Otome Game Review: Heiligenstadt Lied

Lied, an orphan whose parents supposedly died in an accident, has recently began to live on her own (with her cockatiel ojisan BFF Soprano who can talk due to all the magic of her town of Shall). She is also  a pianist for her former orphanage but she’s not really that good. Actually she really sucks at both playing piano and cooking lol. One day she meets a bunch of dudes who happen to have the magical “Falga” powers of famous classical pianists. An evil force called the Forgotten Apostle comes and tries to steal all the sound from the town because of the “evil noise” that’s coming from the darkness inside the performers. Most average people are affected but Lied is safe – so now she joins the musical academy to work with everyone to help restore music back to Shall and defeat the Forgotten Apostle.

Visse – Visse has the musical talent of Chopin and is the orchestra’s pianist. Visse’s first song he learned how to play was “I ran over the cat” so apparently this suddenly makes him a cat magnet. As a child he was forced to play piano in order to remain at the music school. His mother would yell at him and beat him if he didn’t keep playing. Lied tries to teach him that it’s ok to enjoy life since he always looks sad when he performs. He claims it’s because of guilt if being responsible for his mother’s death. Visse’s dad then shows up saying the school killed his wife by forcing her to perform while pregnant. Due to this the baby died… and the Visse we see was created when his mother somehow used her own body and Falga powers to “create a child “. This of course shortened her life span which is why Visse blames himself for her death. But then he whips out his piano scythe and decides he’s gonna kill everyone so they can all be “at peace”. 🤨 The evil music thing starts making everyone go crazy again. After this Visse’s dad who was shot falls into a coma at the hospital  and nobody can remember any of the 5 idol musicians. Lied wakes up in some clock tower with her yandere boyfriend Visse who has her handcuffed to a chair. ( ˘•ω•˘ )

He laments that he wants to make new family with her and so that he can get a “proper birth” that his mother failed. ಠ_ಠ So then Lied manages to escape from the handcuffs and she jumps off the clock tower. After this Visse starts bawling about his mom and what to do with himself. Lied and everyone show up and apparently they got every mattress in town to let Lied fall on to and live lol. Also all the other musicians are magically alive thanks to someone leading them out of the musical limbo space Visse sent them to. After this they visit the mom’s grave, where Visse tells Lied he wants 500 kids.. until dad shows up and slaps him 😂. After this they continue to be a couple and Visse becomes more open about his feelings for Lied. Visse is really funny in other people’s routes and seems to be in a lot of gags but unfortunately it feels like other than cats and gags I can’t remember much of his route at all until the yandere stuff came out and now that’s all I can remember about him.

Dee – Dee is the orchestra’s Cellist and has the Falga of Schubert. Dee struggles with controlling his musical powers and has had his Cello turn into an axe that hurts people. It’s thanks to Lied that he got the confidence to control himself. He was the subject of Falga experiments by the music school because his parents who didn’t want to care for him sold him. All other experiment subjects died except for him. Dee overheard all of this and also the part that if he was useless they’d kill him. His name comes from the fact that he was Subject “D”. He was giant rescued by Clavier and named Dee. He ends up getting a huge crush on Lied, and gets really jealous when Arushe randomly kisses her. His own attempts to steal Lied’s lips end up in failure due to being a ヘタレ and other cockblocking lol. He finally makes a deal with her that if he performs well on the next concert, to let him kiss her. In the end Fia and Relm interrupt their performance as usual until Commander Aizen shoots the music box. and breaks the brain washing on Fia. Dee blames himself for not being able to protect Hart or Arushe from getting injured. He runs off stage and Lied chases after him.

After Lied finds him he tells her how he was just some unwanted lab rat and his own mother didn’t even give him a name. He feels like a failure and starts to cry (rambling about not being able to kiss her lol) so Lied kisses him. She tells him he’s not just a failed experiment and that she loves him. (ღ˘⌣˘ღ) He then kills the moment when he tries to put a ring on her finger and it doesn’t fit lmao. Lied manages to force it on and Dee says her fingers are surprisingly fat (to which she smacks him 😂). Come on Dee she plays piano that’s just what happens! 😂😂 Dee also reads the last page of the “experiment diary” he found from Clavier which is empty except the last page that says “when you get home  say I’m home before you wash your hands.” Magically Hart and Arushe return along with Visse who was MIA for a while lol. They all perform together and after this performance the town clock tower begins to move again and the music is saved. But since Dee can’t stop causing trouble he stops the clock again just to kiss Lied before they run away from the angry police (aka Rudolph his bff lol) 😂. Dee’s route had the same issue where it felt like a lot of stuff was kinda hidden behind a wave of gags since people love to constantly pick on him lol. Poor guy deserves a break!

