|Shichiko the Miko|
Creator: Rabbika (a.k.a. Rabbit Rabbit)
Gameplay Time: 2-5 hours (estimate)
Status: in progress
Completion: 1 dungeon out of a planned 7
Website: none yet
Shichiko the Miko
This game, a game in the works by newcomer Rabbika, is a fairly light-hearted daisy-romp intended to delve into the background, symbolism, and relevance of that ever-present anime canon, the miko - or at the very least, perpetuate the cliché. The figure of the miko somewhat reflects the Western nun, but with very notable differences.
The story deals with themes of difficult choices, emotional maturity, relationships, and consequences.
The game is currently in the very early stages of production. It is being created using RPG Maker 2003.
Shichiko the Miko's story is that of straightforward, uncompromising revenge - plain and simple. Beautiful temple priestess Shichiko Kyouchuu has been attacked intermittenly by demons for the past four years or so, ever since she dumped her demon ex-boyfriend Dark Hop. The thick-skinned young woman takes these "attacks" in stride for the most part, mostly due to their immature and relatively harmless nature (her futon short-sheeted, 900 numbers called in her name, cold noodles in her underwear, etc.).
That is, until recently.
One night, Shichiko's beloved Mr. Worthington is murdered in cold blood. Spurred on by the death of the pet bunny, Shichiko makes plans to journey back to the the Demon World after more than four years, with one purpose: to rip out Dark Hop's lung (or the demon equivalent thereof).
Despite having a headache of epic proportions the morning after Mr. Worthington's wake, in which she was the sole organizer and attendee, Shichiko braves the dimensional portal to the Demon World and does some inquiring at the visitors' center. Much to her surprise, during the 200 years that have passed since she last visited (time flows much faster in the Demon World), Dark Hop has become the Emperor, and she can't get anywhere near him without four Letters of Recommendation from the top four CEO's of the Demon World.
Still, Shichiko is determined to get what she came for. Armed with her magical talismans, her spiritual powers, her broom, and a collection of living paper dolls, she must brave the wacky world of demons and kick some ass. She'll meet heavy opposition from monsters, snooty office personnel, love triangles, Dark Hop's obnoxious kids, and the idiots that perpetually surround her, but she's well prepared to solve these problems with her usual technique: blowing them all into next Tuesday.
However, things are never that simple in RPG's like this, and she'll find that not all problems can be solved with an exploding fire charm. Especially when some problems are results of her own choices of long ago. Especially when further investigation reveals something bigger at work than just a jilted ex-boyfriend. And especially when she may still carry a torch for the very object of her rage...
Because in love, there is no good and evil; only consequences.
For the sake of simplicity, the characters' names are shown in Western format; that is, given name before family name.
Shichiko is a beautiful woman of twenty-nine, with hair like black silk, eyes like rubies, and the quiet sophistication of a fire truck crashing through the ceiling. She wears the robe and performs the tasks of a miko, but she doesn't necessarily live the life of one - she smokes like a chimney, drinks hard, and cusses enough to light your hair on fire. Her father, the high priest, is constantly wigging out and tearing out his hair over this, much to Shichiko's delight. She detests her father as well as her strict and tradition-bound way of life, but continues to be a priestess, possibly out of a sense of duty or possibly because of the otherworldly abilities it allows her to access. She's very strong-willed, no-nonsense, and pretty much just straight-up unfriendly. She's also extremely pigheaded - when she's made a decision, not a force in the universe can move her from it. She's definitely someone you don't want as an enemy; however, whether you'd want her as a friend probably depends on how much of a masochist you are. While she can wield the Sacred Arts of the miko, a lot of her attack power comes the magic-infused charms she carries. [her name is made up of kanji loosely meaning "4000 mistakes of the heart."]
Other than that he used to date Shichiko and is now the ruler of the entire Demon Realm, not much info is given about Dark Hop, and Shichiko isn't spilling either. But even after almost half of a millenium, Dark apparently can't get past the breakup. She must have REALLY done a number on him.
The oldest of Dark Hop's three children, Lindi is stunningly gorgeous. She's also very self-serving and condescending, maybe even a little bit slutty. She seems to look down on Shichiko or nurse some kind of grudge against her, though it's possible that she rather sees Shichiko as some kind of competition in the looks department. Lindi does take great pride in her looks, taking extreme care in the maintenence of her short magenta hair and choosing to sport clothing that's a bit on the revealing side. She has an affinity for magically controlling plant life, and attacks with various pheremones and poisons in battle.
Phrog is the youngest of the three Hop children. He is compulsive, gregarious, and unassuming. He's also a complete and utter moron. He's extremely strong physically, and has ambitions of becoming the strongest demon in the realm. In his chambers in the Imperial Palace, he has a full gym for his personal use, and his walls are covered with tacky posters of bodybuilders he admires. Despite his poor interior designing skills and his jaw-dropping idiocy, Phrog's olympian physique, tan skin, winning smile, and social status (son of the Emperor) have won him the admiration of young women throughout the Empire. He could have any woman he wanted in the demon world, but the only female he's ever even noticed is Shichiko. He constantly pursues Shichiko, pining for her affection and getting close to her in any way he can, much to Shichiko's annoyance. She's known him since he was a small child, and even though time has passed and he's now about 480 years her senior (still very very young in demon terms), she can only see Phrog as a little kid. She's constantly told him so, occasionally using blunt heavy instruments of destruction for emphasis, but he remains forever unflappable. He doesn't seem to be the least bit bothered by the fact that Shichiko is his father's ex-girlfirend. Phrog can summon fire, but as one of the strongest bodies in the land, he can get through most battle situations by relying on brute strength.
