Psychedelica of the Ashen Hawk Review

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PSYCHEDELICA OF THE ASHEN HAWK

Release Date: June 29, 2018 (North America)
Developers:  Idea Factory, Otomate
Publishers:  Idea Factory, Aksys Games
Platforms:  PS Vita
ESRB Rating: T (Teen)

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…and finally! The last title for Aksys’ Summer of Mystery Promo.

It’s a Witch-hunt!
Psychedelica of the Ashen Hawk holds true to its testimonials of a very engaging gameplay with a plot setting that’s intriguingly rather different compared to its prequel (Psychedelica of the Black Butterfly). With the game’s time period set to a Post-renaissance age, the story revolves around the ever famous “witch-hunt” phenomenon that was commonly popular in Early Modern History.

As part of the Psychedelica series where a melancholic finish is a known signature, do not expect to have ten folds of happy endings in this game. 

Walkthroughs:
Common Route Endings
ALL Main Character Endings

 

GAME SYNOPSIS
“In a town ruled by opposing clans and overshadowed by superstition and legend,
A child is born with the dreaded mark of a witch.
She conceals her identity until the theft of a mysterious relic
brings to light a series of staggering revelations.
The mysteries she will uncover could restore order
..or destroy everything that she knows..”

 

ART AND MUSIC
I like Satol Yuiga’s approach to this sequel’s art style. The artist showed a lot of emphasis on colder shades (different shades of black, gray, caramel brown, white), to highlight the game’s setting of ‘a town where winter never ends’.  The Kaleidoscope pattern on each of the character’s head annoyed me at first, but this was one of the easter eggs that got me really absorbed in the game.

The game’s soundtrack was also very new to me. From it’s brisk opening theme to it’s forlorn ending. Everything including the BGMs were incredibly surreal. I love the Middle Age vibe it’s rendering. I’ve included a sample of these tracks below (purchased from iTunes):

 

VOICE ACTING

Mutsumi Tamura “Jed / Eiar” – Kobayashi (Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid) Camilla Pareto (Asterisk War)

Hino Satoshi “Lavan” – Toma (Amnesia), Noiz (DRAMAtical Murder), Leo Crawford (Midnight Cinderella)

Saito Souma “Levi” – Mineo Enomoto (Collar x Malice), Rem Kaginuki (Dance with Devils), Sota (Possession Magenta)

Furukawa Makoto “Lugus” – Adage (Steam Prison), Kyle Ash (Ikerev), Clive (Million Dollar Boyfriend)

Daisuke Namikawa “Hugh” – Takeru Sazasuka (Collar x Malice), Kaga Akira (Clock Zero), Eigetsu/Yougetsu (Saiunkoku Monogatari), Komura Yuuichi (Hiiro no Kakera)

Daisuke Hirakawa “Tower Overlord” – Saint Germain (Code Realize), Laito (Diabolik Lovers), Zain (Period Cube), Nakaoka Shintarou (Hakuoki), Suguri Ohmi (Hiro no Kakera)

Kosuke Toriumi “Lawrence” – Saito Hajime (Hakuoki), Shiki (Period Cube), Rei Mikuni (Collar x Malice), Hideyoshi (Ikesen), Shuu (Diabolik Lovers), John Watson (Code Realize Future Blessings)

Kaito Ishikawa “Elric” –  Alan Crawford (Midnight Cinderella), Tobio Kageyama (Haikyu!), Tenya Iida (My Hero Academia)

Morikawa Toshiyuki “Olgar” – Rai (Lamento Beyond the Void), Arles (Black Wolves Saga), Thoth (Kamigami no Asobi),

Oohara Sayaka “Francisca” – Margaret (Persona 4), Kela Hazel (Galaxy Angel)

 

MAIN CHARACTERS (SPOILER FREE)

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Some character’s true ending will only unlock after clearing another character’s route beforehand. For example, Levi’s good end will only unlock after finishing Lavan’s route. Following the walkthroughs, I’ve linked above is the easiest and most convenient way to unlock all of the game’s endings.

