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Visual Novel / Steam Prison

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There are two kinds of people: the rulers and the ruled. The Heights are a gorgeous utopia. The Depths, a filthy industrial wasteland. Our heroine, raised in the Heights, has nothing but contempt for those below. Now an observation mission requires her to descend into that world, and the gears of fate have begun to turn.

The visual novel provides examples of:

  • AB Negative: The standard terminology isn't used thanks to the setting's pseudo-Victorian-era level of medical science, but early in the storyline there is some mention of Cyrus's blood being likely to react negatively to transfusions and the description given indicates that she is type O negative. This becomes plot-relevant on Adage's path, which reveals that Glissade arranged for her to be exiled to the Depths because he wants to make use of her blood, since the lack of antigens makes it ideal for transfusion.
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  • Aerith and Bob: A few characters have names that are completely ordinary to English-speaking sensibilities, such as Edward Valentine or Fitzgerald and Warner Evans. Others are recognizable but just slightly askew, like Fin, Ulrik, Cyrus, and Ines. And then on the far end of the scale we have characters named things like Eltcreed, Adage, Glissade, and Keef. Yune Sekiei stands out even further, as the only character to have a Japanese(ish) name amidst a cast which otherwise uses Western(ish) names.
  • Animal Motifs:
    • The police force administering the sanctuary district is called the HOUNDS, and they are compared to hunting dogs in their tenacity and viciousness. Sachsen, Ines, and Fin Euclase in particular are frequently described in these terms; for the latter two, it's also used to indicate their obedience to authority. The nobility of the Heights also regard the HOUNDS dismissively as dogs - unimportant and disposable.
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    • Ulrik is frequently compared to a cat for his lithe and quiet way of moving, and for his habit of raiding Eltcreed's house for food whenever he wants.
  • Arranged Marriage: All marriages in the Heights are arranged by the Temple. Before the death of her parents, Cyrus was begrudgingly engaged to Fitzgerald Evans. Ines’s route reveals that the “begrudging” part was mutual on Fitzgerald’s end, too.
  • Back-to-Back Badasses: Cyrus and Ines fight back to back against the corrupt police officers late in Ines's path, with a suitably cool-looking illustration to mark the moment.
  • Bad Boss: Sachsen abuses the HOUNDS under his command as much as he does the residents of the sanctuary district. Should Cyrus defeat him in a duel in Ines's path, the assembled HOUNDS begin calling for her to kill him.
  • Better to Die than Be Killed: On two different routes, Sachsen demonstrates that he would rather take his own life than let Cyrus either kill or spare him after defeating him in a duel. In Eltcreed's path, Elt stops him because the death of the HOUNDS' commander would have lasting effects on the sanctuary district and relations between the Heights and the Depths. On Ines's path, Sachs stabs himself in the throat with his own sword and dies.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Cyrus comes to Ines's rescue late in his route, just as he's been cornered by Cordoa and a group of corrupt police officers who plan to murder him.
  • Big Eater: Despite his size, Yune Sekiei has a voracious appetite. Every meal consists of a cart full of dishes. Even after finishing he is capable of eating more.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing:
    • Fitzgerald Evans, Cyrus's fiance at the start of the story. When first introduced, he seems friendly and pleasant. However, the mask comes off late in Ines's path, revealing a Psychopathic Manchild who stabbed Cyrus's parents to death on his own father's orders without even caring about the reason, and murders Cyrus in Yune's chapel in the "Cold Blood" ending.
      Yune: You look like such a nice man, but you're a bit of a monster. Very shocking.
    • Glissade Roselite is polite, pleasant, and helpful in most of Cyrus's encounters with him. Only in the late stages of Adage's path does the veneer of sanity drop, and Cyrus learns that he's been manipulating her the whole time because he wants to kill her and harvest her blood. Not only that, he's the one who asked Warner Evans to have her exiled in the first place, leading to her parents' murders.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Most of the endings are either happy or complete downers, but a few of them fall in between.
