Time's Tear

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mikey
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Time's Tear

#1 Post by mikey » Wed Aug 08, 2007 6:09 pm

Hi everyone,

I'm very happy to be able to give you our game Time's Tear.

As a game, it's different to our previous release, mostly in that it is a "children's adventure".
There is a lot I'd like to say about it, but maybe that's for later.

Most importantly, my team - Kathryn, Renesis, PyTom, and lordcloudx - thank you, all.

You can get Time's Tear from its homepage:
http://atp.manga.sk/games/tst/tst.htm

The download has 120 MB.

Currently only the Windows version is made. More versions will follow later.

See you.

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Re: Time's Tear

#2 Post by Enerccio » Wed Aug 08, 2007 7:09 pm

Hmm I am going to play it now... but one question.
Are images so big as 90MB? :shock:
(RPA archive is 140MB and soundtrack is 50MB)
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Re: Time's Tear

#3 Post by lordcloudx » Thu Aug 09, 2007 4:17 am

Well... that was fast.
How do you make your games? I see. Thank you for the prompt replies, but it is my considered opinion that you're doing it wrong inefficiently because I am a perfushenal professional. Do it my way this way and we can all ascend VN Nirvana together while allowing me to stroke my ego you will improve much faster. Also, please don't forget to thank me for this constructive critique or I will cry and bore you to death respond appropriately with a tl;dr rant discourse of epic adequately lengthy proportions. - Sarcasm Veiled in Euphemism: Secrets of Forum Civility by lordcloudx (Coming soon to an online ebook near you.)

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Re: Time's Tear

#4 Post by mikey » Thu Aug 09, 2007 4:51 am

lordcloudx wrote:Well... that was fast.
Your identity was as good as revealed in the preview thread, I had no other choice! ^_^
The truth is, I realized yesteday that there wasn't anything else to do.

Enerccio >> The images I didn't compress, just archived them - it wouldn't have changed the download size though (just the unpacked size, the rpa). Compressed (PNG or JPG), they would be around 60 MB.

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Re: Time's Tear

#5 Post by denzil » Thu Aug 09, 2007 5:29 am

Well, I just finished playing it and its really nice game and I liked it a lot. The story was interesting and I just couldn't wait how it will end and the music suited the story very well.
You got me with the map. I had to rollback for the correct answer. :D And it looks like the artefact worked after all. (:
But I was wondering: is there one ending or there are more? It looked like there is just one to me, but I wanted to ask just in case.
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Re: Time's Tear

#6 Post by mikey » Thu Aug 09, 2007 5:47 am

Thank you!

As for your question, there is just one ending. The only variations are in...
... 1.) the color of Alicia's birthday ball dress and 2.) depending on the choices, she will or will not give you the kiss. There are 9 choices that determine whether Alicia will kiss you, and you need at least 4 to get the kiss. But it doesn't change the ending.
As for the rollback, actually you have an unlimited numbe of retries, so a trial-and-error way works as well - but of course, it's probably a much better feeling getting it right the first time around. :)

Thanks for playing!

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Re: Time's Tear

#7 Post by PrettySammy09 » Thu Aug 09, 2007 1:21 pm

I finished playing it last night!

If I had to sum up that game in one word, it would be: charming. :3 That was a charming game through and through.

Let's give a formal review, shall we?

GRAPHICS:

Again -- charming. They were sweet, cute, and creative, especially in the design of Alicia's ball gown. The backgrounds were wonderful as well. I especially liked Alicia's character design and Hideo's. The CGs were placed in at appropriate times, but more would have been splendiferous. But I suppose that's just me being greedy.
I loved the fact that you could change the color of Alicia's ball gown. When I realized it, I was so touched. It not only shows a charming attention to details, but also a wonderful piece of romantic fluff. :3
STORY:

Great! I thought both the writing and execution were done wonderfully.
The ball was wonderfully written especially. I also loved it when you opened up the "artifact" to find it was nothing more than a wristwatch. It was wonderfully disappointing -- I could feel Kazuhiko's disappointment.
GAMEPLAY:

Fantastic! I loved all the little mini-games in there, such as the memory game and the use of tools. :3 I was seriously stumped on some of them. The bell toll thing threw me off too. :3

Overall, this game is FANTASTICAL!! Thanks for making it muchly!

