Rosenkreuzstilette

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High renaissance was never this sexy.


Der Vorhang ist aufgegangen, wer weiß, was noch passieren wird. [1]

In the past, the Holy Empire and Orthodox Church persecuted magic-users, or Magi, wherever they went. One man, a magus by the name of Rosenkreuz, led eight disciples into a battle for their freedom and rights. The battle, which would later be called the Holy War, was long and epic, and cost Rosenkreuz his life. His dream, however, was achieved, as the Empire accepted Magi as a new branch of their military, called Rosenkreuzstilette, or RKS for short.

In time, however, history repeated itself, as Commander of RKS Graf Michael Sepperin (or sometimes Zeppelin) ordered a strike against the Empire. Spiritia Rosenberg, a member of RKS, was away when the order was issued, and was shocked when her closest friend and fellow Magus Freudia Neuwahl told her of the commander's plan as she was carrying it out.

Spiritia takes it upon herself to quell the rebellion alone and restore peace...

Rosenkreuzstilette or Blades of the Rose Cross is a Doujin platformer made by [erka:es] that is heavily inspired by the Mega Man series. The game is notable for having sufficiently good art and music to distinguish itself from other Mega Man clones, as well as toning down the Nintendo Hard difficulty typically associated with them. It also has a small, but growing English-speaking community. An English translation patch is available here.

A sequel is in the works entitled Rosenkreuzstilette Freudenstachel, which features Freudia Neuwahl as the protagonist.

Now it has a character sheet. All character-related tropes go there.


Tropes used in Rosenkreuzstilette include:


Raimund: "THE MYSTIC SWORDS OF THE SEYFARTH CLAN POSSESS SENTIENCE. IF ONE IGNORES ITS WILL, ONE CAN NEVER HARNESS GROLLSCHWERT'S TRUE POWER."
Grolla: "..."
Raimund: "IF YOUR BLADE IS NO MORE THAN A TOOL... AN INSTRUMENT OF DESTRUCTION... THEN YOU AND THE SEYFARTH LEGACY WILL MEET YOUR END THIS NIGHT."

  • Bittersweet Ending: In Grollschwert, when Grolla is about to finish Iris once and for all, Iris self-destructs her palace and Grolla escapes on her own, afterwards watching from a nearby cliff as the palace collapses and Iris escapes in her capsule. She then returns home to place a wreath of flowers honoring her grandfather at his grave.
    • The first main game's ending is also part bittersweet, with Iris self-destructing her palace and escaping in her capsule, and Tia, having been saved from being crushed with the palace by Talos, wondering afterwards what happened to Iris and hoping that she learned her lesson. Nevertheless, she still feels good about her victory and happily reunites with her friends, making the rest of it happy.

Tia: I wonder what happened to Iris...
Lilli: I don't know, but she definitely learned her lesson, right?
Tia: ...I hope so.

  • Boss Rush: It is a Mega Man clone after all...
  • Boss Dissonance: Of both types. Liebea and Luste are surprisingly easy compared to the effort it takes to get to them whereas Freudia, Trauare, and Sichte are slightly more challenging.
  • Bottomless Pits
  • Charged Attack: Naturally, as this is a Mega Man clone.
  • Church Militant
  • Convection, Schmonvection: Neither bubbling lava, nor freezing ice, nor the cold and distinct thinness of the air in the sky will stop Spiritia Rosenberg on her most holy quest. Nor will they stop Grolla and later Freudia.
  • Creepy Cool Crosses: As many as you would expect in a game called Rosenkreuzstilette.
  • Crowning Music of Awesome: One of the main draws of the game.
  • Darker and Edgier: Grolla's side-game, Rosenkreuzstilette Grollschwert, can be considered much darker than the main original game, as it has a Downer Beginning, shows Iris to be even more cruel (especially towards Grolla) than in the main game itself, plus Grolla gets a rather dramatic moment where she becomes both infuriated and deeply hurt by fighting the undead form of her own mentor. It also has a Bittersweet Ending.
  • Dark Magical Girl: The Dark Magi of the Black Cross.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: In Tia's case, defeating her friends in combat means that she is able to convince them that the rebellion is going to be less than worth it. She ends up being right for different reasons than she initially thought. At least Grolla's closer to the truth.
  • Dem Bones: The majorities of the enemies found throughout the games are skeletons and skulls and things made of bones, and one of the sub-bosses is a giant tower of skulls with a glowing-eyed horned skull on top of it found in the first game's version of Grolla's stage as well as the version in Rosenkreuzstilette Freudenstachel's Comiket 75 Trial version.
  • Development Hell: Freudenstachel had been delayed several times ever since its inception (whether for personal or technical reasons), a fact made worse since [erka:es] would only release it at Comiket. At least they release demos....
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Iris is born with the legendary Rosenkreuz's magical prowess and the abundance of knowledge he acquired over the course of his life, which more than qualified her to take her place at the pinnacle of the world. As such, she claims herself being a god. And then Spiritia (and Grolla) punched her out.
  • Disney Death: In Arcade Mode, defeating each of the eight main bosses pretty much causes them to explode in a style similar to that of Mega Man, and the same thing happens to their Golem doppelgangers in Iris Stage 3 regardless of whether it's in Arcade or Story Mode (while in Story Mode, the main bosses simply teleport away instead of exploding after the dialogues end). In the ending for Tia's story in the first game, they're shown to be alive and well, and they all happily reunite with Tia.
    • Not to mention, Freu Got Better earlier than the rest in Arcade Mode when she performed her Big Damn Heroes moment to save Tia from Iris' attack.
  • Downer Beginning: Rosenkreuzstilette Grollschwert, the first game's side-game, gets one. It starts with Iris' Villain Opening Scene where she shows just how nasty she is by killing a priest just for laughs. As soon as Grolla walks in having overheard her plans to have RKS fight against the Empire for her entertainment, not only does she get heavily damaged by her attack, but when she interrogates her on what she's plotting and whether she's been deceiving the organization, she even gets humiliated by her Wounded Gazelle Gambit-- Iris pretends she's an innocent girl when Sichte walks in, causing her to order Grolla to lower her weapon and giving her no choice but to retreat. This sets off the main plot for Grollschwert's story.
  • Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors
  • Faceless Eye: The Deviled Egg as well as the beholder observing the fight against it. Oh, and the Peterchy-like enemies in Freudenstachel's opening stage.
  • Fairy Companion: Eventually, everyone who has their own entry in the series is going to have a Fairy Companion.
  • Fantastic Racism: A long time ago, Magi are often prosecuted by the Holy Empire without good reason; they're often called as "demons", with their leader Rosenkreuz being called the Devil himself. Then, he sacrificed himself to the Holy Empire to create peace. It worked, and the Magi were even given a special place in the Holy Empire's military, called RKS. And then, not long before the first game starts, it's said that the Magi prosecution restarted again.
    • It later turns out that the restarting of the Magi persecution wasn't really the case. The Empire actually feared Iris because she was manipulating RKS into launching a new coup against the Empire out of belief that they were the target of persecution again, just for fun. With that, the Empire actually wanted Iris dead. Karl also made an attempt on her life because he could see through Iris' mask to the greatly villainous Magnificent Bastard she was - which of course led Iris to have her dad imprison him because He Knows Too Much. No one else other than Grolla knew of the disastrous results that would come if Iris wasn't stopped, and even Iris being "kidnapped" didn't help.
    • And after Iris' defeat at the end of the first game, a few months passed leading to the events of Rosenkreuzstilette Freudenstachel, where a new Dark Magus organization called the Black Cross appeared launching its own coup against the Empire out of belief that it was witch-hunting Magi - that while plotting a mysterious agenda at the same time.
  • Five-Man Band: The organization of RKS.
  • Fun with Acronyms: Pronouning "RKS" as if it were German makes the syllables err-ka-es.
  • Garden of Evil: Iris's Garden of Time and Space, the third-to-last level.
  • Giant Spider: A boss at the end of Iris Stage 1 that has the same name as a certain Mega Man X boss: surprise, Bosspider.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: Most sub-bosses and bosses.
