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2012-10-01

Monster Girl Quest! -Part 2- Review




Title: Monmusu Quest! Chuushou ~Makereba Youjo ni Okasareru~
Original title: もんむす・くえすと!中章 ~負ければ妖女に犯される~
Alias: Monster Girl Quest! -Part 2-
Release date: 2011-12-17
English release date: 2012-03-31
Developer: Torotoro Resistance
English publisher: Rogue Translator (as a fan-patch)

"Monster Girl Quest" was a huge hit of the yesteryear and for all the right reasons, as it managed to combine compelling gameplay, adequate plot and perverted sex scenes into one package. I myself liked it a lot, but only now did I managed to get to playing the second part of the trilogy.

MGQ is a VN/RPG hybrid with a gameplay that is quite a challenge if you are playing the game on hard difficulty, and in my not so humble opinion, that is the only real way to play this game as the challenge is part of the fun. To my credit, I managed to beat the whole game on the "hard" (pun intended) setting, despite some monsters giving me a run for my money. I don't remember if I told you that I consider Frederika being the most difficult boss I faced in the first part. Well, the same honour goes to Erubetie in this part of the trilogy (it took me 22 tries to ice her O_o). It's interesting to note, that neither part had a final boss as the most difficult. If there was one thing about the battles that miffed me, it was their heavy reliance on luck. Many of the boss battles in the later part of the story were winnable or not based just on your random evasion rate. Not fair... not fair...
True, true...
The first part was a thorough deconstruction of the prevalent clichés and tropes present in JRPGs and eroges, but it quickly evolved into a full blown game of its own ilk. The second part completely shrugs the parody mantle away (though it still heavily leans onto the fourth wall), becoming more of a homage through rejection. I believe that fits well within the maturing storyline, but I must admit that the jokes that arose in the first part due to parodying were the most hysterical. It also helps that the translation of this work is really competent. Not only there are virtually no grammatical mistakes, but the language flows very easily and even the jokes are presented in a genuinely funny manner. Of course Rogue probably had to change some things to make the puns work in English, but you can never tell what was in the original text or what is solely his invention.
Puns galore.
The plot is a direct continuation of the previous game with our quest taking us through the last bits of the continent trying to collect the remaining spirits Undine and Salamander, and finally to Hellgondo island, where the Monster Lord's castle stands. Luka's desire to bring peace to the land is stronger than ever, but in order to accomplish this dream he has to defeat the Four Heavenly Knights who sow discord across the land. Never fret though, our Hero's quest won't finish with their defeat as the third part of the trilogy wouldn't be needed if everything was so easy.

If there is one drawback to MGQ2, it's that it's an obvious middle part of the trilogy. It starts without any preamble after Luka got Gnome in the last game and finishes on a major cliffhanger (at least, if you got a canon ending). Yes, this time it's possible to get a few different endings durings the final fight, but two of them are obviously just glorified bad ends. At least, the ending confirms a Genre Savvy guess from my review of MGQ1 that Ilias is gonna be the Big Bad of the series. I just wonder who will deliver you Evaluations in the upcoming part of the trilogy... maybe Alice.
Wait! Didn't you just say she's not a Communist?!
Just a small note while talking about Evaluations, but I had to say this. Usually, losing the battle and getting the Evaluation results in exactly the same sprite of Ilias giving us an admonishment about our unquenchable desire to be violated by monster girls, but just lose to Beelzebub and you will behold a never seen before Ilias' OMGWTFOTL troll face. That is understandable though, considering the implications. :-D

As a visual novel MGQ matured significantly between the installations. The first part was all colours and rainbows and black/white morality, courtesy of seeing the world through Luka's eyes. Thus, it's a real joy to see our protagonist visibly maturing during his journey. He's still an idealist, but his naïvety is mostly gone, replaced by reluctant acceptance of the fact that his quest directly contradicts his Goddess Ilias' precepts. That doesn't mean that Luka isn't a butt monkey to Alice's jokes anymore. He's still an idiot when it comes to simple things, but it's subdued enough to not be annoying. Such a visible growth endeared me to the protagonist even though he's still a premature ejaculator :-)
Gives a whole new meaning to hairdressing.
Luka's sole companion and his possibly definitely love interest to be, Alice has officially become one of the best video game heroines of all times. She's funny, she's sexy, she throws great one-liners and... I want to take her home! In the first part she had an annoying habit of talking about food immoderately, but this part greatly restrained that aspect of hers. What I liked the most, was finally getting to know her more intimately. Sure, we previously learned that she is Alipheese XVI, the current Monster Lord and all that, but in the end she remained an enigma. MGQ2 finally lets us know not only more about human/monster relationships, but gives us a glimpse of Alice's backstory and even shews what she really thinks about Luka's "idiotic" quest and why she is tagging along with him.
P.S. Is it just me, or Japanese just love lamias, as apparently every game dealing with monsters in general and monster girls in particular must have one? Don't answer. That was a rhetorical question.
Eaten... again...
The modern gamers will recognise one unusual feature of MGQ - that is the ability to import saves between the installments. It's obvious that Torotoro Resistance treats MGQ parts not as separate games, but as smaller releases of one megagame. To that end you not only can transfer your saves between the games, but also combine MGQ1&2 into one game. I believe the same ability will be included in MGQ3 and you will be able to play the game from start from finish from one executable. However, for now we are left salivating at the few morsels Torotoro deigns to throw our way, as there is still no set date for the release of the third part. That is understandable though, as Torotoro is a doujin group with limited time and resources.