Clavier – I’m 99% sure Kuravia should be Clavier so I’m just gonna spell it as that lol. The route begins showing the Clavier and his band of not so merry men stole music sheets from Beethoven’s old house, killed his servants and then burned it to the ground. Clavier then reveals that certain people inherit the “Falga” of famous composers but sometimes if the person who is to inherit it doesn’t realize it, the power will disappear. Due to this, the music school began doing the Falga experiments trying to force it inside of children (and murdering most of them.) Dee was one of the few successes that received Schubert’s powers but now there’s another problem. The one who has inherited the powers of Beethoven is Hart, however Hart has no recognition of these powers. Clavier also has an arm injury so bad that he has almost lost all feeling in his arm…and due to this he intends to leave the music academy. He constantly has a jealous voice in his head telling him that everyone else is able to easily produce sound, and that Lied can hear the “voices of instruments” while Clavier is no longer able to do so.One day while at her library job, Lied finds a secret passageway through one of the bookshelves and when she goes down she finds a talking sword named Kanade who asks Lied to cut off Clavier’s injured arm. Kanade claims that if they don’t do this, a huge war will break out and tells Lied about the Falga experiments that Clavier participated in. She adds that Clavier just wanted to create a musical “army” more than anything else.

Apparently the entire Johan family would take in slaves from other countries and make them fight with “music” to show other countries that music was a powerful weapon. Apparently Kanade’s original master was a slave taken from Japan. During the battle against Fia they play her country’s old music and she gives up realizing that her country has not been forgotten. After this incident is resolved, suddenly a revelation comes that Clavier has a twin brother named Clavier who is the true inheritor of the Johan family name and is the one who wanted to use music as a weapon. Clavier (young) says that he’s never played an instrument in his life and despite the instruments calling on him for help, he was unable to do anything. Meanwhile Clavier (old) got all the Falga powers and Clavier (young)  was just thrown into the music school. That night when Lied comes into Clavier’s room she unfortunately runs into Clavier (old) who pushes her down on the bed thinking that his brother’s relationship with her was “lovers”. When Lied questions who the hell he is, he says that he’s the real Clavier and the one she knows is just his twin brother. He reveals that he’s actually “dead” because Clavier (young) had killed him, and stolen his arm in order to be able to play music. However that voice in his head was the spirit of his older twin brother constantly inside him…so now Clavier (young) decided to let that spirit take over his body because he was ~done~.

He uses his evil powers and Lied passes out and wakes up in some kind of musical instrument graveyard with Anastel, Relm and Soprano. Kanade shows up too to explain how Clavier (young) is a victim locked up in the broken instrument room because Kanade got possessed by a Japanese tsukumogami and killed his brother (in order to free Clavier (young). Apparently Clavier(young) also had a harpsichord that he repaired and could hear the voice of..but after the arm cutting incident (where he cut off his dead brother’s arm along with his own and replaced it) the harpsichord shut off its voice from him. Since Clavier (old) was dead, Clavier (young) now received his Falga powers but in exchange was no longer able to hear instruments voices. The broken instruments combine their powers to help Lied get out of musical graveyard so she grabs Kanade with her and they escape. Along with Dee, Lied and Kanade they try to wake up the younger Clavier to return to take over his own body. Kanade also apologizes for what she did and admits she had some weird weapon x person crush on young Clavier 😂. Older Clavier finally realizes the mistake of his ways and asks them to cut off his arm so he can finally rest in peace. After this the tsukumogami leaves Kanade’s soul and she says goodbye asking Lied to love Clavier in her place. After everyone performs for Clavier, Lied confesses her feelings for him. Clavier starts crying saying he doesn’t deserve her love, but then eventually admits he loves her. Clavier now has 2 arms that he can’t “feel” with but Lied accepts him anyway and they kiss. In the epilogue Clavier finds out that his brother pushed her down on the bed and gets all jelly so he does the same thing huehue(///▽///).

