NaNoRenO entry: Dante's Wrath

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NaNoRenO entry: Dante's Wrath

#1 Post by mangokiwi.com » Sat Mar 25, 2006 4:25 pm

Hello all.

mangokiwi.com is proud to present our entry to NaNoRenO entitled, Dante's Wrath!

It is noticeably longer than our last game (Kiwi's Valentine), so we are anxious to know what you think! Be sure to leave us your feedback once you have played our game!

You can pick it up from: http://www.mangokiwi.com/games/dantes-wrath.html

We have posted a windows installer as well as a cross platform zip.

Thanks and enjoy!
Diwant
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Last edited by mangokiwi.com on Fri Nov 17, 2006 6:11 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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#2 Post by papillon » Sat Mar 25, 2006 6:27 pm

Do any decisions in this actually count, at all? Almost every time I choose something I get told the character decides to do the other thing anyway.

And your readme still says
Kiwi's Valentine should work with Windows 98 or higher.

To run it, simply run the amgine.exe excutable in the directory
containing the unzipped archive

As for the game, all I can say is that... I'm not sure what audience you're after. It makes no sense, but then ruins any ability to be a fun wacky comedy by doing things that simply aren't funny.

I would suggest losing the death and blood and sticking with comedy action.

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Thanks

#3 Post by mangokiwi.com » Sat Mar 25, 2006 11:26 pm

And your readme still says
Kiwi's Valentine should work with Windows 98 or higher.

To run it, simply run the amgine.exe excutable in the directory
containing the unzipped archive
Yikes! Thanks for catching that! Let me know if we can arrange for you a discount coupon for our games as our thanks. (Drop me a PM or email my dept from mangokiwi.com's Contact us page)
I would suggest losing the death and blood and sticking with comedy action.
Point noted. We were trying to go for a Trigun kind of mix of comedy and serious action. We will play around with the game/script, etc. to see if we can still bring this across.

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#4 Post by RedSlash » Sun Mar 26, 2006 2:41 am

Interesting. Make me feel like reading manga when playing the game.
It seems that there is only one plotline and therefore any choice you make forces you to the one choice the author wanted the story to progess along.
Kinda disappointing with the hanging ending.

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#5 Post by mikey » Sun Mar 26, 2006 9:23 am

Well, I also have mixed feelings about this.

I kind of see a potential, but similarly to Dual Hearts I think the story is just too condensed to make the impact you had in mind. I don't mind a comedy/serious mixture, but it needs time and some narrative to work or kick in, otherwise as papillon said it just feels like there's no focus.

Generally I think this version of your game (if you aren't going to make major changes to it - I suppose not, since it's in the Finished sction) would be suitable for a Flash animation (in the good sense), because it switches viewpoints like a movie, it features a bit of combat, a bit of comedy and it has a lighter feel to it.

My suggestion is (if you don't focus on either the serious or fun part) to make it longer so the texture of the story can get through, and as far as the ending goes, at least some form of epilogue, so the players can understand just why and so on, because otherwise it will feel a bit unfinished.

Also, if there is going to be a sequel (the game ends saying End of part 1), and there is a sequel in the making (your website), it inevitably raises the question whether the story will pick up where it left off in Dante's wrath. If it does and if it continues the story, then it's really questionable whether this is actually a full game.

It may seem I'm just criticizing, but I don't actually have anything against the content of the game - the music, the story or the art, I think they're all very fine and I'm not requiring ren'ai or anything to be happy.

It's just that when playing, all those elements seem to be bigger than the actual game and it just results in this maybe even slightly incomplete experience.

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#6 Post by papillon » Sun Mar 26, 2006 12:52 pm

We were trying to go for a Trigun kind of mix of comedy and serious action.
Okay, that makes m ore sense. And I do like Trigun. :)

Still, flipping rapidly back and forth between the two is jarring. As I remember it, Trigun *started* completely wacky and not serious at all, and then introduced dramatic elements very slowly. So first we see the characters as silly, then we start to get to know them, sense hidden depths, care about them... then when horrible things start happening to them, we hurt for them.

