Harukanaru Toki no Naka de 5 Review – Main Story

Japanese Title: 遥かなる時空の中で5
Company: Koei
Homepage: http://www.gamecity.ne.jp/haruka5/

Yeah, I decided to edit the whole post instead of making a new one, since there were some false information on it (sorry, about that, (。-_-。) but my Japanese is far from perfect… Maybe I should just wait for the games to come before writing anything AND NOT trust other beginner’s reviews that much LOL) Hope you enjoy the more detailed and now correct post! (^ω^)

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Characters

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Hasumi Yuki
CV: Takahashi Mikako
Priestess of the White Dragon

Yuki studies abroad with her adopted brothers Shun and Sou Kiryuu where her cousin Miyako lives. When she, her brothers and Miyako return to Japan they end up in the other world in the Japanese Edo period “Bakumatsu”. She is kind of naive but has a strong sense of justice and wants to save the two worlds and its people no matter how high the costs are.

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Kiryuu Shun
CV: Terashima Takuma
Seiryuu of Heaven

When he was young, Shun and his brother Sou were adopted by the heroine’s family. Shun is like a big brother to Yuki ever since. He shows off a silent and expressionless attitude, despite caring deeply for the persons next to him. To protect the heroine, he stays away from her while wearing a cold mask around her.

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Sakamoto Ryouma
CV: Kenichi Suzumura
Seiryuu of Earth
Tosa Clan (Opening of the Japanese Fraction)

Ryouma has a bright and easygoing nature and calls the heroine ‘Young Lady’. He is known for his eccentric behavior, is kind of mysterious and really popular with the ladies. He has the ability to foresee the weather.

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Chinami
CV: Atsushi Abe
Suzaku of Heaven
Mito Clan (Anti foreigner Fraction)

Chinami is a young disrespectful, stubborn and short tempered brat boy (ツンデレ o(≧∇≦o)). But even though he is young, he’s very devoted to his work. He highly respects his father and his older brother who are both great strategist. He’s totally oblivious of love affairs.

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Okita Souji
CV: Nobuhiko Okamoto
Suzaku of Earth
Shinsengumi (Supporters of the Shogun)

Okita is the captain of the first Shinsengumi division that looks most radiant and always has an ambiguous smile on his face. Though he lacks in showing his feelings and emotions, he cares for his comrades well beings. He’s the personification of a cold and heartless sword fighter. I thought he was a girl, when I saw the PV. LOL

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Komatsu Tatewaki
CV: Shinnosuke Tachibana
Byakko of Heaven
Satsuma Clan (Imperial Rule Fraction)

Komatsu is a young chief retainer with a cold attitude, whose intelligence is over average. Including women, he prefers to keep situations under his control and there is nothing that he can’t handle flawlessly. His adaptability and his ability to grasp new and unexpected situations are excellent and he can differ between ideal and reality perfectly.

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Fukuchi Ouchi
CV: Takemoto Eiji
Byakko of Earth
Vassal (The Shogun’s Opening of the Country Fraction)

Fukuchi has an elegant atmosphere that charms easily. He is wellknown as ‘The Dream Shop’, a secret information provider even though he is only a vassal. Around the heroine his actions are somehow suspicious. He’s Yuki’s fanboy #1. LOL He’s her stalker and often imagines weird things I guess? xD His first encounter with Yuki was hilarious!!!! But I will write it down later. 😉

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Ernest Satou
CV: Shitanda Michael
Genbu of Heaven
England (Opening of the Country Fraction)

Ernest looks like a fairy tale prince, who has a soft and calm attitude. He’s a very talented diplomat who is highly capable of convincing other parties. Under his sweet mask he can be very sarcastic and blunt. But in reality he’s a soothing gentleman? Maybe? His American accent is a bit off, I mean, he is supposed to be British… Even though his English is very good. But I still don’t like him…

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Takasugi Shinsaku
CV: Yasumoto Hiroki
Genbu of Earth
Choshu Clan (Anti Foreigner Fraction)

Takasugi is the leader of the radical Choshu Clan. He seems to be ruthless and often looks down on other people, just like an emperor. But when any crisis situation occurs, he remains calm. When Yuki came to the other world the first time he almost killed her.

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Kiryuu Sou
CV: Shimono Hiro

Sou is Shun’s younger brother and the heroine’s younger brother figure. He always wears an innocent smile and acts like a spoiled kid, but he’s actually a very calculating person.

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Amami
CV: Junichi Suwabe

Amami is known as “The Prime Minister with the White Robe” by the officials of the Shogunate and a high-ranking member in the government. Though he is mysterious, he has a calm demeanor and has noble features. He is the one who gave her the hourglass to travel between worlds and is deeply obsessed with the heroine.

