Windy Capital: Anthropology Studies Docudrama

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Router-Jax
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Windy Capital: Anthropology Studies Docudrama

#1 Post by Router-Jax » Fri Jun 06, 2008 10:44 pm

Game files for all three platforms can be gotten here:
- In the attachment below
- http://hosted.filefront.com/RouterJax/2244352

------------------------

EDIT: Instead of talking much nonsense about the project.. Might as well just go for the full synopsis. Sorry for changing this by every so often, I'm still thinking about the right method to present this to the world. Seeing as Windy Capital doesn't go the usual way visual novels and anime do, it's kinda hard to elaborate this properly. That and I hope people won't look at it the way they look at the usual ren'ai, or the usual anime for that matter. Speaking of which, if this could be compared to any manga series.. It'd be in line with the likes of Kozue Amano's Aria and Kei Toume's Sing 'Yesterday' For Me.

Story:
Windy Capital features a Bystine war relief namely Merlandi Hertova as its main character. Upon being rescued from an invading army's raid, it's then that the savior army found out of her parents' deaths. She was then brought home as an adopted child by Christopher Bayliss, the Wistarian foot soldier that saved her, whom then raised her all the way until she graduates from high school.

As a student, Hertova is pure golden. As to which, it have resulted in her being favored by many regardless of age and gender. However, as talented as she may be, there's always this lonely, confused traits decorating her face.

It was later until the graduation day that her homeroom teacher found out of her long cherished wondering. Apparently she's been thinking that she may owe Wistaria for coming to her rescue when she was a helpless child, but then again Wistaria's act of fending off the army invading Bystine may not be at all different from the invading army's act of committing the war crime itself. To her, Wistaria may soon cause a greater war after liberating Bystine from the invader army. Distrusting Wistaria's claim as it being just and fair, with it being run by an Utopian-oriented city, the Windy Capital.

Of circumstances, it is then that the capital hosts the docudrama 'Windy Capital', in hoping to gain better understanding in human nature. The guys behind the show are aiming for an outsider who have many wonders for the capital, and apparently Hertova is just the right person to host this show. Hence her recruitment as the host of the docudrama Windy Capital.

Will Windy Capital change her assumptions towards Wistaria for the better? Or will the Wistaria be just another power-crazed nation as she assumes?

------------------------

Production notes: I'm still not sure regarding where Windy Capital will be heading, though right now I think I've plans that the options taken will eventually shape up her character, leading to differences in the way people interact with her depending on how you shape her to be, and may even result in different endings in the long run. There's still no exaction whatsoever declared on this idea yet, so I'll keep thinking on what'd be good to implement.

Also it may perhaps be that this wouldn't appeal to everyone, particularly those with short attention span. Sorry, but it's just one of those stories which move at a slow phase. Though I'll try not making people wait much.

------------------------

Fixes to be made prior to the next release:
- Graphical glitch(it's there.. Even I had only noticed it recently).
- The baad writing itself. XD
- Reduce transitions.
- Reduce variation in uses of texts.
Attachments
Windy Capital-linux-x86.tar.bz2
(47.13 MiB) Downloaded 227 times
Windy Capital-mac.zip
(47.95 MiB) Downloaded 172 times
Windy Capital.zip
(47.18 MiB) Downloaded 566 times
Untitled-5.jpg
Untitled-4.jpg
Untitled-3.jpg
Untitled-2.jpg
Untitled-1.jpg
Title-menu-hover.jpg
Last edited by Router-Jax on Thu Jun 12, 2008 10:40 pm, edited 14 times in total.

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Re: Windy Capital: Anthropology Studies Docudrama

#2 Post by Mikan » Sat Jun 07, 2008 12:09 am

I only got one ending, but...

I find the words in the background music really distracting oO; it'd be nice if you could get an instrumental version...
I don't have a lot of experience with English songs, so I don't understand the significance of those songs to the theme of the game.

I'm also a bit of a prick when it comes to graphics, and I'm finding the background incredibly distracting.
The backgrounds look a lot like those black and white composition notebooks. Despite the thick black borders around the characters, I still end up staring at the background because it gives me a very troubling, worrisome feeling in contrast to the homely, cozy, background music.


