Heileen 3 (Yuri version) review

A visual novel set in the 17th century: http://www.heileen.com/
Mariko
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Heileen 3 (Yuri version) review

Post by Mariko » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:05 am

Well, I've finished all 4 of the romances and in fact I have one save with all four love interests at 100% and on any given turn any one of the four ending scenes can pop up. in fact it takes a lot of reloading to duck them if I want to level professions any further.

I found out something interesting in this process. It is possible to resurrect a failed romance. In this particular game save the Juliet romance was progressing much faster than the others so I intentionally tanked it early on so I wouldn't have to keep ducking it's ending scene while I leveled the others. Now we all know failing a romance resets it to 50 but you can still level it in those night time events where you chose to spend some time with someone in the tavern so after I finished getting the other three love interests to 100 I started focusing on leveling Juliet's romance back up to 100 which took quite a while since I was almost constantly reloading to dodge the 3 other romance ending scenes that kept popping up but once I got her back to 100 her second to last romance scene (The one where she's injured and you have to insist on helping) popped up and I was able to complete her romance even though I intentionally failed it early on in the game.

That said, here's my evaluation of the four...

Juliet was my favorite.
Spoiler:
She was well drawn, so much so that the muscular arms didn't seem to detract from her attractiveness at all.
Lora was my second favorite.
Spoiler:
I didn't think I was going to like her early on. She seemed a little too flakey for my tastes but in the end the chemistry between the two somehow worked. The dance scenes seemed drawn a bit more on the silly side than the sexy side. For all I know maybe that's what the artist was going for but oh well. Maybe it's because of having taken flack from the scenes in Loren although I find it surprising that you'd receive enough flack from that to discourage you from doing that again. I mean even though it's describe as nudity in game I find it barely qualified as nudity. There was an occasional side-boob or a butt-cheek but no naughty bits what so ever until the expansion introduced one cg with nipples.
Marie was my third favorite.
Spoiler:
Didn't much care for her temper but I did like how they boldly announced their relationship at the end. That was cool.
Ebele was my least favorite.
Spoiler:
Ironically, in the beginning I thought she was going to be one of my favorites because her sprite was drawn fairly attractive especially when she was in those torn up rags from the shipwreck but I eventually found myself agreeing with other posters in the poll about her requiring to much virtue. I can't blame the character's personality for that though. Rather I blame the virtue/sin system that gave the game a bit of a judgmental quality that put me off which consequently put me off to Ebele.

My overall review of the game...

I liked the characters and the whole pirate setting of the story. That was all pretty cool.

I didn't like the sin/virtue system that seemed to be judging my every move.
I also kind of felt like the skill/profession system the story was wrapped in felt kind of flat. Arbitrarily clicking a button that randomly raises a skill just wasn't very entertaining or engaging. It just felt like a time killer.

I understand this will be the last in the Heileen series but if you guys ever do something like this with a pirate setting in the future it might be cool to wrap it in an RPG battle system like Loren. There could be a map like in Loren but instead of a land mass there would be open ocean with islands with ports they could visit and random locations out in open sea (like "the plains" when doing the quest in Loren to find the cure) where there could be battles with other pirate ships or military ships trying to bring the pirates to justice.

Something like that I'd find a much more engaging way of having the story unfold.
"umm... They were like this when we found them."--- Dora

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jack1974
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Re: Heileen 3 (Yuri version) review

Post by jack1974 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:17 am

Thanks, and well no doubts a RPG in pirate settings would be really interesting. Would be harder to write since there should be some realism / background history to take into account, but it could even be possible to make it a bit more generic like Sid Meier's Pirates (one of my favorite games). For sure this will be the last Heileen game as visual novel/dating sim, but if in a very remote future (like in 5 years from now) the artist will have time again, I agree a RPG game with this setting would be very cool 8)

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ReadyOrNot
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Re: Heileen 3 (Yuri version) review

Post by ReadyOrNot » Wed Feb 27, 2013 2:26 pm

I will have a look on that, too and write some review as well...but Mariko already made me curious ;)
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thesleepykitten
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Re: Heileen 3 (Yuri version) review

Post by thesleepykitten » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:14 pm

jack1974 wrote:Thanks, and well no doubts a RPG in pirate settings would be really interesting. Would be harder to write since there should be some realism / background history to take into account, but it could even be possible to make it a bit more generic like Sid Meier's Pirates (one of my favorite games).
When I wrote my portions, I did a lot of research, so I didn't mind the historical angle at all. ^_^

Although I do apologize the professional stories fell flat. There was none originally - not even an epilogue text to the professional endings, so there was a rush to get them added to the next update. Also I wasn't sure what people exactly wanted - the focus on the characters, or the focus on the jobs (in the 17th century no less! Would people playing a romance game even care about logwood or accuracy...?) so I researched a lot on the professions to the best of my ability. i.e. the diplomat stuff was an actual event (with Heileen getting involved of course), and if you pierced together conversations you could actually pinpoint the years I focused on.^^; So I focused more on the accuracy due to the time limitations (with some slight freedom, Heileen got into the coffee business much earlier, but she was ahead of her competition! XD )

