The story of Machina Jewel centers on a girl named Charlene Lancaster (her first name can be changed by the player), who is the daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Northumberland. Her semi-charmed life is shattered when, on her 17th birthday, Charlene learns that her family has been cursed for the last 200+ years. All children with an odd birth order die on their 18th birthday-–no exceptions. She is the first and only child in her immediate family, so seeing as how 1 is an odd number, Charlene is doomed to die in a year.
But not if she can help it.
Set in a made-up world based on a Victorian Steampunk setting, Machina Jewel follows Charlene as she attempts to break the curse on her family, help out her friends, and–-of course–-fall in love with one of four guys: Lucien, Tetsuyoshi, Azhar, or Alonzo. It’s going to be one crazy year!
LUCIEN . AZHAR . TETSUYOSHI . ALONZO . CHARLENE* . ESPERANSA . SABINE
Lucien: The son and heir of the Duke of Edinburgh. Lucien is polite and reserved, generally, but to those he knows well, he can be very prickly, sarcastic, and blunt. He is very serious about wanting to become the Prime Minister of Windsor and works hard to achieve this goal. Lucien is also Charlene’s tutor on some Tuesdays.
Azhar: A mysterious Arabian pianist who works at the inn. Azhar seems nice enough on the surface and is always smiling, but tends to keep others at a distance. Some say that he was once a prince, others say that he’s a bandit on the run... Stories vary, but it’s clear that he’s very talented and intelligent—and it’s best to stay on his good side.
Tetsuyoshi: A foreign student from Hapon. Tetsuyoshi is rather stuffy and strict about his morals and beliefs, but is also easily embarrassed and seems to have a fear of steam technology. He does not handle girls well and is somewhat isolated because of his peers’ xenophobia, but Tetsuyoshi has a kind heart and is very gallant.
Alonzo: The captain of the Neptune’s Jewel. Alonzo is a friendly, cheerful sailor who curiously believes that having women on ships is bad luck. He owns a parrot named Lucille who only knows how to insult him; attempts to train her to say nicer phrases have failed miserably. It’s unknown what his real occupation is—could he be a pirate...?
Charlene*: The one and only daughter of the Duke of Northumberland and the heroine of this tale. (* her first name can be changed) Though sheltered and naive, Charlene* also has a strong will and tries to approach situations/people with kindness and understanding. This makes it easy for her to make new friends and acquaintances.
Esperansa: The daughter of an Ispanian perfumer and merchant. Esperansa is a bubbly, easygoing girl who loves art. She can always be found with paintbrush in hand, ready to capture the world on her canvas. Esper is the baby of her family and a supportive friend to Charlene*. Unlike Tetsu, she adores learning about new technology.
Sabine: The daughter of an affluent trader. Sabine often travels and knows much about the world. She rarely talks about herself, but is always willing to help out one of her friends. Despite being rich, charming, having a plethora of suitors—and approaching 20 years of age—Sabine remains unattached: a fact which mystifies her friends.
- No obvious "default love interest" here. All four guys are developed equally and we've tried to be as un-biased as possible. Also, all four of them are awesome. b
- Female friends that play a big role in the story. (usually I feel like the heroine of otome games is kind of alone in a den of guys)
- An elaborate story (in fact it probably errs on the side of TOO elaborate/long) with lots and lots of choices and variations in the story based on those choices, even as early as chapter one. At the same time, the gameplay shouldn't be frustrating. It shouldn't be impossible to get a good ending if you pay attention and choose wisely, but there are a number of special endings that will be harder to get.
- A--we think--likable and relatable heroine whose personality can be tweaked by the player via choices you make. (but our game isn't exactly a stat-raising game--no studying every day for +2 int)
- A setting that doesn't involve going to high school in Japan. In fact, our heroine is home-schooled. And she's British. Well, sort of.
- Art: Concept images done, sprites/BGs in progress (all sprites/BGs in the screenshots are temporary)
- Interface/GUI: Done, but constantly being tweaked (the art used in the main menu is temporary concept sketch art -- will be replaced later)
- Story/Coding: Chapter Three in progress (there will be 8 chapters total + endings, epilogues, and bonus scenes)
- Voice Acting: Chapter Two in progress
+ another 4,633 words that have been written, but not yet coded into the game. I'm finally getting the hang of writing without programming at the same time. 8DRen'Py 18.104.22.1680 lint report, generated at: Wed Jul 20 11:25:15 2011
Statistics: The game contains 3,054 screens of dialogue.
These screens contain a total of 55,517 words,
for an average of 18.2 words per screen.
The game contains 81 menus.
This is our first visual novel, so hopefully we can get everyone's help and support as the project progresses. XD Thanks for reading~!
I'm keeping a blog about the progress and whatnot here. We also have a LiveJournal community and website. Also this is probably boring stuff for non-beta testers, but I also have a changelog that is more detailed about progress/changes in the game. Phew! (the game itself will have a website later once we're farther along)
There's a favorite male lead poll going on here!