P.S.
I found the ending reminiscent of a Shakespeare comedy -- EVERYONE gets married at the end. XD Even the random servant girl!!

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Re: Time's Tear

#8 Post by mikey » Thu Aug 09, 2007 3:30 pm

Thank you for playing! I'm glad you saw the game that way, that was exactly what I wanted to achieve, a children's adventure. I'm more and more happy with each comment that people are able to see it this way. I told lordcloudx at the beginning that I really believed in the concept and that with his specific style this would work, and it's great to see that it apparently does. :oops:

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Re: Time's Tear

#9 Post by Ignosco » Fri Aug 10, 2007 2:55 pm

You kept me up until almost 3am playing this... :evil:

It's an absolutely wonderful game... I really enjoyed it, although I'm not sure what time I'll end up getting out of bed now. :P
Or I could even end up in Calleighmore :wink:
Edit:
... and strangely enough, I did have a rather bizarre alternative universe type dream :?
Last edited by Ignosco on Sat Aug 11, 2007 1:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Time's Tear

#10 Post by Mihel » Fri Aug 10, 2007 3:06 pm

Um... .EXE only? That's kinda harsh... :(
Will you stay here for a while, dear, 'til the radio plays something familiar?

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Re: Time's Tear

#11 Post by DrakeNavarone » Fri Aug 10, 2007 3:53 pm

I loved it. It was, as PrettySammy said, absolutely charming. It has all the makings of a good children's story. I wish I could tell something so simply beautiful... The art style fit perfectly. It'd be difficult to see how anything else could fit as well. And I really liked the very forgiving nature of the puzzles. It only enhanced the feel that this was a children's story, and not some difficult puzzle oriented VN that would force you to rollback and/or save+load constantly (and possibly bang your head against a wall/desk/floor/keyboard/monitor/fist/door/etc, etc.). When even something like a simple technical detail enhances the atmosphere of the story, you know it's a beautifully crafted piece. And this is a nice change of pace from the notorious monsters of difficulty known as O3 and Embraced by Green.

There was one little detail that threw me at first, but upon rereading the scene in question, I was satisfied enough.
When Kazuhiko asks Alicia if she knows who Luminae is, she says something along the lines of "I don't think I know... but maybe... Why do you wanna know?". At first I took this as, she didn't know a Luminae at all, so when I found out that Alicia and Luminae are the same person, I was a little confused. But upon rereading it, I saw it more as Alicia sorta evading the question or a little unsure about the answer. I don't think there's any way she couldn't know her second name, so I'm having a little trouble understanding why she wouldn't give her second name. If she was dodging the question, what reason did she have for doing so, and if she was unsure, why didn't she just venture a guess that it is indeed her Kazuhiko is asking about? Or is it just one of those moments where you have to hide the details a little longer to keep the story going? Just a little bit of clarity on this little detail would be appreciated.
Anyway, once again, great beautiful work as always. I really enjoyed my time with this story.
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Re: Time's Tear

#12 Post by papillon » Fri Aug 10, 2007 3:58 pm

minor confusion...
I first assumed it was a completely made-up fairytale kingdom he appeared in in the dream. If it was indicated that this was a kingdom he'd read about in history class, I must have missed it.

This made me really baffled when it was suddenly mentioned in the history class test. Although I then assumed "okay, he dreamed about or traveled back in time to an ancient kingdom he was reading about for history class..."

Then got even more confused by the question about the princess, since the question asked "Who IS" implying present-day. Which... puzzled me why it would be in history class. Especially if this is such an easy question that everyone knows, which makes me wonder why it wasn't mentioned earlier...

