Lily of the Valley
Gameplay 9
Graphics 8
Sound 8

Lily of the Valley is a great update of the free visual novel released by ebi-hime in 2014. In addition to some stunning new artwork and a great soundtrack the story is still as unique as it is captivating. Don’t let the visuals fool you, this novel is not as lighthearted as it first appears and thanks to some great writing the story is a lot more memorable than expected. The game is short enough to complete in a single sitting, but still manages to have a bigger emotional impact than stories that are ten times longer.

Gameplay: Pretty much a kinetic novel with only a single choice, but the story is so good that it is hard to stop playing.

Graphics: The updated artwork looks really nice, but the option to play with the older visuals is a nice touch.

Sound: The hauntingly beautiful soundtrack is definitely a highlight

Summary 8.3 Outstanding
Gameplay 0
Graphics 0
Sound 0
Summary rating from user's marks. You can set own marks for this article - just click on stars above and press "Accept".
Accept
Summary 0.0 Terrible

Lily of the Valley

Developer: ebi-hime | Publisher: ekai Project | Release Date: 2017 | Genre: Indie / Casual / Visual Novel | Website: Official Website | Purchase: Steam / itcho.io

A small town in Wales is probably the last place we would expect to be the setting for a visual novel, but then along came Lily of The Valley. What’s more, the protagonist is a 34 year old man with the soul crushing career of being employed in the call center at an insurance company. The game opens with our protagonist attending the funeral of his mother, who died by choking on a bran muffin of all things. What follows is thirteen short chapters of the protagonist reflecting on his life and the choices that brought him to where he is. Since there isn’t much to do at the family home apart from talking to his father and teenage sister, our protagonist goes out to roam the countryside during his stay. It is here where he meets a fascinating young girl who not resembles his childhood sweetheart, but also appears to have had some connection to his mother.

Lily of The Valley was actually originally released in 2014, but has now been revamped with brand new art as well as an updated script and a new soundtrack. The new art created by Sillyselly, who also the art for other ebi-hime titles like Empty Horizons, Strawberry Vinegar and Asphyxia, is absolutely gorgeous. Fans of the original art, which is a little bit more anime inspired, need not worry either as the option exists to toggle between the two styles on the fly. However, the game does feature a couple of new CGs which are displayed even when using the old sprites. The majority of the novel also still consists of text as only the protagonist’s sister, Hazel, and Lily, the girl he meets on his walk, have sprites. While the game still doesn’t have any speech, it does boast a brand new soundtrack with some great tunes. We are suckers for good piano music and enjoyed every one of the 8 tracks featured in this visual novel. The composer is actually yuzuki, who also contributed to Strawberry Vinegar and Windswept Night, so fans should know what to expect. We definitely recommend also getting the original soundtrack as it is available as a separate purchase .

At only about 25k words Lily of The Valley isn’t a very long novel, but it does feature some great writing. The main story is viewed from the perspective of the protagonist, who has a pretty bleak outlook on life. His thoughts wander everywhere from the ex girlfriend who broke up with him over the phone to family picnics in his youth that got spoiled by rain. While this might not sound particularly captivating, ebi-hime definitely has a way with words and her writing effortlessly drew us into the story. Contrary to the light and beautiful visuals, the game actually deals with some very dark themes. Glancing at the screenshots might make it seem like this is just another romantic slice of life story, but nothing could be further from the truth. Since the game is very short, we don’t want to spoil anything and recommend that players go into this title knowing as little as possible about the story.

Lily of the Valley is short enough to complete in one sitting and since the story is so good this is probably what most players will end up doing. There is only a single choice to make in the game, which leads to one of two slightly different endings. Viewing both endings unlocks a short epilogue, but there is also an intermission and some notes to discover, which shouldn’t be missed. In addition, the game features a handful of Steam achievements to earn and seven Steam Cards that can be used to craft Lily of the Valley themed emoticons and backgrounds.

Although the original release of this visual novel was free, there is no question that the extra work done on this revamped version justifies the small price tag. Players who are only interested in visual novels with fan service and goof-ball characters will probably find Lily of The Valley a little somber for their tastes, but anyone who can appreciate great dialog and relatable characters should definitely give it a go. It is one of those visual novels that you’ll find yourself contemplating long after the credits have rolled, which is not something that happens very often.