Arushe – Arushe has the Falga of Mozart, plays the violin and is incredibly self absorbed. He can’t ever remember Lied’s  name and for no reason keeps calling her Nacchan 😂. Some paparazzi catches them talking and putting a necklace on her neck… and immediately it’s published in the town paper the next day. In order not to look like some manwhore, Arushe asks Lied to pretend to be his girlfriend as he introduces her to his parents. He then has all the guys teach Lied to be like a high status woman in order to impress his rich parents who sponsor the school with a lot of money. Arushe is also childhood friends with Hart, and Hart decided to go to the music school is Shall and so Arushe followed him. When Lied finally meets his parents, the mom gets extremely excited over Soprano because she wants to hug every bird. His father Noah explains that the mother Etoile is mentally immature for some reason and they have to handle her like a child. Not only that but apparently she has wiped out of her mind her own child’s existence and completely ignores Arushe even when he’s in front of her.

Arushe gets ill and passes out on the ship, and after he wakes up he tells Lied he was just jealous of Hart always beating him at everything. Even Arushe’s mother thought of Hart as her own son while ignoring Arushe. He just wanted to take Lied from Hart but says it doesn’t matter anymore and tells her to just go to Hart instead. (I didn’t even realize she had a thing for him?? 🤔) He continues to say mean stuff to her but his actions of hugging her speak otherwise and Lied refuses to back down from him. He tells her he threw his heart into the ocean and will never love anyone again. Apparently the angry spirit Mozart (who had gone out to sea to find Beethoven who had killed himself) gave Arushe his musical talent in exchange for his “heart“. The reason he made this contract is apparently his mother Etoile was supposed to die but Arushe’s took the punishment instead. Lied is able to talk with angry Mozart ghost when she nearly drowns in the men’s bath looking for Arushe lol. Arushe is also apparently able to survive thanks to the bad guy who wants to destroy all music lol. At the next performance the bad guys come to suck the sound of music out of everyone again but the BL love between Mozart and Beethoven saves the day. 😂😂

Also during this performance Etoile finally manages to remember and see her son. Apparently the reason she stopped seeing him is she thought he hated her and began to pretend he doesn’t exist. Lied tells her this isn’t true and in fact Arushe loved her a lot and had tons of presents in his room he never gave to her. So after they stop the bad guys, they decide to leave the town and its music alone… but somehow Arushe is still alive. They see his parents off but Arushe decides to stay behind with Lied and kisses her… until he says he might cheat on her and she rages at him and runs off. They have a small fight at the end cause she thinks she’s no different to him than any of his fangirls. One day she runs into a lady who runs a dress store and finds out that Arushe came to her store many times asking her to make him a dress for Lied. Once the 2 of them stop being tsunderes they confess their feelings, kiss and make up. (ღˇᴗˇ)。o♡ In the epilogue Lied plays him some of her terrible piano and he asks her to show him some affection instead. THAT SAID I still don’t understand what the living hell “my heart is at the bottom of the sea” even means. Is it figurative? But then she says she put her hand on his chest and there was “no heartbeat”. How the hell is he alive?? It’s never even explained sigh.

Hart – Hart is the orchestra conductor who was supposed to receive Beethoven’s Falga but to this day has not awakened it. Arushe feels that Hart should get a chance to perform on an instrument with everyone rather than just waving his conductor stick around. He’s very strict and serious but eventually warms up to Lied. He tells how he’s childhood friends with Arushe because his parents adopted him after his own parents died at war. (Though at first Hart thought Arushe’s parents were gonna sell him lol.) 😂 After some best couple contest, Lied and Hart visit Beethoven’s old house. Apparently it never got burned down by the Yohans. In the game they have it as Beethoven killing himself due to going deaf, but historically he was completely deaf starting when he was 40 and he did from some liver disease (likely due to alcohol abuse.) Due to lacking the Falga, whenever Hart touches an instrument no sound comes out. This is why he’s only a conductor and not a performer.

Apparently though, with her powers, Lied can hear the music in his heart. This route also reveals that Soprano’s soul kept getting reborn into different birds and one of them had met Hart when he was a child. So after the whole being able to hear his music, Lied confesses to Hart that she loves him. He rejects her telling her that she doesn’t love him, but just the “music of Beethoven” inside of him. He starts to avoid her after this, and despite her trying really hard and making him a lunchbox, he tells her he doesn’t want it and accidentally knocks all her effort on the floor (´;ω;`)ブワッ. So apparently Beethoven was enraged that he went deaf and put a curse on music and music began to hate him. Soprano had visited Beethoven several times after he went deaf. He wrote his final song but nobody was able to hear it except Soprano and apparently the song’s “spirit” was reborn inside of Lied. She is the Heiligenstadt Song. The song was representation of Beethoven’s true love for music.

