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Visual Novel / Winds of Change

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From left to right: Ulric, Valessa, Pro, Sovy, and Damek

Winds of Change is a Visual Novel game published by Tall Tail Studios and once again developed by furry community member Klace, AKA Kyle Lambert. Considered something of a Spiritual Successor to his 2016 game Major\Minor, also a Visual Novel. The game takes place on the fantasy world of Alestia, which is a World of Funny Animals supposedly created, and ruled, by the Triumvirate, a religious-like organization trying to keep the people of Alestia under their control. Unfortunately for them, their actions have led to the creation of The Rebellion, an organization of various soldiers and civilians from various Alestian nations that are bent on taking down the Triumvirate.

The player takes the role of The Seer of Valinorth, who is to be soon officially inducted as the nation's Seer. In this world, Seers draw power from The Spirits, which bestow The Seer with visions of the future. The game proper opens with The Seer seeing a horrifying vision of Valinorth being attacked by The Triumvirate; not only that, but the vision implicates the current Elder of the village, Mylus, as being involved with The Rebellion. The Seer, and their scribe Valessa and friend Fortaime, soon learn that this is all true, and are tasked by Mylus with taking The Blade of Exodus, a magical sword The Triumvirate was using to enforce their will, and The Seer to meet with The Rebellion, and to use their power plus the power of The Blade of Exodus to help The Rebellion strike down The Triumvirate and free the world of Alestia.


Winds of Change seeks to improve on Major\Minor in numerous ways, for one including more than two choices whenever The Seer needs to make a decision, as opposed to Major\Minor which only ever offered two choices. The writing is also a lot more fast-paced and intense, and not so weighed down with the overwriting that seemed to affect the other game. The game also tries to expand upon the Affinity System, this time around allowing for special "Heart-To-Heart" moments with team members where you get some alone time with them to deepen your bond as allies and friends...and perhaps even start a Romantic Arc with a teammate...or more, if they so desire. There are also "Party Banter" scenes, where two characters in your area will talk to each other in regards to current events, the ability to talk to one or more party member when visiting an area, and "Parallel Chronicles" that show what other characters elsewhere are up to.


The Seer is also allowed limited roaming from area-to-area, though certain plot events might cause areas to be locked off for good or certain periods of time. When entering an area, the game goes into a sort of first-person point and click mode where they can interact with various parts of the background and get either their own thoughts or their teammates might jump in and say something.

Winds of Change also incorporates a Karma Meter, dubbed "Purity and Corruption". What makes this system intriguing is that you won't be told what choice is linked to which side until after you make that choice; character interactions and the characters' interactions with each other can be affected by your choices as well. There's also Troop Morale to keep an eye on.

The game started in Steam Early Access after a successful Kickstarter and Steam Greenlight campaign, and officially released August 21, 2019.

Not to be confused with the ''other'' Winds of Change involving animal characters.

Winds of Change provides examples of:

