Follow TV Tropes


Video Game / The Gray Garden

Go To
A world where angels and demons live in harmony.

The Gray Garden is a game for RPG Maker 2000 made by Deep-Sea Prisoner in 2012.

Long ago, angels and demons were at war. One day they made the decision to co-exist and live in harmony. A long period of time had passed and the two sides lived in peace.

Yosafire is a cheerful demon girl enjoying an easygoing life with her friends. Until one night when she gets attacked by a mysterious flaming bat from another world. After that, Yosafire and her friends set out to stop an oncoming invasion by Ivlis, the Flame Devil, and his demons of the Flame World, and protect the peace of the Gray Garden.

The English translated version of the game by vgperson can be downloaded from here.

It was confirmed that it will be a trilogy, with a prequel and a sequel to be announced.

This game provides examples of

  • A Day in the Limelight:
    • The videos in the Bonus Room gives screentime to some of the minor characters such as Lowrie and Raspbel.
    • Mogeko also released a special flash animation called "The Sun's Curse" that focuses on the backstory of Big Bad Ivlis.
  • A Friend in Need: When Yosafire and Froze are falling to their apparent death, Yosafire cries over how she jumped after Froze was pushed off the cliff despite she herself being unable to fly. She's about ready to accept that she'll die... until she realizes that means Froze will die too. And the urgency to save her ended up causing Yosafire to overcome her fear of flying to save Froze's life.
  • All There in the Manual: The girls' "ancestors" have only been silhouetted in one of the CGs, but Mogeko has illustrated what they actually look like on their site. Their names have been revealed in some of the illustrations and from someone just asking Word of God directly what they were. They are:
    • Yosaflame -> Yosafire
    • Sherbet -> Froze
    • Rigatona -> Macarona
    • Cranber -> Rawberry
    • Lost -> Dialo
    • Ciel -> Chelan
  • Ambiguous Gender: Etihw apparently has no official gender, according to the translator's notes and the creator. However, the creator also notes that Etihw is portrayed as leaning feminine, so prior to the English version's 1.08 update, they are referred to with female pronouns.
    • In the genderbent mini-version of the game released for April Fool's Day, Etihw gets a more masculine look.
  • And Now for Someone Completely Different: From time to time, the player's point of view shifts from Yosafire to various other members of the cast.
  • Animal Motifs: The Preserves Sisters are associated closely with bats; they're Rawberry's favourite food, both wear all black and red, they wear bat-shaped accessories (choker and hair-ribbon), and their own hair forms into bat-wing shaped segments at the waist.
  • Another Story for Another Time: Characters often allude to the war between the angels and demons, but we never hear all the details about it.
  • Attempted Rape: When Yosafire is at Ivlis' mercy near the end, the screen goes dark and Yosafire's lines imply he is touching her inappropriately. Froze's reaction when Yosafire alludes to what happened later only makes it far worse. Notably, it's at this point that Kcalb manages to get up, stop Ivlis, and retake his powers.
  • Author Avatar: The bizarre Mogeko cat avatar appears throughout the game as merchants, healers, some of the flame demons, and bonus givers.
  • Beach Episode: The bonus video "Yosafire On The Beach".
  • Berserk Button:
    • Stabbing Froze and pushing her off a cliff was the straw that broke the camel's back for Macarona.
    • Attacking Raspel is a sure-fire way to turn Rawberry into a mindless (and cannibalistic) killing machine.
  • Big Bad: Ivlis is the Devil of the Flame World and leader of the terroristic Flame Devils who starts the attack on the Gray Garden and sends his minions to cause chaos and destruction, with the ultimate goal of killing and usurping Etihw and Kclab, then using their powers to conquer the other worlds as well. Though the ending reveals his true motives were to take revenge on the other gods and devils and free his people from their tyranny, and a traitor within the Garden was giving him directions.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Grora is introduced this way when she saves the girls from a swarm of bats. The girls are saved from the flaming bats again later by Lowrie and Greif. Also towards the end, Etihw does this.
  • Big Eater:
    • Yosafire is constantly teased for being this. Her friends even say that they think she's gaining weight because she eats so much. At a couple points in the game, she wonders if certain creatures taste good.
    • Rawberry often thinks about food, though her tastes are more... unusual compared to the other girls.
  • Birds of a Feather: Dialo and Chelan, who are both quiet (though for entirely different reasons) and the most level-headed, motherly members of the main group. The only difference is that the former is a demon and the latter is an angel. Contrast with the other two pairings, who couldn't be more different from one another.
