First Impressions: The Inn Between BL Demo Review

The Inn Between is an upcoming modern fantasy boys’ love visual novel developed by Australian based indie developer Cats on a Lilypad Studios. Drawing inspiration from Japanese mythology, The Inn Between tells the story of Myka Riley, a recent university graduate who finds himself drawn into a fantasy world that may have the answers he needs to uncover the truth about his hazy childhood.

Game Details

  • Fantasy | Boys Love | Supernatural
  • Demo Length: 2 hours
  • Where to Play: itch.io | Steam
  • Fully Voiced in English

Story

Our story starts with Myka Riley, a university graduate and barista.

Just a normal guy…

A normal guy that can’t remember his childhood, whose aunt refuses to talk about their family and who carries around a sketch book full of weird and wonderful creatures he just happens to know the faces of.

A totally… normal… guy….

Things start to change for Myka when he receives a mysterious phone call connecting him to his missing past.

A world which he believed could have only existed in fairy tales begins to blossom before him, awakening within him things long hidden.

Myka’s visit to the mysterious Magnus Inn will change his life forever.

In more ways than one.

Official Synopsis

Characters

Myka Riley – The Protagonist

A recent university graduate with a business degree, Myka spends his time sketching and working at the Merryment Café as a barista. He also has a keen interest in the study of mythology and history. More than anything he seeks closure on his childhood after he lost his memory in a mysterious accident.

The Love Interests

Emrys, Myka, Leon, and Solas (top)

Leonardo Addy: Leon adores his best friend Myka, but when he starts a new job with his father everything changes for him. Trapped in a world he has no control over, torn between his feelings for his friend and his duty to his family.

Emrys: A mysterious resident of the inn, not much is known about him. With the ears and tail of a cat he’s a troublesome shapeshifter who seems to belong to the Inn. He’s an Aloof flirt but will do absolutely anything to protect Myka.

Solas: A mysterious and dangerous god. Little and less is known of him. What is known is his anger at the world, betrayed and twisted he has turned his back on all he once stood for. Friend or foe remains to be seen.

Review

The Inn Between is literally the perfect game for me: a modern fantasy boys love game, inspired by Japanese mythology and lore…SIGN ME UP! Myka Riley, is a normal guy–a recent college grad who moonlights as a barista at a local café. He has no memories of his life before the age of 8 and anytime he tries to remember anything from his past he’s plagued by terrible headaches. But despite that Myka lives a relatively normal life working and spending time with his best friend, Leon. That is, until he receives a mysterious call from a lawyer who seems to know the truth about his family and his long forgotten past. Hoping the lawyer will have some answers about his missing father and past, Myka agrees to meet with him and learns that he is entitled to an inheritance from his late grandfather. His new inheritance includes a creepy old mansion on the outskirts of town. Curious, Myka decides to visit the inn and what he finds changes his life forever…

There were some great features in the demo that definitely set it apart, like the fun phone mechanic–you can all and text characters using a phone interface and the game is fully voiced in English, which is always a plus! I loved the vocal performances and I really hope that the final release of the game will be fully voiced as well (or partial).

The game is heavily inspired by Japanese lore and mythology, but with a modern twist so there is this otherworldly feeling throughout that I think lends itself well to mysterious vibe of the story. It kind of gives you the feeling that even amidst the hustle an bustle of our modern livess there’s still a bit of magic just around the next corner. Also if you’re a cat lover, you’ll love The Inn Between, not only is Myka a cat lover but a lot of the mystical stuff that happens in the game is cat themed and there’s a (totally not creepy) black cat spirit guide that appears from time to time to help Myka.

The demo is a nice length (it took me about 2 hours to finish the entire demo) and you get to meet most of the key players in the story. There are three planned love interests, though we spent the most time with Leon in the demo–he’s a sweetheart, so I’m not too upset about that. Even as the “normal” love interest, there’s still an air of mystery surrounding Leon and I can’t help but get the sense that he knows more about Myka’s past than he’s letting on (my running theory is that he’s some sort of secret Hunter), but only time will tell. The other two love interests, Emrys and Solas are only hinted at in the demo, unless Emrys’s cat form counts as screen time. But, I think keeping them shrouded in mystery was a great move since I feel like they are linked with Myka’s family secrets. HOWEVER, there is one character that completely stole the show for me and that’s Thomas, Myka’s (regretfully) married boss (that man is way too fine to not be available) he serves as a kind of father figure to Myka and is just an all around great guy.

Overall, I absolutely LOVED The Inn Between! I’ll be real with you all, I got some serious Harry Potter vibes from this game, Myka is an orphan raised by his aunt and uncle (with whom he has a strained relationship), he has no memory of his childhood, and he has strange things have been happening around him lately–literally all he needs is a lightning bolt shaped scar. But, that’s where the similarities end, The Inn Between has it’s own vibe, in the demo the fantasy elements are just simmering beneath the surface, and like Myka, we’re left wondering what’s actually going on… and that’s definitely a good thing. I am a sucker for a good mystery and while playing the demo I really wanted to know where this story was going to take us next!

More Info on the Team

Thank you Cats on a Lilypad Studios for providing early access to the demo for this review!


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One Comment on “First Impressions: The Inn Between BL Demo Review

  1. ok you had my attention as soon as you said Australian studio… home grown yaoi content yes please! this game looks like it will be lots of fun and I will most certainly check it out

Gush about cute otome boys~

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