  • Action Girl: Nada, a respected and feared pirate captain. If The Seer chooses to align with her she gets to prove her worth as one during Act 3.
    • And in the Finale, Valessa. She'll take on some Honor Guard soldiers to allow The Seer/Monarch and friends to escape to Balteus' castle. Whether or not she's an effective Action Girl depends on your choices.
    • There's also Nyx, one of the Monarch Vessels. But it's only implied as we never get to see her in full action.
  • Aerith and Bob: We've got some fantastic fantasy names like Ulric, Sovy, Fortaime, Valessa and...Shane. The player can also play either side of this as they get to name The Seer.
    • The game actually makes a joke out of the more unusual names at one point.
  • All According to Plan: The Triumvirs wanted the rebels to get ahold of the Blade of Exodus. They needed the rebellion to have hope so that it would perpetuate the cycle of death necessary to make the blade strong enough to destroy the final idol. More specifically, they needed it to fall into the player's hands, so that they could be the one with the power to destroy it.
  • Anachronic Order: The Opening Prologue does this, as The Seer's vision is frequently interrupted by showing other scenes that are happening in the present day.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: While the game won't tell you what choices lean towards Purity or Corruption it at least has the courtesy to hint at when The Seer is faced with such a choice by saying "This choice will affect the future of Alestia."
    • Also applies to Heart-to-Heart conversations, as the game will inform you that you can potentially launch the Romance Arc with that character by informing, "This choice will permanently affect your relationship with ______"
    • At one point you can make a choice that will either shatter or maintain your bond with an ally. The game has the courtesy to let you know this before you make your choice.
  • Artifact of Doom: The Blade of Exodus, which the Triumvirate was using to oppress the world until the Rebellion stole it from them. At least, that's what the Rebellion thought had happened...
    • The Dark Idol, which apparently contains the essence of Nagi from Major\Minor. It's the source of Balteus' dying state.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Grand Inquisitor Sovy, for the most part, beats down whoever tries to fight him.
    • Ditto for Dracyu, King of Alarinthia and current arena champ.
  • Ax-Crazy: Sovy in the opening vision, who killed and/or assimilated every Valinorth citizen even though he wasn't required to. To him, it was only for fun and sport.
  • Batman Gambit: The Triumvirate are experts of this in the beginning. They use their power to manipulate Spirit-given visions to lead The Seer, The Blade of Exodus, and The Rebellion right where they want them. Damek tries to do this, but ends up getting Out-Gambitted.
  • Bare-Fisted Monk: Sovy doesn't need to hide behind a sword, unlike other characters, managing to best even skilled fighters like Ulric while being unarmed.
  • Battlecry: "May the Triumvirate reign eternal!"
  • Big Bad: The Triumvirate.
  • BFS: Ulric's huge, heavy broadsword, which impresses Fortaime when he gets a close look at it. Apparently, Ulric gets compliments on it all the time.
  • Big Damn Heroes: In Act 3 Sovy is about to kill Ulric...when Pro, who earlier disappeared from the fighting, reappears with the Pirate Captain the Seer and Damek sided with in Act 2, who brings along their pirate army to turn the tide of battle.
    • In the Finale, [[spoiler: there's a few moments of this. The Monarch will use their blade to kill a legion of Honor Guard blocking the bridge to Balteus castle. And if you spared Shane, he'll show up and save Damek just has he's about to be killed.]
  • Born of Magic: Howl arrives in Act 3, a legion of Spirits that inhabits the body of Salus, the former leader of The Rebellion. The combined power and energy of these spirits reanimated Salus' body and keeps it in a stable state for them to use.
  • The Charmer: Pro likes to fancy himself as this. Potentially Played Straight, if The Seer chooses to hook up with him.
  • Chekhov's Skill: You are asked if you are left or right-handed towards the start. Either Sovy or Ulric, depending on your choices, will use a ruse where they amputate the opposite hand to lure the Triumvirs into a false sense of security.
  • The Chessmaster: The Triumvirate likes to fashion themselves as this.
  • The Chosen Many: The Seers could be considered this, as the Spirits choose them at birth and bestow them with their powers. Though The Seer in the game's events is essentially The Chosen One as Valinorth's Spirits gave them the remainder of their power into them.
  • Church Militant: The Triumvirate seems to be this - they even have a Grand Inquisitor and a church in Mazeo.
  • The Corruption: Somewhat literal, as there is a stat on the Karma Meter called Corruption. Spirits actually are this, at least to the Triumvirate, as they influence Alestians to turn against them, thus corrupting Alestians from their original purpose.
    • But then it's learned that the energy from the Dark Idol literally corrupts everything around it.
  • Darkest Hour: The opening vision ends like this, with pretty much everyone in Valinorth (except Valessa) assimilated by The Blade of Exodus, being wielded by Sovy.
    • The first half of Act 3 is this. Things go to hell. Fast.
    • the finale can end up like this as well, as most of your comrades can die. And many, like Howl and Damek, end up in their own personal Darkest Hours.
  • Dramatic Irony: Tends to happen, such as in Act 2 during a Parallel Chronicle when Sovy and his gang spot The Seer's party, with said party being totally unaware they've been found by their arch-nemesis.
  • Driven to Suicide: [[spoiler: If you let Sovy join The Rebellion but kill Halin he'll jump to his death after killing a Triumvir. Apparently the grief from everything becomes too much for him to deal with.
  • Defiant to the End: Before Sovy kills The Seer in the opening vision they're given a couple of dialogue options to taunt him with that are effectively this.
  • Gender Misdirection: Vivien. His aide explains the name is actually very useful because assassins are always looking for a woman. Vivien himself actually uses it for fun to talk to people and talk as if Vivien is a different person.