  • Bleak Level: The Graveyard and The Wasteland immediately after it. It begins with finding a bloodied and stomped Grora, and only goes downhill from there.
  • Blood from the Mouth: Grora after the castle is attacked and she has her ass handed to her offscreen. Even her text-box avatar throws up blood at dramatic moments during the conversation.
  • Bloody Hilarious: Some of Rawberry's attacks, as demonstrated in the pre-move cutscenes.
  • Book Ends: The game starts with Yosafire frolicking alone in the garden, and Froze retrieving her for some apple pie at Dialo's house. During the Good Ending, Yosafire is sent by the other girls to fetch Froze from the garden for a trip to Apple Forest so they can make more pie. And this time, Yosafire manages to not fall in the hole. Also, right after this, just before the credits start, when Kcalb and Etihw stand together in the garden near the castle, you can see the same two birds fly by that flew overhead right at the start of the game.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Yosafire introduces herself and most of the other characters directly to the reader. Froze will ask who is she talking to while Yosafire introduces her. The character(s) displayed on the CGs between 'chapters' also comment on the events we've just seen and wonder aloud what will happen next.
  • Breath Weapon: Yosafire's speciality, starting with a small amount of fire, to her finisher, Final Yosa-Fire.
  • Brutal Honesty:
    • Yosafire, when told that all she has to do to get her and her friends out of the Flame World Prison is agree to be Emalf's girlfriend, she proceeds to bluntly tell him that she couldn't be less interested and, besides, she's Froze-sexual.
    • Ater and Arbus, Kcalb's pet cats, are also very straightforward in their speech, particularly after they destroy Emalf's 'Ultimate' Familiar and proclaim rather simply that it was an easy kill for them. To Emalf's face.
  • Butt-Monkey: Emalf may be able to put out a decent fight but most of the time he ends up on the receiving end of various misfortune. It's all played for laughs.
  • Card-Carrying Villain: The Flame Demons.
    Ivlis: I'm a devil. I'm EVIL.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Earlier in the game, Yosafire and Froze have to look for Froze's pocketwatch. The same pocketwatch would end up saving Froze from being fatally stabbed by Emalf.
  • Conveniently an Orphan: None of the village girls have parents, and they all (aside from Dialo and Chelan and the Preserves sisters) live on their own. Justified in that they are the reincarnations of the angels and demons who died in the great war, as silhouetted in this CG.
  • Crapsaccharine World: The Gray Garden is hinted at being this. First, it was created after a horrific war in which Kcalb destroyed the original world. Second, some of the inhabitants are not as nice as they initially appear — Lowrie's a bit of a jerk, and the Preserves Sisters' Big Eater tendencies end up being a Horror Hunger when they're revealed to be cannibals. And Word of God says Etihw knows about this, yet there's no indication they told anyone, hinting at a coverup. Kcalb himself seems uneasy with this peace, unable to move on from the past. To top it all off, there's a traitor within the village, broadcasting its location to Ivlis and possibly anyone else who wants to destroy it.
  • Cute Clumsy Girl: Yosafire, whose first significant action in-game is to fall down a hole. It's a sign of Character Development by the end when she nearly falls into the same hole, but uses her wings to stop herself and leap across the gap.
  • Dark Reprise: The cheery tune that plays in between 'chapters' has its pitch and speed lowered around the time Yosafire, Froze, Macarona, and Rawberry are captured and taken to the other world, giving the tune a much more solemn feel to reflect how dark things have gotten.
  • Die or Fly: Used literally when Froze's wing is injured and she's shoved off a cliff, forcing Yosafire to rescue her. It's zig-zagged in that Yosafire has always had wings, but an accident as a young girl rendered her hopelessly afraid of flying. Afterwards, she's able to do it no problem.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: In "Hot Pot Party", Kcalb and Etihw nearly start another war over the last bite of mochi kinchaku. Wodahs puts a stop to it in time, though.
  • Distaff Counterpart: The 2014 April Fools' special Garden Gray The stars the genderswapped forms of Etihw, Kcalb, Wodahs, and Grora (with a bonus CG of male!Yosafire).
  • Drama-Preserving Handicap: At several points, the girls make mention of the fact that they can all fly, and therefore walking and/or fighting is a waste of time. That is, until they remind themselves of Yosafire's fear of flying or they find that so many Flame Demons have swarmed the sky that flying is too dangerous.
  • Dressed to Kill: The Faceless Mooks of the Flame World wear these. Yosaf and the gang follow their example for disguises.
