Even if Tempest is a dark fantasy otome game developed by Voltage Inc. for the Nintendo Switch. This is Voltage’s first Switch exclusive release and features full Japanese voice acting. Trapped by time, by fate, and by love. Anastasia Lynzel is wrongly accused of being a witch and burned at the stake. But what should be the end is only the beginning in this dark twisted fantasy adventure.
- Genre: Dark Fantasy | Romance | Mystery
- Rating: ESRB M
- Developer & Publisher: Voltage Inc
- Where to Get the Game: Nintendo Switch
- Similar Games: Cinders | Taisho x Alice
“Trapped by time, by fate, and by love.”
Raging flames sear her flesh. Scolding laughter weighs her down as lead. Her last moments are as she lived: bereft of love, void of hope, and overflowing with despair.
And then, she dies.
A witch whispers to the girl steeped in regret. “Don’t you want a second chance?”
The witch bestows upon her the power of the “Fatal Rewind,” and her charred life is returned to a pure white. A blank slate.
“This time, I will transform into the ideal version of myself.”
With this oath branded into her heart, she returns to life… Yet this resolve will only lead to further misfortune.
The curtain rises on the Carnival, and this witch trial shall herald the end.
Even if Tempest has four romanceable characters: Crius, Anastasia’s boss and leader of the Wings of Garuda; Tyril, the whip toting head Inquisitor; the enigmatic and handsome, Zenn; and Lucien, Anastasia’s childhood friend and the youngest prince of the royal family.
Because the game follows a linear narrative, Even if Tempest follows a very specific play order. Crius and Tyril’s routes are available to choose from at the start of the game, then Zenn’s route, and finally Lucien’s route. Each route reveals a bit more of the overarching story, with Lucien’s route serving as the finale. There is a secret unlockable end that offers answers to some of the loose ends left hanging after Lucien’s route, buuuut it’s not romantic in nature.
Crius Castlerock (VA. Makoto Furukawa)
Crius is Anastasia’s super mega foxy hot boss and Vice Commander of the Wings of Garuda. His good looks, charming personality, and winning smile makes him popular with the ladies. He’s capable leader who is respected by his fellow Wings; no one has a bad word to say about the guy. While outwardly he’s the perfect package, beneath the surface, he seems to be hiding some secrets of his own.
The romance is kind of light in this game, so the relationship between Crius and Anastasia has more of a mentor/mentee vibe to it. Crius is tough on her, holding her to the same standards he holds himself to, but he is encouraging of her dreams and is always there to lend her a listening ear. Crius can come off as a bit disingenuous, since he seems to have a smile for everyone, but he’s much more genuine and vulnerable with Anastasia in a way he isn’t with anyone else. It’s sweet and there is definitely potential for romance, but his route ends so abruptly…
Tyril I Lister (VA. Noriaki Sugiyama)
Okay, this man walks around with a whip, I knew he’d be a good time. 😏 Tyril is the head witch hunter and leader of the Inquisitor squad. He’s a foul mouthed, binge drinking bastion of justice and order. He leads the Inquisitors with an iron fist, and his hatred of witches is second to none. Tyril is a master of deduction, and he doesn’t have time for other people’s BS. Which is a wonder how he’s besties with Crius and Zenn.
I don’t know what I expected from Tyril, he’s like a softer version of Sasazuka from Collar x Malice. He’s a rude Hot Topic priest with a whip… and he wound up being my favorite route in the game. While he’s not the nicest guy (on the surface) and some of his actions are questionable, there’s usually a method to his madness. Tyril has a strong sense of justice and he expects the same from those around him. Because of this, he and Anastasia tend to be at each other’s throats, but despite that, they have a mutual respect for one another.
He begrudgingly comes to trust her more as the route progresses and because of how honest and genuine she is, he inevitably opens his heart to her. But, like with Crius, his route ends with the biggest WTF moment ever and the romance sadly doesn’t get a conclusion (until much later).
