Archangel: Nemesis

released on Jan 20, 2021

Follow the story of 13 year old Twigs as she prepares to go to Boarding School!

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Spoiled child simulator lmao. Also the creator took the game off the internet? I have no idea, but all I can say is it was the right decision if so.

i don't even know how to review it in a way that would do it justice.. this vn has such a personal almost spiritual effect on me, hit me in a hidden place nothing ever really has, and it's sincerely my favorite vn.. one of my favorite things ever really...

everything I could've said has been said better by other reviewers ~

(S01E02: FRIDAY)
I don't think I've ever been moved by a game as deeply as this moved me, save maybe KR0 and Nier. Opening section captures that overwhelming feeling of gratitude and relief upon meeting a friend in a dream, like seeing a friendly familiar face in a city you've never visited before, like no other piece of art I can recall. I'm all the way the fuck in on this even if it's likely to break my heart in half.

The decision to couch what appears to be an examination/critique of evangelical-adjacent/non-denominational Protestant Christian culture/environments in a fictionalized scientology-esque cult is one I'm not entirely convinced doesn't dilute some of what this appears to be attempting to do (or won't in the long run if it sticks with it) but it also doesn't prevent this first episode from hitting a lot of v familiar dynamics with painful accuracy - I had variations of the convo between Twigs and her mom abt associating with non-believers with my own mom growing up and even as a young adult once I started dating lol. Not to reduce this solely to that of course - this a refreshingly ambitious and sharply observed piece of work even if its component parts are all things I've encountered before elsewhere, and the presentation is phenomenal accross the board - terrific soundtrack, character designs that strongly invoke Shigeru Goto's design work on Okage: Shadow King, the believably typo-ridden text itself as expression of its teenage protagonist's processing of the world and her own thoughts (which also reminded me of the writing and speaking style of a very dear friend of mine - if I had to imagine what kind of kid they were at this age Twigs isn't too far off lol), the Anno-esque editing, etc. Also those FMV sequences have a genuine sense of scale and mood sorely lacking in games today, especially on the indie scene, the one capping off episode 1 was genuinely breathtaking. Anyway big fucking vibe, looking forward to seeing how this unfolds!

writing on the 2 of 4 eps that are out so far: i like this a whole lot! direction is just excellent throughout, often frightening and depressing but uniquely sly at times too. a v specific kind of ex-cult christian (or just christian, you COULD take the church in this as a christian church if you wanted) menhera in this; the way religious indoctrination psychologically constricts children, whose trauma then gets internally contextualized through the mythology. also the early 2000s visual influences--drawing from more than just games obviously but love the lines that can be drawn btwn the 3d in this and stuff like sengoku turb or okage or stretch panic--just makes me feel like this is a spiritual successor to hypnospace outlaw in a certain kind of sense that im not gonna elaborate on. cannot wait to see how the next 2 episodes are handled.