Genre: Visual Novel, Otome
Platform: PSP (Reviewed), PS2, PS Vita
Release Date: May 10th, 2010
Disclaimer: This is a very old review rewritten and summarized to make it legible (since my writing was on crack back then), hence the change in formatting compared to other reviews. Also, keep in mind my thoughts are based on the PSP version.
Since I haven’t played any Japanese VNs lately I decided to edit and post one of my Wand of Fortune reviews to make everyone suffer. Worth noting: Wand of Fortune is still my favorite otoge series up to this day so I’m posting this because I wish it got localized.
Lulu’s a beautiful, cheerful and positive girl who loves sweets and always carries some with her. She especially likes macarons and to give you an idea, she spends about 10% of the common route eating or referencing them. She’s strong and sweet and to this day she remains my favorite otoge protagonist.
As a child, Lulu’s grandma used magic to make her happy, so Lulu grew to admire magicians and she thought magic was something beautiful to bring smiles to people’s faces. Her granny gifted her a magic wand, telling her she could become a magician too! Thus, Lulu enters Mills Clea Academy, the best magic academy of all.
Amy: Lulu’s roommate and best friend.
Elbert, Ivan, and Vania: Lulu’s teachers.
Fata Morgana: Founder of Mills Clea Academy.
There are 6 magic elements but everyone has a special affinity with one of them. When Vania and Ivan analyze Lulu’s magic or they find out she’s a rare kind of talentless person they haven’t seen in decades ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ but it’s all good because she can obtain a talent by studying with someone who specializes in a magic element of her choice. And so begins Lulu’s quest to get a magic affinity because otherwise she’s gonna get kicked out of the school lmao.
Anyways before I start you must know that THIS IS A STAT-RAISING GAME FROM HELL WITH TRANSITIONS THAT TAKE FOREVER AND RNG IN EVERYTHING YOU FUCKING DO SO YOU BETTER QUICK SAVE EVERY OTHER LINE CUS THERE’S LIKE A 50/50 DICE THAT DECIDES THE OUTCOME OF EVERYTHING (凸ಠ益ಠ)凸
The reason you need to know this is that the entire game is basically a long common route with some events/dates thrown in depending on the guy you spend your time with, so there’s no specific date for when shit goes down. There are very few scripted events. Each route takes place over the span of 4 months and that’s all the information we’re given concerning dates.
Now that that’s outta my system LET’S SUFFER.
MY FUCKING GOD I’M FINALLY DONE. YES I SKIPPED THE USELESS AMI/ELBERT ROUTES BECAUSE WTF I AIN’T SKIPPING MY WAY THROUGH THE ENTIRE THING FOR AN EIGTH AND NINTH TIME. The game’s not even that long and each route would take about three hours or so IF IT WEREN’T FOR THE ANNOYING 24 FUCKING WEEKS OF STAT-RAISING YOU GOTTA GO THROUGH. To be honest, after the first six weeks of each route you start getting into it since the plot actually starts going places but COME ON WHY DO I HAVE TO SIT THROUGH THE SAME ANIMATIONS, TRANSITIONS AND DIALOGUE I’VE ALREADY SEEN FOR 24 DAMNED WEEKS (╯°益°)╯彡┻━┻.
Listen, personally, I believe the worst part wasn’t even the stat-raising IT WAS THE FUCKING ANNOYING CARD MINI-GAME YOU HAD TO WIN 15 TIMES FOR EACH GUY TO UNLOCK A SPECIAL CG FOR EACH OF THEM. WHICH MEANS IN TOTAL YOU HAD TO WIN IT 90 TIMES TO UNLOCK THE CGS FOR ALL OF THE GUYS. AND THE GAME IS 80% RANDOM SO YOU GOTTA RELOAD AND REPLAY IT IF YOU LOSE, WHICH ALSO MEANS IN TOTAL YOU WILL PROBABLY PLAY THAT FUCKING MINI-GAME AT LEAST 120 TIMES OMFGGGG (凸ಠ益ಠ)凸 I WANTED TO SET MYSELF ON FIRE.
Honestly I beat it about 40 times and then I realized the win count doesn’t carry over so you have to obtain all 15 wins for one guy in one route, which means the 10 wins I got for Lagi didn’t carry over and I was supposed to redo all 15 times. Needless to say, I LOST MY SHIT, TOLD THEM TO SHOVE THEIR STUPID CARDS UP MY ASSHOLE and NEVER PLAYED AGAIN. I didn’t even give a shit all the guys would be stuck at like 97% gallery completion because FUCK THAT.
Moving on, other than the horrid system from hell all the guys were lovely and hating any of them is impossible. Even Alvaro with all his lies got a pass from me because of how amusing he was before the final reveal and as a side-character in other routes. I only gave zero fucks about Bilal’s route but he was great as a side-character lmao how to forget the moment he got tired of Lagi’s bullshit and brought him to Lulu 😂.
The music was very repetitive and when doing the stat-raising segments I just muted the game and played different music in the background. I guess the silver lining is that I liked the track for battle sequences, but it usually only showed up during the final exam of each route.
The ranking of my favorite routes would probably be Est > Julius > Lagi = Trashvaro > Noel > Falanbard. Alvaro’s route was the most fun to play but uh it was all a lie so ( ‘ __>’) fuck me.
Needless to say, the art was GORGEOUS because it’s by Usuba Kagerou and it made the entire thing more bearable. Although I liked the game, I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone unless I wanted to see them suffer. I know a lot of people like it but in my opinion, it wasn’t worth it. The characters are lovely and the story is cute but sitting through 24 weeks of stat-raising every replay is annoying as hell. I ALSO KNOW THE FIRST WAND OF FORTUNE IS LIKE THE WORST WAND OF FORTUNE GAME OR SOME SHIT so I’m not saying the series as a whole isn’t worth it. I’ll be playing the remaining three games and hopefully they’ll be a more rewarding experience.
Present time note: The Vita port of Wand of Fortune 1 improved the horrid systems and grind so I definitely think it’s worth playing. Especially so because of new scenes and CGs! Even better if you can commit to buying the fandisc, since it wraps everything up quite nicely.
Wand of Fortune is an amazing series but my favorite take on Lulu and the gang is Wand of Fortune 2, surprisingly.
Wand of Fortune
The Wand of Fortune series excels in the character department. The entirety of its cast is what carries these lovely games forward even though the story is simple—it has a distinct slice of life feeling to it. I love the Wand of Fortune series so I definitely recommend the entirety of it, especially now that the Vita editions improve on its flaws. My enjoyment would be higher without the horrid system, but unfortunately, I've only played the original PSP editions.