Zenn Sorfield (VA. Shunsuke Takeuchi)
Zenn is the love interest I was most looking forward to, Mr. Tall Dark and Handsome had my full and undivided attention. Not a lot is known about Zenn, no one seems to know who he is or where he’s from, but he gets along pretty well with Crius and Tyril. While it’s not clear if he’s an ally or a foe in the beginning of the story, he always manages to show up just in time to help Anastasia out of trouble.
He claims to want nothing to do with Anastasia or the witch hunts, but he seems to know more about what’s going on than he lets on. Zenn’s relationship with Anastasia is a bit complicated, since he is reluctant to get wrapped up in her drama. But, when it comes down to it he will jump into the line of fire for her. Zenn tries to keep his distance, but he can’t help but be drawn to her strong sense of justice. They really work well together and I think this route showed the most natural romantic development. But, the route ends before anything really happens between them.
Lucien Neuschburn (VA. Kaito Ishikawa)
Lucien is the sweet, third prince of the Kingdom of Hystorica. He’s much more timid than his older brothers and is often the target for their torment (mostly Conrad). He’s childhood friends with Anastasia and harbors a not so secret crush on her that persists through every, single route. However, after the Anastasia’s first Fatal Rewind he goes through a complete personality overhaul, becoming much more charismatic and capable.
This baby was done dirtiest by the linear storytelling of Even If Tempest. Because Lucien’s route is the last one, it serves as the finale for everything, so the relationship between him and Anastasia takes a backseat to the “plot”. Lucien isn’t even the focus of his own route, which is a shame, because he really is a sweetheart. He genuinely cares for Anastasia and is willing to do anything in his power to help her on her journey, even if it means sacrificing himself. And it sucks that he doesn’t get more of a payoff for all his pinning in his route.
Anastasia Lynzel – Heroine
Anastasia is one of the best otome heroines! Her journey is some of the best storytelling I’ve seen in an otome. She goes through it in this game, and through the many ups and downs (and trauma), Anastasia comes out the other side a much stronger person. This is her story and that’s something the writers never lose sight of.
She starts off the story as a weak, naïve girl and later blossoms into a strong, capable young woman. She’s strong willed, with an even stronger sense of justice, but she’s human. Anastasia isn’t the perfect heroine, she makes selfish choices just like everyone else. While her stakes are a bit higher than most, I like that the game allows her to be flawed. Which makes her super relatable without being frustrating. She loves hard and will do anything to protect those she holds dear; even if that means she gets hurt in the process.
Even If Tempest Review
There was a lot of hype surrounding Voltage Inc.’s first Switch exclusive otome release. Voltage really put the extra effort in for this release and Even If Tempest marks a huge step for the company. I’ve been a long time player of their mobile games, and while they’re fun, quick plays, they lack the depth of more traditional otome releases.
So, while I was hopeful about Even If Tempest‘s potential, I will admit I wasn’t expecting much (Voltage Inc. has a way of coming up short with their apps). And on release, the game was buggy as heck, with gamers complaining of multiple crashes among other issues, but I gave it a go anyway if not to see if Voltage really could hold their own against the Otomate releases. With it’s dark, immersive fantasy story, compelling characters, and impressive voice cast, Even if Tempest is a stand out among the 2022 otome releases.
Despite being the only blood heir of the Lynzel family, Anastasia is treated like a literal redheaded step-child. Years of neglect and abuse at the hands of her cruel step-mother and father has left her weak and hopeless. Resigned to her fate, she spends her days locked in her attic room waiting for it all to end. But, her world suddenly changes when she discovers she’s gained a special ability, Fatal Rewind that allows her to travel back in time. The only catch is that in order to trigger the ability, she has to die.
Now, armed with her new powers, Anastasia embarks on a quest to get revenge on all those who wronged her in the past. But her new powers come at a cost, and Anastasia finds herself embroiled in her kingdom’s dangerous witch trials. With tragedy just one misstep away she will need to keep her wits about her if she’s going to survive.