Soprano didn’t want her to be in danger so he kept the truth hidden and wanted her to grow up as a normal girl. He then rages at Hart for being an ass and ignoring Lied’s feelings 😂. Hart then takes Lied to his room, apologizes for being an ass, confesses his love and they kiss. So then Anastel shows up with Relm as usual but this time Lied tries to stop him directly by telling him the message Beethoven left behind but it’s ineffective cause he won’t listen. Thanks to Hart and co. playing some fake “bad music” they manage to stop him and instead it’s revealed the true bad guy is Aizen. Aizen’s been trying to intentionally make everyone’s “darkness” go out of control so Anastel could destroy all the music from Shall. He takes Lied hostage and holds her at gunpoint but then Soprano comes torpedoing into his head and with this they knock the gun out of his hands and Lied manages to escape from his grasp. After this the police arrive and arrest him and once Arushe joins everyone he gives Hart tips on how to be rico suave….so Hart kisses Lied in front of everyone xD. Anastel disappears without explanation as usual though lol. In the end she makes him a bento again and they make plans to try to go on a date since Hart is busy with all his musical work.

Anastel – The OP movie refers to him as Anastel and he’s called the “Forgotten Apostle” or whatever so until his true name is revealed I used Anastel. Anastel was a homeless orphan child and would constantly hear and absorb the negative noise around him. He was too scared to kill himself so he lived a life of stealing to survive. One day he found a broken orgel, whose head was missing. He kept her with him and she called him her new master since her previous master had died (due to her killing him) . When Relm talks with Aizen, he says Anastel is the darkness that comes from people relating to any kind of music (like say jealousy over but being able to perform well or anger over being deaf.) Aizen also explains that Anastel has the power to destroy the bad sounding music…which is why he asked Relm to make a deal to “erase the darkness” from the musicians at the academy… akaka erase the music from Shall. So then they kidnap Lied and also she’s unable to suddenly hear sound. Due to this she was really upset because she was unable to find Soprano who went mia.

Lied has a flashback where she remembers that she and Anastel met when she was a crying baby left all alone. Soprano then found her there too and gained the ability to talk so he became her foster dad and brought her to the orphanage. Lied thanks Anastel for getting Soprano’s attention that time or she wouldn’t be alive now, even though he claims it was not his intention at the time. The next day Lied and Anastel go to Beethoven’s old house following a bird that they think might be Soprano. That’s where Lied runs into Beethoven’s spirit who tells her the truth about everything. He tells Lied about his deafness and how he kept it hidden from everyone and people distanced themselves from him. He got so depressed due to his disability and he began to hate everyone and everything. He was raised with an angry abusive alcoholic dad and a loving mother who died when he was 16. He worked to survive and get away from music and his abusive dad, but he loved music too much and got back into it. Aizen then shows up telling Anastel that he was born from the Heiligenstadt testament that Beethoven wrote filled with his musical angst. Apparently this is based on the real thing, from Wikipedia

The Heiligenstadt Testament is a letter written by Ludwig van Beethoven to his brothers Carl and Johann at Heiligenstadt (today part of Vienna) on 6 October 1802. It reflects his despair over his increasing deafness and his desire to overcome his physical and emotional ailments to complete his artistic destiny.

So anyway Beethoven asks Lied to tell Heiligenstadt (they say that’s his real name now) to not be despaired cause even if he’s the testament of despair, she’s the song oh hope. Beethoven also tells Soprano to get his butt back to Lied as well. Soprano runs into Lied and explains she temporarily lost her abilities to hear music because of musical anxiety lol. Anyway they run into Aizen who’s got his stupid gun as usual and despite Relm’s attempts to stop him he shoots and destroys her completely. Heiligenstadt gets pissed off and decides to use his powers to “destroy all sound” and he and Lied end up in musical limbo. There they meet Beethoven and see his past that when he tried to kill himself he ran from his house and fell down some cliff. He thought he was gonna drown but he was saved by some girl and her family where he wrote his Heiligenstadt Song out of his  true desire to compose. With this realization Heiligenstadt says he doesn’t wanna be alone in the a mass of horrible tone deaf sounds so I guess with magical power of love between Beethoven’s collective angst he manages to be able to sing. His song then fills Shall with music once more, Fia was able to move on from her wandering ghost self and Aizen realized he can’t beat “music” and gives up. Magically Lied and Heiligenstadt return to Shall and attend the music academy like nothing happened lol. They even ask him to write songs for the performances and he somehow gets roped in to it lol. Tl;dr the entire game revolves around Beethoven’s wangst, also his creations fall in love with each other lol.

