3DS

North America

Liberation Maiden

by Tyler Ohlew - October 31, 2012, 11:10 am PDT
Total comments: 6

8.5

The more aggressive side of diplomacy. 

During the Dominion's reign over Japan (New Japan’s former moniker), a secret policy was put into effect. Without the public's knowledge, Brain-Mail (heretofore known as B-Mail) messages were kept from reaching their destinations, and the senders received AI-composed messages in return. The following is one such Brain-Mail chain, from a Japanese resident named Hideki Inaba. It was written during what became known as Liberation Day.

B-Mail Message: Dominionary 23, 2112 – Another crappy day

I got to admit, I’m not a fan of this calendar system the Dominion has put in place. Ever since they started muscling into our country, they’ve been making awful changes to the once-beautiful Osaka. A friend of mine in Tokyo has it way worse, though. The Dominion did an environmental study on his property, and found it was right on top of an energy vein. They dozed his entire neighbourhood and built a Conduit Spike right on top! Now he’s homeless like the rest of us, surrounded by tanks and submarines.

The Dominion doesn’t give two farts about its own people—why would it start caring about its vassal states?

We had a good thing going for a while with our resistance. But it came to an end today when some jerk assassin killed our new president. The only thing we had any hope in. The resistance is trying to get his daughter in as the new president, but I think our momentum is lost. It’s time to give up.

B-Mail Message: Dominionary 24, 2112 – Japan-produced heroine

So… that new president I mentioned, President Shoko? She just shot out of her office in a MECH! She’s up in the sky right now, just blowing these damn fools to hell! She’s just up there, flying around and taking care of business. Things looked kind of awkward at first. Seems she can switch between free movement and strafing with the touch of a button, but she got used to it pretty quickly. Shoko aims using her right hand on a touch screen, and steers the mech with her left. Not too comfortable if you’re a lefty like me, but I could adapt. She doesn‘t have to worry about controlling her elevation at all—the mech does it for her. Shoko just has to worry about the direction she flies in, allowing her to concentrate on saving us. Word is that this “liberator” of hers is some cutting-edge tech.

From my visits to Tokyo's Video Game museum (I'd suggest checking out the JRPG Revival of 2014 exhibition, it's amazing), I'd compare President Shoko's attacks to what our ancestors saw in a game called Rez. She locks onto multiple targets, and then unleashes a wave of missiles all at once. She even had a huge beam she could fire as a constant stream of energy. She has to be careful though; I see her shield deplete with the more enemies she targets. Not that she has much to worry about. Despite the size of the Dominion's forces, not a lot of funding went into their tech; their missiles buzz around her before moving in for the attack. As long as she pays attention, she can avoid damage. President Shoko's airborne advantage is beneficial: since the Dominion focuses on sapping energy from our land, their defense is grounded. Shoko never has to contend with any moving targets, which I imagine bores her a bit. Sure, she's saving her country, but I'm sure she'd like a little more variety in what she destroys.

Best of all is President Shoko's thoroughness! It's not just the mainland she cares about; I've watched her dart off to smaller villages to rid them of the Dominion as well. She's even done some recon missions, flying through an area checking for enemy forces. They're off the beaten path and totally optional, and while I appreciate the effort, they really don't amount to much. I don't know where here sources get their information, but most of those recon missions I mentioned don't even turn anything up. They're just a waste of President Shoko's time, which could be better spent on her main mission.

Here's something a bit crazy, though: as she clears an area of this Dominion scum, they instantly turn fertile again. Entire forests grow back in seconds, right before our eyes. What was once run-down, Dominion-occupied land becomes lush and green again once Shoko is through with it. It's crazy to see how beautiful everything once was, and is again.

B-Mail Message: Dominionary 24, 2112 – We’re free again!

Wow, that was fast. President Shoko made quick work of everything the Dominion had to offer. And I don't just mean here; Tokyo, Kagoshima, and Hokkaido are all Dominion-free! A couple of folks around here were a bit underwhelmed by how long it took President Shoko, noting that it must have been too easy if she could dispatch them so quickly. But those three hours were incredible, if you ask me. It was a fun ride, and yes, while President Shoko spent a lot of her time taking out faceless grunts, I thought the bosses she faced offered plenty of thrills. And that last one she fought—that was something else, wasn’t it? I’m sure you saw it on the New Japan News, so I won’t bore you with the details.

Is it somewhat sick that I enjoyed the liberation of my country? Nope! I'd even be willing to do what she did, and go for a better score! Of course, I'd only be competing against myself (I can't compare my scores with anyone else it seems), but I'd enjoy watching my skills improve.

Overall, I enjoyed what President Shoko did for this country. While brief, I was able to enjoy my time watching her give the Dominion what for. Her abilities may have been limited, but she certainly did the best with what she had. Thank you, President Shoko. We're in safe hands.

Summary

Pros
  • Brief, but encourages high-score runs.
  • Colorful visuals.
  • Entertaining voice acting.
  • Simple controls.
Cons
  • Enemies aren't very aggressive.
  • Good boss fights, but not much enemy variation.

Talkback

oohhboyHong Hang Ho, Staff AlumnusOctober 31, 2012

What a delightfully weird review. Its very Metal Wolf Chaos.

NinSageNovember 01, 2012

Definitely interested in this one!

mudjahNovember 01, 2012

Great review!

Pixelated PixiesNovember 01, 2012

I'm all for experimenting with the format of game reviews but I didn't much care for this one.

I was able to interpolate your meaning, but without the context of having played the game I think alot of the intended humour didn't work for me. Interesting idea though.

tylerohlewTyler Ohlew, Staff AlumnusNovember 02, 2012

Thanks for the kind words, all.

You raise some valid concerns, Pixie. I worked hard to have this read as a proper critique of the game, and am sorry you didn't enjoy it. Hopefully I can win you over next time.

xcwarriorFebruary 20, 2014

Bravo, this kind of review needs to happen a little more often than the dry stuff we see on many websites.

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Genre RPG
Developer Level-5
Players1
Controllers

Worldwide Releases

na: Liberation Maiden
Release Oct 25, 2012
PublisherLevel-5
RatingTeen
jpn: Kaihoō Shōjō
Release Nov 14, 2012
PublisherLevel-5
RatingAll Ages
eu: Liberation Maiden
Release Oct 04, 2012
PublisherLevel-5

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