I'm guessing the disrespect thing is a cultural difference? I can't imagine anyone being that angry with a ten-year-old for screwing up a test. [edit] Okay, I understand that part later. My confusion with history/present-day remains, though. Since obviously there would be MANY princesses in history in a particular kingdom...

I'm still playing as I write this, so more comment later. I just wanted to note this before I forgot about it. :)
and then after that the really great stuff
Loved the ball. Loved the simple tension element of the bell tolls (though I don't yet know what happens if you try to go at the wrong time) and awwwwwwwed when it pointed out the dress color thing, which I hadn't caught on to. :)

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Re: Time's Tear

#13 Post by mikey » Sat Aug 11, 2007 12:12 pm

Thank you for all the positive comments! I really strongly believed in this concept and game, and was very hoping that people would understand / like it - I would have probably been really devastated if it turned out to be a bad thing. Usually I don't put hopes in my games, but this one I couldn't help to. Not hopes for popularity, but hopes that it will be enjoyed for what it is - my fear was that no one wants this sort of game, given the types of games normally seen here, so... it's happiness, but also a relief. Ah, sorry, I need to cool down. Thank you again so much!
DrakeNavarone wrote:The art style fit perfectly. It'd be difficult to see how anything else could fit as well.
I'm glad you see it this way - indeed I asked lordcloudx with actually telling him I don't want anyone else. I wouldn't have done this project if he said no. I wanted to have in this story children, but not lolis - and people who can draw anime / manga-style children without this touch of moe-ness and loli-ism aren't very common - or at the very least it's not the direction people want to evolve. Also, I hope this is not a secret, the early character designs indeed had this touch of loli, but we talked about it and later the final appearances of the characters were born - I think that if someone sees loli or moe in the characters that TsT has now, he's probably seeing this in everything ^_^.

Also, the clothing that he drew for them was not fantasy but medieval, which is another thing we wanted. I wanted Alicia to be a "real" princess, not a fairytale one - and of course, definitely not a fantasy princess either, this is also one topic we wanted to avoid, plus fantasy has this very strong tendency for conflicts or weapons... see below.

The third element I would say we focused on (a bit later on) was the absence of weapons or weapon-like things (also any monsters, opponents, things to "defeat" or other confrontational things).
We had a sequence with shattering glass, later on replaced with leaves, Alicia had a sword - she doesn't have it (actually there is one tiny leftover from that scene, at the beginning where Alicia points her finger at Kazuhiko - the early stages that was a sword). The guards are actually only chasing them in the night, not threatening to hurt them (a prison is the only threat). Also in Hideo's story - originally for that "theft" he was to receive a much harsher punishment. I think more and more into the development I wanted less and less violent things (down to zero in the end, so that characters would not wear weapons, mention them or anything), but of course I still wanted action and excitement, without the children making anything superhuman or impossible... so in the end I'm really happy that it all has worked out.
DrakeNavarone >>
Your comment is one of the other crucial little things, I'll explain:
Alicia generally knows, of course, but they never call her by that name (as explained by Akira). Not even at the birthday ball... So she is surprised, knows that she has heard the name, but does not make the immediate connection that it could be her, since she considers herself Alicia. Then, she realizes that she has this name ("I don't think I know... but... maybe..."), but then it's Kazuhiko who doesn't pursue the question anymore ("It's nothing... really.")

