YMMV: Rule of Rose

  • Alternate Character Interpretation:
    • There's a theory that claims Brown was only a doll all along. This casts Wendy's actions in a somewhat more sympathetic light, and casts an unfavorable light over Jennifer's.
    • One forum moderator staunchly refused the idea that Stray Dog aka, Gregory killed any of the missing children, and Wendy only blamed him for it while committing the murders directly.
    • Some theories posit that the Imps are really the other children, and Jennifer only sees them as monsters because she can't cope with the idea of children doing what the imps do, hence the Animal Motifs linking them to the rest of the Red Crayon Aristocrats. Which would mean the children killed Martha, and Hoffman ran like Hell so he wouldn't be next.
  • Awesome Music: The entire soundtrack.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: All the Aristocrats get a bit of this, though Diana's the most frequent. She's attractive, has the most tragic backstory (and her current life isn't much better) and Jennifer notes that when away from the others she occasionally showed kindness and empathy towards her. This doesn't of course entirely excuse the fact that she's normally their ringleader in tormenting Jennifer, and that she's horrible even to her friends.
  • Everybody Is Jesus in Purgatory
  • Les Yay: A bunch. And all those involved are children. Although unlike the infamous trailer would hint, the examples are quite non-sexual in nature.
  • Narm: But while the Mermaid's appearance and implications are quite horrifying, the sounds she makes can make the fight hard to take seriously: "Wheeee!!"
    • The reveal of the Stray Dog can be hard to take seriously too. Imagine Gregory crawling in all fours, wearing nothing but white boxer shorts.
  • Nightmare Fuel:
    • The Unmarried Mermaid. So much. Any of the monsters in the game, even the lowliest imp, can be pretty terrifying.
    • To say nothing of the Aristocrats themselves.
  • No Such Thing as Bad Publicity: Averted, big time. The developers hired a publicist to hype up the game in the Italian press by significantly overstating its graphic and sexual content in an effort to cause controversy. It worked a little too well once the made-up story reached the UK, where its release was canceled due to the ensuing controversy.
  • Player Punch: Brown. Oh, god, Brown.
  • Play the Game, Skip the Story: An inversion. The story is probably the closest games come to literature (aside from Braid and Planescape: Torment), but the gameplay is repetitive, the combat is awful, and the level design is confusing. There's a quote from Jennifer that perfectly describes why people still like it: "I came to this room every day to do laundry... The water was so cold, and the soap would sting my eyes, but I didnít hate it, because clean laundry is so refreshing."
  • Tear Jerker: The real ending.
  • That One Boss: Most likely Clara from the Mermaid Princess chapter.
  • Warped Aesop: The game's fairytale narrative is rife with these, and each episode's storybook is an increasingly appalling version of this, all to drive home what monsters human beings are. Subverted in the end, as the final, picture-only storybook closes the story on a bittersweet, but uplifting note.
  • What Do You Mean, It's Not Symbolic?: The whole game is rife with a bizarre, surrealist aesthetic that involves, among other things, roses, butterflies, mermaids, stick figure drawings, imps and dead fish floating in mid-air. Not quite all of it makes sense.