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Puppets and princesses, oh my! It’s Rhapsody: A Musical Adventure!:
Mistaked DentistryI know I shouldn’t, with my other two LPs still going on, but I can’t say no to an NIS game. And this one I actually know next to nothing about, so it’ll be a real surprise instead of a poorly-scripted one. Rhapsody: A Musical Adventure is about Cornet Espoir, a dreamy girl who talks to puppets and longs to fall in love with a prince. As the title implies, it’s a game with a lot of music and musical themes, and I’ve been told that instead of cutscenes, there are songs with dialogue. Being the huge music buff I am, I expect to love this game. Being the huge NIS fandork I am, I expect to love it a lot. I’ll try to make it interactive where I can, but as I have no idea what to expect from this game, I can’t make any promises at the moment. With that said, let’s get this ball rolling. The story begins with our heroine running across a flat black background while ominous music plays. She turns to look behind her, but trips and falls down. As she gets up, she changes directions, running towards the screen and away from a huge pair of orange eyes on the horizon. She falls again, and a… dragon-looking thing pops out of the right-hand side of the screen. As she sits there, helpless at the beast’s mercy, a dashing young man leaps into action, cleaving the dragon in two with his sword! His foe vanquished, he turns to the girl. The background has changed to an idyllic forest, and harp music has begun playing. He smiles at her, asking if she’s okay. Blushing, she replies that she’s fine, and thanks the mysterious stranger for his bravery. He’s the man that she’s always dreamt of, her ideal prince, and she’s found him at last! Just as she finally stands, ready to accept the prince of destiny, the screen begins fading to white… A little pixie-looking girl in a pointy hat, Kururu, is yelling at Cornet, who apparently dreamt the whole thing. Still asleep, Cornet tries to kiss her, making her fly around the room and get even angrier. Pulling out a giant paper fan, she smacks Cornet out of bed. Cornet is upset she got pulled away from her romantic dream, but Kururu wonders why Cornet isn’t tired of having that dream so often. Cornet insists that one day a prince really will come for her, but Kururu tells her to keep dreaming and get dressed, as her grandfather was calling for her earlier. The view zooms out, showing us the town and the game logo, and now we have control of Cornet. The music in her room is pretty soft, but a little too heavy on the chimes for my tastes. I save, and oh geez, everything on the menu makes an irritating beeping noise when you tap it. We head downstairs, where Cornet’s grandfather, who looks a little like an old lawn gnome, tells her he found a puppet in their mailbox. It’s a cute puppet of a blond girl in what looks like a fluffy pink nurse outfit. She asks if we can hear her— we can —so she deduces that Cornet must be the girl who ‘plays the horn and makes friends with puppets’. Bingo, doll face. The puppet’s name is Sharte, and she needs to find her sister, Terra, who vanished after she decided she wanted to be human. Sharte asks for us to play our horn and let her join the party. We get a choice to say yes or no, but it’s a But Thou Must moment, and telling her no just makes her ask again, so we say we will. Cornet plays a brief, soft tune on her horn, and Sharte joins the party. Grandpa then asks Cornet to go into the woods to get something to build their fire up with, and gives us a helpful remind to equip our accessories. Uh, thanks? That was out of the blue. Either way, I find in my inventory a Cat’s Paw (+5 Offense) and a Fighter’s Charm (+5 Defense), and put both on. I also move Sharte into the party lineup, and we’re off! Out in the yard, two kids are wandering about. I tried to chase them off, but the boy was only worried about finding ‘Koro’ and the girl was upset she couldn’t catch a toad to give to me. After using Kururu’s huge fan to scare them away, I wandered into town. Everyone in this town seems to have a puppet, which is weird, but only Cornet can talk to them. Everybody knows she can, but not how she does it, as normal humans can’t talk to puppets. Kururu can talk to humans for no explained reason, but is the only puppet in the village that can. After picking up some healing items at the shop (and blowing half our cash in the process), we head to the woods, where a guy who sort of looks like Willy Wonka asks if we plan to go in. Of course, we are, so he tells us to be careful, as rumor has it that a mean witch lives in the Wonder Woods. Oh, and to always equip our accessories. What is it with these people and accessories? Or puppets, for that matter? Whatever, let’s go. Orange Village is weird and the people are boring. The music in the woods is exactly the same as in Cornet’s dream, and it looks the same, too. Our heroines love how nice it is outside. Kururu: I know what you’re thinking! I wish you could take a walk with the Prince. Am I right!? Admit it? Ah, I went through the same phase... A long time ago... Cornet: ...... [Cornet makes a flat, unamused face.] Kururu: Huh? Why are you looking at me like I have a third arm? I have some experience in love too! My age or being a puppet doesn’t matter! Love is love! ...I think I like Kururu. Suddenly, something croaks, scaring Kururu. Two giant toads hop on-screen, and both girls scream. Our first battle starts, and the music is pretty cool. It has a threatening theme battling it out with a lighter one, which is perfect here. Sharte seems to be the fastest party member, but she’s horribly weak. Cornet takes out a Toad in one hit, and then helps Kururu mop up the other one. For our efforts, we pick up a Healing Candy. Cornet: How horrible! Kururu: If you hate them so much, why didn’t you just run from them, duh? You can be so stupid sometimes, Cornet. No, yeah. I like Kururu. Cornet: Well, I can’t help it. I was born that way. Kururu spies something offscreen, then asks Cornet for a favor. Cornet: [Looking unamused.] Again? What is it this time? Kururu: Let’s have our lunch now! I’m starving! Scratch that. I love Kururu. She is just a bundle of awesome and cute. Cornet tells her they can’t eat until the found what they were looking for, but something begins to growl. Kururu thinks it’s Cornet’s stomach, so they go ahead and have lunch. This makes Kururu happy, so she asks Cornet to sing her favorite song. And this, gentle readers, is where you come in. We can sing to her, or not. Should we? Edit: Ahaha, her name is Cornet, not Coronet. I am fail.
edited 6th Nov '10 1:12:35 PM by Swingyshark
I auto-counter with my passive feat of Insincere Apology.
Welcome to Purgatory!I must agree; Kururu is indeed...awsute? Cutome? ...Eh, guess there's some words that just can't be combined sensibly. Also, I've played a little bit of this game before, and I don't think you'll have to be too worried about stocking up on healing items. Better to save up for more accessories for your puppets, and for some of those Teleporter items. That is, unless you don't mind walking out of some really long dungeons, dood. ...Oh, and I think that singing would be nice. May as well put the 'Musical' in 'Musical Adventure', right?
edited 6th Nov '10 4:36:59 AM by EndarkCuli
Mistaked DentistryLooks like we’re singing. Cornet agrees to sing Kururu’s favorite song. She stands up and starts swaying back and forth while some soft instrumental piece plays in the background. It goes on like this for a while, and even though she isn’t actually singing, her lips are moving like she is. Eventually, the song does start, with English lyrics written across the bottom of the screen while Cornet sings in Japanese. I remember this song, I’ve known it for so long And it feels so good to hear Sounds a little sad but sweet just the same Lovely melody Whenever I hear this song, I really don’t know why It makes me shed a little tear But I’m sure my tears will soon disappear Because I know you’re here Whenever I am feeling sad And everything around looks bad All I have to do is think of you I know my dreams are waiting to come true Let’s go on with hope in our hearts Love will surely show us how Let’s go on, our hearts filled with dreams Let’s go on and find them now …Are we totally sure she’s not related to Flonne somehow? Cornet: [She looks sad.] Kururu… Do you think my mom and dad are always watching me from somewhere? Kururu: Of course. They’re always watching over you to make sure you’re happy. But there’s no time to dwell on that. We have a MacGuffin to find! On the next screen, there’s a sign. To the west is more forest and the Natalie River, while to the south is a cave. Caves are always plot-worthy, so let’s check that out first. On the way, we get ambushed by two Jellies, which Kururu and Sharte quickly dispose of with a Lightning spell and Saint (a Holy spell), respectively. Everyone goes up a level; Kururu and Sharte learn Heal. Eventually, we come across a giant rabbit. He looks to be asleep, but the moment we examine him, he vanishes, leaving Cornet mystified. Heading west, we find another sign: BEWARE OF MONSTERS! Pssht, whatever. Cornet fears no monster! It’s spelunking time, damnit. …Wow, that cave music is ominous. And extremely familiar. It’s the same music from Cornet’s dream! Surely this is a bad sign, but we press on. The monsters in the cave are only slightly tougher than in the woods. Disappointingly, there is nothing plot-worthy in the cave, although we do find Heal Cocoa, Healing Candy, and 100 Inotium in some treasure chests, and the whole party went up two levels. After some backtracking, we return to the first sign and head for the Natalie River. After many screens of nothing in particular, we hit another sign. Natalie River to the south, forest to the west. We’re also warned that a witch lives in the forest, which we’ll get around to later. First, let’s check to see if there’s anything of value by the river. Spoiler alert: There isn’t. Just a sign warning us we’ll be sorry if we fall in. Backtracking back to the sign, we go further into the forest, where a cutscene occurs. Cornet starts tying her shoes, or maybe getting stuff off the ground, I really can’t tell. Kururu just zooms around the screen, eventually finding the plot device they came here for: Red Inotium! It’s strange, though, because normally they find a lot more than the meager portion they picked up. Almost as if someone picked the place clean… SUDDENLY, CATS. Three of them, led by a catgirl in a pink suit. She demands that Cornet hand over the Red Inotium, and her cat-monster chorus cheers her on. Catgirl: Inotium is for Marjoly and Marjoly only… So you better give it up if you… know what’s good for ya! If you don’t… Cats: Yeah, if you don’t…? Catgirl: [Suddenly looking pissed] I’m gonna beat you up! …Pfffffft. No, seriously. What if we don’t? Cats: Yeah, beat you up! The Myao says! The Myao says! The catgirl, Myao, gets angry with her fanboy crew for being irritating, while Kururu and Cornet talk about how stupid all four of them are. They try to leave before the stupidity rubs off on them, but Myao isn’t having any of that. Our heroines pretend they can’t hear Myao, making her even more angry. Myao’s cats suggest punishment, which she decides is a good idea. She orders the cats to punish our heroes, but… Cat 1: I don’t feel like it, meow. Myao: Move it or lose it! Alright, you overgrown hairballs. Let’s do this shit. The battle is over before they can even attack us, and Cornet levels up in the process. Defeated, the catkids flee, cowering behind Myao. Aww, they’re so cute; I feel kinda bad for beating them senseless.◊ Myao has no sympathy for them, but decides that it’s time to start taking us seriously. She chants some silly magic words and— …She summons a dragon. Seriously? We have to fight off a damn dragon? Cornet is ready for it, but Kururu suddenly flies over to Myao to give her their Inotium. What the hell!? She does it so they don’t get eaten by Myao’s dragon, but Cornet is totally ready to put her size 7 slipper up that thing’s ass.◊ Kururu thinks she’s absolutely crazy and refuses to fight the dragon. Cornet says that courage is standing up to even the toughest obstacles, but Kururu insists that that’s suicide, not courage. Kururu: You do know that when you die… The game is over, right? You’ll have to watch this scene all over again. No, you read that right. Kururu proceeds to smash the crap out of the fourth wall before Myao interrupts her to remind us all that she’s still there, and that her dragon is hungry. Kururu thinks better of giving their Inotium away, so she returns to Cornet. The dragon hits her, but before it can finish off our heroes, the prince from Cornet’s dream rushes in and slices the dragon in half. Myao makes the most adorable surprised face◊ and demands to know who the mysterious man is. He doesn’t tell them, but he does make it clear that if they don’t get away from the girls, they’ll be dead next. The catkids are ready to hightail it out of there, but Myao notices the crest on the man’s sword belong to the Royal Family. He really is a prince! Myao says she won’t let him get away with this, ◊ then runs off to tattle to Marjoly. The prince, Ferdinand, checks to make sure Cornet is alright. He asks her name, but when she says nothing, he thinks she’s still to afraid of what happened to speak. When several voices call for him, he makes his exit, imploring that the girls get home safely. Kururu talks about how awesome and dreamy he is once he leaves, but Cornet is too lovestruck to say anything at all. We’re now at the start of… —Chapter One: Much Love! The Great Cooking Plan!— So, let’s break for now. After a word from our sponsors, we’ll see how Cornet plans to win Ferdinand’s heart.
edited 10th Nov '10 1:01:42 PM by Swingyshark
I auto-counter with my passive feat of Insincere Apology.
Welcome to Purgatory!How to win a heart...I honestly have no idea, dood. Maybe you should...uh...show how much you appreciate him! Yeah! By...joining a fanclub or something! That's what all teenage girls in love do, right? Now, all we've gotta do is find/make a fanclub... Anyways, it looks like you're doing a great job. Screenshots are definitely a nice addition, dood. Best of luck when it comes time to write up the next update!
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