  • Dual Boss: Late in the game, Poemi and Emalf fight the party together.
  • Extreme Omnivore: Rawberry. If you can name it, she'll eat it. Apple pie, caterpillars, flaming bats, her best friend.
  • Fangs Are Evil:
    • Ivlis has an impressive set, which are best seen when he's smiling maniacally.
    • Rawberry grows massive sets from her hair if her dark side comes out to play.
  • Female Angel, Male Demon: Etihw leads the angels whereas Kcalb rules over the demons.
  • Finishing Move: Yosafire, Froze, Macarona, and Rawberry will learn their final Magic attack at Level 30.
  • Foreshadowing: Halfway through the game, Etihw speaks to Dialo and Chelan about all of the terrible things they did to Kcalb and the demons, leading Chelan to assure them (through Dialo) that she loves them, regardless of their past. At the end, Yosafire tells Kcalb the exact same thing — with Cool-Down Hug — to restore his will to live.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Yosafire (sanguine), Froze (melancholic), Rawberry (choleric), Macarona (phlegmatic).
  • Gag Dub: The Gray Garden With Voices and Garden Gray The With Voices, both by The With Voices Project, who also did Mogeko Castle With Voices.
  • Genki Girl: Yosafire. She is pretty cheerful for the most part and is the complete opposite of Emotionless Girl Froze.
  • Girly Bruiser: Macarona. She is the most stereotypically girly member of the party, yet she is also said to have the most formidable grip of them all. Her skill set also matches this, most closely following that of a Bare-Fisted Monk.
  • Glass Cannon: Macarona. Noted to be extremely tough, with an appropriately high Attack stat (particularly after she hands Emalf's ass back to him) and hard-hitting special attacks, but her HP is laughably low compared to the other girls.
  • Grey-and-Gray Morality: Fittingly for a game called The Gray Garden. Initially, things are pretty clear-cut, with the good, peaceful garden denizens against the evil Flame Demons. But by the end, it becomes clear that Ivlis and his minions, cruel as they are to outsiders, behave like a loving family towards each other, and for all the bad things they did, they actually have legitimate reasons to want the Gray Garden destroyed. Meanwhile, the supposed Big Goods are not as benevolent, or united, as they may have initially appeared. For starters, it's clear that Etihw and Kcalb did some bad things in the past they're not proud of, including destroying the original world to make room for the new one. But Lowrie has a hidden jerkish side, too. In addition, the Preserves Sisters are cannibals, and Etihw's always known this but has never told anyone, implying they're covering it up somehow. It's also hinted that Kcalb might still be haunted by his past to the point of having to struggle against his own violent side. Reficul and Satanick punish Ivlis through Cold-Blooded Torture and Rape. And there's a traitor in the village, helping Ivlis. Most notably, the thing that drove Ivlis to evil in the first place was a rejection and beating from his father Siralos, and being mocked by the other devils including Reficul and Satanick, sparking a desire to gain power and seek vengeance against them- and given that they’re Jerkass Gods who are locked in a Forever War and have committed many atrocities themselves, it’s hard not to sympathize with him. Overall, the Flame Demons come across less as sadstic terrorist doing everything For the Evulz and more like as brutal rebels fighting against a system that they believe, with some justification, has wronged them and so many innocents.
  • Hell Invades Heaven: In a way. The Gray Garden has demons living alongside angels in peace until the Flame World full of more violent demons decided to invade.
  • Heroic Safe Mode: Seeing Froze getting stabbed in the wing and shoved off a cliff is enough to send Yosafire into this. It's zig-zagged in that she jumps without thinking instead of freezing up, comes out of it long enough to recognise her folly (i.e. she can't fly either), but then re-enters it when she realises that her handicap means Froze is about to die. Next thing she knows, Yosafire is flying, with Froze in her arms.
  • High-Pressure Blood: Several of Rawberry's attacks invoke this in the pre-move cutscene, usually after she does something cute.
  • Hopeless Boss Fight: Two instances of this. The first is when Yosafire first meets Rieta on the beach. The second is the first boss fight with Ivlis, who had stolen Kcalb's power. In both instances, the boss will be invulnerable to damage and the only way to advance is to keep attacking them until the battle automatically ends.
  • In the Name of the Moon: "This'll be the end of you!"note 
  • Ironic Echo: While mocking Yosafire, Emalf tells her "You know you can't do nothin' to make useless any better." Yosafire throws those same words back in his face after his trump card's reduced to entrails.
  • I Was Just Passing Through: The M.O. of the Passing Demon, who spends all her time screwing with Ivlis' plans behind the scenes, but insists she's just a 'passing demon'. Turns out as a Devil of another world, she owes Kcalb one, and she eventually concedes that a world like theirs is fragile, rare, and definitely worth protecting.