I wanted to have this, to show that both Alicia and Kazuhiko are in their nature 10-year-old children - Alicia doesn't really make the connection (or she would need more time) and Kazuhiko doesn't pursue the matter intensively enough (he has it that this Calleighmore is slightly different - if he even thinks about it) - both do not see it as something important. A few times in the story Kazuhiko also tells how he doesn't think when things hurt or get complicated, since again - 10 year olds will generally not be able to cope with and solve things of magnitudes that adults will. Of course, this isn't putting them down or anything, it's just that it doesn't work that way - well, maybe in anime, where you have children understanding the meaning of life, but I wanted to avoid such thing - even at the expense that initially this may seem confusing.
papillon wrote:
I first assumed it was a completely made-up fairytale kingdom he appeared in in the dream. If it was indicated that this was a kingdom he'd read about in history class, I must have missed it.
Ugh.. I'm afraid, this is mentioned six times, before the test:
1."- You are on the soil of the Calleighmore Kingdom. And it just so happens that you, stranger, are talking to the princess."
2."- Yes! It's the key to everything, hidden and guarded inside Calleighmore Castle."
3."- One more thing... I'm... Alicia. Alicia Calleighmore."
4."In... Calleighmore Kingdom..."
5."I was in Calleighmore Kingdom."
6."I dreamed that I was in the Calleighmore Kingdom."
I don't know how this could happen, but then again, you're a very quick reader as I know, so sometimes things can get overlooked.
About the disrespect, it's a cultural thing, yes.
papillon wrote:
Then got even more confused by the question about the princess, since the question asked "Who IS" implying present-day. Which... puzzled me why it would be in history class.
Bingo!!
Akira asks specifically "What is the name of the kingdom..." as well as "What is the name of the crown princess" - though she doesn't ask "who is", it does indeed have this present-day feel, and Akira uses this specifically and especially when she asks the question about her daughter - for her, her daughter is not dead, for her it's unnatural to think of her in past tense. She allows herself to say this, to prove that she hasn't lost all hope, because she is in relative safety with her students - no one will expect 10-year olds to pry into the wordings of the teacher. But I'm really happy you noticed!
Mihel wrote:Um... .EXE only? That's kinda harsh...
Well, it's a self-extracting archive - but you probablu meant Windows-only? I plan to post a Linux and Mac distribution into the RAA when TsT is added.

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Re: Time's Tear

#14 Post by Ignosco » Sat Aug 11, 2007 12:48 pm

Were you aiming to make Time's Tear a VN that could be played/enjoyed by children? (I guess it's the other implication of children's adventure). It definitely seems like the sort of story that could operate on two levels :).
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Re: Time's Tear

#15 Post by papillon » Sat Aug 11, 2007 12:52 pm

No, no, you're totally missing my point there. I'm a fast reader but not THAT fast.
When the kingdom is mentioned on the test, I definitely know it's the same kingdom I just visited in my 'dream'. I recognise the name.

However, when I was first in that 'dream' kingdom, I did not see any sign that this was a kingdom I was STUDYING. She says Calleighmore all the time but I don't remember him ever saying 'I was just reading about that before I went to bed, I have a test on it tomorrow!' That's what I was confused about. Did he ever comment when she said what kingdom it was that he was studying that kingdom?

Restarting it, I do see the name Calleighmore mentioned at lot at the very beginning of the game. So I guess my problem is that I don't take in information very well at the very beginning of a game when I'm more focused on trying to figure out who and where my character is than paying attention to the teacher. :) I noticed the poem and I remembered that it was a history class, but I didn't remember the names that were being mentioned. When he was preparing for bed, he only mentioned 'that test' and not what it was about. I figured it was about history in general.

So he wakes up in this mysterious place. She says the name Calleighmore - which I did not remember and which he did not respond to, commenting only on how she thinks she's a princess and there's no such thing. He says he doesn't know where he is.

She says "You mean you don't know the Kingdom?" and he says No.

So I interpreted this as - she is claiming to be from some kingdom that he has never heard of before, ever. It is therefore probably some kind of fantasy land, completely removed from the history he is learning about in school.

Since I thought the place he visited in his 'dream' was a made-up fairytale kingdom, when the class started having questions about it on the test, I thought perhaps we were /still in a dream/ - but then I suspected that was getting too head-trippy for a children's adventure. :)

Admittedly the crucial problem is just that I didn't pay attention to the name Calleighmore being said at the very beginning of the game and therefore didn't recognise it when Alicia said it. But it would have been helpful if he'd commented that he was studying this historical kingdom when she first mentioned the name. :)

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