Seeing the same scenario played twice with different players was really interesting. saxikath and I did that with Live-Action Clue once upon at time, but that was partly a way of debugging the rules of the game. Given that some of the characters are heavily based on Utena characters, thekinginyellow noted early on that it was like watching the TV series of Utena and then movie of Utena. Variations on a theme.
The players are mostly trying to find their true loves by the end of the game. Unless they're just trying to screw things up for potential true loves. I am simply fascinated that essentially the same pairings ended up happening this time around, though in some cases for different reasons. Emergent TDaTD behavior? If it happens a third time I'll be inclined to suggest that the GM is wrong about who should end up together. ;-)
Now I dissect the end games some. LARPfic! No, no, not really. That would be truly scary.
So, the Lords except for the Prince have no choice in the end game. They can woo the Ladies, but in the end the Ladies choose. I can *almost* reconstruct the sequence of choices for each game from the photos and knowing which flowers I delivered. If anyone can fill in the gaps, let me know.
In the first game, Lady Kassirin chose Lord Selle first.
Then two things happened, I'm not sure which first: Lady Clara chose Lord Kieron, and Lady Viridian chose Lord Samangelov. Between them, Lady Elia chose Lord Armster. (So either Kieron, Armster, Samangelov or Samangelov, Armster, Kieron. Given the characters, I expect Clara got to choose Kieron first.)
Then Lady Gedra chose Lord Mirabilis.
Lady Jade chose the Prince, and he accepted.
[EDIT: or not... lemme check my notes again]
[EDIT May 27]In the second game, Lady Elia chose Lord Armster.
Lady Kassirin chose Lord Selle.
Lady Gedra chose Lord Mirabilis.
Lady Clara chose the Prince, who rejected her. (Burn!)
Lady Viridian chose Lord Samangelov.
Lady Jade chose the Prince, who accepted her.
I'm not certain where in this sequence Lady Viridian's choice came. But you'll see that all the player couples in game two are the same as in game one!
In both games, all the ladies successfully avoided Lord Tachrymon. But in one game Clara and Kieron got the happy ending, while in the other they were left lonely--but took over the Isles as the Queen and Duke got their happy ending. So even there there's some symmetry. Clara is probably the best qualified to take over the Queen's job, but I fear for the tender hearts of ladies entrusted to the care of Duke Kieron! In each case the Prince chose the same lady and left his mother at last.
I think that if you leave aside the Utena-related mappings, then Prince & Jade works perfectly well. Why *shouldn't* she have a Prince? And why shouldn't a Lady who demands respect and a peer work her way through the Prince's facade?
Or at least, reasoning somewhat circularly, any Prince who would say yes to Jade works as a partner for her. This is not at all what I thought initially after seeing the character sheets, but it's what makes sense to me after watching some of the game play out. And Gedra and Mirabilis was my early guess, and still makes more sense to me than Gedra and the Prince. I don't see how a fragile thing like Gedra can get the Prince to break through his emotional armor, basically. Whereas it makes sense to me that Jade can demand an equal from him, and, after some tussling, get one.
So, suppose Jade / Prince and Gedra / Mirabilis. I think I buy all the other intended pairings, though: Clara / Kieron, Viridian / Armster, Elia / Samangelov -- and those last two pairs just got swapped in each game. I'd love to know what their players think of the "correct" pairings versus the ones that happened in game.
Unfortunately that leaves Lady Kassarin with either Lord Selle or Lord Tachrymon. I'll say this--I don't think Kassarin would bore Selle very quickly. ;-)