It’s weaboo festival courtesy of Clavier

I’m not sure if this game wanted me to take it seriously, or just sit through a really extended comedy routine. The story is supposed to take place in this old timey eastern european setting but it’s hard to take it seriously when you get milf jokes and jokes about Japanese kotatsus. The art was also really stylized and it took me some time to get used to everyone’s giant forheads and giraffe necks. The game also tries to juggle dumb jokes and plot at the same time with no good balance between either. At the beginning there were too many gags in the common route that most of it flew over my head. Once you got into the individual routes you started to see somewhat of an interesting story but the major bias was for Mozart & Beethoven and it made most of the other guys’ routes seem really pointless. A lot of stuff was resolved magically without any explanation, a lot of important plot details would be brought up and never fully touched upon….but yes let’s make some more licking jokes. I played in an order recommended by a Japanese blog (whose walkthrough I also used) and I thought it was actually a great play order so I’ll post it here: Visse → Dee → Clavier → Arushe → Hart → Anastel. The play order ended up being “routes that make no sense and do not matter to the overarching plot” to “this is literally the entire plot of the game” so I recommend this order as well. Unfortunately this means my brain barely paid attention until we got to Clavier and suddenly I began to understand what the actual hell is going on and take interest in the storyline that made no sense before.

I actually found the bonus sketches to be better looking that the colored ones lol

I checked Amazon JP reviews and most people also agreed that the scenario was poorly written and they spent too much time on dumb jokes  instead of focusing on details of the plot they could have expanded on. It’s actually kind of a shame since by the end of the game I really ended up liking both Arushe and Hart the most and even took a liking to some of the sub characters. So overall once again they had a great set of ingredients, but they assigned someone who has no idea how to bake to put it all into a cake so the game ended up being a confusing musical mess. Hopefully if Extend ever produces another game, they will hire the scenario/writers from Sidekicks since that was their top tier release.


13 thoughts on “Otome Game Review: Heiligenstadt Lied”

  1. Oh, I really really liked the artwork for this one and most of the characters have interested me, so maybe I’m gonna play it in the future. Great review as always. Btw, are you planning to play Psychedelica?

  2. Yea I personally liked the sketches way more than the colored versions…
    but you are right it was a whiplash of bad comedy jokes and then they’d try to cohesively put it together in the end of each rouet

  3. On one hand, I’m getting classi9 flashbacks, and I really adored that manga despite it’s rather strange premise of making a reverse harem comprising of famous musicians as Bishounens in a music school.

    On the other, unlike classi9 that balanced the more serious, comedy and romance aspects in a nice way, this one feels like it’s kind of trying to give me whiplash with how things go, or maybe that’s just me.

    Regardless, I’ll say I like the artstyle, mostly because it reminds of me of some shoujo light novels I follow. That uncolored picture you posted reinforced it

  4. yea it took time to get used to the art but eventually it didn’t really bother me. I think the whole premise of musical powers is actually really cool but they just don’t focus on it enough. too much time wasted on dumb stand up comedy style gags and then by the time you finally start seeing the meat of the plot, the route ends.

  5. The art style is very, whats the word “unique” lol sort of following the doujinshi style. Also, the plot reminds me a lot of the manga Classi 9 where all the guys have some sort of connection to legendary musicians. Sad to hear that you didn’t like it (or more like it wasn’t good) Good luck on the next otoge!

  6. tiny machinegun was actually written by someone else, this person only did the character profiling according to vndb… and I actually liked txm lol. but yeah while the characters were ok it was so just sloppily put together and focusing on the wrong things 😞

  7. Too bad about the writer. I wanted to buy this because I like their work in drama cds but games with various ends don’t really seem like their thing since I also didn’t really enjoy Tiny x Machinegun. I guess I’ll be sticking to their stuff released from IM Label. Anyway, thanks for the final thoughts. Nice to know the characters are at least likable, if anything.

  8. Here’s to hoping the next otoge is much better! I wish this one had done better than it had since the art style was so different, but then again I should know better after Reines des kusogoe lol

  9. i mean if you just wanna see a game fulla comedy gags and don’t care about the plot you might enjoy it then

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