  • Keeping the Handicap: Grora and Wodahs could have had their missing eyes restored by magic - but the former wants to find her original lost eye instead of growing a new one, and the latter just gets a kick out of seeing his brother's apologetic face every time Kcalb looks at his eye patch.
  • Knight of Cerebus: Arguably, the first Flame-Bat that appears and beats Yosafire to death's door.
  • Leave the Two Lovebirds Alone: Yosafire does this when she sees Etihw and Kcalb alone together.
  • Lost Food Grievance: Basically the story of Garden Gray The. Etihw eats the chocolate cake Kcalb was looking forward to, and in a fit of rage, Kcalb runs away from the castle.
  • Lovecraftian Superpower: Appears to be a familial trait in the Preserves family, as both Raspel and Rawberry show the ability to grow giant spikes/fangs from their hair for when their Big Eater tendancies transform into a Horror Hunger.
  • Ludicrous Gibs: Occassionally appear. One bad ending has this happen to the main party.
  • Money for Nothing: Money is only useful during the very early part of the game. After that, you only use it mainly for healing.
  • Multiple Endings: There are five available endings to the game, all of which are earned by last-second choices or screwing up certain sequences:
    • Bad End 1 - Dead End: Back yourself into a dead end during the chase sequence in the Flame Demon world. Emalf will kill all of the girls, and the ending title card is an image of him standing over Yosafire's corpse.
    • Bad End 2 - Happy Torture Time: Lose the first fight against Poemi, and the party will be dragged back to the Flame Demon World. When she wakes up, Yosafire discovers that her friends have been mutilated and reduced to piles of bloody meat, with Poemi approaching... The final title card is a shot of Poemi smiling beside a chained up Yosafire, who is now missing her bottom half.
    • Bad End 3 - Binge-Eater: If you choose to have Macarona scream instead of calling out to Rawberry, Rawberry will turn on her. The final title card is an image of Macarona being eaten by a gleeful Rawberry.
    • Normal End - Fickle Fate: If the girls lose the final battle against Ivlis, we see Kcalb despair in his final moments, before apologizing to Etihw. Some time later, Etihw appears, but all they find is a trail of blood and Ivlis, who proceeds to gloat. The revelation causes Etihw's mind to break.
    • True End: Beating Ivlis in the final battle gives Kcalb enough time to retake his powers, ruining Ivlis' plan. The girls and Kcalb are nearly overpowered as Emalf, Poemi, and Rieta appear, but Etihw's timely arrival saves them. Deciding to make a hasty retreat, Ivlis manages to push Kcalb off the cliff before disappearing, and Yosafire rescues him. After a speech about his past misdeeds, Kcalb laments that dying would have been better, but Yosafire restores his will to live by declaring that the past doesn't matter. On their way back to their own world, Ivlis and co. are ambushed by The Passing Demon — revealed to be Reficul, the Devil of another world — who dishes out a well-deserved ass-kicking. Some time later, life returns to normal in the Gray Garden, and the final scene shows the girls going off to gather more apples, while Kcalb and Etihw stand together in their garden.
  • Nightmare Face: Invoked by Rawberry for several of her attacks, but also when she turns on Macarona and eats her alive in Bad End 3. The Raspel's Secret bonus video makes it apparent that it's a familial trait.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: One where Macarona unleashes her fury on Emalf and another after the boss battle with Poemi and Emalf back in the village where they actually turn into bloody piles of meat.
  • Not What It Looks Like: At the end, when Yosafire goes to the garden to check on Kcalb and sees him and Etihw having a moment, she thinks she's walking in on an "adult" moment, apologizes, and runs away, much to Kcalb's embarrassment and Etihw's amusement.
  • Official Couple: Kcalb and Etihw.
  • Opposites Attract: Very much. Yosafire is hyper and energetic while Froze is quiet and stoic, Macarona is sweet and girly while Rawberry is disgusting and tomboyish, Etihw is talkative and expressive while Kcalb is melancholic and morose (and so on).
  • Orange And Blue Morality: Arguably, Rawberry, whose top priorities throughout the story are food (most often, finding more delicious Flame Bats to devour), sleep, Macarona, and the safety of her sister, Raspel. Nothing else seems to matter to her. When things get serious, she does manage to pull it together and be serious, but it's very rare.