LAVAN

  • Lord of the Wolf Clan
  • Overprotective
  • One-Sided Luurrv

As the Wolf family’s first son, Lavan was raised to be the heir of their clan from day one. He’s a very charismatic, respectable man and almost everyone in town loves him. Besides his handsome features that gets him all dem stares from the ladies, he’s also exceptionally skilled in combat and loves collecting weapons (sword). Lavan is also the only guy in Jed’s harem who knows her cross-dressing secret. The game made this very obvious, so I don’t consider this as a spoiler. That said, I sort of feel bad seeing his unrequited love for Jed unfold as you read through chapters. I love Lavan’s interaction with the heroine in all his short story episodes though, it’s romantic fluff at its finest. Plus, his Masquerade CG is something to look forward to.

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LEVI

  • Short Tempered
  • Second Son Syndrome

Levi is the second son of the Wolf family. He’s also the head of the town’s vigilante committee. Although he can be a little short tempered at times (especially when provoked by the opposing faction), a lot of soldiers from the wolf clan respects him for his leadership. He thinks of Jed (the heroine) as his little brother and is always looking out for her best interest. One thing I really like about Levi, is how accepting he is when it comes to his flawed characteristics. I also love how there isn’t much of the cliched ‘sibling rivalry’ between him and Lavan in the game. Their brotherly relationship seemed pretty solid all throughout the story.

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LUGUS

  • Lord of the Hawk Clan
  • Gap Moe
  • Best boi

As the only son of the present Hawk Lord, Olgar, Lugus is expected to do his tyrannical father’s bidding, such as collecting taxes from the townsmen. He doesn’t seem to care what the rest of the town thinks of him as long as he gets the work done, befitting their faction. Lugus displays a very cold, unfriendly persona upfront but get into his good side and you’ll discover a surprisingly adorable gentleman. Not only is he the poster-boy of the Psychedelica AH, he’s also the game’s bias as most of his short story episodes contain an overwhelming amount of doki-dokis compared to the rest of the guys in the game (laughs).

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HUGH 

  • Mysterious “Traveler”
  • knows more than he lets on

Not much is really known about this character besides introducing himself as the mysterious traveler who took interest in the heroine’s story. Going through Hugh’s route gives you a lot of easter eggs in the Psychedelica lore. Tbh, Hugh’s character confused the hell out of me to a point where I had a million theories in my head that didn’t really panned out in the end. His character design was beautiful though, and I’m always a sucker for Daisuke Namikawa’s voice acting, so there’s that! ( ̄ω ̄)

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TOWER OVERLORD

  • Amnesiac
  • Free Spirited
  • Lazy

This eye-patched man lives with Jed in the town’s lonely white tower and acts as the heroine’s ‘guardian‘. Although listed only as a side character of the game, I consider the tower overlord as one of the main important casts in Psychedelica of the Ashen Hawk. Because of his free-spirited nature, his interactions with the heroine were always enjoyable. He’s also one of the few who knew about Jed’s real identity and would seldom tease her whenever she dresses up as a woman. Though this man deliberately wears an easygoing facade, inside his happy-go-lucky smiles lies a dark secret that brings about a deeper and more complicated character.

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JED / EIAR (Heroine)

  • Cross dressing MC
  • MVP
  • Best Girl

Born with the accursed red eye, our heroine was ill-fated as the descendant of an ominous witch, who was believed to have caused the town’s never-ending winter season. Because of this, she hides her true identity and decided to live her life as a man.

