The Liar Princess and the Blind Prince Review (PS4)

The Liar Princess and the Blind Prince

Sometimes there are people who are attractive in their emotional austerity and restraint. A mysterious sense of muted coolness can be observed in the minimalistic way they use to conduct themselves. There is a word for that type of Japanese aestheticism named Shibui (渋い), and no better concept exists to describe the relation between the two companions in The Liar Princess and the Blind Prince.

The game is a modern twist on the classical plot of the “Red Riding Hood”, where as the main moral learned was to never trust strangers. Even a very friendly stranger may have bad intentions, amongst many other literary interpretations. However, this story argues that this concept is harsh and cruel, because even if the wolf feels guilt and compassion, they cannot change how they truly are, a “wolf” and not a human being, and they don’t even have the chance to become one, yet alone get accepted for who they truly are.

The Liar Princess and the Blind Prince is now available for PS4 (Tested) and Nintendo Switch.

The Liar Princess and the Blind Prince Review


Our story starts with a reverse in roles. The human this time is a boy prince, and he is the one who wanders blindly into the forest, while the wolf is actually a female canine. The prince wanders into the night searching for the wolf girl’s beautiful singing voice, only to end up as a victim of her insecurity, and blinded because of her unconscious reflex to cover his eyes and prevent him from seeing her form, ripping them in the process.

Drowning in guilt over the predicament of the prince, the wolf transforms into a princess and sneaks into his castle, promising that she has the solution to his misfortune, without divulging who she truly is. She tells him about the witch of the forest who can grant any wish as long as they ask, and thus beings her long quest to guide the prince the witch in order to wish for his eyes to be healed, and for her to finally be redeemed of the guilt.

The Liar Princess and the Blind Prince

The Liar Princess and the Blind Prince is an action-adventure game played from a side-scrolling perspective. The princess can freely shapeshift between human and monster form, and must rotate between each of them at proper times to escort the prince and hold his hand, or to defeat the other forest creatures in combat by directly attacking them or utilizing the environment around her. Solving simplistic puzzles that require teamwork, and sometimes solving mathematical problems is also part of her reflective adventure.

The prince also has his own share of work to do, as they will face together many environmental puzzles along the way. Weak and fragile as he is, he cannot survive high falls and withstand attacks from others like the princess, so you must take extra steps with him and proceed with caution using platforms and ladders to keep him safe along the road, taking into consideration that even he can do certain things the princess cannot, such as holding small objects and carrying fire lanterns.

Wolf

Over the course of the journey, the two begin to bond in many interesting ways. Their silent modesty, mixed with their respective worries and past scars produces a hint of a dark serenity. As they take the time to read each other’s movements and merge their understanding without actually communicating with the eyes, you begin to appreciate their elegant simplicity, and the beautiful imperfection of their relationship. You can get a glimpse of their relationship using the interactive diorama on the official website here.

The start can be fake, but every now and then, the fake can be more real than the real thing, as it is actively trying to be real, and is doing the effort required to be so, through simple hand gestures and eyefuls of kindness, a tireless vehement effort. All of the story scenes are also narrated by only one female voice actor, who tells what happens and speaks on behalf of all the characters in the game, conveying their innermost feelings and desires.

The Liar Princess and the Blind Prince

It felt as if it was the princess’s voice herself, gushing her feelings at the reader, asking for their understanding and forgiveness and for us to look at the true heart of the matter and the meaning behind every gesture or unintentional fallout. Even the game itself is developed entirely by one person -Sayaka ODA- who supplied the concept, as well as the illustrations and character artwork, so we could discern her true feelings upon experiencing the game and witnessing her cute and detailed designs.

One important collectible to take note of in The Liar Princess and the Blind Prince is the golden foliage. Grabbing enough of them unlocks many concept arts that can be accessed from the main menu, and its very effective in showing the finer details of each character, and the effort that went into making them fit into their roles and express themselves without words. There is also a rose that can be picked up at each stage and handed over to the prince as a present.

The Liar Princess and the Blind Prince

There is nothing distinctive to write about the sound effects except that it was matching with the grim fairy tale quality of the presentation. Nothing really complex regarding the puzzles either, but we can say the journey kept being visually interesting, and emotionally vivid during all of the hours we spent with it. It didn’t more than 6 hours for everything to reach it’s bittersweet and thought provoking climax.

Finale

Finale
80 100 0 1
Beauty is not always seen, and is not always looking at us from far away. Our sensitivity to the world around us, the transience of our perceived notion of beauty, and how it in reality imperfect and impermanent, all of this plays a role into seeing the real beauty, like the sight of a cherry blossom petals falling in the springtime, or the cries of a wolf whose only wish was to be seen, for who they truly were.
Beauty is not always seen, and is not always looking at us from far away. Our sensitivity to the world around us, the transience of our perceived notion of beauty, and how it in reality imperfect and impermanent, all of this plays a role into seeing the real beauty, like the sight of a cherry blossom petals falling in the springtime, or the cries of a wolf whose only wish was to be seen, for who they truly were.
80/100
Total Score

The Good

  • Dream-like fairy tale quality in visual presentation and character design
  • Artistic reinterpretation of a classical story with a meaningful approach
  • Puzzles depend on companionship and emotional understanding

The Bad

  • Absence of any challenging gameplay designs
  • Story length can be divisive
Total
22
Shares
Related Posts