  • Our Angels Are Different/Our Demons Are Different: There are various worlds of angels and demons, and the Gray Garden world is a rare one where angels and demons co-exist peacefully. Passing Demon implies that the angels from her world are much more violent than the ones in the Gray Garden.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: When the girls need to avoid getting seen by Emalf and the flame demons, Yosafire comes up with using the suits and sunglasses the demons wear to hide their face and wings. Much to Froze's surprise, the disguises actually work.
  • Perky Demon: Rawberry and Raspel. They dress in black, and Rawberry is always interested in consuming bugs and bats and loves tormenting her angelic friend, Macarona.
  • Point of No Return: Before you go to Daybreak Forest, you are given a subtle warning about it being this trope. Sure enough, after that, the party gets captured and sent to the Flame World, and they spend 1/3 of the game trying to return home.
  • Rain of Blood: One of Rawberry's attacks in The Gray Garden is her smiling!! It causes a random out-of-nowhere Mogeko's head to slice itself open and its blood to spray all enemies damaging them.
  • Rare Candy: The [Attribute] Candy items scattered in the hidden chests.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Etihw and Kcalb. Wodahs, Grora, and the cats could count too, as they fought in the Great War. While Etihw is older than Kcalb, the latter's the one who gets the old jokes thrown at him.
  • Running Gag: No one being able to recognise the girls after they don the aforementioned disguises. Even Dialo and Chelan don't see it's them.
  • Sailor Fuku: Macarona wears a green and red version, with matching nice hat.
  • Save Your Deity: The girls to Kcalb.
  • Sdrawkcab Name: More than a few. Kcalb and Etihw for black and white, Wodahs for shadow, and Emalf for flame. The most striking example is the name of the Passing Demon, Reficul, which is Lucifer spelled backwards.
  • Suspicious Video-Game Generosity: A full-heal (for 10G) is always placed right before a serious fight. Around Daybreak Forest, the game also starts bombarding you with Rare Candy and very useful equipment. This comes just before the party is captured and imprisoned inside the Flame Demon world.
  • Tempting Fate: Even after the last boss fight, the Flame Demons persist in taking down Yosafire and the girls, and a weakened Kcalb, Wodahs, and Grora. They mock that it would take a god to stop them.
    Etihw:: You rang?
    • Perhaps the most triumphant example.
    Yosafire: And maybe, just maybe... People from that other world are gonna come invade! One day, it's gonna be like... KABOOOOOOOOM!! ♪
    *Cue explosion and demon invasion*
  • Theme Naming:
    • Kcalb and Etihw (black and white).
    • Wodahs and Kcalb may also fit (shadow and black).
    • The Preserves sisters, Raspel and Rawberry (Raspberry and Strawberry).
    • Several of the girls' ancestors also share a themed-name; Yosafire/flame (Fire), Froze and Sherbet (ice/cold), (St)Rawberry, Raspel(/berry) and Cranber(ry) (fruit/preserves), Macarona and Rigatona (pasta).
  • The Cameo: One of Mogeko's many characters, DJ Met, appears in the Bonus Room as a radio DJ interviewing Yosafire.
  • The Glomp: Yosafire does this to Kcalb towards the end after saving him from falling to his death and assures that despite his past, people now still think he's kind and accept him.
  • The Stinger: After the credits, Yosafire is seen leaving the garden when she hears something fall from the sky behind her. Curious, she excitedly turns back to go see what it is, and the game ends.
  • The Unpronounceable: A few of the Sdrawkcab Names are tricky to pronounce, but from vgperson's Gray Garden notes (spoiler warning):
    • Etihw: "et-tee-ooh"
    • Kcalb: "ku-calb"
    • Wodahs: "woe-dahz"
  • Took a Level in Badass: Macarona. Literally and figuratively when she beats Emalf to a pulp for stabbing Froze, resulting in both her and Yosafire falling off a cliff together. After aforementioned event, she says she's brimming with new-found confidence, and the game notes that her Attack and Defence stats have increased greatly.
  • Tranquil Fury: Macarona, very briefly after seeing Emalf stab Froze and push her off the cliff. It doesn't last very long, however, before she launches into a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown.
  • Wham Episode: About halfway through the game, there are a series of short scenarios which comprise of your party being imprisoned in another world, Dialo and Chelan blown away by Ivlis, and Etihw being captured. The brief trek through the ruined village — with The Reveal of Rawberry's dark side — also counts.
  • Why Won't You Die?: Yosafire and her friends get very frustrated by how the demons they defeat keep coming back, especially in regards to Emalf, where they compare him to a cockroach. Even literally turning Emalf and Poemi into raw meat doesn't stop them!
  • Willfully Weak: Etihw. While still the most powerful entity in the game, they remain in their (vulnerable to capture and non-omniscient) human form as a way of making sure they will never forget their own folly during their conflict with Kcalb and risk starting another war.
  • You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry!: Specific examples being Macarona, Etihw, and Kcalb.