This is where it all started. Before I discovered the gods from the stars, my first love in this newly discovered world of otome games were the brave men of the Shinsengumi, a group of samurai in 19th century Kyoto. It’s a funny thing how I got there. Apparently, my browser had realized that I had started to learn Japanese, and in a well-targeted ad, it showed me the title picture of this particular set of stories. I have to say, I do love it when the algorithm gets stuff right. And here we are, one year and countless stories later, and yet I’ve never written about the Shinsengumi.
The truth is, I needed a break. After reading a few of the stories, I was desperate for something more frivolous, more light-hearted. The stories of the Shinsengumi are good. They are very good. But because of their very nature, they have a capacity for tragedy unmatched by titles set in the modern world, for example. Death is possible every time the men set foot outside the compound; and when they come back alive, there’s still no guarantee that they will be healthy in body and mind. If, like me, you get emotionally invested in characters, that really takes a toll.
But it’s been a year, and I thought I’d pay a visit to my favorite samurai (I know, they are technically ronin, themselves). Maybe with some light-hearted holiday fluff? But first, obviously, I owe you an introduction.