest half-brother would've been a preteen or a very young teenager at the time of the marriage.
The Wiki Rule: Here. Doubles as a walkthrough of sorts, since it lists all the skill checks and consequences of your actions.
Wife Husbandry: One of the other custody options for the aforementioned Duke of Elath is to bring him to the palace as Elodie's betrothed (though to be sure, Elodie is only two years older). They end up more friendly than romantic. Elodie can also express interest in marrying her friend's little brother Anciet, who's even younger, but the epilogue indicates that nobody seriously considers it except Anciet himself, who proposes after coming of age.
Wizard Duel: One possible endgame. This is so that the Big Bad can properly gain the possession of Elodie's Lumen Crystal.
The Woman Wearing the Queenly Mask: Elodie is a young girl who has just had the responsibility of ruling an entire country thrust upon her well before anyone expected her to be ready for the task, least of all Elodie herself. The mood swings she experiences are important for players to consider, given that her attitude affects how well she does in her weekly classes.
Worst Aid: AVERTED! Do NOT pull the arrow out, or else death from blood loss. Even being knowledgeable in Battlefield Medicine isn't enough: if you're under seventy in the skill, you wind up shoving it in.
Another way to think of it might be Puella Magi Madoka Magica as a Raising Sim. In which the player takes the place of Homura, frantically replaying and trying to change the fate of this little pink-haired girl!
You Are What You Hate: Elodie's father blames magic and Lumen for her mother's death, but in one ending it's revealed that he also possesses a Lumen crystal when he duels Togami in his daughter's place. In another, with enough Faith skills, Elodie can find out about his secret collection of Lumen artifacts.
Briony has a blonde mother and a blue-haired father; "naturally" enough, she has green hair.
You Killed My Father: Togami murdered Queen Fidelia before the beginning of the game so that her inexperienced daughter would inherit her Lumen crystal and make it easier to take in a Wizard Duel. However, you only discover this in the ending where he taunts Elodie after killing her father as well, and in this path you're in no position to do anything about it... at least, not immediately.