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Yakumo Miyako
CV: Mitsuki Saiga
Priestess of the Black Dragon

Miyako is the heroine’s older cousin, she also studies with. She hates to lose to man, so she never shows any weakness and acts more like a man than a woman. Although she is very sweet, she tends to be overprotective of the heroine. In the other world she is chosen as the “Priestess of the Black Dragon”. Yeah, this is actually a GIRL! (」゜ロ゜)」It’s a TRAP! I really thought it was a boy, so I was kind of disappointed, when it turned out that Miyako is a girl…  I mean he’s HOT!

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Story

One day the heroine, Hasumi Yuki is on a plane back to Japan with her two adopted brothers Shun and Sou and her cousin Miyako, but then the plane malfunctions in the air. The plane crashes and when Yuki regains conciousness she finds herself with Shun and Miyako in another world “Bakumatsu” around Japan’s Edo period. Yeah, so we have the Edo period again. LOL No, I did NOT picked this game because of the Shinsengumi. Even though my blog contains only Shinsengumi content by now… I SWEAR! There she encounters some members of the different fractions at that time, which are using the four Gods Genbu, Suzaku, Seiryuu and Byakko to achieve their goals. Since the Gods are treated like weapons Yuki wants to free them from that cruel fate. When she encounters Genbu and is about to release him a high-ranking member of the government, Amami, shields her before she gets injured and gives her an hourglass, an item she can use to travel between the two worlds. Later Amami reveals that her own world is facing a crisis (every single existent was wiped out without any trace, except for Sou, Yuki’s younger brother) and she is chosen as the “Priestess of the White Dragon”. He tells her that Yuki has to gather the four Gods in order to restore her world, so her journey begins and she is trying to collect the four Gods. While she is collecting the four Gods she is meeting a few young men with the power to command the Gods. So basically you are gathering the four Gods in Chapter 1-6, while meeting new comrades and sometimes travel to your own world where Sou is stuck alone.

(SPOILER)
So when you managed to gather all four Gods in your own world, the plot twist comes. LOL Sou snatches the last God from you (I can sense danger here…) and runs ahead to put it in the stone plate, while everyone is like “NO!!! GIVE IT BACK!!!! YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT’S GONNA HAPPEN!!!! щ(ಠ益ಠщ)”. Yeah, so suddenly it turn out that Sou is a bitch bad guy!! He says that he hates everyone and everything and wants the two worlds to become one, which means, that everyone is doomed! Well, I hope he has a good reason to be bad… Since everyone is too weak Sou has the upper hand thanks to the four Gods in his hands, he disappears and tells them that Amami is the one, who is behind everything. He planned to leave his beloved O-nee-chan, Shun-nii and Miyako-nee and Yuki’s other companions in this world that is collapsing right now, so if you didn’t get the hint, he wants to kill you without dirtying his hands. But before that can happen Miyako is chosen as the “Priestess of the Black Dragon” by the Black Dragon (LOL, who else) and Yuki asks the White Dragon to switch everyone to “Bakumatsu”, before bad things can happen. There Amami confirms that he is the true villain (did he just used Sou, I don’t know yet), who lied to Yuki, when he said that she needs to gather the four Gods to save her world. In order to defeat Amami, who wishes to become God in the new fused world, she decides to ask the 8 men that were travelling with her also known as 八葉 (Hachiyo) for help. So yeah, this time in Chapter 7-10 you have to find all your companions. In each chapter you meet 2 characters that can command/summon the same God, Shun and Ryouma, Souji and Chinami, Takasugi and Ernest, and Fukuchi and Komatsu. Sadly you can’t gather all of them, since some of them choose their own paths since your not sexy enough. When you meet Amami again, he says that it your fault for letting your 八葉 die. Yeah, apparently some of them died, because you were not persistent enough they did not follow you… 。:゚(。ノω\。)゚・。

When they finally face Amami, he defeats you and suddenly vanishes, apparantly he doesn’t want to LOL(WTH?! I don’t know why… orz Amami you’re talking too highfalutin, dude!!!) and Bakumatsu starts to collaps. As everyone tries to save Yuki, she is left alone in her saved (? At least everything seems normal to me) world. But yeah, that’s not what Yuki wanted, so she decides to travel back to the time, where everything begins (yeah, you have to do Chapter 7-11 AGAIN, even though the events slightly change this time) to rescue the two worlds and everyone with the White Dragon’s power. This time she has to pay world travelling and certain events with pieces of her life “命のかけら”. She only has 5 pieces of life, so choose wise when you want to switch worlds! If your life runs out before reaching the end of the story it’s “Game Over”! The White Dragon also tells her that she needs all Hachiyo to be able to defeat Amami and reset the two worlds.

