Published on August 24th, 2023 | by S. Masoud Kazemi
The Cosmic Wheel Sisterhood Review
Summary: The Cosmic Wheel Sisterhood is an amazing visual novel that will leave you with some existential questions to ponder.
Imagine if you could alter the fate of any person you encounter. Not in simple terms, but in vast practical terms where you could determine or to be precise predict what happens to them. When they will die, how they will die, or when they will rule the country or become the owner of the biggest company in the world. That is basically what you do in The Cosmic Wheel Sisterhood but with Tarot Cards.
As much as I don’t believe in any of these tricks and cards, I do love it when it is used properly in storytelling and I have to confess that the design on each of these cards is superb. So it was a nice experience to create and design my own set of Tarot Cards. That is the main gameplay of The Cosmic Wheel Sisterhood.
After Furtuna spends two centuries out of her one-millennium exile punishment, she is done and decides to conjure a Behemoth. Behemoths are powerful beings of the universe that can only appear if a witch conjures them. Furtuna conjures Abramar, a Behemoth that spends a long time in slumber. After Abramar is conjured, it decides to help Furtuna create her own set of Tarot Cards.
In order to create a card you need elements of fire, earth, wind, and water. You will gain more elements by using Tarot Card to predict the future of a person or explore their past. The cool part of creating a Tarot Card is that you can select the background or Sphere as it is called in the game, select the card’s Arcane, and lastly the Symbol. Combining different things will result in different cards that each have multiple meanings.
So you can make a card that is too good, that is too bad, or a mix of both. Since the cosmic has its own balance I mostly went with mixing them and the results are quite unique that motivates the player to do more and play more. Since the game is basically a visual novel with some mini-game it is unrealistic to expect engaging and fantastic gameplay.
Although, the conversations are quite engaging. You will go through some existential thoughts or even an existential crisis once you finish the game. While the game does use fantasy-like creatures and witches to tell its story, there is still some truth in all of it.
What the characters say and the direction of the story at the beginning has its essence of profoundness but not too much to overwhelm the player. Although as you progress through the story and reveal a few secrets in the game, that’s when you start to question many things. You will have some existential thoughts when you reach that section.
And it’s not a simple existential thought, it’s will be a cosmic existential thought. Are we truly free and have a saying in what happens to us and around us? Or everything is just based on the roll of the dice and pure luck? Or is it a dream that we cannot control as Alan Watts say but must enjoy its good moments, endure the difficulties, and learn from them?
We do live on a rather tiny planet compared to the size of the cosmos. Are our lives really matter when you zoom out and see how tiny we are in the bigger picture? What is the purpose of what we do if won’t be alive in the next century when our planet, our home won’t exist in a couple of more centuries? These are the type of thoughts you will encounter when you play the Cosmic Wheel.
And the game encourages players to not push these questions away, but rather dwell on them. While we won’t find an ultimate answer to those questions, the least we can do is try to find what makes us happy. To use Albert Camus’s words, find something that will make life worth living through all of its difficulties.
And the game is not just about existence and finding meaning. Its talks about almost anything good and horrible about life. It talks about love, passion, helping each other, and war, famine, and exile. The game truly has a cosmic balance and it is a rollercoaster of emotions that has cosmic existential philosophy in itself. You can interpret the story of The Cosmic Wheel however you want, and it would be right.
One of the major reasons I dwelled on these thoughts while experiencing The Cosmic Wheel was the music. The soundtracks of this game are just magical. There is a sense of melancholy mixed with tenderness and nostalgia that makes it truly out of this world. The music in this game truly affects your experience which is how it should be.
The Cosmic Wheel Sisterhood is quite an astonishing visual novel that anyone could experience. There are some mini-games that will break the repetitiveness of a visual novel. On the other hand, the story and characters, especially the topic the game dwells on and the conversation with characters are very profound. And the wonderful music of the game doubles the effect of the story.