    • In the ending "Follow Me," Ines returns to the Heights and Cyrus is left behind, once again losing someone she'd come to care about, and still without any means of getting back to the Heights or resolving the murders of her parents. However, she has the means to get by on her own for a while, and Adage invites her to work as his assistant; the ending concludes with Cyrus determined to make a new path for herself.
    • Similarly, in the ending "Roselite," Adage has been executed and Cyrus is stuck in the sanctuary district, but she's obtained some justice and closure regarding her parents' deaths. Making use of the house, tools, and medical texts that Adage left behind, she resolves to become a doctor and move forward with her life.
    • In the ending "Always Faithful," Cyrus has uncovered the truth of her parents' murder, brought those responsible to justice, and cleared her name. The HOUNDS are also being reformed under a new leader. Cyrus and Ines are both welcomed back to the Heights and reinstated as police officers, and will be working as partners to root out the corruption in their society. On the other hand, they can't be together romantically due to the laws of the Heights, and Cyrus believes Ines doesn't return her feelings anyhow. Additionally, Fin will never be the same after his torture at Sachsen's hands, and refuses to return to the Heights even though he has the option to.
  • Bodyguard Crush: If Cyrus falls in love with Eltcreed and he with her, it happens while she's working as his personal bodyguard.
  • Break the Cutie: Poor, poor Fin Euclase is viciously and comprehensively broken over the course of the story. Cyrus's kind, mild-mannered partner is transferred into the HOUNDS after her exile, where Sachsen subjects him to severe and repeated physical and mental abuses purposefully intended to strip away his humanity and render him a hardened killer obedient to Sachsen's orders. Fin's sanity is left completely shattered by the experience, and by the time Cyrus meets him again he's a broken and violently unstable man.
  • Cheerful Child: Despite the harsh conditions of the sanctuary district, Merlot has an unfailingly cheerful and friendly disposition which provides a welcome ray of sunshine for Cyrus after her exile.
  • Clear My Name: Even after being exiled to the Depths, Cyrus hopes to uncover the truth about her parents' murders and clear her name. It's subverted in most paths of the story, in which she has no opportunity to investigate and winds up having more immediate issues to deal with. In Ines's route, however, she's potentially able to find the real murderer.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Adage's usual manner is very dry, and he spares no one his sarcasm.
  • Dehumanization: Criminals exiled from the Heights are stripped of their last names and have no rights; most of the HOUNDS, Sachsen in particular, feel free to do whatever they want to the people of the sanctuary district because they're all just criminals anyway. However, new recruits to the HOUNDS get it even worse - Sachsen is shown to put them through brutal "training" intended solely to strip away their humanity and condition them into obedient hunting dogs, which is what happens to Fin Euclase.
  • Dirty Cop: The government of the Heights is riddled with corruption, and the police force is no exception. There are upstanding officers like Cyrus, but many others are in the pockets of various politicians and aristocrats, including Cyrus's superior Cordoa Hasse. The extent of the corruption is shown in Ines's path, where it's revealed that Cordoa led a group of police officers in murdering Ines's former partner to stop his investigation, then covered it up as a suicide, to stop his investigation.
    Cordoa: Police are tools. ... Tools of the government, of the instruments of power. We are tiny gears in the mechanism of society. Sure, we talk about justice, about doing what's right for the citizens. But if we want to feed our families, we have to win the patronage of the politicians who wield all the power.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Merlot, a child born in the sanctuary district, bumps into Cyrus by mistake when she and Fin are on their observation mission. Sachsen, who is guiding them, cuts Merlot's arm as punishment for "injuring someone from the Heights." He was even about to sever his leg off so he wouldn't run around again before Cyrus challenges him to a duel.
  • The Dog Bites Back: In "My Time" Fin kills both Glissade and Sachsen. He cuts down Glissade after he ordered him to prevent Cyrus and Yune from leaving. He helps them escape, but stays behind. Shortly later, Sachsen arrives to the scene and is furious with him for disobeying orders. In the resulting struggle, Fin comes out on top and lights the both them on fire.
