One fantastic thing about video games, or interactive mediums in general, is how easy it is to slip into the shoes of a character. Want to be an ass today? Put on Kratos’ sandle… boot… things… Whatever those are. Want to be an emo young adult that has the entire world’s fate resting on his shoulders? Put on your shoes made of belts. Even if these characters have independent personalities and clear identities, when you talk about aspects of them determined by interactivity, it’s easy to say: “I did this.” Unfortunately, it can be hard to find some variety between all dem vidya gaem shoes. However, recently I stepped into one pair of shoes in particular that I haven’t worn before: A set of heels.
Princess Debut is the game, and the Nintendo DS is the portal that leads someone such as myself, a 21-year-old manchild, into a world seen through the eyes of a little girl… Or at least what Japanese developer CAVE believes that world would look like. The title is essentially a babbeh’s first visual novel, giving you locations to visit, choices to make and, most importantly, some smexy hot men to date. The choices you’re able to make with character interactions really enhance the ‘I’m in her shoes’ aspect of the game. There are some simple Elite Beat Agents / Ouendan style dancing sequences, but they are just filler between you and your ultimate goal of getting yourself a fine piece o’ man meat.
Princess Debut was totally, probably, maybe, not really made with my demographic in mind. Being aimed at a young audience, the characters don’t have much depth and the main character is pretty much a generic “ like, totally yeah, super cool,” kind of girl. Given the type of game it is, it doesn’t need some in-depth characters with real emotions or something like that. If anything, it’s more enjoyable filling in the blanks yourself. For example in situations where some fine lookin’ prince man is hanging out with some other princess chicks. There’s the option to “call out to him” to interrupt their meeting with a simple, “hey guys, what’s up?” But in the correct mind set, “call out to him” changes to “slap dem bitches off my man,” where you proceed to cockblock those princesses and steal the manly prize for yourself.
Sometimes given the power to be in shoes of others can also reveal some awful things about yourself. In Princess Debut I was dating one guy, and then he stopped showing up to dance practice. I got frustrated, so I just went off and started cheating on him with another man to satisfy my dancing needs. Later, you find out he injured his leg but didn’t want to tell you, so I did end up feeling kind of bad in the end. (Pro-tip from an experienced fake little girl: be honest, men!)
So next time you go to buy yourself a nice pair of video game shoes at your local retailer, or through online means, maybe consider looking for something a bit different from the tried and true main characters. Who knows, maybe you too will find joy in being a little girl.