38 people found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.0 hrs last two weeks / 0.0 hrs on record
Posted: Jul 14, 2017 @ 8:58am
Updated: Jul 17, 2017 @ 10:36am

"To be thoughtless is to be blind."
—The Lion's Song, Episode 4

In one word, The Lion's Song: Episode 4 is "sublime".

This review is very special and cathartic to me. It contains mild spoilers for the game's closure and covers elements of the previous episodes as well — again, with mild spoilers only. It also contains its share of artistic terms and historical information.

The Lion's Song is set mostly in the prestigious "City of Music", Vienna, during the early years of the 20th century. Throughout the first three episodes, the players are waltzed along streets filled with music, fanfare and the bohemian life while following the lives of three people: a struggling violinist, a budding artist and a strong-willed mathematician. Vienna is what connects them all through its awe-inspiring artistic circles and distinguished societies. The other side of the coin, however, is the city's cold-blooded scrutiny, which seems to put each of the characters to test as the story flows.

Episode Four – Closure
The fourth and last episode arrives to connect all those lives together in the form of a journalist. Four men find themselves in the same compartment of a train ride into the unknown. As they share their personal tales with one another and wonder about the life they left behind, they realize there is more to what connects them than a train ride. One of the men then pulls out a newspaper and players and characters alike are quick to realize the connections formed therein and to draw them as far back as Episode One – Silence.

As the train ride stops to a halt, it is made clear that the inevitable, that which loomed over the hearts and minds of Vienna and the world, has arrived: the First World War.

Our journalist protagonist then steps out of the train and into the shoes of a Lieutenant. His three colleagues plead to him that he goes forth and writes about his men, despite his new-found role as a leader. As his old life is left behind, his new-found writing career, his duty as writer as well as a leader, is set.

Indeed the culmination of all those prosperous young lives and budding passions is the cold-blooded War. However, its arrival in the game is set with such tactfulness and purpose, that one can't help but see it as means of closure rather than unavoidable pain or disturbing rage. As the War seems to change the lives of all those characters forever, players are faced with their own decisions — that matter! — and are given the means to wonder about the impacts of wars and the undying hope for a better future that naturally lives in the hearts of the young and talented youth.

Personal impressions
I have to say that, by the time the final cut-scene was over, I could barely see the screen amidst my tears. I waited so long to review The Lion's Song in cowardly fear that it wouldn't live up to my expectations. That it would stumble and fall along a vast flight of stairs right as it was trying to ascend to the last step. I cherished this title so much I feared that, as has happened before with other titles, it would disappoint me with a final decision that set aflame all I had done before.

The Lion's Song did no such things. It not only elevated the already high views I had of it, but also laced all its episodes together in a cozy bundle of fantastic writing, outstanding art and an unbelievably smooth flow.

Like a writer that finally reaches the last page of their book and closes it with a satisfying thud, The Lion's Song: Episode 4, instead of smiting players' hopes with the arrival of the war, uses it as means of instigating hope and shedding a light into an even brighter, albeit bittersweet, future than the one it came to originally paint.

Like an opera in 4 acts, The Lion's Song reaches its breathtaking Grand Finale with Closure which, much in the same manner as operas, offers a dramatic and tragic end without ever lowering its standards.

With its three-dimensional characters, its detailed script, its array of meaningful options and routes, its charming and superb art and its eloquent flow, the picture The Lion's Song paints, in the end, is a dramatic chiaroscuro that handles its blacks and its whites with strokes close to those of a genius.

Without further ado, I have to say that The Lion's Song and all of its chapters receive a solid and emphatic recommendation from me, especially if one is entangled in the world of the arts or seeking a tale that is told not only with silver-tongued phrases, but a tenderhearted tone.

17.07 edit: typos. Thanks, Jack!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny Award
< >
☽ Coraline Castell ☾ Dec 28, 2019 @ 7:14am 
@perfectra woah ty so much for stopping by and for the compliment! That's super kind. Have a fun year's end (: :butterfly:
perfectra Dec 26, 2019 @ 7:21pm 
What a wonderful review!
☽ Coraline Castell ☾ Sep 4, 2017 @ 7:51am 
@Trevi thank you kindly! This is one of the reviews I'm proudest of. A gentle word or two from kind strangers like you is what keeps fueling my love for writing, even in Steam-review form. Wishing you a great week! :butterfly:
Trevi Sep 3, 2017 @ 7:24am 
such a great review!
monroe Jul 14, 2017 @ 9:18pm 
☽ Coraline Castell ☾ Jul 14, 2017 @ 7:43pm 
@Anton Haha! Indeed, dear. I sometimes feel the same. I'm never against negative feedback as long as it is helpful. A mere "thumbs down" doesn't help me improve.

I'm glad, however, that someone like you thinks this is good. Means a lot! :butterfly:
monroe Jul 14, 2017 @ 6:19pm 
"9 of 10 people (90%) found this review helpful"

lol always someone's who's salty out there going: "I'm gonna click No on this and feel special, just because I can"
☽ Coraline Castell ☾ Jul 14, 2017 @ 11:07am 
@Daybreak thank you, my friend! It means a lot when peopel stop by to drop some love. :butterfly:
Daybreak Jul 14, 2017 @ 10:24am 
Lovely review! :moonflower: