AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

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SundownKid
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AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

#1 Post by SundownKid » Wed Apr 03, 2013 9:00 pm

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Synopsis
You are a regular college student living in a fictional American city in the near future, who has decided to buy a personal android, or AMI (Autonomous Mechanical Individual). This is a western sci-fi styled visual novel about the hijinks that ensue on your day off.

(The main character was written with a male in mind, but the name is editable)

Screenshots

Image

Image

Features
*About 9000 words
*A smattering of dialog choices and a couple of endings
*About half an hour's worth of gameplay
*Full German language option


Download (v.1.1)
(All platforms)

Team
*SundownKid (Jonathan X.) - Writing, UI Design, Programming, Production
*Kara Zisa - Character Art
*Jonathan Guzi - Background Art
*Vince Parrish - Music
*Marcel Weyers - German Translation

(Free bedroom BG from Auro-Cyanide)

Note
This was written for NaNo 2013. It functions as a self-contained story and is not related to anything else. Feel free to put down your questions or comments!
Last edited by SundownKid on Mon Aug 19, 2013 11:05 am, edited 7 times in total.

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Re: AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

#2 Post by Chibichann » Wed Apr 03, 2013 11:02 pm

:P Cool! nice to have a different atmosphere in a gameplay,you know with sci-fi and all, I will download and play then comment in a while.

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Re: AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

#3 Post by Funnyguts » Wed Apr 03, 2013 11:37 pm

Well, that was a twist >_> I wish it had been a bit longer, the character relationships needed more time to develop.
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Re: AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

#4 Post by SundownKid » Thu Apr 04, 2013 12:54 am

I could probably add more to that, but I didn't want the second half to take a backseat to the first half. =P

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Re: AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

#5 Post by saguaro » Thu Apr 04, 2013 10:15 am

Short and sweet. I had a lot of fun playing this one.

I've been working on a Twinestory about a society with robots, and the robot manufacturer is named DynaCorp. So now I'm trying to figure out if we're on the same wavelength or if I subconsciously sourced that name from elsewhere.

9,000 words flew by quickly, the dialogue was fun and flowed well. It's cool you got this done in a month, considering the number of BGs and sprites. I really liked the music.

The GUI is pretty cool. I like what you did with the help screen, it never really occurred to me to build a screen for it for some reason and I may borrow that idea. I am preoccupied with "number of clicks per action" and so I noticed the extra click to get to volume control, which I almost always adjust. Does it bother people? I don't know. I just know I always notice things like that.
The twist is good. The whole ROBOT HAS FEELS thing is overdone obviously, so while I'm comfortable with robots being WHAT IS LOVE? all the time, because I dig robot stories, I appreciate the joke you play on the MC (and by extension, the player).

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Re: AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

#6 Post by SundownKid » Thu Apr 04, 2013 12:23 pm

Thanks for the feedback. The name DynaCorp is a parodic reference to CyberDyne from Terminator, so I thought it would be funny, what with the whole sentient thing. That might be where the coincidence stems from.

I'm glad you liked the story and the game itself. As far as the extra clicks, I just felt that everything in settings should have equal billing, it's not that big of a deal. People have equal chance of going to adjust the video or text settings. I don't think the help screen is 100% necessary, but it helps maintain cohesiveness within the game rather than popping up a separate window.

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Re: AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

#7 Post by DaFool » Thu Apr 04, 2013 12:55 pm

I liked it. Though I wasn't floored at the end as I was hoping. I wish I could say more, but just imagine someone nodding in contentment.

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Re: AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

#8 Post by PyTom » Thu Apr 04, 2013 7:43 pm

I played through this game, ostensibly to help with testing 6.15.4, but really because it's right up my alley as far as content goes. I'm pretty sure I cleared all the endings - I saw two distinct endings, and chose alternating choices to get to them. If there's another ending, it's well-hidden.

I was pretty impressed with the production values of this game, especially the schedule. The art - which isn't in a traditional anime style - is attractive, once you get past Lydia. Things like the animated AR glasses were a nice touch. The interface is incredibly polished, and just in general the game is nice to look at and interact with. Although I didn't look at the code, as a player the game appears to be made well.