Alright, so if there’s any character in the game that truly deserves high regard of respect, Jed would be your gal. I have never felt so sympathetic towards a character until Jed. All throughout the game, this heroine was too good – I couldn’t even put it to words. She’s kind, very independent and above all, doesn’t wallow on any BS. Truth be told, it was so aggravating playing her character not because she was mundane (she’s not!) but because she was such a good character, it pains me to see all this misfortune befalling on herimage. I was totally at a point where I just want to give her a comforting hug, and scream: “Please cut this heroine some slack!” image

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this heroine can take a beating too and can fight well with the sword

 

MAPS
Aside from the flowchart, the game also allows you to navigate through TOWN MAPS where you can collect “Town Memories” and watch short episodes of sheer fluff goodness. Make sure to switch from Jed to Eiar whenever you can, as both characters offer different short stories.

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Town Memories – marked in PINK, with the magnifying glass icon. (you’ll need these to buy items from the antique shop by the tavern);  these are very short talk episodes with the town people.

Short Story Episodes – marked in BLUE, are short stories of the heroine’s encounter with the main & side characters of the game.

 

TRAILER / OPENING MOVIE

 

Will I enjoy Psychedelica of the Ashen Hawk even though I haven’t played Psychedelica of the Black Butterfly?

Psychedelica AH somehow created its own new lore which can stand alone on its own. That being said, it can be enjoyed as it is, even if you haven’t played Psychedelica BB. However, I still (strongly) recommend playing the prequel beforehand as there were A LOT of references from Black Butterfly that were very significant in Ashen Hawk. Playing its prequel also adds up to the game’s enjoyment level.

 

OVERALL THOUGHTS? (*°▽°*)
With lengthier gameplay this time, It did a great job introducing the main characters and their corresponding motives at the beginning of the story. I also like how each chapter was gradually building its overarching plot, one that’s very engaging, – I actually had a hard time putting down the game for a while.  All the characters were very likable and I love how each of them (including the side characters) seem to have their own backstories to share as you progress through the game. Although still low in romance, the game did manage to take the fluff up a notch when compared to its predecessor (PBB).

But just like any other mystery themed visual novel, it had a couple of plot holes that left me asking more questions after completing the game. I was expecting a proper closure, like the one in Psychedelica BB, but sadly there wasn’t any, which sort of left me a little confused… Will there be another sequel that will give me answers? Please…I need to know!

Do I Recommend this game?
Consider this title a nice treat to those who’ve played Psychedelica of the Black Butterfly (whether or not you’ve enjoyed it). Ashen Hawk had great pacing and story build up, it won’t take you that long to get absorbed in the game. However, it doesn’t promise a merry ending with rainbows and sunshine, so EXPECT and brace yourself for the angst and unexpected plot twists.

I guess, if you view the Psychedelica series as a visual novel rather than an otoge, you may appreciate it more. (* ^ ω ^)

 

Chlo’s Rating: 7/10

Psychedelica of the Ashen Hawk Walkthrough (Part Two – ALL Main Character Endings)

Just a few notes before starting your play through of Psychedelica AH:

  • As part of the Psychedelica series, you will be navigating through the game’s flowchart just like the previous game (PBB).
  • This walkthrough will get you all the (PS) trophies of the game the easiest. However, this guide does not indicate the correct canon order of routes you should take. Feel free to deviate whichever route or ending you wish to unlock first.
  • Some short episodes only unlocks after completing another short episode prior.
  • Some  short episodes contain CGs.
  • The only short episodes that are available to unlock are the ones that says “NEW”The rest would require you certain conditions such as finishing a particular ending.
  • Side stories on the MAP in PINK are considered “Town Memories” – these are very short talk episodes with the town people.
  • Side Stories on the MAP in BLUE are Short Episodes.
  • Stories on the MAP in YELLOW indicates a new chapter has been unlocked.
  • I suggest watching all the available Town Memories and Short Episodes in MAPS just to knock them out of the way. You will need to do this either way, in order to collect “Town Memory Points”.
  • You can use the Town Memory Points to purchase items at the Antique Shop by the Tavern (in MAPS).
  • Make sure to change from Jed to Eiar  (hero to heroine) whenever you can in MAPS as both characters offer different Short story episodes.
  • If I missed anything in this walkthrough, or if you have any questions about this guide, feel free to contact me here.

 

This guide unlocks the following Character Endings:

1) Lugus Ending
2) Lavan’s Ending
3) Levi’s Ending
4) Hugh’s Ending 2 (Traveler’s Ending)
5) Link’s Ending

Ready? Let’s go!

 

Lugus Ending

The Hawk Lord

Lugus’ list of Short Episodes

– To the North Alley (Map 1)
– Family and Servant (Map 3)
– Startling Weakness (Map 4)
– To the North Alley (Map 5)
– Brother and Siste (Map 6)
– Stained Glass (Map 7)
– Love Triange (Map 7)
– Lugus’ Favorite? (Map7)
– Snowdrop Field (Map 8)

 

Load Any Save File
Open Flowchart

Select Chapter 3*5

CHAPTER 3*5

– Select All Options Except “Stay There”

CHAPTER 7*2

– It was inconsiderate of me

CHAPTER 7*7

– Go to the chapel

CHAPTER 8*8

– Talk to Lugus

CHAPTER 8*10

– Don’t Kill Olgar

CHAPTER 9*2

– This is Reality

CHAPTER 9*3

– Don’t Run

CHAPTER 9*5

– Won’t Run

MAP 8

Complete All Short Stories!

Church – Nod
Tower – Release Ashen Hawk From His Sins
West Alley – See Levi Under The Sun
Foggy Forest –  … ***(REQUIRED)***
Square – He Shouldn’t Say That
Snowdrop Field – Believe in Lugus

(Lugus Ending)

 

Lavan’s Ending

The Wolf's Wife

Lavan’s  list of Short Episodes:

– Leg Treatment (Map 3)
– Gift Destination (Map 3)
– Childhood Friend (Map 3)
– Cooking Together (Map 3)
– Tea party (Map 4)
– View on Love (Map 4)
– At the Church (Map 6)
– As the Heir (Map 6)
– Least Favorite (Map 6)
– Love Triangle (Map 7)
– Taunting and Logic (Map 7)
– To the Square (Map 8)

 

START a new game from the beginning (I know what you’re thinking; thank the lawwwd for the “skip” button)

MAP 2

  • Read all NEW Town Memories
  • Purchase all the Items from the Antique shop at the Tavern. (If you can’t purchase all, make sure to come back once you have enough Town Memory points).
  • Read all NEW “Notes” from the flowchart

MAP 3

  • Read all NEW Town Memories
  • Purchase all the Items from the Antique shop at the Tavern (if you haven’t yet).
  • Read all NEW “Notes” from the flowchart
  • Make sure to complete the short episode “The Stranger”.

MAP 4

  • Read all NEW Town Memories
  • Purchase all the Items from the Antique shop at the Tavern (if you haven’t yet).
  • Read all NEW “Notes” from the flowchart
  • Complete all short episodes (make sure to switch from hero to heroine).

MAP 6

  • Read all NEW Town Memories
  • Complete all short episodes (make sure to switch from hero to heroine).

MAP 7

  • Read all NEW Town Memories
  • Purchase the last  item from the Antique shop at the Tavern (if you haven’t yet).
  • Complete all short episodes (make sure to switch from hero to heroine).

CHAPTER 3*5

– Select All Options Except “Stay There”

*CREATE A SAVE FILE HERE

CHAPTER 7*2

– Even So…

CHAPTER 7*7

– Go to the chapel

CHAPTER 8*8

– Talk to Lavan

CHAPTER 8*10

– Don’t Kill Olgar

CHAPTER 9*2

– This is Reality

CHAPTER 9*3

– Don’t run

CHAPTER 9*5

– Won’t Run

MAP 8

(Go to) SQUARE – Nod ***REQUIRED***

CHAPTER 9*7

– I seek happiness

(Lavan Ending)

 

Levi Ending

Town of Sinners

NOTE: You can only unlock this ending after clearing Lavan’s route.