Your concern about conflict is appreciated, however I feel that the game didn't reach the level of sophistication required to convey such a complex issue. Try reading about people living as refugees, such as Joe Sacco's comics (particularly, Palestine), Maus: A Survivor's Tale by Art Spiegelman, Deogratias: A tale of Rwanda, and personal stories from people who've evacuated from recent natural disasters such as Hurricane Katrina, or the chengdu earthquake.

The game is too simple -- it needs more attention to detail. Perhaps the main character is jealous of classmates who have friends and have lived in that town all their lives, or perhaps the classmates pity her or pick on her because she doesn't belong. There's very little pragmatic examples of why she feels the need to embrace her home country. Show us why she loves her country, and why she feels the need to do something.

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Re: Windy Capital: Anthropology Studies Docudrama

#3 Post by Samu-kun » Sat Jun 07, 2008 1:23 am

Mmm... I thought that it wasn't bad. But I will agree with Mikan about the English songs. They are very distracting. o_o; Also, perhaps you should find an editor to look over your script. Unfortunately, I'm rather busy with my own projects, so I won't be of any help there, but some of the narration didn't quite sound perfectly fluent. Also, do the choices actually do anything? I felt like it didn't really matter which choice I made because they felt like the same thing. As for the story, there's not quite enough there for me to make a reliable judgement. It could be good depending on how it turns out.

In terms of the art, it's pretty good, but pay attention to all the character's arms. They all look unnatural. The art style isn't quite to my tastes but it looks good. XD Also, I thought it was strange that all the characters look atleast quasi-realistic but there were cartoonish "!!!" and "..." bubbles next to them some of the time. It feels more like the character sprites should be superdeformed when stuff like that happens. XD

Well, it was pretty short, but it has potential. There wasn't particularly anything exciting in this episode, but I can hope that the story will get more dramatic in future installments. :3

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Re: Windy Capital: Anthropology Studies Docudrama

#4 Post by Router-Jax » Sat Jun 07, 2008 3:31 am

First of all it's good to see that this is downloadable, despite the file size. >w>
Samu-kun wrote:Also, perhaps you should find an editor to look over your script. Unfortunately, I'm rather busy with my own projects, so I won't be of any help there, but some of the narration didn't quite sound perfectly fluent. Also, do the choices actually do anything? I felt like it didn't really matter which choice I made because they felt like the same thing. As for the story, there's not quite enough there for me to make a reliable judgement. It could be good depending on how it turns out.

In terms of the art, it's pretty good, but pay attention to all the character's arms. They all look unnatural. The art style isn't quite to my tastes but it looks good. XD Also, I thought it was strange that all the characters look atleast quasi-realistic but there were cartoonish "!!!" and "..." bubbles next to them some of the time. It feels more like the character sprites should be superdeformed when stuff like that happens. XD

Well, it was pretty short, but it has potential. There wasn't particularly anything exciting in this episode, but I can hope that the story will get more dramatic in future installments. :3
Ohh.. Okay, I'll see what I can do about the music. :)
Hehe.. Well you got me. XDD I believe it's clear now I'm no native english speaker. Nor am I used to writing things, moreover something poetic. XP That and I really couldn't find anyone to do some of the works for me, well around this area I'm at it's only me who is motivated to do this kinda thing.. Sigh. >_>
Actually as of now I'm not really sure about what do the choices do. Whether they will cause great changes or will only lead to ever slightly differing events(as seen in Persona 3).

About the art, yeah it's quite difficult.. Seeing as I don't really have much time to redo characters in various poses, I ended up choosing only one that'd represent them most of the time. And to make it worse all that the characters have on them are all drawn separately(from hair to accessories to outfits..) and I do admit that all these make them look strange.. Hehe
Also, regarding the art style it's really because I'm not really an avid anime fan anymore. Yet I feel that I don't wish for things to get too heavy, so there I implement those "..." and stuffs. Also because I'm trying to further enhance the feel, though I don't know if it works that way. :p

And regarding the story, who knows. I've never had any experience completing a story. But I believe I want to keep continue doing this, since I suck at comics and seeing this is the only thing I can do.. And yes it does worry me a bit actually that the story starts of slow, there will be something happening though I hope we can get to that point quicker before I get everyone bored. XD

I only got one ending, but...
Mikan wrote: Your concern about conflict is appreciated, however I feel that the game didn't reach the level of sophistication required to convey such a complex issue. Try reading about people living as refugees, such as Joe Sacco's comics (particularly, Palestine), Maus: A Survivor's Tale by Art Spiegelman, Deogratias: A tale of Rwanda, and personal stories from people who've evacuated from recent natural disasters such as Hurricane Katrina, or the chengdu earthquake.