System Requirements

  • OS: Win XP+
  • Processor: 1.2 GHz Pentium 4
  • Memory: 512 MB RAM
  • Graphics: DirectX® 9 Compatible Graphics Card
  • DirectX: Version 9.0
  • Storage: 250 MB available space
  • Sound Card: DirectSound-compatible sound card
  • OS: MacOS
  • Processor: Any 64 bit processor
  • Memory: 512 MB RAM
  • Graphics: OpenGL compatible card
  • Storage: 250 MB available space
  • Sound Card: Any audio output
  • OS: x86/x86_64
  • Processor: 1.2 GHz Pentium 4
  • Memory: 512 MB RAM
  • Graphics: OpenGL compatible card
  • Storage: 250 MB available space

Related posts

Not The Robots

Not The Robots

I wasn't sure if Not The Robots would live up to its wacky concept but it turned out to be much more addictive than I anticipated. Clearing out a level without taking damage is a rush and the stealth mechanics make for plenty of tense moments. It is not the easiest of games and it has to be completed in one sitting as there is no save feature but trust me it is worth it. Gameplay: Eating furniture has never been this much fun! Graphics: Nothing spectacular but gets the job done. Sound: Good tunes and solid sound effects.

Arcadecraft

Arcadecraft

Arcadecraft is a nice take on the management genre, but there is a certain amount of tedium involved. Watching your arcade thrive and grow is very satisfying, but most of your time is consumed by emptying the cash from machines and tossing out troublemakers instead of making in-depth management decisions. Hopefully future updates will add some more locations and customization options. Gameplay: Running an arcade is fun, but your space to work with is very limited. Graphics: Plenty of different machines and ways to customize the look of your arcade. Sound: Manages to capture the chaotic atmosphere of an arcade.

Goats On A Bridge

Goats On A Bridge

Don’t be fooled by the cute graphics, Goats On A Bridge can easily cause you to rage quit after your hapless goat tumbles off a bridge or roll into a crate it was supposed to jump over, for the umpteenth time. Taking control of two goats at the same time, and then navigating them across an obstacle course is not easy, but it is quite fun. The game is even more entertaining if you can rope in another poor soul to help you with the goats. Gameplay: The game packs a mean challenge, but it is relatively short. Graphics: The levels are bright and cartoony, while the already adorable goats can be made even more charming with accessories. Sound: A couple of nice tunes and the usual wacky assortment of sound effects.

Steins;Gate

Steins;Gate

Steins;Gate started off quite interesting, and had me hooked with its unique story, but by the end I was literally on the edge of my seat. Although it is quite a long game, there is literally never a dull moment. The use of a mobile phone to make choices, and branch the story is a stroke of genius, and with six different endings there is a lot of replay value. If you want to experience a visual novel with plenty of action, drama, suspense and outstanding characters, then don't miss out on Steins;Gate. Gameplay: Not only is the story excellent, but there is actually a surprising amount of choices for a visual novel. Graphics: The artwork and character designs are beautiful. Sound: The original Japanese voice acting is very good, and the music is equally great.

Pinball FX2 – Super League

Pinball FX2 - Super League

Zen Studios have been on a roll with great pinball table and Super League is no exception. Even if you are not a fan of football you'll appreciate the flow of the table and the multitude of scoring opportunities. The football theme has been expertly interwoven with the gameplay in a way that not only makes sense but is very addictive as well. Gameplay: A great table with nice ramps and an abundance of multi-ball opportunities. Graphics: The different designs for each football club looks excellent. Sound: Catchy music and nice sound effects recreate the atmosphere of a real football match.

Guilty Gear X

Guilty Gear X

It is a pleasant surprise to see the Guilty Gear series appear on PC and with the right setup this game is a blast to play. Gameplay is solid although the last boss is one of the cheapest I've seen in a while. The lack of a story mode is also a downside but if you like your fighting games deep and don't mind getting your ass kicked then this is the game for you. 2D fighting games doesn't get much better than this on PC. Gameplay: More accessible than the last game but also has a lot of depth if you stick with it. Graphics: It would have been nice if the resolution could be increased but the game still looks good. Sound: Good music but muddy sound effects.

Leave a comment

5 × 1 =