  • Graphics Induced Super Deformed: Done intentionally to mimic the style of, surprise, Mega Man
  • Gratuitous German: Most of the series, really. In particular, the signature attacks of all the Magi and the names of all the stages. It's possible that erka:es itself qualifies.
  • Gravity Screw: One of the castle levels has flipping gravity, not unlike Gravity Man's level in Mega Man 5.
  • Happy Ending: The first main game combines this with a Bittersweet Ending, as Tia wonders what happened to Iris and hopes that she learned her lesson from the defeat she landed her with thanks to The Power of Friendship (after which Iris had already self-destructed the palace and escaped in an attempt to crush her too only for Talos to save her), and otherwise still feels good about her victory and at the end happily reunites with her colleagues.
  • Have a Nice Death: Each individual stage has its own game over screen and some of them are even shout outs in their own right.
    • Actually, all of them are Shout Outs. Furthermore (more apparent in the English patch for those not familiar with Japanese) if you lose all your lives in the very last stage, the game calls you a Completely Incompetent Half-Wit. Seriously.
    • One of these actually helps you somewhat. The game over screen for the Thanatos stage is a shout-out to the game over screen from Shadowgate. If you bother taking a look at the inventory, you can see two items besides the torch: Sword and Harness - Which is referencing the weaknesses of the stage boss, Grollscwhert and the Klageharnisch.
  • High Altitude Battle: The battle against Luste takes place on a falling temple of some kind, and the final battle against Iris is above the clouds as dawn breaks.
  • Holy Roman Empire: The setting of the game, though it's just called the Holy Empire here.
  • Fundamentally Female Cast
  • Meaningful Name: In spades. Lampshaded by Iris just before the final battle.
  • Meaningless Lives: In a way. Energy tanks carry over and respawn when you continue. There's nothing stopping you from collecting the energy tank in a stage and jumping off a cliff just to collect it again.
  • Mega Manning: Yep. Still a Mega Man clone.
  • Mildly Military: Even though the RKS is supposed to be a military organization of the Holy Empire, they never do much in the way of military duties. The Blades seem more like a special sect for Magi than a military.
  • Mood Whiplash: Trauare and Schwer-Muta's theme songs contrast with their confrontation songs greatly. One gets Darker and Edgier, the other the other way around.
  • Nintendo Hard: Even if it's been toned down by comparison, it still is.
    • And then there's Grollschwert. You know it's bad when the game warns you how hard it is before you get to the title screen.
    • Freudenstachel seems to be actively trying to make up for the lower difficulty in the first game by toning it back up 3 times as much.
  • Ominous Latin Chanting: The songs "Dark Purple Moonlight", "Dark Purple Moon Dance of the Moon Rebirth", and "Sinner" feature these in the form of Ethereal Choirs rather than latin words.
  • Our Demons Are Different: The Behemoth in Freudenstachel's opening stage as well as Astaroth and Lucifer in Grolla's Freudenstachel stage.
  • Our Ghosts Are Different: The Poltergeist at the end of Sepperin Stage 2.
  • Password Save: As another part of its nod to the Blue Bomber.
  • Rain of Blood: The bloody rainstorm near the end of Grolla's Freudenstachel stage.
  • Rapunzel Hair: Most of the female characters all have hair that reaches at least their knees.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Rink and Lecht, respectively. Also Zorne and Trau.
  • Scenery Porn / Scenery Gorn: One of the other main draws of the game.
  • Shout-Out: Tons, from the design of the stages to boss fights with Graf Michael Sepperin and Raymund Seyfarth, both of which have been heavily inspired by Castlevania: Rondo of Blood.
  • Speed Run: Did we mention this was a Mega Man clone?
  • Spell My Name with an "S": In the fan translation, the surname of Sepperin is changed over to Zeppelin. Zorne, Graf Michael Sepperin, and even Iris were named after Count Ferdinand von Graf Zeppelin, after all.
  • Spikes of Doom
  • Stealth Pun: Several dozens, if not hundreds, of these can be found in the English fan translation, with over half a dozen in the pause menu alone.
  • Tears of Blood: The statue at the end of Sepperin Stage 2. Also, the stage title for said stage is "Bloody Tears", named after a certain Castlevania song.
  • The Backwards R: Used literally as the RKS logo.
  • Theme Naming: The first name of (almost) everyone is a very mangled version of a emotion in German, while their last name comes from various German board game designers (e.g. Klaus Teuber of Settlers of Catan fame).
  • Thirteen Is Unlucky: If you choose to start a playthrough from the Opening stage in the first main game, then Sepperin Stage 4 will become the thirteenth stage, which makes perfect sense as, after Tia beats Graf Sepperin, Iris pulls off a You Have Outlived Your Usefulness on him and then attacks and fatally injures Tia, giving her a Heroic BSOD as she gleefully explains the whole truth behind the war and its motives just before Freu makes a non-lethal Heroic Sacrifice to save Tia in a Big Damn Heroes moment.
  • Translation Correction: In the Fan Translation. Partially, at least.
  • Turns Red: Most, if not all of the bosses.
  • Wasted Song: The song "Dark Purple Moon" (Grolla/Raymund Confrontation) is over five minutes long without any looping, but it only plays during two relatively short dialogue sequences.
  • Weaksauce Weakness: The developers haven't forgotten about Metal Man's being killed in one hit by his own weapon while designing Luste.
  • Weird Moon: Some of the games' backgrounds contain a red or blue moon. Like the red one in Grolla's Freudenstachel stage.
  • The Wiki Rule: Yep.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle
  1. The curtain has risen; who can say what has yet to unfold?