I'll be sure to do a better job presenting the historical content and make it more interesting if it happens again. ^_^;
Last edited by thesleepykitten on Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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jack1974
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Re: Heileen 3 (Yuri version) review

Post by jack1974 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:17 pm

thesleepykitten wrote:When I wrote my portions, I did a lot of research, so I didn't mind the historical angle at all. ^_^
ALL RIGHT, WE HAVE THE WRITER ALREADY!!! Heileen: The RPG! :mrgreen:
thesleepykitten wrote:Although I do apologize the professional stories fell flat. There was none originally
That's why... it was just an extra, I didn't even plan to have them. The game is already 3 times bigger than previous one (and if we consider male+female, even more). I personally don't minded too much the profession plots, to be honest, but surely is not your fault, you did the best with the time constraints :)

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Re: Heileen 3 (Yuri version) review

Post by Mariko » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:36 pm

Actually the profession plots weren't what I felt fell flat. In fact I didn't explore them enough really read through them. It just the mechanics of it. Just click and gain click and gain.. repeat. Was boring. Even in Loren My main focus is the story but the the fights are just a more entertaining mechanic to wrap it in and give the game more re-playability in my opinion.
"umm... They were like this when we found them."--- Dora

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thesleepykitten
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Re: Heileen 3 (Yuri version) review

Post by thesleepykitten » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:41 pm

jack1974 wrote: ALL RIGHT, WE HAVE THE WRITER ALREADY!!! Heileen: The RPG! :mrgreen:
"Heileen just jumped to another genre! There's no more Heileen Visual Novels, but she's going to start kicking butt with her sword in pirate RPGs!" (Her pirate ending was canon.)

In honesty, if I was asked on work on a Heileen RPG I wouldn't mind. Although I'd probably desire a brand new cast to accompany Heileen and her new adventures.
Mariko wrote:Actually the profession plots weren't what I felt fell flat. In fact I didn't explore them enough really read through them. It just the mechanics of it
Aaaah okay. ^^; No worries, Mariko.

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jack1974
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Re: Heileen 3 (Yuri version) review

Post by jack1974 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:07 pm

thesleepykitten wrote: In honesty, if I was asked on work on a Heileen RPG I wouldn't mind. Although I'd probably desire a brand new cast to accompany Heileen and her new adventures.
What, and Jack / Robert with STRENGTH of 99?? :lol: Morgan with his Charisma skill and Juliet special skill "Shark Attack"? it would be awesome :mrgreen:
Mariko wrote:Actually the profession plots weren't what I felt fell flat. In fact I didn't explore them enough really read through them. It just the mechanics of it. Just click and gain click and gain.. repeat. Was boring. Even in Loren My main focus is the story but the the fights are just a more entertaining mechanic to wrap it in and give the game more re-playability in my opinion.
Well you compare a full featured RPG like Loren with a budget that is x2 Heileen (and if we consider the time spent is more like x5) so obviously is inferior. Anyways for Spirited Heart 2 will try to have a different mechanics, promised!

Mariko
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Re: Heileen 3 (Yuri version) review

Post by Mariko » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:04 pm

jack1974 wrote:
thesleepykitten wrote: In honesty, if I was asked on work on a Heileen RPG I wouldn't mind. Although I'd probably desire a brand new cast to accompany Heileen and her new adventures.
What, and Jack / Robert with STRENGTH of 99?? :lol: Morgan with his Charisma skill and Juliet special skill "Shark Attack"? it would be awesome :mrgreen:
Mariko wrote:Actually the profession plots weren't what I felt fell flat. In fact I didn't explore them enough really read through them. It just the mechanics of it. Just click and gain click and gain.. repeat. Was boring. Even in Loren My main focus is the story but the the fights are just a more entertaining mechanic to wrap it in and give the game more re-playability in my opinion.
Well you compare a full featured RPG like Loren with a budget that is x2 Heileen (and if we consider the time spent is more like x5) so obviously is inferior. Anyways for Spirited Heart 2 will try to have a different mechanics, promised!
Yeah, admittedly I was comparing apples to oranges. I guess I'm just more of an rpg fan. But I'm an even bigger yuri fan. lol and I did really like the whole Loren story and think a pirate story could be just as epic.

Bottom line is it's the yuri aspect that attracted me (an rpg fan) to a visual novel like Heileen. Sorry for the harshness of my review being skewed by my preference for rpgs.
"umm... They were like this when we found them."--- Dora

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jack1974
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Re: Heileen 3 (Yuri version) review

Post by jack1974 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:08 pm

No problem, as you said it was because you were comparing two very different things, that's it :) but I'm not saying you're wrong, the stat raising gameplay must be improved in future titles.

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