Genre: Visual Novel, Otome
Release Date: March 30th, 2018
In a dark era for PC otome games, a new challenger appears: Majestic☆Majolical, dazkarat’s first visual novel. The developer’s description page hints at them mainly focusing on otoge – of course, I was wary about trying out a game by an unknown brand. Players who frequent the otoge scene are probably aware that most Japanese visual novels are released in consoles nowadays, and the ones rarely published for PC are +18 games that often end up being barely decent, or a complete mess.
My paranoia concerning the game was strengthened after seeing who the scenario writer was. If the name Hiyo rings any bells, you’ve been a victim just like many others. That’s right, the one behind otoges such as Ijiwaru MyMaster, Akazukin, Riddle Garden, and Trick or Alice is in charge of the writing for Majestic☆Majolical. Oh boy.
Still, being the poor, gullible person I am, I challenged myself to check the voice actors working in the VN. To be honest, I was certain that there wouldn’t be any big names in there because the game’s developer is just starting out. I didn’t expect to be persuaded.
I was terribly wrong. Damn you, Kaji Yuuki and Kimura Ryouhei.
The Idocrase family is a prestigious and well-known presence in the magical world. Doted on for their superior magical abilities and capable of taking on the most important tasks, the members of the family are admired by all of the community.
Our main character, Lapis, is unfortunate enough to be the one failure in the Idocrase family. Most of her parents’ magic was passed down to their first children. Thus Lapis, the youngest offspring, had inferior abilities compared to the rest of her family. Even then, she’s determined to try her hardest and become a part of the combat witch department.
The magic exam all students have to take involves traveling to the human world to gather gems from human hearts. These magical gems reflect the human’s feelings towards the witch that collected them. A deeper and darker color gives higher scores on the test, since it represents a stronger attachment. There is a catch, though — a witch mustn’t take too many gems from a human being, or else they will grow too dependent and their hearts will break once their memories are erased and the witch disappears.
Under these circumstances, Lapis begins attending a human academy to extract gems from the other students. She’s not alone in the human world, for her loyal butler, Jasper, and her overprotective older brother, Hauyne, followed her to supervise her and ensure her safety.
Majestic☆Majolical’s plot is simple, but it’s nice to experience the witch narrative after a considerably long time. Contrary to my expectations, the story and romance were relatively tame, taking into account that Hiyo was involved in the writing process.
Lapis was a great heroine who could stand up for herself and didn’t spend most of her time getting flustered or being useless, unlike many of the main characters in otoges nowadays. Lapis’ personality was a key factor in building the player’s interest in the plot, as the narrative was mostly about her life as a witch and her magical exam. As opposed to visual novels exploring the guy’s backstory or problems in their respective routes, Majestic☆Majolical mainly focused on its heroine’s story and development.
Regrettably, the plot went straight to the point. This is usually something good, yet it was awful for this game since the story was so simple that each route took approximately 4 hours to finish. The plain and straightforward story was both short and unmemorable; besides, neither of the romanceable characters managed to grab my attention. Mitsuki was as interesting as a rock, and though Shiki could be cute at times, his rapist and yandere tendencies were a turn-off. Shiki’s route highlighted his creepy self instead of letting his moe self shine. Because of these setbacks, Majestic☆Majolical’s tale definitely won’t be a reason to remember the VN.
Concerning the game’s visuals – I won’t lie, I had a mixed reaction at first. Majestic☆Majolical’s art isn’t ugly per se, however, it surely takes some getting used to. Although I grew to like it by the time I finished the otoge, the characters initially creeped the hell out of me. I remember describing to a friend how the drawing style gave me the heebie-jeebies. Something about the facial features and coloring conveyed the feeling that the game would be filled with yanderes ready to jump out of my screen and stab me. Shiki’s route did contain some of my initial expectations, nonetheless, it was nowhere near as dark as what I pictured based on the sprites and illustrations.
It’s hard to judge the art, as it’s so unusual, yet the quality was consistent overall – the artist didn’t struggle with angles, plus she nailed the portrayal of different atmospheres depending on the situation – and the coloring was very pleasing to look at, especially in the fluffier CGs. I dare to say the visuals are pretty fulfilling as a whole, and my initial gripes with it are very subjective.
Majestic☆Majolical’s music is incredibly fitting and nice to listen to. The soundtrack isn’t Hakuoki good, nevertheless, it could easily be placed amongst my favorites in VNs. The music managed to set the mood for the magical scenarios and it fit well with the rest of the game’s ambient. I was especially drawn to the OP and ED themes, sung by my gods Kimura Ryouhei and Valshe, respectively. Mystic Labyrinth and Lapis Lazuli are nice songs.
The voice acting was great and I enjoyed listening to everyone. There aren’t many big names involved, yet everyone in the cast is highly talented. The humorous interactions between the characters surely influenced the quality of the voice acting – the cast was able to deliver their comical lines in a goofy way that never failed to crack me up even during unexpected moments. Majestic☆Majolical’s scenarios explore a wide array of emotions, which gives the voice actors the opportunity to deliver their lines in numerous different ways throughout the otoge.
Although I usually never comment on the UI or VN’s system, it’s a must in this case. The scene replay is really sloppy. Instead of showing a list of every scene in a route, you can only replay the scenes that have CGs in them. This threw me off a lot when I tried to replay some funny moments because there wasn’t a way to rewatch them without replaying the game, and even if you want to replay the scenes with illustrations, you can’t see what happened prior to the scenario with the CG. It only lets you read the one moment in which the CG is being shown, but not the dialogue before it.
Majestic☆Majolical vol.1 managed to surpass my expectations, nevertheless I would only describe it as a lighthearted, decent game. The theme and resources used to set the magical atmosphere of the VN are good, however, the story just isn’t strong enough to leave an impression on the player. It feels like a product with pretty packaging, yet lacking content. It’s an extremely forgettable and overpriced otoge that I’ll only remotely remember thanks to the dent it left in my wallet.
As I bought the three volumes together, I’ll still play the remaining two Majestic☆Majolical games – hopefully, they’ll have a better plot than this first entry.
Majestic☆Majolical has a charming collection of side-characters and an interesting, relatable heroine. The art is a bit of an acquired taste, but the colorful and light-hearted atmosphere described by the game is portrayed nicely. Unfortunately, the romanceable leads are bland and boring, and Shiki has a highly distorted notion of what love is. Despite its flaws, Majestic☆Majolical does a great job at reviving the magical universe concept.