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Gameplay

This game is a visual novel with role-playing elements. You also have a map, where you can choose which location you want to visit and fight monsters by walking around. You have a round-based battle system, where you can cast magic or use weapons to make damage just like a usual RPG. According to which mode you play (beginners, normal, advanced) you can choose attacks from only Yuki or all members. There is also an element system with the 5 elements fire, darkness, earth, water and nature. And be sure to level up constantly AND NOT LEVELING UP special abilities to often, you will NEED some MANY element points, you get from fighting demons of different elements, to unlock some buildings and following events in your own world. I barely managed to unlock all buildings since I leveled my abilities up too much. orz Each character can use 2 additional elements to his own element (Yuki’s element is decided through your birthday), which are important to start special combos in battles that can defeat the enemies with mostly one hit. LOL But that’s not all, to start special combos your characters have to have enough affinity, that is represented by green stars. You can raise it, when selecting favorable responses in story events or finishing fights with them quickly. When a demon is defeated by his weakness element he will leave a element orb, you can strengthen your weapon with. If you do that often, you will even get a better weapon.

In total there are 14 endings. The 8 Hachiyo’s, the four Gods, Miyako, Amami (I think you have to get all other character endings before you can get his ending), a default ending and a canon true ending. (Idk, how the endings are divided since I have 13 endings if i count 8 + gods + Miyako + Amami + default + true)

There are (love) route for each character you can get with and I’m not sure how it really works, since I’m just started with the character routes, but I’m looking forward to that! As I heard you have to trigger all “Heart Crystals” (心の結晶) -events to get on a love route. I just don’t know how to trigger them… I had some of them already, but it was pure luck. LOL There seem to be hints how and when to get them, but somehow I don’t get it… ( ?´_ゝ`)

All in all I think you can compare the gameplay to QuinRose’s Arabian’s Lost.

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CG’s and Screenshots

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Thoughts

I somehow stumbled on this game’s PV and fell in love with the art at first sight (´ ▽`).。o♡, so I searched for some more information. Yeah, and now I want to share it with you. To be honest: I’m a REALLY BIG RPG fan (*≧▽≦)ノシ)), so I think I will try this game after I played Custom Drive and finished reviewing Hakuoki. I should really finish my summaries up… orz  so I couldn’t wait and played it already. xD But I have to admit, that the gameplay is kind of intuitive, even though the character events are a bit uhm… hard to get? I think I missed some of them without even noticing… LOL I will play my first playthrough without a guide and use one after this… Somehow I get the feeling, that I’m becoming a do-M…

Each chapter of this game is really long and since this game is only semi-voiced I have to read so much, so it takes me even longer!!! ((((;゜Д゜))) I wonder, why some of the important character events are not even voiced!!!! ಠ_ಠ The whole mood is kind of destroyed, when it switches from fully voiced to non-voiced, really… But still I wonder, why I do understand it after all, I mean, my Japanese sucks is poor? LOL Maybe it improved by playing some games and animes learning new vocabulary.

The concept of the story reminds me of Fushigi Yuugi, a manga from Yuu Watase. I loved Fushigi Yuugi so I think I will also come to love Harutoki. All characters in Harutoki seem very interesting and the Seiyuu’s voice samples are very impressive. It’s said that the stories are all kind of bittersweet, sad and heartbreaking, which only makes me even more interested. I think I will cry like rivers, when playing this game, since I love tragic stories. (●´∀`●)

And I really did NOT pick this game because I like the Shinsengumi. It was really only coincidence that the story turned out to take place in the Edo period. Well, it’s kind of funny though… (o・_・)ノ”(ノ_<。)

I bought the Treasure Box of Harutoki 5 containing 2 drama CD’s, a sketch book and a photo book with all CG’s (it’s really beautiful!!!! (❁´◡`❁)*✲゚*) and a Making-of DVD from the auditions. I think this is the last game I’m ordering this year, I have 3 games in backlog now and I can’t seem to find time to play them all. xD There is also a fandisk/sequel to Harutoki 5 called Harukanaru Toki no Naka de 5 – Kazahanaki. They added Sou and Rindou (a new character) as love interests. Maybe I will get the sequel next year, if I’m still not satisfied. LOL

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37 thoughts on “Harukanaru Toki no Naka de 5 Review – Main Story

  1. I wonder why I never heard about this game before. ⊙_⊙

    If it’s produced by Koei, I assume the artwork is from the same illustrator with that of Kin-iro no Corda (or La Corda d’oro). No doubt CGs would be terrific.

    I’m a fan of Fushigi Yuugi, too…in fact, almost to maniac degree. XDD But that’s when I was younger. What a wonderful manga! I still love the series even now. (The Genbu sequel has no progress. I don’t know if it’s also in Japan or it’s just from my country’s publisher that the series is somewhat stuck.)

    So, you’re now a fan of period stuffs? XD
    FYI I love tragic stories, too!
    Otoge makers, please make us cry like mad, then! XDDD

    And thank you for your detailed review! Its RPG fight system is interesting.

    • Thanks for reading! 😉

      Well yeah, I guess no one knows this game because it doesn’t count as an otome game?! ┐(‘~`;)┌ It’s more like a reversed RPG with visual novel elements.

      I don’t know if it’s the same illustrator as from La Corda d’oro, but the CG’s are wonderful, even the sprites are impressive!

      Haha, another FY maniac. (*´∀`*人*´∀`*) But I have to admit, that I like the Genbu series better. I think it might be that Takiko and I have a lot in common, so she is someone I can understand very well. Yeah, the Genbu sequel/prequel was halted about 2 years and now it’s continued. Watase-san stated, that the story will end next spring. I can’t wait for the last chapters… It’s so sad. I cried so much and it’s not making it better that we know it will end very very sad and tragic 。゚(゚ノД`゚)゚。

      Oh yeah, did you know? FY Genbu has a otome game too! (*°∀°)=3 You play as a girl named Mariko that is sucked in the ancient world through a mirror with her childhood friend Takumi. There you can get endings with the Genbu-Seishi + Shigi, a new character (sided with Shigi) and of course Takumi. I wanted to play this too, but I should seriously stop buying games randomly. ―(T_T)→ I worked for 3 weeks, but I can’t spend the whole money on games. xDDD

      Well, I do like complicated and mysterious stuff, so I guess I can count in historical stories?! xD

  2. Thank you for the review, I played this game months ago but abandoned it since the system is pretty confusing for me. But seeing your review I think I’ll pick up this game again and at least finish one route xD Shun and Okita kinda catch my eyes lol

    • Thanks for reading and commenting!(人´∀`*)
      I can’t decide on the character I want to go after first… Maybe it will be Takasugi or Ryouma, since I love Yasumoto Hiroki and Suzuken. Or Chinami? He’s the type of love interest I enjoy the most..

      Shun is okay, but since that Kokoro Connect incident, I do not really want to hear Terashima’s voice… щ(ಠ益ಠщ)

      Have fun playing it! I think the system will confuse me as well, since I’m still learning Japanese… LOL

      • Ha2 yeah that incident is really making me sad :v: I lost respect for him. But fortunately it is semi voice right? xD Ah Takasugi looks okay too, but I can’t decided who is my fave right since all the guys have a plus point in my eyes ^0^

        I’m still learning japanese too, and untill now Kanji is my biggest enemy xDD

        • Yeah, Kanji can be really tricky… orz I just can’t remember some of them. LOL Why can’t everything be written in Hiragana and Katagana? It’s hard enough to learn all those new words. (。_+)\

  3. Sweet! HaruToki! I’m a huge fan of this series. I love the art, story and seiyuu but sadly I neva played any of its games at all. Plus, my Japanese knowledge is as poor as a mouse. I usually hunt down others’ reviews for this so thanks so much for putting one up (^o^).

    • You’re welcome! My Japanese is kind of below average, so I’m always hoping to understand enough to know what’s going on. LOL But still I want to spread love for less known otome games, because they are awesome too!

      Yeah, reading reviews is really funny and enjoyable, don’t you think? It’s nice to see, which impressions the games make on different persons. (❁´◡`❁)*✲゚*

  4. Heya 🙂 This post is a bit late but I just stumbled on your blog and had fun reading through your comments 😉

    Of the Haruka games (this is the fifth, logically xD), I think this one is the easiest one to get character events, since the game does at least tell you where they are (grimace). Haruka 3 had you wandering around the map…lost…with no signposts..though they did put some in I think for the PSP version.

    You can skim over the places with [!] to see whose event is where without using your points up wandering around all over the place. (I think if you click the triangle button when you’re map roaming, it gives you the arrow to check where events are. You might already know this, sorry if you do, but you said you had some event finding problems so I thought it might help? Also, there are clues in the character info sections, where you check your relationship with them…if you follow those it’s not so bad picking up all the events.

    That said, not everything is obvious. I only just stumbled by accident onto the all-of-them-together ending, and I still haven’t worked out how the heck to access the 4 gods. I know there is a way, I just can’t find it. Yet. Sigh.

    I’m not going to spoiler but just gonna say be careful with Ryouma because one of the chapters you have to go to the Real World before the game automatically sends you, otherwise you can’t get his event, or subsequently his ending.

    I think the 14th ending is the failed ending the first time around. If not, I can’t work out what it is either…

    Sorry to gatecrash your post like this, I just get all happy and smily when I see someone else entering into the HaruToki love ❤

    • Hi~!
      Thanks for reading and feel free to gatecrash my posts anytime! 😀 I always get extremely happy, when someone actually commented on my blog. 😉

      Well, I haven’t played any of the other Haruka games (I don’t think I ever will), so can’t really compare them. But I heard that this game was not as popular as the other ones… I wonder why?! It seems like the whole seiyuu cast was changed, but is that really the reason?

      Well, when I first played Harutoki, I was seriously lost between all those possible event choices, but I think I recently got how it works. xD I should have read the instructions BEFORE playing. xD I realized that there are also hidden character events, that don’t have a character icon either and I was really suprised to get a CG of a character all of a sudden… ^^ Not that it’s bad or anything… 🙂

      I think you can only get the 4 gods ending after you finished at least all the Hachiyo routes? You have to pick up all the stone plates for the god talismans hidden in the Bakumatsu in chapter 7-8 after you travel back in time and defeat them in the real world after that. If you haven’t finished all character routes, you won’t be able to capture all of the gods into the talismans like me. LOL
      I only got Suzaku, since I already finished Chinami and Souji and was like “Oh, crap… I have to do the other Hachiyo’s as well?! -.-“. And seems like that wasn’t everything… I’m not sure, but if you fight vengeful spirits and demons you have to use the 4 gods power… But don’t ask me how to… xD I guess, it’s one of those special attacks with the 2 Hachiyo’s that share the same god power… ^^

      So did you already played almost all routes? Who’s your favourite “love interest” so far?

      • Heya =D Thank you! I’m glad you didn’t mind my hijacking you! xD

        Well, I did think I’d finished the game, then discovered I hadn’t, because I discovered I had missing CGs. And then I looked and discovered there was a 4 Gods ending…and *tears hair*. I have the four seals, but aside from one Byakko event, nada. ;_;. I’m sure it’s probably reeeally obvious, and I’m being reeallly stupid…but anyhow 😉 I wouldn’t care except the Gods are voiced by four of the original seiyuu, and I wanna hear a voiced event with them…>.>.

  5. Ugh. It deleted half of my reply -_-

    With the other games and seiyuu, I think it mattered because of the 10 years they’d been doing the roles and the number of live events they were involved in. But the new seiyuu are not that bad, and they’ve been to events, so probably it will even out. In terms of plot and gameplay 5 is one of the better. Possibly the 2nd best IMO. 3 is the only one I’d recommend – basically because it has as deep and complex a plot as 5, if not more, it has a more vivid heroine and animated sequences in/around the endings, as well as CGs. And a really cute Hakuryuu.

    My favourite…hard question. I liked Chinami, Souji, Ouchi and Amami. Also Shun, because it explained a lot. I didn’t not like anyone though…except Miyako. I admit I found her annoying.

    Sorry for the double post.

    • Haha, seems like wordpress is pulling pranks on commentators as always… ^^

      Yeah, right?! I want to hear the Gods too. 8D Especially Suzaku (Takahashi Naozumi)! If you have problems to get the god’s ending, how about using a guide? A fellow otome gamer recommended this one:
      http://www.ladygamer.jp/otw/harutoki5/index.php?%BB%CD%BF%C0

      I read about how Nozomi is a really strong heroine in Harutoki 3, but I kind of prefer full-voiced games, at least for now, since my Japanese is not good enough to understand everything. ^^ I’m always crying, when too much Kanji’s appear, like when Amami speaks (Seriously, I’m afraid, that I won’t understand anything in his route… orz)… But Hakuryuu looks really adorable. 😉

      I don’t know about the other seiyuu’s except that Naozumi-san was in the cast, but I think the CV in Harutoki 5 are superb! I LOVE them all!

      Oh that reminds me…. Souji’s ending made me cry so much, because I thought that Yuki and he would never see each other again… That parting scene extremely heartbreaking…. 。:゚(。ノω\。)゚・。

      • Yay for website technology…thanks for the link btw. 😉 I’ve looked at a few Japanese sites, but they haven’t been overly enlightening. Maybe this one will prove better?

        OMG Souji’s path. No kidding. I practically yelled at my PSP until it got to the very end. ;_;. Then I was like MEEEEAN GAAMEEEE!!!

        None of the Haruka games are full voiced. I doubt they ever will be, because there are so many alternate options. The first game I played was HT2 and I was convinced it was broken when the voices suddenly stopped, but then I learned they were generally like that xD Though it adds some effect to the voiced scenes, I know what you mean about kanji. I don’t have the same trouble now, but when I played 2 I’d only done a year or two of Japanese there were times when I was pretty much just getting the gist of what was going on. For that reason I kinda got an ending completely by accident, and still don’t know quite how I did..;o_o. BUT I did learn a lot of new words, most of which will probably never come up in normal conversation xDDD

        I love the original seiyuu and I love the new seiyuu and I guess with me it’s fine to have all of them =D I’m greedy =D the more seiyuu the better! I think the others in the game are Hoshi Souichirou (Genbu), Inoue Kazuhiko (Byakko) and Seki Tomokazu (Seiryuu)…but I may be wrong. No MIki Shinichirou or Okiayu Ryoutarou in this edition. Sigh.

        • There were bets about if Harutoki 5 would be the first one of the series to be fully voiced. But yeah, I guess it’s just too much work… But it’s great how much you learn by actually reading and hearing new words. 🙂 The Furigana’s for unusual Kanji’s and names are very helpful as well. Even though I doubt that most of the words I learned will be useful for everydays conversations. 😀 I often do get a bit more than just the gist of what is happening, but it’s really depressing, when you don’t understand key scenes and events… ^^

          I’m doing Takasugi’s route right now, but I’m not really in the mood to get through it… Well, it’s not like I have time to play that much either. xD

  6. I know this comment is going to be really spoiler-y but please please please tell me Fukuchi didn’t kill himself. If if he did it was by magic chains or something and not by hanging himself. Please. I need to know. I just finished his route and I’m still shaking.

    • Hey there!

      I’m so sorry, but I can’t help you out with this question, because I have yet to finish Harutoki 5. I really love Fukuchi, but I kind of wanted to do his route last, because otherwise I’d probably never finish this game. ^^

      If I’d planned to finish HaruToki 5 next, I would say I’d come back to you and tell you after finishing, but HaruToki is not going to be one of the next games I’ll finish…. I’M SO SORRY. ;w;

      • AH! I’m so sorry! I didn’t mean to spoil anything for you but I was just so distraught because I loved Fukuchi too and his story completely ripped me apart. I was regretting having any knowledge of Japanese. His route was really hard to trigger too and I’m still trying to figure out how I did it. I got the game about a week ago I’ve been flying through it like crazy. I only have Miyako and Souji before I unlock Amami’s route. You’ve played harutoki 3 right? I was thinking about getting that one but If it’s going to be emotionally rougher than this then maybe not… Or maybe I’ve just become really sensitive to such things as death. Which I’ve realized is the theme of this game. Oh dear.

        • I apologise for butting into the conversation, and I’m not gonna make any spoilers, but there are similar kind of themes in some of the paths in Haruka 3. But don’t let that put you off playing. I think it’s still, generally, the fan favourite (but I’m biased too because it’s about the era I study xD).

          I don’t remember Fukuchi’s path too clearly, it’s been a while since I played the original game, but as I remember it Yuki turns back time and saves him? So he isn’t dead ultimately…I find it more disturbing with Shun in paths that aren’t his, to be honest.

          • I know that she saves him but I just want to know if she stopped him from committing suicide. I’m fine with people dieing in general from other things but I do have massive triggers when it comes to self harm. Is there anything like that in 3?

          • I don’t remember Ouchi’s path enough to comment on that, I really don’t know the answer – it’s been too long. As for Haruka 3, how much spoiler do you want? :-/. I don’t want to ruin the full game for you! I don’t remember an incident like that in the paths of the 3 characters, but there are some…complicated…situations relating to a couple of them…

        • Ah, don’t be sorry! I forget spoilers pretty easily. xDD Though I kind of had a feeling that Fukuchi’s route would go into that direction from all the information I gathered by playing until now. ^^

          I actually haven’t played HaruToki 3 and I don’t plan on playing it either. I heard it’s a good game, but I really need to stop playing all these “ancient times” (aka 和風) games. They always make me depressed, because I can’t read so many Kanji. LOL

          • But because it’s wafuu, it’s good for your kanji 😀 LOL XD. Albeit you do learn some odd words. It was awesome when I was studying for my classical Japanese final, though – all those archaic constructions in Haruka 5 really helped xDDD

            And thanks for not minding my butting in. I’m a happy little Haruka fangirl 😉

  7. I don’t mind spoilers at all but I’m worried about other people here accidentally coming across these comments and spoiling stuff. I don’t mind self sacrifice and I know that 5 is a lot like 3 I just can’t take suicide anymore. as long as Benkei doesn’t do anything to himself I’m fine since he was the only one I really liked the design of. crap, It’s Benkei isn’t it? I know from the OVA he ends up on the other side with Masaomi at one point.

    • I had a good long think about Ouchi and I have this overriding impression that he took the “damage” that was being transferred from him to Yuki back into his own body…or something like that? I honestly don’t remember him actively hanging himself, but I might be wrong. It’s been 2 years or more since I finished that game…I just think I’d remember that, because I like Ouchi.

      I think 5 is my second favourite after 3 but I think that 3 is sometimes more complicated.

      Anyone passing through who doesn’t want the slightest of spoilers for 3, please do not read beyond this point…
















      Right. Brief spoilers then.

      Tomomori jumps from the boat into the sea in pretty much every path that ends at Dannoura, except for his own. This matches with the historical Tomomori, but because they don’t ‘find’ him, I guess you could lookat it in the terms of the animated episode and say that he escapes (with Masaomi, Tokiko and the Emperor).

      I can’t think of that theme in any Hachiyou path, but I never finished Kagetoki. That said, there are deaths – protecting Nozomi, missions that have no return, betrayal, and even one character who is already dead. Atsumori is…often very negative about himself, and you may have noticed he wears chains at his wrists and throat.

      Some of the paths are also very emotional. I found Riz and Yuzuru’s the most that way, so if you play it, I suggest you play others in between those, just to give you a break xD.

      Benkei (blond, Chi no Suzaku) turns double agent in the game too, though only in his path. I think he’s going to take on Kiyomori alone.

      I would recommend playing it 🙂 The animated episodes for 3 provide a summary but don’t do full justice to the characters and mostly focus on select bits from first Masaomi and then Kurou’s paths, with smatterings of the others. I learned a lot more about them from the live Neoroma events before I played Haruka 3, and completely fell in love with most of them in the same way I have with the 5 ones.

      • Oh thank you so much. I wasn’t sure because I know in Fukuchi’s route there’s a part where he’s laying with you and I’m pretty sure he’s dead then and it wouldn’t make much sense if he hung himself. But then again there’s that odd part in the morning after you come back to save him and he tells you to go back inside. Finding the flower in his journal and stopping him before he does something with the chains Amami gave him just had all the ear marks of a suicide. The “taking on yuki’s pain” would make more sense with the scene where they are laying together. Maybe the chains he got from amami have some kind of magic properties and he was putting them on that morning. I know that you eventually break them during that scene. I wish I was completely fluent in Japanese so I could know for sure. It just hit way too close to home. I’m starting to feel a bit better. Yeah, that’s better if it was self sacrifice to save her. Also, from what you’re telling me about 3 sounds like I’d be able to handle it. Or maybe I should stick with the simple happy original Harutoki. gah, but 3 is said to be the best. I’m so conflicted. I love this series so much. I wish I didn’t have these triggers so I could just enjoy them like every one else.

        • You’re welcome. And I’m pretty much the same. I actually have issues with characters dying if they’re characters I’m attached to, so I still haven’t finished watching Hakuouki…but that’s a whole other issue.

          I don’t remember in enough detail to know about the chains specifically, but maybe they were the means of transferring the wounds…

          I’m really attached to the Haruka 1 characters, esp since the manga, but 3 is a much more fulfilling game to play, since they don’t skirt around the characters quite so much. Plus, Haruka 3 has one add on and one fresh game, whereas Haruka 1 has Maihitoyo but that’s it.

          It’s so nice to hear someone else so enthusiastic about Haruka. It gets way too little attention because of the lack of English language material.

          • I’m actually really good when it comes to character death, it just depends on the circumstances. Also, I’m pretty sure Hakuouki was created to rip your heart out, just sayin’.
            WHOOO and don’t even get me started on Haruka 1, especially the manga. I started collecting them and let me tell you, I’m completely addicted. The art, the story, the interactions and reactions of each character. SOOOOOO GOOD. I’ve gotten so attached to Eisen. He completely overtook the manga.
            I heard that the manga didn’t do too good over here in America because every one thought it was a mamsy pamsy rip off of Fushigi Yuugi. It’s good because the first volumes are mega cheap but then you hit volume 10 and suddenly you’re dishing out 30$-70$ for used library copies. What the crap happened!? I’m stuck on vol 9 waiting for some prices to drop.

            I don’t know what it is about this series that drew me to it. Maybe it’s the fact that all the guys are really respectful even if they are complete jerks or womanizers not trying to rape the main girl every five seconds like in fushigi yuugi. Or maybe I can relate to all the characters? I don’t know, but this series is just. gaaaah. I love it even when it tears me apart, I just want to constantly be drawing these sweet babies.

