I've just finished the first playthrough of this game. And oh my dear god I'm so in love with it I can't even begin to put words on it!
I usually comment only after I'm done playing all the routes I wanted to play - and yes, sometimes I'm only planning on playing one route - but this time I'll make an exception and comment after only one route, even if I'm going to play all of them. The main reason is that the game is very long and very emotion loaded. Because of that, I need to take a break from it in order to let my feelings and my heart cool down before I play again, or I'll feel too guilty for doing another character's route haha!
Before I go deeper into the review, I'll start with non spoilery more technical things. Well, I've seen people tell that before, but the grammar needs some work. Now, since english isn't my language either, it didn't really bother me or hinder the experience, and I wouldn't be able to correct it anyway (I'm pretty sure I do my fair share or grammatical errors too haha). The art style is not really up my alley, but it's pretty nicely done and the characters are quite expressive, wich is the most important thing. Their designs are also lovely. And the music is gorgeous! I know it's freeware, but I really like the selection - it fits the mood perfectly!
And now, the part that contains SPOILERS! Be warned if you're reading this even if you're not the dev nor have finished the game!
So, I've decided to start with Casimir! And I must say the choice was difficult! Xander was not an option since I've avoided looking too in depth at the screencaps here, and I didn't read the comments before playing, so I didn't really know who was the fourth character. Because of that, I've decided for a first playthrough one of the boys from the party would be the best. But honestly, even having decided that, it was still hard as hell, because I love them all! So yeah, since I've decided to play Lysandra as a nice girl, I've tried to be the nicest possible to all of them anyway, and make my decision with the flow of the story... And I ended up getting naturally drawn to Casimir. I guess even if I love them all, he's really the one and only that would by my character type. And oh dear, he's so noble, gentle and cute at the same time - he's an awesome character and a great prince and I love him to no end haha!
I guess Casimir IS my favorite character, but it's hard to tell before doing the other routes. I mean, I'm pretty sure I understand Arantis and Osario fairy well now, and I'm certain I won't have any trouble getting their good endings now (as Casimir is my type, his route was very easy for me even on the first try), but it's never the same when you "understand" the character versus when you actually do their routes, so yeah. And then... we have Xander... and oh dear, he's so great too. And he broke my heart so hard... I'm pretty sensitive to amnesia in fiction - it's often such a pet peeve for me that it already happened I simply didn't play a game because amnesia was too important in it. But when I choose to play, I get easily very emotional. And well, I had the feeling I could almost feel myself Xanders pain at seeing how his one and only love doesn't remember him, and how she now loves another man. He literally made me cry even when I wasn't actually doing his route. And making Lysandra tell him she's sorry but she now loves another man was one of the most difficult choices I had to do in videogames. Ever. It had to be done, but the pain... oh the pain...
I guess I have to leave Xander's route and do it last. The guilt would be too big if I did another route after doing his, so yeah... I guess Arantis will be the next one. I don't know if I like him or Osario better, but his route seems slighly harder - may as well do it next.
Speaking of difficulty, I must say I LOVE the amount of choices the game offers! You did a great job with allowing the player to shape Lysandra's mindset and opinions about life, people, love and so on. It was sooo enjoyable. And also, it allowed to really shape the relationships and interactions between the characters as please. The characters really feel alive thanks to that! But at the same time, it didn't make the game too difficult wich would have been annoying since it's so long. Congrats on that!
Another thing I really enjoyed was the fact you didn't put any "secondary romances". I really dislike when characters end up with someone else if you don't do their routes. Some games do that, but to me it feels like in the end, the route you do doesn't matter since an NPC will be able to do exactly the same as you for the character, in the end. And also, the game's very title "Second Chance". I'm genuinely happy the title isn't only about Lysandra's second chance at life after the amnesia, but also about everyone else's second chances. Casimir who lost his first love, Arantis who was betrayed by the one he loved, Osario who was only used by the person he wanted to notice him and respect him... And of course Xander who already lost Lysandra once.
Okay... I feel like I'm writing a book about your game at this point haha! I think I should stop now!
So yeah, to conclude this gigantic comment, I want to thank you again for making this game. I really enjoyed every bit of it, and it may be one of my favorite otome games ever. I'll probably comment after playing each other route, so expect more from me! Though I'll probably get more into depths about the routes once I'm done with all of them. It would be better.
Anyway, thank you again for the wonderful experience!