There is a poem called "The Red Butterfly"
A group of butterflies, flying towards the light.
Towards the fires of hell.... But the butterflies are unaware of that.
And then a single butterfly separates itself from the group
The butterfly realizes the danger and challenging the fires of hell, dives courageously in the blaze
His wings catch fire, his body burns
But the butterly keeps on flying
Until his body disappears into the fires of hell....
The poem has such a scene.
"Detective Jinguuji Saburou DS: The Red Butterfly"
I don't know about other writers, but I need background music to write. Preferably vocal-less (or else I'll sing along). And so music from the Tantei Jinguuji Saburou ("Detective Jinguuji Saburou") series is often the companion to the sound of my fingers running over the keyboard. And it certainly isn't a bad companion. Jazz is of course the prefered choice for hardboiled detective fiction / noir fiction and Tantei Jinguuji Saburou luckily has great jazzy soundtracks (though PC classic Grim Fandango has some outrageously fantastic tracks too).
Tantei Jinguuji Saburou DS: Akai Chou ("Detective Jinguuji Saburou DS: The Red Butterfly") is the latest entry in the long, long running detective adventure game series. I'll won't go into too much detail here about the basic settings etcetera, as I already wrote about it earlier. I do want to make a point about that Tantei Jinguuji Saburou is in fact one of the longest running game series ever, having started in 1987. It's really one of the big names and even though the format has changed a lot in all these years (with a considerable amount of Jinguuji games appearing for mobile phones nowadays), the basic premise is still intact: a hard-boiled detective adventure game (with hints of puzzle plots), often strongly connected with social phenomena in the Japanese society. Hai to Diamond ("Ashes and Diamonds") for example featured the problem of city renewal and the involvement of yakuza, while Shiroi Kage no Shoujo ("The White Shadow of the Girl") was strongly connected with coin-locker babies. The game series may have had a very long run, but the stories are often comtemporary and a joy to work through.
Like the previous iterations for the Nintendo DS, Tantei Jinguuji Saburou DS: Akai Chou consists of five scenerios that were originally released for mobile phones (mobile phone series 16 ~ 20) and one original scenario (15th entry in the main series). As always, the mobile phone games are relatively short, but are often surprisingly interesting, filled with contemporary problems. In Tsubaki no Yukue ("The Whereabouts of Tsubaki"), Jinguuji is asked to find a net-friend of a boy. The boy had been refusing to go to school because of bullying, but this net-friend had slowly been encouraging him to go back to school. The net-friend has suddenly disappeared though and now Jinguuji has to find a person whose name or face he doesn't know. Akenai Yoru ni ("On a Never-Ending Night") is strongly connected with foreign workers in Japan and the way they try to make money to send back to their home countries. The story switches between Jinguuji and inspector Kumano of the Yodobashi police station, a narrative trick first used in the series in the fourth game Toki no sugiyuku mama ni ("As time passes..."), but is still very effective when used with the right story. Kadan no Itte ("The Decisive Move") is more straight-forward story, with a shougi player being blackmailed to lose an important game. His daughter's life is at stake, but the player has one big character flaw: whenever he starts playing shougi, he forgets everything outside the board. When he starts playing, he only thinks of winning. Rensa suru Noroi ("The Linked Curse") was actually the first game I had bought on my mobile phone in Japan and is a pretty neat story where Jinguuji is hired to investigate the death of a young occult reporter. Minutes before he died in a motor-accident, he had called his girlfriend saying it seems he was cursed. Finally, Nakiko no Shouzou ("Portrait of a Deceased Child") starts with a very strange request: Jinguuji is asked to take care of a little boy, but the boy should't be alive actually as his funeral was on TV just a few days ago.
Gyakuten Kenji 2). The titular Red Butterfly was a bomb-terrorist from 20 years ago who fought against the development plans of a city. He was never caught and nowadays has quite a fandom who admire his fight against the corrupt companies. Skip to the present, where the politician Saeki running his election campaign has received a threat call by someone calling himself the Red Butterfly. The only thing the Red Butterfly asks: "reveal the truth". Jinguuji is asked by Saeki's daughter (who is also his secretary) to investigate the case and uncovers a plot that is connected to the events of 20 years ago.
I really should look for the novels one of these days....
Original Japanese title(s): 『探偵神宮寺三郎ＤＳ： 赤い蝶』 / 「椿のゆくえ」 / 「明けない夜に」 / 「果断の一手」 / 「連鎖する呪い」 / 「亡き子の肖像」 / 「赤い蝶」