  • Embodiment of Virtue: In their character profiles, each of the major characters is associated with one of the Cardinal Virtues as their "character theme" - Cyrus is Justice, Eltcreed is Charity, Ulrik is Prudence, Adage is Temperance, Ines is Fortitude, Yune is Hope, and Fin is Faith. Their particular virtues are not, notably, depicted as wholly positive. Cyrus's unwavering sense of justice sometimes gets her and those around her into more trouble than it solves, Eltcreed has devoted himself to giving to others so much that he's losing his sense of self, and Adage's policy of not using up his limited supplies on patients he knows he can't save, while pragmatic given the conditions in the sanctuary district, leaves him dogged by guilt.
  • Engaging Conversation: Cyrus has met Eltcreed all of twice the first time he proposes marriage to her, at a point where the sum total of their acquaintance might possibly add up to about twenty minutes. He suggests it several more times over the course of his path, well before serious romantic feelings have grown between them.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Warner Evans, for all his flaws, does genuinely love his son Fitzgerald. When it seems Ines is going to strike Fitzgerald for interrupting his duel with Cyrus, Warner immediately leaps to his defense to protect him.
  • Fate Worse than Death: In the "The Ending We All Wished For," Yune is exiled to the depths because of his love for Cyrus. Due to rejecting Sekiei's love he loses his ability to redirect harm but stays immortal. The people of the sanctuary who are angry with him proceed to beat him when they realize they won't get hurt by doing so. Afterwards, Sachsen hands Yune over to Glissade as research subject. After some time, Ulrik is able to find and give him a Mercy Kill.
  • Forceful Kiss: Happens in the Fin's route DLC, though not by the person you would expect. In the neutral ending, Sachsen locks Cyrus up and forces a kiss on her. It is implied that he will go further than before the screen fades to black.
  • Foreign Language Theme: "Höyry Vankila - Laventelin Sininen,"note  the ending theme, is in Finnish.
  • Frame-Up: Cyrus gets framed for the murder of her parents and is immediately exiled from the Heights. In Adage's path, she learns that Glissade arranged it because he wants to use her blood. On Ines's path, she can learn who actually committed the deed.
  • Frankenstein's Monster: Adage's path shows that Glissade is obsessed with the idea of creating life, beginning from when he was assigned to a facility in the Heights which disposed of infants the government deemed "unnecessary". He succeeded in using these "raw materials" to create a living girl he named Priscilla, but because she was created and grew up in a sterile laboratory, she was vulnerable to infection and quickly sickened and died after being exposed to the world outside. He's trying to revive her using body parts from women and children in the sanctuary district and wants Cyrus's blood for this project, leading to her death in two endings. In the "Recessive" ending he also harvests Adage's eyes to give to Priscilla.
  • Gender-Blender Name:
    • The heroine's default name, Cyrus, is traditionally a male name.
    • "Ines" as a given name is traditionally female, a form of "Agnes." They may have been aiming for "Innes," a surname sometimes used as a male given name.
  • The Great Flood: The divided society of the setting is the result of a catastrophic flood some 400 years in the story's history. The Heights were built as a shelter from the flood, but only for a select group of people; their descendents make up the current population of the Heights, while the Depths are populated by the descendents of those who survived the flood on the surface. The two "Extra Stories" available from the menu tell the story of the flood as the people of the Heights and the Depths respectively understand it.
  • Guys Smash, Girls Shoot: Inverted on the Bodyguard Route - Cyrus continues to use her sword once she's retained as Eltcreed's bodyguard, while both Elt and Ulrik use handguns. On Ulrik's path, Cyrus tries to learn how to use a gun and Ulrik later asks her to train him with a sword, only for each of them to discover that they have absolutely no aptitude with the other's weapon and are better off sticking with what they know.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Theia Skone, the previous commander of the HOUNDS, saves Sachsen from falling rumble as they were fleeing from a failed meeting with the Verräter. Mortally wounded, she dies shortly after from blood-loss.
