You have probably heard of the VenusBlood Frontier Kickstarter going on right now.
If not; Venus Blood is a long-running series of strategic turn-based roleplaying visual novels with a heavy focus on gameplay and tentacles. While the game mechanics differ from game to game, you can always expect the training or corruption of your heroines to strengthen your battle prowess to be a main part of the gaming experience. Also, tentacles.
Venus Blood Frontier is one of the most successful entries in the series, allowing the player to conquer not only the floating continent of Yggdrasil, a land loosely based on Norse mythology, but also the five goddesses who protect it.
Ninetail, the developer of the Venus Blood series, wants to bring this game to English for us Western gamers. They teamed up with JAST USA, veteran publisher of visual novel games, to make this project one of the most promising eroge the English VN community can be excited for in the near future.
Two of Venus Blood‘s core themes involve tentacles and turning pure girls into erotic temptresses. That’s more hardcore than your regular JRPG, but if this is exactly what you’re into then you should already be downloading the demo! It jumps right into the prologue and the first chapter of the game.
The game is huge, and if you’ve never played a VenusBlood game before, chances are that you’ll be overwhelmed. That’s why I’m here for today, so we can take a look at the demo together!
The World and Story
The Floating Continent of Yggdrasil is a lush paradise governed by five goddesses. It’s also the location of the legendary relic “The Heart of Yggdrasil”, which the Demon Emperor Surtr wants to get his hands on. For this reason, and to select the successor to his throne, he sends his grandchildren on a quest to get their hands on this mythical item nobody even knows how it looks and to bring it back to him.
One of the candidates is Loki, whose father was unjustly marked a traitor. He was executed, Loki’s mother incarcerated and Loki lost his standing in the noble family. However, the search for the Heart is his chance to not only redeem his family’s name but also to get revenge on the ones who wronged him.
In order to achieve that, he not only must surpass his cousins who are also trying to obtain the hidden treasure of Yggdrasil, the three beautiful demon sisters Fenrir, Jorm and Hel, and their seemingly nice brother Ymir, but also battle and capture the four beautiful goddesses of the seasons as well as their Chief God Odin.
When playing the demo I was positively surprised that this setting is not only a good basis for VenusBlood as an SRPG, but it’s also told very well during the ADV scenes.
The soundtrack is really good and sounds pretty epic and the multitude of CGs showing characters unleashing their unique battle skills coupled with the interesting and thrilling chuuni-writing (that is enhanced by female and male voice acting) lets you not only feel gripping excitement when you battle your own battles during the gameplay segments but also during the lengthy story events which Loki triggers by advancing his conquest of Yggdrasil’s lands.
VenusBlood Frontier is the sixth entry in the long-running VenusBlood series. Even though every VenusBlood game is different, there is the assumption the player is familiar with its strategic elements, like units, attributes, skills and general flow of the game. The style Frontier takes is a mixture of Empire and Abyss, the fourth and fifth games in the series.
To make your first time as painless as possible, I will discuss some of the basic gameplay mechanics Frontier in a more user-friendly way in my follow-up guide. For full coverage of all the important gameplay mechanics of VenusBlood Frontier, I recommend checking out Ninetail’s official English Gameplay Video.
Loki is everything you could want from a protagonist. He is capable, cunning, and knows how to turn a losing battle into a win. But he also has his personal agenda which makes him act emotional and revengeful at the appropriate times and gives a justification for his (or the player’s) less moral decisions.
I don’t want to discuss every single other character here. The cast is big and pretty much every archetype you might want to see participating in this conflict is there. Just look at the cover that was exclusively created for the English version.
I also recommend reading the character descriptions on the official English VenusBlood Frontier webpage to find out who will be your waifu.
I think it should be obvious who mine is.
Your Choice: Love or Corruption?
Not only is the question of who is the best waifu very significant, but also whether she should be corrupted or not is of essential importance — at least when it comes to the five goddesses.
If you capture a goddess, you can train her to make her into your loyal servant by mind-breaking her with your magical tentacles. This makes her not only naughtier but also stronger as a unit. A corrupted goddess will also have a noticeable change in character. Again, look at the character page if you want to know in which direction your favorite goddess’s lewdness will go.
However, you also have the choice of simply befriending your heroines if you’re more the vanilla type of erogamer. Not enslaving them will probably make some battles harder, but there will also be some other benefits; most importantly a significant change in the many endings you can achieve.
Your companions and their level of corruption is not the only way to personalize your journey through Yggdrasil. The game tracks choices Loki makes in his struggle for revenge. Will he completely submit to his demonic urges which will lead to the Chaos Route? Or will he be able to enter Law Route in the later chapters by being a somewhat decent person? Is there a chance for happiness with his favorite goddess? You can decide.
While you can’t train your goddess in the game demo, you will find yourself needing to decide between the lawful or chaotic way to solve situations. As you will already find out in the first chapter, not only do these choices affect which ending you will get, but they also have instant consequences for your current campaign. Being chaotic in the demo will lead to a battle that is probably the most challenging part of the whole demo, especially on the hardest difficulty setting.
If you still haven’t yet, I highly recommend to download the demo and play it. There is an 18+ version which is completely uncensored and an all-ages version for people who like to keep their pants on.
There are some bugs in the demo you may or may not notice. There is a memory leak that might crash the game if you played an older version of the demo, but Ninetail released a patch to fix this. Also, in the all-ages version the game loops back to the beginning at the end, which doesn’t happen in the adult version for some reason. There are also a few typos and translation errors. For example, the character ‘Tilca’ actually supposed to be ‘Tyrca’. Ninetail has stated that the success of the game’s Kickstarter will bring on a new localization team, with the new translation to be done by Arunaru. So if you think that the text in the demo version felt a bit rough around the edges, don’t you worry. The final product is sure to be polished and great!
If you’ve thought about supporting this project, take a look at the amazing backer rewards and I’m sure you’ll find something worth putting your money into. There are some exclusive goodies you don’t want to miss.
For obvious reasons, I’m going for the Always Together – Tilca set. After playing the demo, I really need a Tilca by my side.
Am I the only one?
Visit the VenusBlood Frontier Kickstarter page to find more detailed information on the story, characters, localization, and development progress.