One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2015]

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YossarianIII
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One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2015]

#1 Post by YossarianIII » Wed Mar 25, 2015 11:02 pm

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One Night at Amphora
A five-act comic fantasy about whiskey, jello, dubstep, and bereavement.
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Left: A super important decision you may have to make. Right: Exciting gameplay action sample!
About
One Night at Amphora is a free 10,000-word comic fantasy visual novel about a girl trying to return to normal college life after the sudden death of her mother. It features 2-1/2 endings based on the player's cumulative choices and over 50 animations to show the characters' expressions. The soundtrack centers on one recurring theme repeated in a loose pastiche of different genres, including hip-hop, reggae, EDM, and indie rock.​
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Anything goes! Please let me know of any bugs or difficulty in downloading. And I'm always curious to hear what decisions people make...
Known Bugs
Old saves not deleted
Drosophila melanogaster
Last edited by YossarianIII on Mon May 18, 2015 7:10 pm, edited 3 times in total.


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Re: One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2

#2 Post by sonorousgem » Thu Apr 02, 2015 7:16 am

I got 2 of the endings.
because I regretted not making jello the first time so I had to go back XD
I thought Ashkii was a girl for the longest time until I realized he was a guy? I don't actually know, awkward haha. Sadly I wasn't able to focus on the music, but that was only because I was enjoying your writing too much! It was so funny XD Some conversations were surprisingly dark, but you pulled it off well. I also liked the animations, those were pretty cool.
I tried to make choices I would make in real life, but one time I
just told Lyn she looked worse than a mess or something. She wasn't happy about that.
I also
chose "..." over "..." and "..."

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YossarianIII
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Re: One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2

#3 Post by YossarianIII » Fri Apr 03, 2015 12:58 pm

Thanks for the feedback, sonorousgem!

That's interesting -- I had written Ashkii as a male character, without thinking much about it. One of my first plans for an update is to give him a sprite at some point... I suppose it doesn't really matter for the story though what gender Ashkii is.

Actually, in a way, I'm glad to hear that you didn't notice the music. I was concerned that some of the songs with vocals in particular would be too foregrounded and distract from the reading. So I'm glad the background music stayed in the background :)

Finally, as to the choices you made...
you can insult Lyn all you want, and you still won't get a bad ending (there pretty much is no bad ending...). Actually, you might've noticed that the very last line of dialogue is the same no matter what you do. There's a specific reason for this... But I think I'll wait until a few more people have had a chance to play before posting any more explanation.
Glad you enjoyed it!


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Re: One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2

#4 Post by sonorousgem » Sat Apr 04, 2015 6:05 pm

I think a sprite for Ashkii would be nice, but yes the gender didn't seem to matter ^.^
how thoughtful about the endings! I didn't notice, honestly, but I'm sure there are more aware, informed players who have noticed! hopefully they speak up...!

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Re: One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2

#5 Post by YossarianIII » Wed Apr 08, 2015 6:21 pm

Just released the first update! The links above will now take you to the newest version.

The biggest change is that Ashkii, the player character, now gets his own sprite for, like, five seconds. The game is also now available through itch.io. Finally, in my most recent test run, I noticed that a couple of the sound effects were wonky, so those have been de-wonkified.

Thanks for everyone who has played so far! I've been pleasantly surprised by the number of downloads.


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Re: One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2

#6 Post by paradigmshifty » Thu Apr 09, 2015 4:51 am

The writing was my favourite aspect of the game. The characters back-and-forths
(especially about the whiskey)
had a natural slice-of-life feel for me.
I really liked that the supernatural charms/magic was not at all important to the story, maybe it is more in the other path! I didn't make jello the first time and retried from there and made it the second time to see what changed.
The amount of work put into the characters movements was impressive, although the art style isn't my thing. I like the soundtrack too - are all those tracks made by yourself??
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Re: One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2

#7 Post by YossarianIII » Thu Apr 09, 2015 8:21 pm

paradigmshifty wrote:The writing was my favourite aspect of the game. The characters back-and-forths
(especially about the whiskey)
had a natural slice-of-life feel for me.
I really liked that the supernatural charms/magic was not at all important to the story, maybe it is more in the other path! I didn't make jello the first time and retried from there and made it the second time to see what changed.
The amount of work put into the characters movements was impressive, although the art style isn't my thing. I like the soundtrack too - are all those tracks made by yourself??

Thanks for the feedback, paradigmshifty! It sounds like in the middle of the story
you told Lyn your favorite part of the night was "all of it because you gave me free whiskey." That makes her talk more about whiskey at the end no matter which "path" you're on...
As for the other paths,
I will say that magic never plays a major role no matter what you choose. This is intentional--I kind of liked the idea of a world where magic is something without any obvious, quantifiable use, but which is important to the way people interact with each other in an unquantifiable way *cough*like liberal arts*cough* I didn't really explore that idea in this story, but Amphora is a world I've written in before and will certainly return to at some point...
Yes, the art style is 5% rebellion against the fancy-graphics-but-emotionally-vacuous storytelling model of AAA video games and 95% me being lazy. :)

As for the soundtrack, I did a large chunk of it alone, although there were a couple other people involved, particularly on vocals. At least one of those bands listed in the credits is a real band that existed in public (albeit in obscurity) before this project...


