A few years after its initial announcement, Grisedge’s fantasy BL game Kintouka is finally set to be released on 17th of March 2017. The game has garnered attention among BL game enthusiasts due to the success of Grisedge’s previous BL adventure game, Galtia—and as predicted, expectations are also high. Will Kintouka manage to deliver?
Kintouka was first announced in 2014 with a planned release date of 2015 along with the final release date of Galtia, which was about to be released at that time. However, just like what happened with Galtia, Kintouka was also delayed for several years due to various improvements within the game.
Despite several delays, Galtia was worth the wait. It provided an interesting storyline that took a long time to finish the game. The same quality was expected for Kintouka, but it turns out that it will probably become even better since the scenario writer for the game is no other than Tsushimi Bunta, the scenario writer for IDOLiSH7 (i7, also known as Ainana in Japan). And if you play i7, you’ll know that there’s a huge possibility for you to get hooked in the plot and never want to stop reading.
Kintouka changed its character designs during its development. Its prototype designs (above) was more mature-looking than its current ones (below), and the latter also gave each character more individuality. Given the personality of each character, I’d say the current designs definitely suit them better.
The game will have four main routes, but other characters will still play a large role in each route. There are also 18 different endings. On the 29th of December 2016, Grisedge released the gameplay of the prologue as well as its first five chapters on Youtube.
The last time Souta went back was when he was still in elementary school. During that summer, he often played with his friends Kyou, Shuu and Munesada. He also played a lot with Tsukasa, a man in his twenties who often hung out at his grandma’s house. For Souta, that summer was the happiest before his life went downhill when his parents died.He was on the phone with his friend on the other line when he suddenly experienced difficulty in breathing, to the point where he was on the verge of choking and moaning. (Yes, moaning. It was even lampshaded by his friend on the other line.) Apparently, he keeps on experiencing such a thing recently—and he has no idea why.
When Souta arrived at the village, he was greeted by one of his neighbors who had taken care of him when he was young. He was also attacked by an enraged young man who was angry at him for not visiting his grandma when she was still alive. Turns out that it was Kyou, the youngest one among his childhood friends. He didn’t remember Souta, but it was to be expected since Kyou was still really young when he last visited the island.
The island has a tradition of loving and cherishing the dead as if they were still alive. For the locals, a funeral is treated as a ‘Festival of the Dead’ since they believe that a person becomes a god upon death and all dead people are gods. They also offer ohagi and okuribana, a send-off gift that a loved one offers to the deceased.
Even though his grandma hasn’t reached out to him yet, Souta’s feelings have definitely reached her—that’s what he was told, and he kept it in mind until the night of the wake, where he dreamed about his grandmother. It was a memory of his childhood where he told his grandmother about a field full of red flowers that even his mother cannot see. His grandma told him that he shouldn’t touch those flowers—those are Kintouka, the flowers that grant wishes and let a person hear the voices of the dead.
After that dream, he found himself outside in the middle of a field full of red flowers—the Kintouka. He didn’t know why he was there; he could’ve sworn that he was sleeping in his grandma’s house. Not knowing where he was, he asked the help of a guy whom he thought was Tsukasa at first, but quickly dismissed the idea because the latter was supposed to be in his forties.
The guy who looked like Tsukasa didn’t know who he was or where he lived. He didn’t even remember his own name, so he told Souta to call him Tsukasa instead. And since he didn’t have a place where he can stay, Souta invited him to live in his grandma’s house—at least, until his memories return.
Suzumura Souta (CV: Furukawa Tetsuto)
Souta is a cameraman from Tokyo who went back to the island for his grandmother’s funeral. Shuu, Kyou and Munesada are his childhood friends, and Tsukasa is his older brother figure. He had lost his parents when he was young, hence the reason why he wasn’t able to fulfill his promise to come back.
Watari Kyou (CV: Suga Kiya)Kyou is the youngest among them and is the one who took care of Hana in Souta’s absence. Hana treated him like her own grandson. He is the one who assisted Souta upon his arrival in the island.
Watari Shuu (CV: Yajima Noboru)
One of Souta’s childhood friends. He is a part of the Oumi faction, one of the two most powerful families in the island.
Oumi Munesada (CV: Oiri-hana)
He is a guy whom Souta met on the night of his grandmother’s wake. He doesn’t remember who he is or where he lived, so he decided to name himself as Tsukasa. He lives with Souta at his grandmother’s house.
Tsukasa (CV: Wasshoi Tarou)
The VerdictThe story may appear to be quite simple at first but the promise of an underlying plot is apparent, if the gameplay of the first five chapters on Youtube is anything to go by. It can be quite slow at first, but just like Grisedge’s other games this pace in plot progression is the norm and it will most likely end up being lengthy too.
The art and music were great and the overall feel of the game definitely suits the nature of the story. The slow-burn feel of the plot was pretty interesting as well, and I look forward to how it turns out because I’ve heard a lot of good things about Tsushima Bunta’s writings.
As for the main characters, Munesada was the one featured the least and most of his scenes in the preview only consisted of him talking with his staff. Tsukasa’s existence, on the other hand, remains a mystery and will continue to remain as one until the game reveals his true identity as well as his connection with the kintouka.