The middle Hop child, Bunni is quiet and keeps to herself. She never talks, and she never removes her giant, body-concealing trenchcoat and scarf. For all we know, she might not be a character at all but instead a set of clothes floating in the breeze. She doesn't have much of a presence, and people rarely remember ever meeting her. Despite this, she seems to show the same loyalty to her father as her brother and sister do. She constantly puts herself between Shichiko and Dark Hop very deliberately, indicating that she's a sentient being after all, though she's very weak and easily pushed out of the way. Despite her apparent harmlessness, though, Bunni is the Hop sibling Shichiko trusts the least...
A kamitsukai ("paper user"), Ohma has a paper shop in the Demon realm. She is the one who gave Shichiko her magical Book of Shapes and taught her how to use the katagami (literally, "shape-paper"), the magical paper dolls that can fight alongside Shichiko in battle. She is bubbly and flirtatious, constantly making undisguised overtures towards Shichiko, and constantly being met with undisguised revulsion. Shichiko doesn't get along with Ohma at all, but often returns to her for help. Ohma is often pouty when she doesn't get her way and seems to be very immature at times, but she's hardly an idiot. She is in fact one of the more powerful magicians of her time and has had her fair share of battle experience. However, she isn't interested in fighting for anything, and is content living by the ocean and bringing in a few bucks with her little paper shop.
A short demon who carries a big stick, Zazella runs the Beginners' Room at the All Unlikelihood Lodge. She is the cheerful and perky daughter of the realm-renowned bounty hunter Ziggy, and follows in his footsteps part-time. She is also one of Shichiko's few friends, being one of the few people to best the priestess in battle, gaining her respect. Unfortunately, Zazella seems to have a serious one-way crush on Phrog, the Imperial Dumbass, while he obliviously continues to pursue Shichiko. Oh, well, Zazella can do better than him anyway...
Shichiko's mother, Harumi Kyouchuu, is a very gentle and kind woman, perhaps overly so. She never seems to get angry, and takes the oddities of her daughter's life in stride. Incidentally, Shichiko trusts her mother more than anyone else she knows, and confides all of her deepest emotions to her mother while she will barely even say "hello" to any other person on Earth. Shichiko's father, Iwa Kyouchuu, is the polar oppostie of his wife. He doesn't handle stress well, and will fly off the handle at the smallest of annoyances - especially when they come from his daughter. When he's not actively disapproving Shichiko's involvement with the Demon Realm, he's outright denying it. As the head priest of the shinto Temple of the Perfect Example in the human realm's Japan, he is very prideful, and his "wayward" daughter brings him great shame. While he's the head priest, it's debatable who is truly in control, as his mild-mannered wife is often the one to reel him in when he loses his head. [The name "Kyouchuu Harumi" loosely means "mature springtime heart," and "Kyouchuu Iwa" loosely means "rock heart."]
Nazia, Vama-Ting, Varicella, and Mew Kiss
The top four CEO's of the Demon Realm, whose asses must be kicked.
These characters have now become a part of my personal pantheon, and will probably be appearing in any webcomic I attempt.
Demon World Visitors' Center
A place to periodically check in and find information.
The All Unlikelihood Lodge
Where Shichiko rooms during her stay in the Demon World. Has a Beginners' Room in the basement.
Ohma's House & Paper Shop
Where Shichiko can service all of her paper-related needs.
Institution of Daemonic Wildlife
The first institution Shichiko must infiltrate. For regulating and protecting wildlife. A jungle-cave-like setting.
Institution of Daemonic Irrigation
The second institution. Oversees plumbing issues. Looks like a bath house on the inside.
Institution of Daemonic Meteorology
The third institution. For weather-related business. The obligatory "ice level."
Institution of Daemonic Technology
The final institution. For keeping up with the rapid advancements in technology.
A mountain that is cloaked in eternal sunset, atop which three little shrines oversee the world.
Expect a showdown here.
A dreary cave filled with ruins, treasures... and memories.
Shichiko's Abilities Though most of her special attacks will be in the form of Charms she can use in battle from the item menu, Shichiko will learn Sacred Arts as she levels up. She'll also learn Paper Arts, though these largely aren't meant for battle. The skills under this skill set consist of various brush strokes that can turn a paper slip item (available at Ohma's store) into an elemental spell charm. As the game goes on, Shichiko will learn more things to do with paper, such as creating origami, and combining more than one type of charm for bigger and better spells.
When Shichiko finds special paper, she can take it to Ohma and have her turn it into a living paper doll - a katagami. The katagami act as party members. There are several different types. Shichiko will start off with some very simple ones that are computer controlled and have no attack power, which will act mainly as decoys. Later, she will acquire katagami that act as mages, fighters, healers, etc., which can be controlled manually. The katagami can learn skills on their own, and can also be equipped with magic. Managing the katagami is done through the Book of Shapes, which is a book-themed CMS (and a total pain in the keister to program @_@). The katagami can be swapped in and out of the party at pretty much any time outside of battle.
At Ohma's house, the katagami's levels can be raised to match Shichiko's. This solves the problem of uneven leveling for lesser-used characters, and the player only has to worry about Shichiko.
A lot of the graphics will be taken from the RTP (hey, it's there for using, right???) or customized from it. Another source for character graphics is charas-project.net's character generator, which is a quick way to crank out some NPC graphics that haven't been in every other RM game you've ever played. Battle animations and chipsets are taken from a variety of sources, including the Red Rose of Pain and OrochiWeapon, as well as some custom work. The Battle Character Graphics and the System Graphics, however, will all be completely original from the ground up.
While I'm leaning on the RTP for this again, I also hope to compose some original music for the game. The obligatory cheesy pop intro song will be written, composed, arranged, and sung by yours truly, and is tentatively titled Tradition Bound.
Umm, my friends didn't hate the demo?
Title and release informationEdit
Expect a two-dungeon demo any day now.