1947, in a criminal underworld. Bodyguards wanted.
Rose Guns Days is a doujin game
by 07th Expansion. Wordof God
has stated this work takes place in an entire new universe, in contrast to When They Cry
Tokyo, 2012. The city has become a cosmopolitan metropolis, where people of Japanese descent have become very few. The young Journalist Julie Hayashibara is one of them, and is called in by the famous Mafia boss Jeanne Amakawa, Madam of a club in Tokyo called Primavera. The old woman wants to pass on the story of the unknown first Madam of the club, Rose Haibara, and how Primavera came to be how it is today.
Tokyo, City 23, 1947
. In an Alternate History
, Japan lost the war in 1944, when the country was destroyed by a natural disaster. The United States and China quickly started to compete in the reconstruction, bringing massive waves of immigrants with them, to the point Japanese people became a minority in Tokyo. Three years later, almost all the Japanese people in Tokyo go by a second Western name, and unemployment mixes with criminality and prostitution. Leo Shishigami comes back in his unrecognizable hometown after three years, and saves a young girl chased by The Mafia
, who invites him to eat pasta in the club she owns, the Primavera. After wandering around in the city and unsuccessfully searching for a job and a roof, Leo goes back to the club, where the crime boss Alfred Akagi
and his henchmen are threatening
the girl who helped him. After the incident where he shines again, Leo ends up hired as a bodyguard for "Madam Rose". There begins the story of Rose's determination to help her compatriots in need and Leo's fight to protect and support her.
The game is completely different from anything released by 07th Expansion so far, as it features no gore, Psychological Horror
or mystery, but rather a mix of slice-of-life and action with elements of political drama, with a generally lighter tone. And in a slight originality from the usual sound novel format, action scenes are punctuated by a reflex mini-game with a recorded score at the end of each Season. Considering the setting, some touchy themes come to be treated in the story, especially the questions of nationalism and cultural specificity.
A promo and trial has been released by Witch Hunt
, the translation team behind 07th Expansion's previous work Umineko: When They Cry
, and they will provide an English translation once the full games are released. The demo can be found here
. The English translation of Season 2 is now available, and a trial of Season 3 can be found on 07th Expansion's website. The Last Season will be released in January 2014.
Like the When They Cry
series, manga adaptations rapidly started in Square Enix magazines, all currently on-going :
- Season 1 started in September 2012 in the Gangan Joker. It is drawn by Sōichirō, who already worked on the manga adaptation of Alliance of the Golden Witch.
- Season 2 started in February 2013 in G-Fantasy. It is drawn by Nana Natsunishi.
- Season 3 started in September 2013 in the Gangan Online. It is drawn by You Oomura.
Other manga adaptations include a spin-off called Aishū no Cross Knife
, published in the Big Gangan, and a prologue titled Rose Guns Days Gaiden
in the Monthly Shonen Sirius
Obviously not to be confused with Guns N' Roses
Rose Guns Days contains examples of:
- Adaptation Distillation: In the manga, most fight scenes are shortened or outright removed (since the fight mini-game obviously doesn't translate well in manga). The exposition dialogues and exploration of City 23 are also kept to a minimum, giving the story a much faster pace overall. Which can lead to some surprising choices, like the meeting and fight between Leo and Alfred being purely and simply axed; instead, the explosive truck crashes into Alfred's hideout while Miguel and Caleb's mooks come to clean up.
- Affectionate Gesture to the Head: Stella often does this to Wayne, much to his annoyance.
- Alliterative Name: Most Japanese characters who go by a Western name chose one that gives this effect : Wayne Uedera, Cyrus Saimura, Amanda Amamiya, Oliver ("oriba−") Oribe, Nina Ninagi, Alan Aramaki, etc.
- Alternate History: Outside of American and Chinese immigration, it's also mentionned that the Cold War is now between the United States and China, and Japan benefits from the Marshall Plan. And since the atomic bomb was never used, the doctrin of nuclear disssuasion probably doesn't exist.
- Art Shift: Not exactly, but many people are designing the sprites, with very different styles.
- Awesomeness Meter: Your skill in the mini-game is symbolized by an insignia which becomes more elaborate when you manage a flawless sequence (the more Score Multipliers you can manage, the faster it evolves) but regresses every time you screw up an attack. It starts with a single silver chevron and goes up to a golden lion head with golden laurels on the sides.
- Bilingual Bonus: There are occasional lines in Chinese or (for the Japanese version) in English.
- But Not Too Foreign: Philip Butler's mother is Japanese and Rose's father is Greek.
- Buxom Is Better: Stella, Amanda, and the rest of club Primavera.
- Call Back: Richard's line "Long live capitalism!" was also said by Krauss at the beginning of Umineko: When They Cry. Except it sounds much more cynical this time. Similarly, Caleb's speech about what is needed to be a ruler mirrors what Gaap says in Episode 4 of the same series.
- Cast of Snowflakes: Ryūkishi07 was already pretty good at this when he was the only artist, so now that there are several, that's not too surprising.
- Cat Fight: Can happen easily between Meryl and Stella, it seems.
- Cliff Hanger: Season 1 ends with Rose running to safety while Leo and Wayne face Miguel's bunch, and later Rose declaring war on Caleb. The situations of Claudia, Leo and Wayne, Stella and Meryl, and Richard and Cyrus are unknown.
- Cool Old Lady: Jeanne Amakawa.
- Cool Shades: Every character drawn by Ryūkishi07 (mostly minor or nameless characters) either sports these or has no eyes, save for Alfred, Claudia and Wang.
- Eagleland Osmosis: A very extreme example of this, no doubt − at least in Tōkyō.
- Expy: Naturally for a work by Ryukishi, Rika Furude from Higurashi: When They Cry once again receives a counterpart in the form of Stella, though not blatantly. Likewise, Meryl's name and appearance share similarities to Miyo Takano and Lambdadelta.
- Fictional Currency: Japanese Dollars.
- Film Noir: The story has definitely several elements of the genre, including the time period and mafia-infested setting.
- Foregone Conclusion: We already know what will become of Tokyo and Primavera in the future, so the ending is unlikely to be happy.
- Gratuitous Italian: Club Primavera (Italian for "spring"). The song "Maboroshi Ni Shisu" (Death in Illusions) also has Italian lyrics. Who cares?
- Greek Chorus: Jeanne and Julie play this role in the VN, occasionally interrupting the story to comment the events; in the manga though, they only appear in a short prologue to introduce the story.
- Historical-Domain Character: Even in this setting, Douglas MacArthur is still the Supreme Commander of the American occupation army.
- Hot Scoop: Julie.
- Implausible Hair Color: Leo is entirely Japanese, yet has blue eyes and orange-ish hair.
- Homage: The Overkill badge shows Rena with her cleaver.
- Kicking Ass in All Her Finery: Stella and Meryl are good at hanging out with lonely men, and wiping the floor with impolite ones.
- Leo Shishigami Is About To Shoot You: With his finger, but still.
- Lighter and Softer: Considering we're talking about the author of the When They Cry series and Higanbana No Saku Yoru Ni, the mood is certainly much lighter. Although the story setting is still kind of depressing.
- Meaningful Rename: After the disaster and the loss of the war, most Japanese in Tōkyō started to go by a Western second name, apparently to forget about the war and start anew.
- Multiethnic Name: Similarly to Umineko, most characters have a Western first name with a Japanese surname. Unlike Umineko, these Western names aren't their real names.
- Mukokuseki: Mostly played straight, but curiously averted with Lee Meijiu's henchmen, who actually look Chinese.
- Nintendo Hard: The fight mini-game starts gentle but gets harder as your score gets higher. By the end of a given Season, landing more than 3 or 4 hits in a row becomes nigh-impossible.
- Odd Name Out: The rest of 07th Expansion's novels (Higurashi No Naku Koro Ni, Umineko No Naku Koro Ni, Higanbana No Saku Yoru Ni) have an obvious formula to their titles that this game forgoes.
- Official Couple: Rose and Leo. Also, Caleb and Amanda.
- Pre-Ass-Kicking One-Liner: All over the place. Of course, Leo is the king of it.
- Present Day Past: The story takes place in the 1940s, but the background photos (especially those of city landscapes and car interiors) are obviously taken in 2012.
- Rapunzel Hair: Rose, and of course, Rapunzel.
- Real Place Background: In usual 07th Expansion fashion. If this◊ is anything to go buy, the photos have been taken in France (most likely Paris). And yep, the club Primavera is actually the the Moulin Rouge.◊
- Repetitive Name: Leo Shishigaminote and Rose Haibaranote . Probably justified, since Leo and Rose aren't their birth names (their real names are Koutarou and Misaki, respectively).
- Rose-Haired Girl: Rose Haibara.
- Save Scumming: A good (if a bit cheap) method to maximize your score.
- Shout-Out: Leo gives one to the Tale of Urashima Taro.
- Surprisingly Good English: Because Witch Hunt was helping with the translations.
- Time Skip: The story is divided in 4 years (from 1947 to 1950), with a time jump in the middle of each season from S2 on. The manga, somewhat more logically, has the "Seasons" follow the time skips (the Season 2 manga starts directly in 1948 for example).
- Title Drop: … Kinda sorta. The climax of the 1947 part is a battle named "the Night of Roses and Guns".
- Trademark Favorite Food: Leo and pasta.
- Trash of the Titans: Charles, Nina and Oliver's appartment was a horrible mess before Rapunzel joined them. Since they grew up in the street, they have absolutely no notion of cleaning or decoration.
- True Companions: Rapunzel, Charles, Oliver and Nina rapidly become this.
- Unproblematic Prostitution: Played variously. Primavera is a high-class club, so the "ladies of the night" can work in relatively decent conditions (although it's not like they chose this job eagerly); those working for the mafia probably aren't so lucky. By Rapunzel and Nina's case, it seems being legal isn't a requirement either.
- Vague Age: It's hard to determine exactly the Wandering Dog quatuor's age in Season 2, especially Rapunzel's. We only know they aren't legal yet.
- War Is Hell: The few flashbacks of the frontlines never describe anything pretty.
- Word Salad Title
- You ALL Look Familiar: It seems there are only 3 or 4 mafia mooks in Tōkyō. Although admittedly, there are surprisingly many different sprites for nameless characters − especially in Season 2 −, which is an oddity in itself for a VN.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Richard, Stella and Miguel are literal examples of this trope.