Levi’s list of Short Episodes:

– Tables Have Turned (Map 3)
– Childhood Friend (Map 3)
– Cooking Together (Map 3)
– By the Stove (Map 4)
– To the Square (Map 5)
– Least Favorite (Map 6)
– Frenemies (Map 6)
– Great Team (Map 6)
– Confession Batthe (Map 6)
– Flower Decoration (Map 7)
– To the West Alley (Map 8)

 

Load Previous Save File (from Lavan’s route)
Open Flowchart
Select Chapter 7*2

CHAPTER 7*2

– It was inconsiderate of me

CHAPTER 7*7

– I’ll check and see how Levi is doing

CHAPTER 8*8

– Talk to Levi

CHAPTER 8*10

– Don’t Kill Olgar

CHAPTER 9*2

– This is Reality

CHAPTER 9*3

– Don’t run

CHAPTER 9*5

– Won’t Run

MAP 8

(Go to) West Alley – “I Love Levi” ***REQUIRED***

CHAPTER 9*7

– I seek laughter

*CREATE A SAVE FILE

(Levi Ending)

 

 

Hugh Ending 2 (Traveler’s Ending)

Blissful Girl

This ending only unlocks after:

  • Completing the rest of the endings in the game
  • Completing ALL the Short Episodes.
  • Completing ALL the notes in the flowchart.

Load Previous Save File (from Levi’s route)
Open Flowchart
Select Chapter 3*1

CHAPTER 3*1

– He seemed kinder than he did previously

*CREATE A SAVE FILE HERE

TRAVELER 4

– Go back to sleep

(Hugh Ending 2)

 

Link’s Ending

The Witche's Eye

Same as the Traveler’s Ending, this ending will only unlock after:

  • Completing the rest of the endings in the game
  • Completing ALL the Short Episodes.
  • Completing ALL the notes in the flowchart.

Load Previous Save File (from Traveler’s Ending Route)
Load Flowchart
Select Traveler 4

TRAVELER 4

– Go to the Tavern

(Link’s Ending)

 

TIP: If the final (PS) Trophy doesn’t unlock after finishing this ending, Go back to MAP 8 and  select the choices on short episodes you haven’t made yet in the game to complete it.

 

PREVIOUS WALKTHROUGH: Psychedelica of the Ashen Hawk Walkthrough (Part One – Common Route Endings)

Psychedelica of the Ashen Hawk Walkthrough (Part One – Common Route Endings)

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Just a few notes before starting your play through of Psychedelica AH:

  • As part of the Psychedelica series, you will be navigating through the game’s flowchart just like the previous game (PBB).
  • This walkthrough will get you all the (PS) trophies of the game the easiest. However, this guide does not indicate the correct canon order of routes you should take. Feel free to deviate whichever route or ending you wish to unlock first.
  • Some short episodes only unlocks after completing another short episode prior.
  • Some  short episodes contain CGs.
  • The only short episodes that are available to unlock are the ones that says “NEW”The rest would require you certain conditions such as finishing a particular ending.
  • Side stories on the MAP in PINK are considered “Town Memories” – these are very short talk episodes with the town people.
  • Side Stories on the MAP in BLUE are Short Episodes.
  • Stories on the MAP in YELLOW indicates a new chapter has been unlocked.
  • I suggest watching all the available Town Memories and Short Episodes in MAPS just to knock them out of the way. You will need to do this either way, in order to collect “Town Memory Points”.
  • You can use the Town Memory Points to purchase items at the Antique Shop by the Tavern (in MAPS).
  • Make sure to change from Jed to Eiar  (hero to heroine) whenever you can in MAPS as both characters offer different Short story episodes.
  • If I missed anything in this walkthrough, or if you have any questions about this guide, feel free to contact me here.

 

This guide unlocks the following Common Route and Character Endings:

1) Happy Ending 1
2) Happy Ending 2
3) Bad Ending
4) Tower Overlord Ending
5) Hugh Ending
6) Heroine’s Ending (True Ending)
7) Wolf Brother’s Ending

Ready? Let’s go!

