Helena's Flowers[GxG][Sci-Fi][Battle of Troy]

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Heiden
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Helena's Flowers[GxG][Sci-Fi][Battle of Troy]

#1 Post by Heiden » Mon Nov 09, 2015 8:41 pm

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Synopsis

Helena of Achaea is said to be the most beautiful woman in the galaxy.


After her elopement with the neighboring Wilusan princess, Achaea declares war on Wilusa resulting in a years-long bloody conflict. As the war is drawing to a close, Helena is escorted back to her rightful place in Achaea. However, something goes wrong and their ship crash lands on a desolate tiny planet, killing everyone on board except for Helena and a single soldier.

Now stranded in the vastness of space with only a strange soldier for company, Helena finds herself thinking about what sort of fate awaits her. And more importantly, does she even have a place to return to?
Screenshots
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This VN contains:
- ~15k word count
- 6 endings
- A gore warning for one of the endings
Team
Concept, Writer, Programmer - Heiden
Backgrounds, Sprite lineart - Reikun
GUI, Sprite coloring - laniessa
Download- For Windows, Mac, and Linux
Questions
1. What ending did you get first?
2. Favorite ending?
3. Did you have any trouble avoiding the bad ending? Accessing the best ending?
4. General thoughts, comments, suggestions?

Hello! We made Helena's Flowers for Yurijam 2015 and we had a lot of fun! We hope you enjoy!

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ketskari
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Re: Helena's Flowers[GxG][Sci-Fi][Battle of Troy]

#2 Post by ketskari » Wed Nov 11, 2015 10:14 pm

Downloaded it and played a bit of the beginning, though I plan to play to an ending when I have a chance. It's a really gorgeous game, and I'm already intrigued by the theme. :)

Congrats on the release!
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Ina
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Re: Helena's Flowers[GxG][Sci-Fi][Battle of Troy]

#3 Post by Ina » Thu Nov 12, 2015 1:12 am

I believe I've completed the six endings, and I must say that the Best ending is amazing.
The writing was fluid and it was easy to empathize with both Silea and Helena, and the fact that they carved out their own destiny is amazing, even though at first the situation seemed hopeless.
Ah..it said Penelope's husband Odysessus died, and Odysessus is a girl in your story, so does that mean in this world, there are only homosexual couples, or just that they are equal to heterosexual couples? Just asking because I found it a bit strange there was absolutely no mention of a man and woman marrying - perhaps Helena's parents were one such? Sorry if I get it all wrong....

Not to mention....Helena x Silea is beatiful, and it resonates so much as their relationship develops; Helena accepting the fact that she's only herself, and Silea understanding that a Queen may not be what people think her to be.
Overall, it was great. And I couldn't stop smiling after getting the last ending. Your take on the original story was very bittersweet; and this entry to Yuri Jam is amazing <3 Thank you so much for making a wonderful game like this.
My completed games ^^ Hopeful Night
On the Eve of Christmas
W.I.P.s Something for Yuri Jam x3

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Don't you think the plot's great? :D

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Re: Helena's Flowers[GxG][Sci-Fi][Battle of Troy]

#4 Post by Heiden » Thu Nov 12, 2015 8:47 pm

@ketskari - Ohh, thank you so much! I hope you'll enjoy the endings! :)
Ina wrote:I believe I've completed the six endings, and I must say that the Best ending is amazing.
The writing was fluid and it was easy to empathize with both Silea and Helena, and the fact that they carved out their own destiny is amazing, even though at first the situation seemed hopeless.
Ah..it said Penelope's husband Odysessus died, and Odysessus is a girl in your story, so does that mean in this world, there are only homosexual couples, or just that they are equal to heterosexual couples? Just asking because I found it a bit strange there was absolutely no mention of a man and woman marrying - perhaps Helena's parents were one such? Sorry if I get it all wrong....

Not to mention....Helena x Silea is beatiful, and it resonates so much as their relationship develops; Helena accepting the fact that she's only herself, and Silea understanding that a Queen may not be what people think her to be.
Overall, it was great. And I couldn't stop smiling after getting the last ending. Your take on the original story was very bittersweet; and this entry to Yuri Jam is amazing <3 Thank you so much for making a wonderful game like this.
I’m so glad you enjoyed Helena and Silea’s relationship! They were tricky for me to write, so I’m glad that their characters come through.
As for Odysseus being a woman and there being no male characters - Originally I hadn’t planned on changing any of the character’s genders from their original versions, but once I got around to writing it, I wasn’t super comfortable with some of the connotations the work had with a male Alexandros/Paris and Menelaus. I had wanted to try writing Alexandros’ gender ambiguous but well, those pesky pronouns got in the way and I just decided on making them a woman haha. So I suppose everyone in our version is a lesbian! How do they have kids? Well- It’s the Space Future, they probably figured something out. It might seem a bit strange that there’s no male characters in our story, especially since the Illiad and Odyssey are such hyper-masculinized stories, but I had a lot of fun imagining those characters as women while also keeping their basic character tropes. :)
Thank you so much for playing!! :D

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Re: Helena's Flowers[GxG][Sci-Fi][Battle of Troy]

#5 Post by Ina » Sat Nov 14, 2015 4:05 am

Ina wrote:I believe I've completed the six endings, and I must say that the Best ending is amazing.
The writing was fluid and it was easy to empathize with both Silea and Helena, and the fact that they carved out their own destiny is amazing, even though at first the situation seemed hopeless.
Ah..it said Penelope's husband Odysessus died, and Odysessus is a girl in your story, so does that mean in this world, there are only homosexual couples, or just that they are equal to heterosexual couples? Just asking because I found it a bit strange there was absolutely no mention of a man and woman marrying - perhaps Helena's parents were one such? Sorry if I get it all wrong....

Not to mention....Helena x Silea is beatiful, and it resonates so much as their relationship develops; Helena accepting the fact that she's only herself, and Silea understanding that a Queen may not be what people think her to be.
Overall, it was great. And I couldn't stop smiling after getting the last ending. Your take on the original story was very bittersweet; and this entry to Yuri Jam is amazing <3 Thank you so much for making a wonderful game like this.
Heiden wrote:
I’m so glad you enjoyed Helena and Silea’s relationship! They were tricky for me to write, so I’m glad that their characters come through.
As for Odysseus being a woman and there being no male characters - Originally I hadn’t planned on changing any of the character’s genders from their original versions, but once I got around to writing it, I wasn’t super comfortable with some of the connotations the work had with a male Alexandros/Paris and Menelaus. I had wanted to try writing Alexandros’ gender ambiguous but well, those pesky pronouns got in the way and I just decided on making them a woman haha. So I suppose everyone in our version is a lesbian! How do they have kids? Well- It’s the Space Future, they probably figured something out. It might seem a bit strange that there’s no male characters in our story, especially since the Illiad and Odyssey are such hyper-masculinized stories, but I had a lot of fun imagining those characters as women while also keeping their basic character tropes. :)
Thank you so much for playing!! :D
Aah, I see! OwO That explains it. Thanks! And really, I didn't expect Penelope to die on the way though. Wasn't she gonna wait for Odyssesus with his kid? But that too might be a twist. Who is Silea based on, by the way? :D
My completed games ^^ Hopeful Night
On the Eve of Christmas
W.I.P.s Something for Yuri Jam x3

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Don't you think the plot's great? :D

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noeinan
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Re: Helena's Flowers[GxG][Sci-Fi][Battle of Troy]

#6 Post by noeinan » Sat Nov 14, 2015 5:32 am

Oooh, downloading this to play later! The field of flowers against a starry sky really reminds me of the manga Olympos by Aki. Really gorgeous!
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Re: Helena's Flowers[GxG][Sci-Fi][Battle of Troy]

#7 Post by Skarn » Sat Nov 14, 2015 7:13 pm

The Trojan War aftermath. From Helen(a)'s point of view. IN SPACE.

Also, in a universe where everyone is female.

After checking everyone's name on Wikipedia (the mythology geek in me needed to do it), I'm finally ready to review this.

The take on this classical story was interesting, with some fascinating twists (Penelope for example), but also with some passages I found quite strange.
The "flowers" arc looked a lot like Helena's descent into madness. By the end of it, she is aggressive, talking to flowers, refusing to leave a planet where she can only eat the same kind of fruits all year long, which is certainly not healthy at all... Yet, it's treated as some sort of good ending.
However, I enjoyed the bittersweet relationship between the most beautiful woman in the world and the amazon.

The GUI is really polished and beautiful, except for the choices which are strangely bland by comparison (simple rectangles). Also, I didn't understand how the gameplay was supposed to work:
At my first try, I spammed the flower field and got the best flower ending with ease.
Then I spammed the crash site, and got the best Silea ending without difficulty.
Finally, I tried some combinations of both, and ended with the bad ending every time.
Since I supposedly already got the « best » endings, I stopped there, but I'm still curious about the algorithm and the possible endings.

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Heiden
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Re: Helena's Flowers[GxG][Sci-Fi][Battle of Troy]

#8 Post by Heiden » Sat Nov 14, 2015 9:34 pm

@Ina -
Yes, in the original version Penelope waits for Odysseus' return with their son Telemachus. In our version, I imagined Penelope waiting for a while, but then being called into the war to help return Helen(a). Telemachus is probably still waiting at home for their parents to return. And Silea is based on Penthesilea, queen of the amazons! https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Penthesilea :D Though she originally fought on the side of the Trojans, I figured she could be easily convinced to fight for Achaea/Greece since she was just looking for a place to die, haha.
@daikiraikimi -

OOhh, I love Aki's art~ Especially in Olympos~ That's such a compliment! Thank you haha :'D. I'm so blessed to be able to work with Rei and laniessa, they do amazing work.