If you jumped straight from the first few episodes to the last few episodes, it wouldn't work. :)

The action components and WOO-HA! poses you've got going on are fun, so for a short game I would say stick with that. If you make it longer or do build a full series out of it, then you can start shading in depth over time.

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#7 Post by PyTom » Sun Mar 26, 2006 5:51 pm

One thing about Dante's Wrath is that it has choices, but it's fundamentally a Kinetic Novel insofar as those choices generally don't matter. I think it probably would have been better if there wasn't the illusion of choice, especially if you're going to force people into what most would regard as a bad ending.
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#8 Post by Alessio » Wed Mar 29, 2006 9:16 am

What I liked less was what has been already mentioned: The story feels too rushed (it's nearly like reading a synopsis) and the mixture of light-hearted humour and gore (e.g. the sister and camera scene) is not really my thing. Either-or.

The graphics were a bit inconsistent. Since the characters are drawn quite well, the CG background was sometimes not such a good match.

What I did like was the approach that the main character is not the player; also, the drawings were pretty good (if maybe a bit overused). It definitely had an anime feel to it. The humour was nice in places. Build on those strengths for the sequel!

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#9 Post by mangokiwi.com » Wed Apr 05, 2006 4:31 pm

We are ecstatic that so many people left comments on our game! With many of the comments as we read them through we found ourselves nodding in agreement with what was suggested.

From our 'lessons learned' meeting where we sat down to figure out where we can change our game making for better games, the loudest fact was that this was our first game we designed plot first, game second. We had the storyline written out and the choices were added on to make it have a game feel (a point that was noted by many). Our other games (Temple Of Blocs, Kiwi's Valentine) were game first, plot second and were better received by their audiences.

Ren'ai is hard in this way since it is a form of marriage between game and plot and the art seems to be to find the right balance between both, knowing that one cannot simply carry the other. We have taken the comments graciously provided to us and will put them to fruit when working on our future games.

Thanks!
Diwant

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#10 Post by bookie » Sat Apr 15, 2006 11:49 pm

Finally got to play this, and unlike what seems to be everyone else I liked the mixture of comedy and seriousness. To be honest the seriousness wasn't all that amazing because of the already mentioned problem with the length and speed of the game. There's not enough time to get serious to any degree of depth, so the angst involved doesn't really pull me in as a player. But the comedic parts are what made it worth playing to me.

I also liked the way you twisted the usual visual novel's visual aspect of the format and made the images play out in a more manga or comic sort of way.

So pros: The comedy and what I suppose would be called the direction.

Cons: A little too short to get anywhere, and I agree choices that had an effect on the story would have been nice too.

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#11 Post by mangokiwi.com » Wed May 03, 2006 8:09 pm

Thanks for the feedback :) We were trying to go Ren'Py nouveau with the animations. Nice to hear that they were received well by some.

From,
Diwant

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#12 Post by kara24601 » Tue May 30, 2006 9:26 pm

Unless there's going to be some ren'ai branchs or whatever in the future , I don't really get why this game is among the ren'ai games. Not that I'm really complaining. It's good enough that I didn't plunk it in an "Other" folder but it could've been better so it's in a "Mixed" folder. Come to think of it , I should take it out of my Ren'ai folders completely and decide where it really belongs since I wouldn't call it a ren'ai game. ( and with my luck you'll probably inform that it's not really intended to be a ren'ai game but then I'll have to ask why did you advertise here then or something like that and then maybe you'll want to hurt me...*shrugs and laughs* )

I really loved how Gen looked so I was very disappointed when
it turned out he was not just a thief but a murderer too


Like most people , I didn't like the mixing of seriousness and comedy. Like another has stated , it would've been better to get the comedy out of your system first and then introduce the seriousness in small doses or something like that. I think other people care way too much how short something is or wether it has sound or what. ( I've stated it before and I'll state it again , some things don't really need any sound or you just can't find the proper sound for them. ) The graphics and how you pulled off the mixing of some 3D-ish-ness ( ugh..yeah...I'm pretty sure that's not a a good way to put it....sorry...lol ) with manga / anime stylings ...that was really cool. I'd like to see more of that. I'd especially like to see that in a ren'ai game.

Thanks for all your hard work.

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