The game is too simple -- it needs more attention to detail. Perhaps the main character is jealous of classmates who have friends and have lived in that town all their lives, or perhaps the classmates pity her or pick on her because she doesn't belong. There's very little pragmatic examples of why she feels the need to embrace her home country. Show us why she loves her country, and why she feels the need to do something.
I'm sorry to say Mikan but we're not quite there yet.. I believe more will be elaborated later. And yes I do agree that for something that takes quite long to do it's unfortunate that this started of at a confusing foot. I intend it to be that way and I do read about war stories. Apart from the fact that I myself isn't of a blood that originated in this land I'm living, and it was indeed because of war. And though I live rather comfortably as she is right here, right now I still can't help but to feel the need of doing something to preserve my blood's homeland, and it's not something easy to achieve and a direct approach wouldn't most likely work. It will get complex and all, but I don't want to rush things too much. I'm just afraid too much happenings in the beginning would make things too messy to be continued later. This isn't yet the complete package and it'll be long.

Though thanks for the comment. :) I'm trying to see what everyone thinks of this depend on who they are, how old are they, where they're from and all.

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Re: Windy Capital: Anthropology Studies Docudrama

#5 Post by Guest » Sat Jun 07, 2008 9:58 am

Hmmm... did you take down the file? filefront doesn't want to process the download request...

One thing though I can comment on now is the art... very unique.

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Re: Windy Capital: Anthropology Studies Docudrama

#6 Post by Router-Jax » Sat Jun 07, 2008 10:05 am

Guest wrote:Hmmm... did you take down the file? filefront doesn't want to process the download request...

One thing though I can comment on now is the art... very unique.
Nope, I didn't. The same thing seemed to happen to me when I try to download another RenPy game that is hosted on filefront too.. Maybe they have a bandwidth limit?
Other than that, I don't know where else I could post mirrors for these. :| Somewhere reliable and don't take too long to upload, if you can mention any?

Regarding the art, well of course I favor it myself. It looks different from the way I'm no longer an avid anime fan..
As what I expected, different people really do give differing opinions about these. Thanks though. XD

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Re: Windy Capital: Anthropology Studies Docudrama

#7 Post by lordcloudx » Sat Jun 07, 2008 3:35 pm

Router-Jax wrote: Nope, I didn't. The same thing seemed to happen to me when I try to download another RenPy game that is hosted on filefront too.. Maybe they have a bandwidth limit?
Other than that, I don't know where else I could post mirrors for these. :| Somewhere reliable and don't take too long to upload, if you can mention any?
Right here. Upload the game as an attachment to your first post. Most of us do that for newly completed games.

Also
http://www.megashare.com

and other free filehosting sites.
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: Windy Capital: Anthropology Studies Docudrama

#8 Post by Router-Jax » Sat Jun 07, 2008 9:55 pm

lordcloudx wrote:Right here. Upload the game as an attachment to your first post. Most of us do that for newly completed games.
Sure, actually I tried that too. Only that I got logged out somehow while uploading them.. Though having uploaded some in the process(before I got logged out) I find the server here pretty reliable too, Well.. I just uploaded them, there..! :D

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Re: Windy Capital: Anthropology Studies Docudrama

#9 Post by PyTom » Mon Jun 09, 2008 1:56 am

First, let me say I liked what was present here in the game. It's not a clone of the average Japanese visual novel, but instead goes for its own thing, in terms of the sort of art and music that's involved. (Although I think it's fair to say that it's a descendant of Ori, Ochi, Onoe, at least in terms of presentation.) While there's nothing wrong with a JP-clone VN, something different is nice as well.
It's interesting the way this episode sets up religious identity to be a major part of the series. It is somewhat confusing the way it sets up two (warring?) religions, which may be existing religions with the serial numbers filed off. You can tell an interesting story this way, but you do need to be careful about how you introduce the two religions, and you'll need to keep refreshing the reader's memory about what's what. I'm interested in seeing where you go with it.
I think it's fair to say that the writing could use a wee bit of polishing. While the story is understandable, there are just a few jarring word-choices that break immersion.

