BLUE REFLECTION: SECOND LIGHT
The Blue Reflection dilogy is somewhat similar to Persona – here, too, a lot is built around emotions and inner experiences, the characters enter worlds created by memories, fight demons there, and after that they return to school and communicate a lot with each other. But in Blue Reflection, all this is played out and performed by the forces of exclusively girls. Although you can already see from the screenshots that this is a game for boys.
From game to anime and back
The first Blue Reflection was released in 2017, and it was created by the Gust studio, which is part of Koei Tecmo, which has already eaten a dog at games with cute fighting tanks (we are talking, of course, about the Atelier series). From April to September of this year, the 24-episode anime Blue Reflection Ray was broadcast, and now a full-fledged sequel has been released with new characters, but also with the inevitable references to the original. Not to mention the commonality of themes and the setting itself.
This is what the girls looked like in the first Blue Reflection.
In Blue Reflection, many genres are connected (how else is it in anime?). This is both a story about hits (more precisely, about hits), and a bright representative of maho-shojo – the genre of games, anime and manga, where magical girls with superpowers act as heroines. And often ordinary schoolgirls turn into them. In the world of Blue Reflection, they go from their schools to other dimensions created by their own feelings and memories, and there they become the titular sad (or sad, melancholic) Reflectors.
With the help of special rings, they connect their emotions with the thoughts and feelings of those people who experience strong experiences in order to control the power of human emotions, prevent negativity from growing, and so on. The same rings and the power of emotions flowing through them help to fight the demons. In general, it really looks like Persona, but in a girly performance and with its own chips.
A frame from the anime.
They won’t be chased
Ao Hoshizaki, the protagonist of Blue Reflection: Second Light, didn’t know any of this, of course. She was going to the summer academy, where she was sent after an unsuccessful annual exam, saw a strange message on her phone and ended up in another dimension, with other girls and in another school, which stands in the middle of either the sea or the ocean. Naturally, this is a metaphor for the sea of feelings – periodically Ao, Kokoro (Kokoro), Yuki (Yuki) and Rena (Rena) – that’s the name of the first three schoolgirls we meet here – will go through these waters into strange and dangerous worlds created by memories the girls themselves.
The heroines call this dimension The Faraway, that is, far away.
At first, they really do not remember anything about how they got here, and about their lives. Therefore, on the tab of their biographies in the diary there are many dashes. Fighting demons (of course, created by their subconscious), exploring and clearing the map, we find fragments of memories and gradually fill in the gaps, learning another, usually sad, story. After that, according to the plot, a new girl (or several at once) appears at the school and new bizarre worlds become available for outings.
The stories may be truly sad, but they are unlikely to surprise child psychologists. One girl, for example, was bullied at school and built a shelter where she hid with her friend. The other, as it turns out, studied ballet (like the heroine of the first Blue Reflection, by the way) and often sat in her mother’s cafe (so that’s why she loves coffee!) With a friend who once suggested that she run away on a train wherever her eyes look.
One of the flashbacks.
It is clear that in Blue Reflection you can find what you associate the songs of the Tatu group with. The hints are obvious, especially considering that one of the key mechanics in the game is dating, which allows the main girl, that is, Ao, to strengthen relationships with other girls and receive bonuses for this. But these are just hints. Heroines can languidly lie nearby and sunbathe, make compliments or, in the absence of boys, play performances about princes rescuing their princesses.
Compliments are hard to come by.
But it still looks innocent enough and walks the fine line of vague expectations, allusions and languor without crossing the line. And the characters still remain primarily friends who talk to each other about life, about books, about their interests, remember something from life and share experiences.
So in vain in the Russian Steam stubbornly block the game. Blue Reflection: Second Light is primarily about how vulnerable, thin-souled people can be, and even more so teenagers, and how difficult it is for them in the ordinary world. It is in this and in those sad stories from the life of girls that one can discern social relevance, and not in the notorious agenda, which does not smell here.