Review: Time Princess - Moving Mountains

I wasn't sure what to expect from the latest visual novel in Time Princess called Moving Mountains. This game releases new stories so often that there isn't always enough time to read up about them to get excited, which was the case here. This story is pretty typical of a visual novel from this game. It focuses on a particular historical period and features a heroine with the ability to make decisions that have the potential to change history. Moving Mountains is the most generic story I've played in this game so far. It didn't introduce me to a new culture since there have already been several stories set in China, most of which were more interesting than this one. Unlike many of my favorites from this game, the story was not rooted in mythology or legend. Instead, it was your average tale about a woman who was ahead of her time and wanted to avoid an arranged marriage and find independence.

Moving Mountains Visual Novel Cover

There was nothing particularly wrong with Moving Mountains story per se, but it didn't have anything that made it stand out among the other visual novels in Time Princess. The hook didn't grab me with something unique like mythological beasts, demons, secret identities, pirate legends, or historical icons. You play as a typical girl from ancient China named Wen Rou who wants to do more with her life than being married off to the richest suitor. When she turns down a pompous man's proposal, her father is falsely accused of criminal actions, and she goes on a quest to clear his name. The story is called Moving Mountains because she realizes that she needs to clear a mountain pass in order to save a village from a flood that had recently devastated them. Her three companions help her out from the sidelines, but none of them have particularly interesting backstories.

Lady Jiaojiao is Wen Rou's best friend who supports all her decisions. After Wen Rou leaves her home to investigate the floods on behalf of her father, Jiaojiao mainly communicates with her through letters and does some things in the background to help her out when she can. Jiuhua is Wen Rou's neighbor and one of the story's two potential love interests. He is also supportive but not very interesting as a character. The other love interest, Gu Yin, has the most relevance to the plot. He is a government official, which gives him the most connections to help Wen Rou with her research on stopping the floods and clearing her father's name. He is more difficult to get close to since he is the only one who didn't know Wen Rou prior to the beginning of the story and is intimidated at first by her take-charge and independent nature. By making certain decisions throughout the story, it isn't too difficult to bring him over to your side.

I was pretty disappointed with the clothing options in this visual novel. Time Princess has already released several stories set in ancient China, and the outfits from this one didn't look any different from many of the ones I had already collected in the game. Most of the hairstyles and robes looked similar enough to the ones I had from other stories that it didn't feel like I was getting anything new or special. Not only that, but this was the first story in Time Princess that does not contain the complete blueprints for the main outfits in the visual novel itself. More than half of the outfits require the player to obtain the final piece through the game's "Lucky Jerry" lottery system, meaning it is only possible to complete two of the outfits by completing the story alone. I thought this was a pretty cheap trick to encourage players to spend more money and become even more addicted to a game that's already highly addictive.

Overall, Moving Mountains just didn't do it for me after having played so many of the more fantastical and innovative stories in this enchanting game. I found this visual novel very bland. It only took the basic ingredients of an average Time Princess story without adding anything new into the mix. Like most stories in this game, the main character was a good role model and had some pretty clothes and close friends, but there was nothing that made her particularly special. I wouldn't recommend this story to seasoned players because there's nothing in it they haven't already seen, and I don't think I'd recommend it to newer players either because there are so many more interesting ones that will add more complete outfits to their in-game wardrobe than this one will.


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