@Skarn -
Yes the flower ending, I suppose it isn't necessarily a completely 'happy' ending haha. But what she gained in that ending that she was missing in the Silea best ending is that she was able to be alone. Achaea wouldn't have left her alone for very long in the other ending, even with Silea's trips. But yes... she is alone and perhaps even a bit mad. And not eating the best diet haha ;;;
And as for how the game works -
By day 12 you need to have found either the ship piece or the flower fruits. Otherwise, Helena loses hope and kills Silea in a frenzy. And I think there's one 'best' ending you might be missing. Try dividing up your days 10/10. :')
Thank you so much for playing! :DD

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Re: Helena's Flowers[GxG][Sci-Fi][Battle of Troy]

#9 Post by Ina » Sun Nov 15, 2015 5:31 am

Wow, that's real neat! :')
Thanks so much for taking the time to answer all of my dumb questions, but I frankly feel that no matter what, the best ending of the flower field was very..calm.
Yeah, she did get a bit mad...but she acquired a great realization and peace in herself. Aside from the same diet every time...or maybe she could boil it and roast it or there'd be some fishes in the pond or something..... XD
My completed games ^^ Hopeful Night
On the Eve of Christmas
W.I.P.s Something for Yuri Jam x3

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Don't you think the plot's great? :D

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Re: Helena's Flowers[GxG][Sci-Fi][Battle of Troy]

#10 Post by Anne » Sun Nov 15, 2015 11:43 am

I actually really liked the flowers ending, somehow it made a lot of sense within the story. I also liked how it told Helena's story and showed her relationships with other people without those people even being there or anything actually happening. Silea's route felt a bit more straightforward. *should try the 50/50 one now*
The idea of Trojan war in space is just fascinating, the art is nice and the GUI is really fitting (except some minor stuff like the already mentioned choices).

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Re: Helena's Flowers[GxG][Sci-Fi][Battle of Troy]

#11 Post by TsukiShima » Tue Nov 24, 2015 6:05 am

I've played this, and managed to get 5 out 6 endings there is! I'm not sure if I will go back to get the other one, because I am already satisfied with the game overall!

The art and music fits so well together, I have applause the team for that! Usually, I find it a bit boring especially when there is only 2 characters around, but with this game, I was not disappointed at all.

1. What ending did you get first?
I got the bad ending first, and for a couple of times too. Perhaps because I kept on being late about asking or pushing the question to Silea. That was my own fault.
2. Favorite ending?
I'm going to have to go with Silea's best ending. Simply because we get to know so much about two characters, and we can know the overall stories from there. The flower endings are just fine for me, but I believe it's because of my personal attachment towards Silea that made me favor her endings. I don't really like it when she forces Helena to return and all that sort.
3. Did you have any trouble avoiding the bad ending? Accessing the best ending?
Not at all!
I think the main mistake I kept making is not reading throughly and unsure of the choices I make. After I got how the story moves, right after getting the flower best ending, I knew how to get the others.
4. General thoughts, comments, suggestions?
As I already said, the art was fantastic. I like how the emotions of the sprites are very... wild? Is that the term I'm looking for? I feel that the sprite moved, their expression showed exactly what they are feelings. I love that!

I feel the game is almost professional already, and I understand about the time constraints, but perhaps with more CGs, it can attract the players to go on with the game. Some players may have low attention span (like me) and the same backgrounds made me slightly bore. I felt a little limited during my first few playthrough because I must either go back to check the ship or the flower field.

Other than that, I think this game could get 9/10! Thank you so much for creating such a piece!

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Re: Helena's Flowers[GxG][Sci-Fi][Battle of Troy]

#12 Post by Reikun » Tue Nov 24, 2015 11:08 pm

Thank you so much for playing, everybody!!!!! Glad to read everybody's different impressions :)
TsukiShima wrote:4. General thoughts, comments, suggestions?
As I already said, the art was fantastic. I like how the emotions of the sprites are very... wild? Is that the term I'm looking for? I feel that the sprite moved, their expression showed exactly what they are feelings. I love that!

I feel the game is almost professional already, and I understand about the time constraints, but perhaps with more CGs, it can attract the players to go on with the game. Some players may have low attention span (like me) and the same backgrounds made me slightly bore. I felt a little limited during my first few playthrough because I must either go back to check the ship or the flower field.

Other than that, I think this game could get 9/10! Thank you so much for creating such a piece!
Thank you for your kind words!!!! Heiden did an awesome job coding in all the expressions ^o^ I had fun drawing them too. I'm so glad to hear you liked them!!

You're right about having more CGs. It's my fault that we didn't get that many into the game (since I didn't work on the art consistently during the jam, haha);; I hope the CGs we did have were satisfying(?) to get as part of the story! It's definitely something I want to improve on in future games I work on.
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