Natheless, they managed to do a stunning job with those limited resources. In my review of the first part I complained about the inconsistency between the art styles, some lackluster H-scenes and the lack of sprites for appearing characters. Most of those complaints still stand, but their relevance is diminished and overwhelmed by the positive aspects of the game. I don't know if I didn't notice the rough edges anymore or the art was just better overall. The art is still inconsistent as fuck (at least three different styles were used: watercolours, colour pens and computer imagery), but I couldn't pinpoint any instance of it that I disliked. Some of the rape scenes still don't get proper CGs, but the half-CGs are no worse than the real ones.
Deja vu...
Torotoro show a really disturbing imagination with their choice of monster girls to rape you. If anyone thought that the first game exhausted the possibilities, they were dead wrong. Sure, some of the monsters return: Four Heavenly Knights (or rather three of them as we meet the fourth one for the first time in this game), Slimes, Crab Girl, but overall the world is populated with previously unseen monstrosities and they all are after your semen. I might question some of the choices (I find insects decidedly unsexy) and I'm not a big fan of vore, but rule 36 claims that there are as many fetishes in the world as there are people. If you search long enough you will find someone who gets all hot and bothered while thinking about bread.

One of the features of the game that I was previously unaware of is the ability for fans to create play modules and share them. It resulted in a shitload of fan-modules created and some of them added to the newest patch by Rogue Translator (you have to have combined both parts of the game to use some of the modules without crashing). Many of those modules are just a one-scene scenarios showing Luka taken advantage of... again. However, two of them deserve a special attention: "Cecil's Adventure" and "Cecil's Adventure: Scylla Channel". They display an amazing quality with funny storylines and an almost professional art. The biggest difference is that the protagonist of those scenarios is a female knight called Cecil and the Evaluations are provided to us courtesy of Alma Elma herself. You can finish the first scenario in about 30 minutes and the second one in half that time, but I think they are worth playing even despite them being vore centered. Maybe it's all about a female being eaten that strikes me the right way (har har).
The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea.

In the end, "Monster Girl Quest: Part 2" is a great continuation to a great game and with steadily increasing quality of the games I can only imagine what will be added to the third part to finish the storyline with a bang. My suggestion - go, play the game now and then wait for more.

Links of Interest

Visual Novel Database
Official Japanese site
Buy the game on DLsite
Download English patch from Rogue Translator or from direct link
Walkthrough for MGQ 1&2
Monster Girl Quest Wikia
New Game+ Patch / direct link
(Monster Girl Quest NG+ is a fan made custom scenario where the player can experience the beginning stages of the game with levels and abilities from the end of part 2. Slight changes to the story are completely fan made and non-canon. Some bosses have been improved for the sake of challenge.)
Gnome's laboratory blog (here you will find some of the fan created modules not included with the newest patch)
Download additional fan scenarios not included in the latest patch (I took those mostly from Gnome's laboratory)

Final Verdict: 81%

UPDATE (2013-06-23):
Title:Monster Girl Quest Delicious -Breakfast- Scenarios
Original title: もんむす・でりしゃす!-breakfast-
Release date: 2013-04-01
English release date: 2013-04-18
Developer: Tokinokogiri
English publisher: Dargoth
This is no MGS cardboard box.
This was HTML based spin-off stories set in a MGQ universe. Normally you would not be able to enjoy them, but Dargoth of "Violated Hero" fame not only translated those stories, but also programmed them to work as fan modules. All of these stories are completely vore based and contain no fights - in other words, these are just small scenarios showing Luka, Cecil, Sara and some other insignificant characters enjoying themselves while being eaten. If you are not a fan of such content you might skip it, but others might want to check it out. Instructions how to install the module are presented on Dargoth's site.

Tokinokogiri's official site
Buy a Japanese version of the side stories at DLsite
Download the English module based on those stories from Dargoth's website

4 comments:

  1. Can you provide a step-by-step on how to properly get this game to work? Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 1. Buy the game. Extract the archive into a directory of your choice.
      2. Download an English patch. Extract into the game's directory overwriting files if necessary.
      3. If you wish to combine parts 1 & 2 into one mega-game, copy the file "arc.nsa" from the folder of part one and put it into the folder of part 2, overwriting the file.
      4. If you have already finished part one, copy "gloval.sav" from the folder of part one and put it into the "save" folder of part 2.
      5. Launch the game with "mon_que.exe". Go to the "Extras" and use options "Part 1 Conversion" and "Part 1 Save Import" (if you finished part one) in that order.
      6. Start the game and enjoy yourself.

      Delete
  2. Anonymous28/1/13 05:58

    Do you know where I can get Cecil's quest?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's included with the latest English patch from Rogue Translator.

      Delete