  • I Cannot Self-Terminate:
    • In the ending "Words Unspoken," Cyrus is taken captive by Rafale and asks Ulrik to kill her rather than let them use her as leverage to force him to cooperate with their plans. He can't bring himself to go through with it, but Vice injects her with the drug Ulrik was going to use and she dies anyway.
    • In the ending "One-Winged Bird," Ulrik asks Eltcreed to shoot him in exchange for stopping the collapse of the Heights, feeling that his life has no purpose but saying he's too much of a coward to kill himself.
    • In one of the branches of Eltcreed's path, Fin Euclase asks Cyrus to kill him after she prevents him from attacking Eltcreed. Refusing to comply leads to the "Sweet Recompense" bad ending.
    • The reason Yune Sekiei makes Cyrus his attendant in the Servant Route. The machine in his chest keeps all things from harming him. He believed that she would be able to go through with killing a saint since he thought her to be the murderer of her parents.
  • Implied Rape: Twice, in what are arguably the darkest scenes of the game. First, in Eltcreed's route, there are two bad endings in which Fin, utterly broken from Sachsen's abuse, is implied to do this to Cyrus. Second, and in a more apparent example in the Fin Route DLC, Sachsen ties Cyrus up, kisses her, and says he will "have fun" with her and "break" her before he gets bored.
  • In Medias Res: The story begins with Cyrus regaining consciousness and discovering the bodies of her murdered parents. It then skips back two days to cover the events leading up to this moment.
  • Innocently Insensitive: In the common route Cyrus complains to Fin about marriage and how lucky he does not "have to sacrifice his [sic] own desires for society." All the while unaware of his two year crush on her, and sacrificing his desire to be with her for the sake of society.
  • Jigsaw Puzzle Plot: Each love interest's path reveals different details about the setting, what's going on in the world and what's happening around Cyrus in particular. The only way to resolve all of the dangling plot threads - including but not limited to the mystery of who killed Cyrus's parents and why, what becomes of Rielith and Merlot, what's up with the medicine the HOUNDS distribute, and the bigger picture of how the Heights, the Depths, and the sanctuary district interact and how the world became this way in the first place - is to play through every possible path.
  • Kill It with Fire: Near the end of Adage's path, Adage douses Priscilla with flammable liquid and sets her alight to destroy her past salvaging and break Glissade's delusion that she's still alive.
  • Ladykiller in Love: Eltcreed is very popular with women and has an active social life of casual romance, until he finds himself falling for Cyrus. Her complete innocence regarding love and sexuality causes him some inner conflict, as he finds he's restraining himself much more than he usually would.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Cyrus's impulsive decision to defend a young boy in the sanctuary district from Sachsen during the observation mission very likely saves her life once she's exiled. The boy, Merlot, and his grateful mother Rielith welcome Cyrus into their home and share their limited resources with her, providing her with shelter and support without which she could easily have died of starvation or exposure out in the streets.
  • Last-Minute Reprieve: In the "Sacrificing Myself" ending, Adage is mere seconds away from being executed for killing Glissade when Ines intervenes and convinces Sachsen to hire the prisoner on to work for the HOUNDS instead. With Glissade gone they're in need of a medic and no doctor from the Heights is likely to take the job voluntarily, so Sachsen agrees to spare Adage in return for his services.
  • Love Is a Crime: The government of Heights strictly controls the population, and all marriages in the Heights are arranged by the government. As a result, romance or sex with anyone other than one's designated spouse is a crime that can get you sent to the Depths. This is how Rielith ended up in the sanctuary district, and why poor Fin can't admit his feelings for Cyrus until it's far too late.
  • Mad Doctor: Glissade Roselite. One may get the sense in early encounters with him that he's a bit off; just how far off the deep end he actually is becomes clear in Adage's path. He's obsessed with creating life, in particular via his 'daughter' Priscilla, and is having the HOUNDS murder residents of the sanctuary district to provide him with parts. Two different bad endings on Adage's path, "Recessive" and "Flickering, Vanishing," result in Glissade murdering Adage and Cyrus as part of his efforts to revive Priscilla.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • "Euclase" is a crystalline mineral. The name comes from Greek words meaning "easily fractured."