          • Don’t get me wrong, I love Yuugi. Really love it. It was the anime that kicked me off learning Japanese in the first place and I still consider it an institution. But it does totally hack me off when people say Haruka is like Yuugi. Yuugi’s China, for a start. Haruka is Japan. And Heian Japan, where Haruka 1 is set, has a lot of cultural influence from Tang China, so yeah, to the superficial eye, there are similarities.

            But really, Haruka 1 is based on something quintessentially and culturally Japanese, Genji Monogatari. There are a lot of tropes from it, and it’s generally thought among fans that Tomomasa represents Genji himself, with all his lovers (in a drama CD there is one scene which is almost paying tribute to a scene from Genji). So people who say Haruka is a Yuugi rip are just showing they know zero about Japanese history or culture. Genji Monogatari is one of the first ever novels in recorded history (early 11th century I believe), and all Haruka eras correspond to something historical, even when they are weaving in fantasy.

            Yuugi, on the other hand, is an indeterminate ancient Chinese period represented in a book. Completely different 🙂 So anyone who says Haruka rips Yuugi obviously can’t tell Japan from China :P.

            Mind you, also doesn’t help that the anime translated Yasuaki as being a “sorcerer”, which an onmyouji isn’t…

            Yorihisa and Yasuaki are my favourites. Eisen next. More in the manga. He’s a little neglected in the anime. It sucks that the English ones are so hard to get hold of. Japanese ones aren’t so hard – if you can play the games maybe you can read the manga? Alternatively, none on Ebay? My favourite volumes are 12 and 13 so the best is yet to come IMO. 🙂

            There’s also an omake chapter I don’t think came out in America. It’s hilarious but full of spoilers for the ending of the manga…

            Did you ever see any of the live seiyuu events for Haruka? Some of them are hilarious, especially the dramas…

  8. sorry, we keep running out of room on the replies. I thought about buying the japanese mangas but the problem is that I got my younger sister and a bunch of friends addicted to them as well and they can’t read much japanese (spreading the love). oh ho ho, they’d be so mad. As for the live action stuff. HOOO I ran across the stage musical and the whole time I was like “Why would you… what is this odd feeling of betrayal I’m feeling”

    • LOL XD Ah, the musical 😉 No, I meant more along the lines of these:

      That kind of thing ;). where the voice artists do activity corners, live dramas (with some crazy adlibs) and songs. I have to confess half of the reason I fell so in love with Haruka (and probably, Koruda too) was because of the neoromance live events – although it makes me so sad to watch the Haruka Matsuri 2008 and see Kawakami-san in tears at the end, knowing it was the last time she ever appeared at an event.

      And I see. Converting others is always a good plan O.O. Spread the Haruka :D.

      • oh ho ho ho, I don’t know why I find these so silly. I’m not really into the live stuff. I’m here mostly for the art and personalities.
        So, I’m about to finish Miyako’s route in 5 and get Amami. I’m already planning on buying another Harutoki but I want to get a treasure box this time. I’m still shooting for 4 because I love the character designs and yet 3 is floating in the back of my mind saying “you want me…” Yume no ukihashi for the DS is mega cheap for the treasure box and that one I’m eying since it has characters up till 3 interacting. I have my doubts about 4 though. I don’t know if I can make it through the game without quicksaves *heavy breathing*

        • The artwork and backgrounds and settings for 4 are really awesome, but I always struggled to get really into it. It’s quite popular, I think, but…I only ever finished Nagi’s path and then part of Tooya’s (I really do like him, by the way. He’s about the only one though that I felt that strongly about). It’s a bit airy fairy fantasy for me, plus if you miss something early on it can dog your progress for the whole rest of the game, not just one path. That drove me mad. I guess it depends on how you feel about those things. I think the plot is stronger in 3, but then I think part of it is also that I feel detached from these characters because of the whole seiyuu shift around and that’s a big part of Haruka for me too. But to me Haruka 3 > Haruka 4.

          Mind you, you have to pay attention with 3 as well…missed events can also mean replaying certain scenes over and it’s only in the PSP release I think that they indicate where those events are taking place, not in the original PS2 one. (Oh I had such fun -_- One scene in particular I ended up knowing almost by heart and it still haunts me).

          The live events can be quite fun and a bit silly, but then they can also complement the characters from the games and the manga etc. For example, there’s a whole stage set focusing on details from the 3 game that isn’t in the manga at Haruka 2008, and there was another long drama with Yorihisa and his brother, Sanehisa.

          I have not played Yume no Ukihashi. It’s meant to be pretty easy though, and not too expensive.

          • Oh no, you got me watching all the live stuff now. I’m only running across angelique stuff though. (which I’m totally okay with)and I admit, they are really funny. As for the games… I bought both Yume no ukihashi and 4… but not 3… yet… I think I have a problem.

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