Believe me when I say, Even if Tempest is not a game for the faint of heart! This game gets dark. It gives Amnesia Memories a run for it’s money in the number of ways you can die horribly in an otome. Burned at the stake, stabbed, un-aliving yourself, and that’s just in the prologue! Even if Tempest pushes the limits with it’s story and characters, putting them through some pretty harrowing experiences. The content warnings aren’t a suggestion, so be mindful of them. This is definitely one of the darkest otome games to date—at least until Virche Evermore: Error Salvation drops later this year.
In this world death is more of an inevitability. Regardless of what the characters do, the only way to successfully resolve their conflict is by Anastasia using her Fatal Rewind to clear the playing field and start over. But, in doing so, she has to die. It’s a heavy price to pay, but a sacrifice Anastasia is willing to make if it means protecting those around her, even at the cost of her own mental wellbeing.
Each trip backwards in time reveals new truths and unforeseen consequences. Things get even more dangerous when Anastasia catches the eye of the Witch of Ruin. He regularly possesses an unsuspecting victim, coercing them to commit murder. Through his machinations he ignites the kingdom’s witch hysteria which facilitates the witch trials, referred to in game as Carnivals.
In a style reminiscent of Ace Attorney, Anastasia and her chosen LI investigate the witch’s crimes by interrogating witnesses, collecting evidence, and unlocking special skills that will help you discover which of five suspects (Sacrificia) are the true culprit (Membra) that is being manipulated by the the Witch. Rather than feeling out of place, the trials seamlessly fit in with Even if Tempest‘s story and add a fun interactive element that you don’t see often in otome games.
Even if Tempest employs a linear narrative style, with each route building on their predecessors to tell a more cohesive overarching story. Each layer reveals a small piece of the story with the conclusion only being revealed after completing all of the character routes. Most otome games have branching, self contained routes, but I kind of like the interconnected story because it really allows for some great worldbuilding and character development.
This is such an immersive story and world, and I really enjoyed learning more about it in each new route. The fairytale inspirations of Even if Tempest are hard to miss, but the dark twists and turns make for a more memorable experience. I especially loved the lore surrounding the Kingdom of Hystorica and the Goddess Norn. A lot of Hystorica’s history is entrenched in its worship of the goddess and it was interesting seeing how much of a role that played in the overall story. It’s very reminiscent of the importance of Amaterasu in the story of Olympia Soiree.
While Even if Tempest is an otome game, the romance is not always at the forefront of the story, in fact in some routes it feels more like an after thought. I know, the main draw of an otome game is the romance, but hear me out. The characters are some of the best I’ve seen in an otome game. There really isn’t a bad apple in the bunch, each love interest was a lot of fun to get to know and with such different motivations and personalities there’s a nice variety to choose from. Though, I’d be lying if I didn’t say Tyril wasn’t my favorite—I like when they’re a challenge (and he has a whip).
And don’t get me started on all the great side characters! Fuckboi fiancé, Conrad may be an evil asshole, but he’s a damn good villain (and hot too, seems I have a type). Then there’s Anastasia’s maid, Maya; Evelina, Anastasia’s evil step-mom; her friends in the Wings; and so many more! The world of Even if Tempest is full of colorful characters that breathe life into the story. Friends, family, antagonists, and the occasional bystander all come together to make this journey and give weight to the trials and tribulations Anastasia has to overcome.
Honestly, the story is so good I am willing to overlook the lack of real romantic development. Here’s hoping the upcoming fandisk makes up for this with some sweet happily ever after stories, because after this journey, I think we all need some sweet lovin’. But, there’s a lot simmering under the surface in Even if Tempest and uncovering it’s secrets is half the fun.
So, Is Even if Tempest worth playing?
Heck yeah! For their first console exclusive release, this is a strong game from Voltage Inc.! Even if Tempest is an experience I won’t soon forget. Sure, it’s not perfect, the lack of romance, some weird translation choices every now and again, the crashing, and some interesting pacing in the prologue being among some of its weaknesses. But the strong dynamic cast, interactive gameplay, and intriguing mystery make Even If Tempest one of the best otome games I’ve played in a long time.