    • Before Eltcreed took power and renamed it, the Liberalitas district was instead known as "Verräter," which is the German word for "betrayal."
    • Subverted by Eltcreed, who claims (in the ending "My Queen") that his given name is derived from an old phrase meaning "I love you." He cheerfully admits almost immediately after that he has no idea if his name means anything in particular - it was just a ploy to get Cyrus to say those words back to him.
  • Miscarriage of Justice: Cyrus is arrested for murder, confined overnight, and the very next day is hauled out for her sentence to be carried out without even being officially questioned, let alone receiving anything resembling a trial. Ines and Adage's paths confirms it was a purposeful frame job.
  • Motherly Side Plait: Rielith wears her hair in a loose braid over her shoulder, and one of the first things Cyrus notices is about her is her gentle, motherly demeanor.
  • Multiple Endings: Eltcreed, Ulrik, Ines, and Adage each have five endings; Yune has six. There are also four "Other" endings, for a total of thirty possible ends to the story.
  • Mummies at the Dinner Table: Adage's path illustrates just how batshit insane Glissade really is - if having women and children murdered in order to use pieces of their bodies in rebuilding his Frankenstein's Monster weren't bad enough, he vehemently insists that she's not dead, only sleeping, even as the decomposition advances to the point that Sachsen demands he do something about the stench. Adage resorts to setting the pieced-together corpse on fire to break Glissade's delusion, and even then it doesn't really work; in the ending "Flickering, Vanishing," Glissade manages to douse the flames and starts over, while in the "Sacrificing Myself" ending, Glissade burns to death trying to save his creation.
  • Murder the Hypotenuse: On Eltcreed's path, Fin Euclase becomes convinced that Eltcreed is "corrupting" Cyrus and tries to kill him in order to save Cyrus and remove the obstacle keeping them apart. In the "Sweet Recompense" ending, he succeeds.
  • Never Bring A Knife To A Gunfight: Firearms are widespread in the Depths, making swords obsolete, and on the occasions when Cyrus ends up fighting opponents with guns she's usually at a disadvantage thanks to their range and speed of use as compared to her sword. Guns aren't a guaranteed win, however - in the "My Queen" ending, the HOUNDS are able to suppress several groups of firearm-toting enemies thanks to being overall better-trained and organized, making use of the fact that they're fighting in an urban area to force their quarry into close quarters where they can't make effective use of their weapons' advantages.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: A lot of the trouble in Ulrik's path is caused by Ulrik carelessly telling Vice that Cyrus is from the Heights. He realizes almost as soon as the words are out of his mouth that he probably shouldn't have shared that particular information, but his low estimation of Vice and the rest of Rafale's capabilities causes him to severely misjudge just how much damage his carelessness is going to do until it starts blowing up in his face.
  • Nom de Mom: Ulrik's path reveals that his family name of Ferrie came from his mother. He doesn't have the full story of what happened between his parents - his mother told him his father was dead, and he didn't learn otherwise until after her death - but the significance of the Ferrie family goes back to before the great flood, suggesting that it's been their practice to pass on the name from mother to child in order to ensure that the family line continues.
  • Oblivious to Love: Between her own overly-serious nature and the fact that the Heights forbids romance outside of one's government-arranged marriage, Cyrus is completely clueless about romantic love and has a hard time even understanding the concept, let alone recognizing when someone has romantic feelings for her. She's managed to go two full years without ever recognizing that Fin is in love with her, for starters.
  • Offing the Offspring: Two endings of Adage's path, "Recessive" and "Flickering, Vanishing," result in Adage being murdered by his father, Glissade.
  • Only Friend: Ulrik doesn't like or trust people, to the point that Eltcreed is the only actual friend he has. Even their relationship is complex, going back to the connections between their respective families, but Ulrik likes and trusts Eltcreed more than he's willing to admit.