 

Common Route (Happy Ending I)

Masquerade

CHAPTER 3*5

-Stay There
(Happy Ending 1)

 

 

Common Route (Happy Ending II – Hero’s Ending)

Masquerade (1)

Load Any Save File
Open Flowchart

Load Chapter 3*5

CHAPTER 3*5

– Select All Options Except “Stay There”

CHAPTER 7*2

– It was inconsiderate of me

CHAPTER 7*7

– Go to the chapel

CHAPTER 8*8

– Talk to Hugh

CHAPTER 8*10

– Kill Olgar
(Happy Ending 2)

 

Common Route (Bad Ending)

Hallucinations

Load Any Save File
Open Flowchart

Load Chapter 3*5

CHAPTER 3*5

– Select All Options Except “Stay There”

CHAPTER 7*2

– It was inconsiderate of me

CHAPTER 7*7

– Go to the chapel

CHAPTER 8*8

– Talk to Hugh

CHAPTER 8*10

– Don’t Kill Olgar

CHAPTER 9*2

– This was a dream
(Bad Ending)

 

Tower Lord Ending

Tower Overlord

Load Any Save File
Open Flowchart

Load Chapter 8*10

CHAPTER 8*10

– Don’t Kill Olgar

CHAPTER 9*2

– This is reality

CHAPTER 9*3

– Run Away
(Tower Overlord End)

 

Hugh Ending

Butterfly Journey

Load Any Save File
Open Flowchart

Load Chapter 8*10

CHAPTER 8*10

– Don’t Kill Olgar

CHAPTER 9*2

– This is reality

CHAPTER 9*3

– Don’t run away

CHAPTER 9*5

–  Will run
(Hugh Ending)

 

True Ending (Heroine’s Ending)

Gentle Ending

Load Any Save File
Open Flowchart

Load Chapter 3*5

CHAPTER 3*5

– Select All Options Except “Stay There”

CHAPTER 7*2

– It was inconsiderate of me

CHAPTER 7*7

– Go to the chapel

CHAPTER 8*8

– Talk to Hugh

CHAPTER 8*10

– Don’t Kill Olgar

CHAPTER 9*2

– This is Reality

CHAPTER 9*3

– Don’t Run

CHAPTER 9*5

– Won’t Run

MAP 8

Complete All Short Stories!

Church – Nod
Tower – Release Ashen Hawk From His Sins
West Alley – See Levi Under The Sun
Foggy Forest – Don’t Kill Olgar
Square – He Shouldn’t Say That
Snowdrop Field – Believe in Lugus ***(REQUIRED)***

*CREATE A SAVE FILE HERE

CHAPTER 9*7

– I seek the light
(Heroine’s Ending)

NOTE: You should see and Epilogue after this chapter.

 

Wolf Brother’s Ending

The Two Beasts

LOAD PREVIOUS SAVE FILE

CHAPTER 9*7

– I can’t decide
(Wolf Brother’s Ending)

 

NEXT WALKTHROUGH: Psychedelica of the Ashen Hawk Walkthrough (Part Two – ALL Main Character Endings)

Code Realize Wintertide Miracles Localization Confirmed

coderealize

A few hours ago, Aksys Games confirmed the localization for Code Realize Wintertide Miracles during their panel in Anime Expo 2018. This is really good news of CR fans like me who’s been dying to marry Van Helsing forever like, I’m so down with that! lmao

However I couldn’t help but feel a little disappointed that there was only one otome title announced this year. I am pretty sure most otoge fans like myself were anticipating titles like the latest FD Collar x Malice Unlimited or at least new games like Piofiore No Banchou or Charade Maniacs (those were some of the many titles in my wishlist).

Aksys Games has also stated that Code Realize will probably be one of the last physical PSVita games in the US. Does this mean going forward, they’ll be releasing games (particularly VNs) on new consoles instead (maybe PS4 & Nintendo Switch)?

Below are some of the non otome titles they have announced during earlier’s panel: