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Video Game / Heavenly Guardian

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Yukinko Daisenpuu ~Sayuki to Koyuki no Hie-Hie Daisoudou~ (雪ん娘大旋風~さゆきとこゆきのひえひえ大騒動~), released in America as Heavenly Guardian and in Europe as Legend of Sayuki is a Cute 'em Up developed by Starfish SD.

The story revolves around a Snow Goddess named Sayuki, who is in love with a young boy from a village that fears the Snow Goddesses. Visiting the village one day, she learns that the boy has been cursed with an eternal sleep. Reading up on the curse, she discovers a remedy that cure her love's condition but it requires seven ingredients that she must travel the land to acquire. Armed with her powers over ice and snow and accompanied by her pet snow rabbit, Toto, Sayuki must battle a variety of ghosts and monsters to gather the ingredients and save her beloved.

The game was released for the Nintendo Wii in 2007 and the PlayStation 2 in 2008, initially intended as an entry in the Kiki Kai Kai series before Taito was bought by Square Enix. The gameplay is therefore similar to those games; the player controls Sayuki from a Three-Quarters View perspective, battling various monsters as you gather Power Ups and fight your way through the levels, battling bosses for the cure ingredients Sayuki needs. Sayuki fights by firing iciles in the direction she is facing (or where the cursor is pointing in the Wii version), with Toto offering support by firing freezing blasts. The player can collect multi-coloured crystals that not only power up Sayuki's attack but gives them different properties (Rapid, 3-Way, Homing, Bomb), as well as snowballs that can be used to power a blizzard attack that hits many enemies and freezes them instantly, or "Toto's Wild Dance" attack that involves Toto acting as a shield that freezes enemies on contact. At the end of each level is a boss who must be defeated in order to claim one of the ingredients. Along the way, Sayuki can use her blizzard attack in certain spots to discover the Yukinkos, bashful creatures that are hidden in the scenery, in order to unlock additional modes.

The game also has a two-player mode where the second player takes control of Sayuki's sister, Koyuki. This version has a different story, involving the two sisters competing to see who can collect the most snowballs and get through the levels the fastest.

In 2019, the game was ported to Nintendo Switch and Steam under the name Snow Battle Princess Sayuki.

This game contains examples of the following tropes.

  • Adorable Evil Minions: The vast majority of the enemies in the game consist of this, especially the snowman and ghost enemies. Those that don't count are still pretty cute thanks to the game's artstyle.
  • American Kirby Is Hardcore: The original North American release was definitely trying to hide the fact that it's a Cute 'em Up, not only removing Sayuki's name from the title, but also having box art that shows the various yokai enemies instead of the protagonist.
  • Bedsheet Ghost: One of the basic enemies, almost resembling a napkin in a top hat.
  • Boss Rush: The final level, Residence of King, monstly consists of battles with the bosses from the previous levels. And a giant version of the pumpkin enemies for some reason.
  • Boss Subtitles: Each boss's name appears on-screen as the battle with them begins.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: The crystals that boost Sayuki's (and Koyuki's) attacks.
  • Cute Witch: A recurring enemy, that when defeated turns into a cat and scurries off.
  • Dem Bones: An enemy in some of the later levels, as well as the first boss, Giant Bones.
  • Everything Trying to Kill You: Justified due to the Japanese setting and the fact that living inanimate objects are a popular form of Youkai. This results in Sayuki having to fight enemies such as snowmen, living statues, evil paintings, pumpkin monsters, monster lanterns, and a living mirror.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: Each of the bosses have something to do with the ingredients Sayuki is looking for, except for the giant pumpkin boss in the final level who appears in the Boss Rush, who is given no foreshadowing or explanation. It isn't even given a name.
  • Here We Go Again!: The single-player-ending has Sayuki find out that she was gathering the ingredients for the wrong cure, and is accused of trying to kill the boy. This doesn't stop Sayuki, who instead researches a cure for THIS curse instead and goes through all the levels again. This time, she successfully cures the boy, who has seen Sayuki helping others and decides that she can't be as bad as the other villagers say.
  • An Ice Person: Not just Sayuki and Koyuki, but also several enemies in the game.
  • Inexplicable Treasure Chest: All items are hidden in one, usually a Japanese style one tied with rope but keys and such are usually found in the traditional wooden one.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Both varieties appear in the game as enemies. For a less literal example, Koyuki seems pretty hot-blooded compared to her sister, who is more aloof.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: Toto and the Yukinkos. Along with most of the enemies you face.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: The single-player ending has Sayuki collect all the ingredients and create the cure, forcfully feeding it to her beloved villager... only for him to reveal he wasn't suffering from an eternal sleeping curse, but rather a paralysis curse. Sayuki is rather cruelly accused of trying to kill the boy and kicked out of his house.
  • Youkai: All but a small handful of enemies are drawn from traditional Japanese mythology; almost all the youkai discussed on the page appear in the game in some form or another. Sayuki and her sister Koyuki are Yuki Onna.
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle!: Similarly to Ghosts 'n Goblins, completing the game once gets the player a bad end as they gathered the wrong ingredients, and they must play through the entire game again in order to get the true ending.

Alternative Title(s): Legend Of Sayuki