  • Only One Name: Exiles from the Heights sentenced to the sanctuary district are stripped of their family name, so Adage, Rielith, and Merlot are only known by their given names. In Adage's case, his former family name is also a spoiler - it's Roselite.
  • Parental Abandonment:
    • Adage's father Glissade abandoned his son when he was a child to bring life back to his daughter.
    • Ulrik's father sold him to the leader of Verräter to pay off his debts when Ulrik was eight years old, contributing no small amount to his trust issues.
    • Yune was abandoned on the side of the road as a baby. He was found by Reisha Ferrie and soon adopted as his son.
  • Penal Colony: The sanctuary district of the Depths serves as a penal colony where the government of the Heights exiles their criminals.
  • Police Brutality: The HOUNDS, essentially the prison guards of the sanctuary district, freely abuse the people who live there. On various different occasions Cyrus witnesses or hears about the HOUNDS extorting their charges for "side income," brutalizing them for petty infractions, or simply tormenting them for amusement. They mostly seem to take their cues from Sachsen, the current commander; on Adage's path a shopkeeper comments that things weren't so bad under the previous commander.
  • The Power of Trust: Trust is an important theme of Ulrik's romance. Ulrik doesn't trust easily; Cyrus showing trust towards Ulrik earns affection with him even as it confuses him, and earning even a little of his trust is a signficant development in their relationship. Breaking his trust, meanwhile, has very serious consequences.
  • Replay Value: There are five possible love interests and thirty possible endings, and the degree of Story Branching means that a single run through the game from beginning to ending will have only scratched the surface of the available content. In addition, the second playthrough onward adds scenes explaining what happens to Fin in Cyrus's absence, and Yune's route is only unlocked once you've completed the "Ferrie" ending of Ulrik's path.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Yune Sekiei is over 400 years old and has been around before the flood.
  • Running Gag: On Adage's path, neither Cyrus nor Adage himself ever stops harping on Adage's terrible cooking.
  • Shipper on Deck: If you end up on Ulrik's path, Eltcreed is thrilled to see Ulrik and Cyrus growing closer and takes every opportunity to play wingman, on several occasions essentially forcing the two of them to spend time together.
  • Son of a Whore: Merlot's mother, Rielith, could only make ends meet by selling herself when her former lover left her soon after both were exiled from the Heights.
  • Start of Darkness: Flashbacks in Ines's path show the events that put Sachsen in charge of the HOUNDS and shaped him into the man he is when Cyrus meets him. His attempt to aid the HOUNDS by forming a trade agreement with Verräter caused the death of the HOUNDS' then-commander Theia, a woman he greatly respected. The emotional fallout of these events - guilt, insecurity regarding his own strength, and paranoia regarding the people of the Depths - combined with the pressures of leading the HOUNDS over the past two years have taken an obvious toll on his mental stability, turning him into an erratic tyrant obsessed with strength and control by any means.
  • The Stoic: Ines is noted for his serious and reserved manner, which causes many people to think of him as rather stiff. He only really loses his cool twice in the course of his storyline - humorously when he meets Yune, whose status as a holy saint renders Ines awed to the point of nervous stammering, and much more darkly in the ending "The Fangs of a Hound" when Sachsen presents him with Cyrus's bloodsoaked uniform to let Ines know she's been killed.
  • Story Branching: The storyline forks in several places, beginning with a split into the "Bodyguard Route" or the "Prisoner Route." The Bodyguard Route in turn splits off into Eltcreed and Ulrik's paths, while the Prisoner Route divides into Ines and Adage's paths, and each love interest's path has at least one more significant fork based on your decisions before finally splitting off into the various possible endings. Additionally, completing the "Ferrie" ending unlocks the "Servant Route," a completely new story branch focused on Yune Sekiei with its own set of endings.
  • Sweet Tooth: Ulrik prefers sweets, especially chocolate, highlighting his tendency to be somewhat childish.