  • For Great Justice: A lot of the Rebellion's motivation for wanting to take down the Triumvirate is this. Given that the Triumvirate is tyrannical, and killed a lot of parents of Rebellion soldiers, it makes sense. Of course, this becomes a lot muddier once the Triumvirs get a chance to explain their actions...
  • Good All Along: The Triumvirate. They explain that this has all been a plan to destroy the final Idol and the Blade of Exodus, to rid the universe of the constant conflict and death they bring.
    • Sovy. While your first meeting with him in a vision seems to indicate he's a shameless mass murderer, it's revealed he's just dutifully loyal to the rightful rulers of the world; when that is revealed to be you, he quickly moves to change sides. Even if you reject his help, the epilogue implies he dedicated his life to protecting the monarchy you put in place.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: The Spirit Idols and the Blade of Exodus. The Triumvirate reveals in the finale that they have attempted to destroy the idol multiple times, but it always reappears in another world and begins to ruin it. To make matters worse, the power of the Blade of Exodus, which grows stronger with every death, always creates conflict. The Triumvirs came up with a solution: trap a single world in a time loop (the Blade retains its power from prior timelines) until the Blade was strong enough to destroy the idol for good, as well as the Blade itself. the cost of the wielder's life. While the Triumvirs are known for being manipulative bastards, the fact two of them are indifferent to being killed makes this more plausible.
  • Hello, [Insert Name Here]: Characters will refer to The Seer as whatever name the player gives them - at least in the text boxes. The actual voiced lines will still call them Seer/Seeress. and later, Monarch.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: The Triumvirate let the Rebellion steal the Blade of Exodus as part of their plan. Despite their attempts to justify their actions, all three of them are killed with it by you and Sovy/Ulric (depending on choices).
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: "Good thing there's a fireplace here to warm things up."
  • Near-Villain Victory: The first half of Act 3.
  • Off with His Head!: The way the last Triumvir dies.
  • Outgambitted: Despite all of Damek's expert planning, he falls victim to this in Act 3, as he was the one being led into a trap, rather than he leading the Triumvirate into a trap. However, this ends up happening to the Triumvirate later on in Act 3, due in part to Sovy fleeing and Pro being resourceful and getting friendly pirates to assist in the battle.
  • Railroading: Even if you choose to forgive Pro for his treachery that got people killed, forgive Ulric for being a Grand Inquisitor, allow Sovy to join your side, forgive Shane, and free Halin from his mind control, your character will brutally kill the two last Triumvirs even after they've explained themselves. It could be argued that everyone else was a tool of the Triumvirate so can be forgiven on that basis, but the Triumvir's utilitarian explanation of everything they had done makes this choice seem forced.
  • Sacrificial Lamb: Valinorth is viewed as this by The Rebellion, as Damek saw a vision where The Rebellion won...but Valinorth was destroyed in the process, and Damek intends to stick to that vision. Subverted in Act 3, as he and the rest of The Rebellion learn that was a false vision.
  • Sadistic Choice: The game hints that these choices will eventually befall The Seer, and boy does the first of these not fail to disappoint. In the aftermath of the surprise attack on Rebel HQ, The Seer can either bestow some remaining Rebellion soldiers with their spiritual powers of visions, at the cost of said soldiers becoming vegetables when the power is used up, or resurrecting dead Rebellion soldiers and giving them the spiritual the cost of them being stuck in a form that dies hard and in addition they will be in eternal constant pain. Even Valessa and Fortaime, whom The Seer was normally able to consult up to this point, have nothing to say as to what they think The Seer should do.
    • At the end of the game, you are presented with the option to destroy the final Spirit Idol, though it will come at the cost of your life. Considering you likely made lots of promises to comrades by this point that you would come back, the fact you have to choose between going back to live with the people you love or killing yourself for the good of everyone is not easy.
      • Of course, the revelation that agreeing to sacrifice yourself warps you into a new world with your memories intact but where the Triumvirate never oppressed anybody makes it easier...
  • Stealth Sequel: While the Blade of Exodus looks like a normal blade to someone going into Winds of Change blind, others will quickly notice how it resembles the weapon used by the Nagi and Nemi in Major Minor, complete with having the same powers and otherworldly gear. The real evidence of this being a sequel, however, is when ghosts (Wordof God says they're memories) of Acheron and Reiyo appear as The Triumvirate explain themselves.
  • Turned Against Their Masters: Turns out that Alestians were originally created to blindly serve the Triumvirate, however, the spirits from the conquered monarchy began influencing Alestians to the point they had free will and began to turn against the Triumvirate... ultimately culminating in the current Rebellion.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: The only reason the Triumvirate engages in atrocities is they're trying to build up the power of the Blade of Exodus so it will be powerful enough to destroy the final idol as well as itself. They see the horrors they're inflicting on one world as a small price to pay to save countless others.
    • It makes much more sense considering Acheron and Reiyo were perfectly fine with using deception and allowing some death for the sake of the greater good in Major\Minor.
  • Xanatos Speed Chess: The situation seems to change to this following Act 3. The Blade of Exodus remains in the hands of The Seer, and in addition, there are rebellion soldiers who are being trained to see visions, and Howl, a construct of monarchy spirits that can see into the future as well, thus robbing the Triumvirate of their ability to corrupt visions. However, the heads of the Triumvirate are still clever schemers, and they still have Sovy who himself is a clever schemer and skilled fighter.

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