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Re: One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2

#8 Post by Mad Harlequin » Thu Apr 16, 2015 12:17 pm

I just finished playing this and I really liked it a lot! :)

A future release could use some polish----I saw one word missing, one homophone issue (affect vs. effect) and one sentence with a repeated word or two. But this was quite good. The writing was very natural, which worked well with your story. I didn't feel that anything Ashkii or Lyn said was out of character. That's not easy to manage! Nice job!
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Re: One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2

#9 Post by YossarianIII » Fri Apr 17, 2015 5:58 pm

Mad Harlequin wrote:I just finished playing this and I really liked it a lot!

A future release could use some polish----I saw one word missing, one homophone issue (affect vs. effect) and one sentence with a repeated word or two. But this was quite good. The writing was very natural, which worked well with your story. I didn't feel that anything Ashkii or Lyn said was out of character. That's not easy to manage! Nice job!
Thanks for the feedback, Mad Harlequin!

The whole concept of writing branching stories is pretty new to me, so trying to keep the characters consistent was definitely one of the challenges. Glad you liked the dialogue!

Good eye on the errors. I took a pass and spotted a few typos... I suspect there are more lurking in the decision trees, so I'll take another pass and release an update within the next week or so. Missing words my most frequent type of typo.

I'm hoping eventually to try something more ambitious in terms of GUI/overall presentation for whatever I do after my next project, Beretta Mondatta (which was nearly finished before NaNo). The next one will involve either rock & roll or fish. Probably not both, though.


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Re: One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2

#10 Post by Mad Harlequin » Sat Apr 18, 2015 7:55 am

YossarianIII wrote:The next one will involve either rock & roll or fish. Probably not both, though.
Hey, you could write a story about a fish who wants to be the Undersea God or Goddess of Rock!
I'm an aspiring writer and voice talent with a passion for literature and an unhealthy attachment to video games. I am also a seasoned typo-sniper. Inquiries are encouraged. Friendly chats are welcome.
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Re: One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2

#11 Post by YossarianIII » Sun Apr 19, 2015 1:03 pm

Mad Harlequin wrote:Hey, you could write a story about a fish who wants to be the Undersea God or Goddess of Rock!
That could work, although I neglected to mention that if the fish story ever sees the light of the Internet, it will involve flying trout. They will live in the sky and be no better at playing guitars than normal trout that live in rivers. So there are at least a few obstacles to them becoming Undersea Deities of Rock. Then again, I suppose overcoming seemingly impossible obstacles is the basis for a lot of great stories...


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Re: One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2

#12 Post by YossarianIII » Mon May 18, 2015 7:48 pm

New update:

There were enough typos and other bugs that I decided it was time to release a new version. The content is basically the same, just with fewer errors in the text.

Thanks to all of you who've been downloading and playing!


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Re: One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2

#13 Post by bosinpai » Sun Jun 07, 2015 10:24 am

Hi,

Nice game given the NaNoRenO time constraints.
I added a screenshot in my renpy "motivational" intro slides :) I had documented the "photo + photo filter" trick for backgrounds, as well as a few simple drawing styles (like Locked-In's), but I'm surprised one can get away so well with naïve art :)
Plus, it allowed you to add lots of postures and short animations (to be compared with Autumn's Journey, which is about a zillion times prettier, but has exactly one (1) static pose per character ;)).

Storywise, Lyn's character was interesting as it's pretty impredictable. The downsite is that you're in the dark for choices during the first playthrough. It's interesting that you
score better when insulting her all the time rather than simply avoiding hairy subjects ;)
I expected stronger changes during subsequent playthroughs,
as the scenes are basically always the same, so you get a linear feeling
thought I was pleased to find 2 additional scenes.
I found it a tad long but so are most of the VNs, so it may just be me :)

Congrats and good luck with Beretta :)

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Re: One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2

#14 Post by YossarianIII » Tue Jun 09, 2015 6:24 pm

Thanks for the feedback, bosinpai!
bosinpai wrote:I added a screenshot in my renpy "motivational" intro slides I had documented the "photo + photo filter" trick for backgrounds, as well as a few simple drawing styles (like Locked-In's), but I'm surprised one can get away so well with naïve art
Yes, feel free to use screenshots, recordings, excerpts, etc., from the game however you want. Everything in the game is either public domain or something I hold the rights for, and I'm fine with any reasonable, noncommercial use.

bosinpai wrote:Plus, it allowed you to add lots of postures and short animations (to be compared with Autumn's Journey, which is about a zillion times prettier, but has exactly one (1) static pose per character ).
Yep, that's the goal! :)

bosinpai wrote:I expected stronger changes during subsequent playthroughs,
as the scenes are basically always the same, so you get a linear feeling
thought I was pleased to find 2 additional scenes.
Yes, now that I've had some time to look back on the game, I think one of the weaknesses is that it doesn't have a whole lot of replay value. Some VNs are meant to be played through multiple times to unlock all the paths; this one was supposed to be based more on the Telltale Games structure of telling just one story but giving players a way to make it unique. But I do think it would be cool for future projects to give players a reason to play through the story again.


Glad you enjoyed it!


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Re: One Night at Amphora [Comedy][Friendship][Fantasy][NaNo2

#15 Post by qirien » Sat Jun 13, 2015 12:47 am

Enjoyed the friendship story! I like the realistic depiction of such a serious issue... I've never had a loved one die, but I feel like maybe I could be a better friend to someone who has after playing this game. :-)
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