Friday, November 9, 2012

Rose and Camellia 1 & 2 Review

The world of gaming has a wide variety of games, there are high production games with gorgeous graphics that play it safe to aim for the largest group possible, on the other end of the spectrum there smaller indie games that have low risk, so they tend to experiment more often. One such example is a unique flash game that was released quite a while ago, it sparked some interest because of its unique catch; the game was about slapping members of the Japanese aristocracy. While it does have a unique catch, it wins you over with its unique gameplay, catchy music and its over-the-top absurd humor and dialog. This game set of unique games is Rose and Camellia and its sequel, a game with a simple premise that wins you over with it various charms.

The first game is about Reiko Tsubakikoji, a commoner woman who just married into the wealthy and powerful Tsubakikoji clan. Shortly after the marriage, her husband dies, leaving her isolated in her noble family. Determined to win over her family, she slaps her way to the grand matriarch of the clan, Camellia; taking on her sisters-in-law, family maid, and her mother-in-law to the top of the family clan. The sequel stars Saori Tsubakikoji, who was humiliated by her defeat at the hands of her commoner sister-in-law a year ago. Her extravagant life was disrupted with her defeat, so she plots her revenge to take the position of Grand Madame of the Tsubakikouji clan back.

The story is as silly as it sounds, and the dialog, character movements and story sequences even sillier. It borders on the melodramatic, with classic lines like, “do not discount the resolve of the lowborn woman” or “her strength surpasses that of your typical noblewoman.” The story sequences between the slap battles are just as bad, with maids hanging off of ceilings and muscular cousins coming in from boarding school. This sense of humor also extends to the character movements in the slap battles. In the beginning, it seems to be a regular slap match, but at the lead character moves on, it starts getting further and further into the absurd. With an elderly mother avoiding slaps as effortlessly as a ninja, or the maid using a heavy punch instead of slap to get her point across.

The gameplay is strangely addictive; it requires mouse movements for slaps and defense. There is a bar on the upper left corner and it moves left to right. That is the window of opportunity that the person has to attack and defend themselves. To attack or defend, you have to hit a button on the bottom right, and then move your mouse to the person or away from them. The difficulty level changes the speed of the upper left window, leaving less time to input and more time on defense. I find that playing it on the lowest difficulty level still present a challenge. As more slaps are dealt, physical damage can be seen on the opponent (a la punch out). Part of the gameplay is the music, and it is very catchy. It does fit the atmosphere of aristocrats duking it in the name of honor and family glory. As an indie company, they have given the player the option to download the soundtrack free, which is a nice touch.

This is not the kind of game I normally review, but it is an interesting experience and it is free to play, it just requires flash. The game has a fascinating story and it is quite funny. Rose and Camellia’s silly storytelling, dialog, and character movements punctuates the game experience. It is a unique game that does have a very Japanese sense of humor that translates well for the western public. The game itself is a short experience, taking 10 minutes at most. It is at the very least, the best slapping game out there.

Rose and Camellia
Rose and Camellia 2
Nigoro Games English
Nigoro Games Japan


Anonymous said...

I love this game, any more like it?

KrisZ said...

Sorry, I don't know of any. Feel free to give recommendations and I can review them.

Rich$Con said...


Rich$Con said...