To end the review part, let me say this is a solid start to a larger work, and I'm interested in seeing where it goes from here.

There are a few technical comments I should also make:

First, let me say that this is probably the most effective use of Ren'Py's more advanced features I've seen in a while. It's a more interactive presentation than the average VN, and I think it adds to the feel of the story. I'm not sure it would be appropriate for every game, but here it seems to work.

On the other hand, I though transitions were overused. Having to wait a half-second each line of dialogue is somewhat annoying. I'd suggest limiting transitions to major changes (characters entering and leaving the scene, or changing position), and just perform simple changes in the speaker or emotions without a transition.

An alternative would be to shorten the transition (say, to .2 seconds rather than .5), and use _window_during_transitions to leave the window up during these minor changes, so they aren't as jarring.

Finally, I'd suggest rethinking how you present dialogue. While the current version works, switching from asfont to Deja Vu all the time is a bit disorienting. I'd consider using asfont for the dialogue as well, even if you keep it in a relatively standard window.

Anyway, hopefully these can be addressed in the next volume.

(Oh, and I'm curious where you got that instrumental version of "Yesterday" from. Though it disqualifies you from the RAA, it's an interesting rendition of a great song.)
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Re: Windy Capital: Anthropology Studies Docudrama

#10 Post by lordcloudx » Mon Jun 09, 2008 2:13 am

Just downloaded and finished this VN.

To answer your question, I'm male and I'm a Southeast-Asian like you, although we're probably not from the same country. Here are my slightly disorganized thoughts:

I liked the use of the VN medium and how everything was put together, such as the near-professional coloring of the character art, the tidbits of animation, the use of centered and windowed text and other stuff that I might have failed to mention.

Now what I didn't like was the main story, which was extremely underdeveloped; and the use of the English language which came off as a bit awkward. It was a bit too formal and almost robotic at times, but not without its share of errors. However, I just set my tolerance level for the awkward English a little bit higher, since I'm not a native speaker myself.
What I meant about the story being underdeveloped, is that it just sets a premise and then nothing really ever happens beyond that. Hertova is going to the Windy Capital; she's anxious about it; she has some pointless conversations with her teacher and grandpa; then what?
Also, I didn't like the English vocal song that you used. It was too distracting and didn't really seem to fit the story in any way. I liked the instrumental version of "Yesterday" though.

Lastly, try to use more detailed narrations next time. It was kinda hard to follow exactly what was happening at certain times even with the help of the graphics.

Still, over-all, you managed to create a unique ambiance for this entire piece, which worked well in its favor. It's just that the story didn't make good use of the ambiance you created, but since this is just episode 1, there's room for improvement in the next chapter.

Good job and congratulations on your first VN. (If this really is your first VN :wink: )
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Re: Windy Capital: Anthropology Studies Docudrama

#11 Post by Router-Jax » Mon Jun 09, 2008 4:29 am

Well I've nothing against JP-clone VNs either, though if it's what I do on my own I can be a bit picky. Still I don't mind if what I'm doing out of what I honestly like is similar to anything(In this case, its' way of presentation with o3's).
Oh, and I'm honoured to have everyone, especially PyTom here to overlook what I made with RenPy. :oops:

As for what PyTom said,
I do admit that the setting of the two religions on a dispute is a bit bizarre, but it's what I see happening today.. And if it's gone worse the real world might end up like this(which I have a firm belief it would eventually), so this series is kinda like showing the consequences to such happenings. Maybe players could take it as realizations or something. Though yes the series in its overall will have mention of religion from time to time, with this what it's being about. I believe I'll have to juggle many factors regarding this VN from time to time and I'll make sure I don't mess up.
About the English vocal songs.. I'm not really sure but there is a significance in there, and seeing as an equal or more amount of player do say it's alright, I'm kinda hesitating since it's my preference to use it. So I'm sorry to say but I'll leave it at that for a bit longer and see how things turn out. :?
Though the conclusion that I could make right now it ought to be so to english speakers, or those accustomed to it, who would understand the vocals just upon hearing without having to interpret it much. It could get distracting.. Though the reason I'm hesitating is because I find that the equal amount of people agreeing with me belonged to this group, and by most they're not even my close friends.