  • Taking the Bullet:
    • Cyrus shields Ulrik from Vice's gun near the end of one of the branches of Ulrik's path, taking a bullet to the abdomen in the process. In the "My Own Story" ending, Eltcreed shows up with a first aid kit and Ulrik is able to stop the bleeding. In the "Ferrie" ending, she's not as fortunate and dies from the blood loss.
    • In the ending "Goodnight, Assistant," Cyrus shields Adage from a bullet during a robbery attempt. He has no way to stop the bleeding or save her life, and can only give her a sedative so that she dies without pain.
  • Taking the Heat: Fin’s route has him taking the blame for murdering Cyrus’s parents.
  • The Talk: Cyrus has been extremely sheltered even by the standards of the Heights, and furthermore had no interest in her impending marriage so she's mostly avoided finding out much about the specifics of what's involved. Adage nearly hurts himself laughing on his path when he realizes he's going to have to educate her about where children come from.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Ines's route shows that prior to taking over leadership of the HOUNDS, Sachsen wasn't an especially physical person or a very good swordsman. By the time Cyrus crosses his path, he's become a powerful fighter who Cyrus struggles to match.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: Sachsen Brandenburg, as revealed in flashbacks during Ines's route. While it seems he was always somewhat cold and cynical, he wasn't a bad man; it's only after the death of Theia Skone placed him in command of the HOUNDS that he became violent and sadistic. His hostility towards Cyrus is at least in part because she reminds him of Theia.
  • Tsundere: Ulrik is prickly, sarcastic, and very easily flustered. Eltcreed takes a particular delight in teasing him, and you can expect a lot of blushing, awkward mumbling, and exasperated "baka"s if you play his romance path.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Fin Euclase mentions Cyrus's unusual blood in the presence of Glissade. This kick-starts the plot when Glissade arranges for her to be framed for the murder of her parents.
  • Updated Re-release: The VN received a Playstation Vita port titled Steam Prison: Nanatsu no Bitokunote , which adds a love interest route for Cyrus's police partner Fin.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Much of Eltcreed and Ulrik's friendship consists of Eltcreed intentionally winding Ulrik up and Ulrik complaining about it.
  • Vomiting Cop: A flashback to Cyrus's first encounter with a dead body during her work as a police officer includes poor Fin losing his breakfast due to the sight and smell of the corpse.
  • Wardens Are Evil: Sachsen Brandenburg, the commander of the HOUNDS, is effectively the warden of the sanctuary district. He's also a sadist who goes out of his way to brutally break down new recruits in order to shape them into merciless hunting dogs in his own image, and hands out viciously disproportionate punishments to the people of the sanctuary district and the HOUNDS under his command alike.
  • What Is This Thing You Call "Love"?: Cyrus is vaguely aware that love exists, but thanks to the restrictive culture of the Heights and her own youth and sheltered upbringing, she's utterly clueless about what being in love with someone means or how romantic love works. On Adage's path she actually worries that she's getting sick and describes her "symptoms" to him, whereupon he delivers the blunt diagnosis that she's in love with him.
  • Yandere: Fin Euclase, particularly in Eltcreed's path. Sanity shattered by his experiences with the HOUNDS and Glissade, he fixates on Cyrus as the only light remaining for him in the darkness. He reacts violently to any real or perceived threat to her well-being, and he takes seeing her together with any of the game's love interests very, very badly.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: Anyone who has been exiled from the Heights. This include the HOUNDS, all of whom are former police officers exiled to the Depths due to losing their partners (either by death in the line of duty or themselves being sentenced to exile). Although it is possible under certain circumstances for someone to return to the Heights, it's rare and the process is very difficult. In one of Ines' endings, Fin Euclase decides not to go back even when the option is offered because he's been too badly traumatized by his experiences.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Cyrus's hair is pink, Fin and Ulrik both have green hair, and Sachsen's hair is purple. Adage has streaks of pale green in his black hair, and a flashback CG shows he had them even as a child, suggesting that they're natural rather than dyed.

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