My big problem is that this game shows all the signs of being a robot story - which I generally like - but isn't one. The thing about good robot stories is that you have stories about creatures who are like humans but different in an important way. In I, Robot, you have the three laws. In things like Time of Eve and Star Trek's The Measure of a Man, you have a group of intelligent creatures that are treated as an underclass by society. In That Cheap and Sacred Thing, you have the ability to swap personalities between host bodies.

The problem I have with AMI is that it's not really a robot story, but rather a story that happens to be set in a world with robots in it. So I experienced the sort of disappointment that comes from expecting more than I got.
Even with the same story the game had, I wonder if it could have been taken in a more interesting direction. When the robot isn't.... well, isn't that kind of creepy, when you think about it? I'd expect people to show things to their household robots that they wouldn't want to show to other people. If the story had gone in that direction, it could have gotten interesting.
I'm not sure if this will generalize to other reader - it might be more based on genre savvy that the actual story - but while I respect the work that went into this, it didn't really give me what I wanted.
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Re: AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

#9 Post by SundownKid » Thu Apr 04, 2013 9:02 pm

True, a more gradual reveal might have worked better than just making one half with the people and the other with the robot. The revelation is a bit sudden and a bit more comedic than dramatic. But, I think the story would need to be somewhat longer to address that issue.
I'm guessing you were thinking of something along the lines of the main character divulging his personal troubles to the robot, and then having her help him throughout the story. I'm sure years ago I would have been the first one to point out that the robot wasn't very robot-like... I must have been corrupted by those darned animes *shakes fist*.

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Re: AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

#10 Post by arachni42 » Thu Apr 04, 2013 10:28 pm

I enjoyed it. I didn't care for the sprites in general, but I did really like AMI's human-like poses. I loved the interface; it felt really polished, and I also am now inspired to make my own help screen. ;) I also really enjoyed the background art.

I thought the story was enjoyable. I liked the little nod to Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
I'm glad it wasn't the regular old sentient robot cliche. As mentioned, I liked the particularly human poses of AMI. That, and the way she started acting human right out of the box. It had a level of casualness that you don't usually see in sentient robots (for good reason). That was well done. I could definitely tell something was going on, but I wasn't sure what, and it made me want to find out! It was also quite amusing to see the "robot's" behavior and actions the second time through.
Also, I noticed one typo. I don't remember the exact dialogue, but it was something like, "You're.... youre sentient??" with a missing apostrophe.
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Re: AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

#11 Post by SundownKid » Fri Apr 05, 2013 1:12 am

Thanks! I caught the typo, it will be fixed in the next version. The sprites were a collaboration, so I didn't really have much say in how they looked, haha.

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Re: AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

#12 Post by SundownKid » Mon Apr 08, 2013 9:35 pm

I'm adding a German translation to the game, though I'm not sure if I should label it somewhere in the description. But, I am releasing it along with a few other fixes in Patch 1.1. Danke!

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Re: AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

#13 Post by SundownKid » Mon Apr 15, 2013 5:17 am

Now that the thread has exactly 1337 views (seriously!) I am releasing version 1.1 of the game. It has the full German translation as well as some other minor fixes and additions, like a lengthened ending.

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Re: AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

#14 Post by Carassaurat » Mon Apr 15, 2013 12:30 pm

I noticed back in the beginning of NaNoRenO that you and I both had the same tags for our visual novels and dealth with similar themes. Now that I've played it, it's uncannily similar in some ways and completely different in others.

I had fun! If I've got to give you one piece of criticism, I think it's a bit heavy on convenient musing about the changes that have taken place since our current time.

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Re: AMI - Autonomous Assistant [BxG] [Sci-fi] [NaNo 2013]

#15 Post by SundownKid » Mon Apr 15, 2013 12:33 pm

Carassaurat wrote:I noticed back in the beginning of NaNoRenO that you and I both had the same tags for our visual novels and dealth with similar themes. Now that I've played it, it's uncannily similar in some ways and completely different in others.

I had fun! If I've got to give you one piece of criticism, I think it's a bit heavy on convenient musing about the changes that have taken place since our current time.
Yeah, I guess he wouldn't really have a reason to think that way, though I do muse about that from time to time. :lol:

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