I agree with the english though, Not having to use it as mean of communication in daily lives and that I'm not a really good communicator, I think that's enough to make for the awkward script. :mrgreen: I'll try to improve on this part or look for somebody willing to edit it for me. I'll also work out on the narration.

Well if there's anything that seem underdeveloped I think that goes to where the current story stops at, at which it kinda stopped at somewhere it shouldn't yet.. Though I did expect that I'd get this kinda responses depending on what kind of readers are playing it.
Otherwise, blame me for I have no experience of doing any story to a finish whatsoever, the first time can be awkward.. :p
That and the rendition of this VN as if it's a docudrama I think, will have many people expect too much from it despite the fact that it shouldn't be seen in such way. I'm afraid the docudrama format it is done in would mostly show the protagonist's life progressively rather than having everything exciting every time. Though I do consider at what phase the story would be too slow to be interesting.
Speaking of the long run, from what I judged this'd take long to finish. It may even length up to be as long as a professional VN thus explaining the slow start. Aside from reasons mentioned earlier.

On the technical issues, yeah I think something was wrong with it. :) Thanks for mentioning, I'll look into that matter and fix stuffs prior to the next release.
Only one thing I need help on.. Now that I realize it, when I'm making up for distributions for the game, I notice that I'd need to archive the files(particularly images), but say.. For expansions I think all I'd need to upload are the updated script.rpy file, additional image and new sounds used. But since I'm going to only upload these files and not the whole game itself.. Is there any way I could have the image archived(as to protect them) in the expansion pack? Or is that I must left them unprotected in it?

And yes, this is my first VN. XD I think the inexperienced look is kinda clearly shown in this.

By the way, the instrumental Yesterday I got it from a friend who took a 3-month films & animation certificate program, who in the process was supplied with over 7000+ sfx and some bgms. Most of the bgms though(aside from the Peter McConnell ones)are uncredited. :| So I don't really know where do they came from, hence what I typed in the credits. Though yeah, I'm sorry that it is the cause it's disqualified from the RAA, but seeing as this is an amateur release whatsoever.. All I care about is doing it with my full passion(and thus the sounds I feel like suiting). I've had my fair share of getting shit from the professional world, so I'd just like to spend my time having fun doing this. XD And only consider changing that if this is considered for a legal release version, which isn't likely to happen.

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Re: Windy Capital: Anthropology Studies Docudrama

#12 Post by lunasspecto » Sat Jun 21, 2008 2:02 am

I'd be willing to do some editing for you. I haven't read the visual novel yet, but I'll download it now; it looks very interesting. I haven't been very active here, but I'm working on my own visual novel, so I have some interest in the projects people post here. I don't have any special education in the English language, but I'm a native speaker and I think I have a good sense of grammar. I also have a copy of the classic English grammar guide Elements of Style by Strunk and White.

I hope there aren't any glaring grammatical mistakes in this message. That might discredit me as a possible editor. :wink:
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Re: Windy Capital: Anthropology Studies Docudrama

#13 Post by Router-Jax » Sat Jun 21, 2008 12:53 pm

lunasspecto:
What can I say? I'm not an active member myself. XD Hmm let's see.. The more the merrier. I've already got a friend volunteering for the position, though yeah she seemed just as busy as I am and all, so I thought it'd be handy if I could have a few to help me. :) Also, the main reason I'm trying to get editors into the production is also so that I could learn how english is used by english speaking communities.. Helps a lot in me writing better.

I see, coming up with your own projects eh? :D Hmm.. Reminds me, I think that alongside this project I'll also be coming up with another in the meantime. Things ought to get hectic and additional editors could be a necessity.. I'll holler if I need any help. ;)

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