Archive for May, 2010

Always look on the brighter side of life…

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

This posts going to be a little short to keep attention where it should be, specifically on Graph’s screenshots.  For those wondering, yes Marisa is reading the original Dracula to Flandre, and no she had no idea what she was getting into when she started it.  Hilarity is sure to ensue, and by hilarity I mean a big mess.  In fact the aftermath of this is the first time you can get yourself painted over the walls, though hardly the last.

That’s right, it’s entirely possible that your guidance of Marisa will lead to a time paradox and rather bloody game over.  Our Gensoukyo is a generally nice place, but you’re still dealing with very powerful people.  If you manage to screw them over badly they might just get angry enough to explode you, seal you, shove your soul into a doll, turn you inside out, or turn off your lungs.  And, well, romantic entanglements can be messy.

Still, we aren’t going to kill you for taking the wrong entrance to the Shrine, or for not wiping the blood off your shirt (well aside from that path). And there’s a powerful ally who can give you hints as to what to do and not to do.  Should you choose to spend time with her of course.

New screenshots: Storytime

Thursday, May 20th, 2010

I’ve added a new set of screenshots to the gallery.  This time it’s a series of screenshots based on a good chunk of the script.

Storytime

Go see it here.

Of Fanservice, Bikinis, and Birthday Suits

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

So.

Visual Novels.  Lots of them have sexual content.  Not all, but lots.  So when we began this project, we had to decide…

“How explicit should our work be?”

Well, frankly, the general conclusion was that none of us felt confident or comfortable writing in an explicit environment.  Some of us didn’t think we had the skill to do it properly, and others just didn’t like the idea in general.

Of course “not explicitly H” covers a whole lot of ground.  We also had to decide how much fanservice we were going to put into the art, and how much we were going to insinuate was going on off screen.

Art wise we’re going to stay within the boundaries of safe.  However that doesn’t mean there won’t be fanservice.  The girls will be visiting the hot springs that popped up, and there are a few other interesting events that we have planned that will allow the girls to change outfits.

Writing wise… we haven’t fully decided yet.  However, sex is part of relationships, and even if Marisa’s relationship might be too young to get into those matters there are other couples in Gensoukyo as well.  So while nothing may happen on screen, there may be a good deal implied, or occasionally outright stated.

So…what does all this mean for you, the audience?  If you enjoy swimsuit pics and a dose of innuendo there’ll be something here for you.  But if you don’t care about those things don’t worry, we aren’t going to twist the story in odd shapes just to put those scenes in.  So, all in all, expect a lot of good fun, of all shapes and kinds.

Marisa

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

Marisa, as the heroine, gets a lot of time.  Admittedly she doesn’t get that much art time since we’re using Marisa’s point of view (most of the time) but in terms of screen time she’s almost always there.  Thus we’ve taken a fair amount of time to try to develop Marisa herself.

The first thing we tried to make sure of was that Marisa wouldn’t just be a generic protagonist.  She’d have her own personality quirks, character flaws and strengths, just as she does in the original games.  Of course this is a visual novel as well, so we have to give the player a fair amount of choices too.  Fortunately Marisa’s complex enough to have many different ways of approaching a situation, all depending on her mood (and the players whims).  Still there are going to be some times where Marisa does something brilliant or stupid (or both) that will be out of the players hands.  You didn’t expect the black white witch to not steal control at some point did you?

Of course uncontrolled theft isn’t the only thing Marisa will be bringing as a character.  Marisa’s quest for immortality is a large chunk of the game, and we spent a good deal of time working out the reasons for that and filling out the rest of her character.  In the process we created a whole lot of story for Marisa herself.  In fact Marisa will be the character the player learns the most about as they guide her through her quest to become a true magician.

Character designs.

Tuesday, May 4th, 2010

So I was asked by some of the others in the dev crew, “How do you decide what to draw?” Most of the work I’ve done for this project so far is the cut-in images (a character image that can be set right on top of a background), so I’ll mention something on that.

About the designs, I’ll usually look at a variety of different sources for inspiration.  First stop is the fighting games if the character appears there.  I have an easier time getting character personalities from the fighting game portraits, but I do consider the ZUNart for designs, just to not stray too far from the source.

At times though the fanon handles things in a way that I like better than the original sources.  For that I’ll root through my picture collection or through Danbooru if I haven’t saved enough of a certain character (you can thank my hard drive space for that) I think the most outstanding design choice of this sort was on Patchouli– while we love our little bookworm all deadpan and snarky, for the sake of character development we wanted her to have a decently wide range of visible emotions.  I discovered that it was a lot harder to do so with Patchouli’s normal hair color because it hides the eyebrows pretty well… you know how a lot of anime villains have no eyebrows right?  Anyway I changed the hair color to something lighter because of that, and I suspect it’s part of the reason why so much fanart gives her a lighter hair color as well.

That’s all from me for now.  I think I can safely say that you guys can see a demo release sometime this summer.