“Quick-Change” by EmSun.

“[A] short narrative about a trans kid making new friends, getting a crush, getting in trouble, and joining the school musical in the extraordinarily gendered hell that is (private, christian) middle school. [The game is] made for trans kids, gay kids, musical theater kids, private school kids, and anybody who was once one of those kids.”

Dani is the newest arrival to the private Christian middle school, which is the center of the cute visual novel “Quick-Change”. Besides the typical problems of a ‘newcomer’ in the middle of the year like getting used to the teachers and building up a circle of friends, Dani has some more personal issues to deal with. But with the help of his new pals – the hothead Kyra and the kind-hearted Sophia -, everything is possible.

Dani is unsure about his gender identity. His mother still treats him as a girl, as she wants him to wear skirts and dresses, even though he clearly feels uncomfortable in them. Moreover, Kyra and Sophia realize how amazingly Dani can sing, so they kind of pressure him to take part in the audition for the upcoming school musical. That is not a problem per se, as Dani really likes acting and singing, but then he actually gets one of the leading roles: The male one. That forces Dani to finally come to grips with himself and his identity.

Overall, “Quick-Change” is a beautifully designed and humorous game with an absolutely adorable ending. While there are no real interactive elements in it besides clicking the left mouse button to advance the dialogues, making it more some kind of digital comic or kinetic novel, it still feels refreshing. I smiled so often because of this experience, and who knows, maybe someone of you will find some hardly needed joy in it, too. [PLAY]