Pastel Sweets [GxG, Dating Sim, Commercial]

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RosyInk27
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Pastel Sweets [GxG, Dating Sim, Commercial]

#1 Post by RosyInk27 » Mon Aug 18, 2014 3:04 am

✿ Pastel Sweets ✿
This project is only in the conceptual stages right now (no stunning art or pretty logos to show off rn ;m:), but I'm feeling good enough about where it's going so far to give a brief overview on the game! ♥ As always, your opinions on this are greatly welcome!

Plot Synopsis

Life after college is just not what it's cracked up to be. Despite graduating with honors from a well-respected business university, none of the companies you've applied to will hire you - your last interviewer just plain shows you the door the moment you walk in! However, you get lost on your way home and stumble into the Sucre + Lait bakery and cafe, where you decide to drown your sorrows with hot chocolate and cookies. The shop's beautiful baker, Brooklyn LaVoie, takes pity on your when she happens to see your many rejected resume copies. She confesses that the place is horrifically understaffed because of interpersonal conflicts with the previous employees and figures that (although you're admittedly overqualified) you would fit the job perfectly!

Once Brooklyn pulls out the owner, you get hired on the spot (since you can't exactly afford to stay unemployed for another month) and so begins your unusually adventurous career as a common cashier. During your time at Sucre + Lait, you will discover the reasons behind the bakery's many conflicts, cater to the rich and famous, and maybe find sweet satisfaction beyond your usual late night slices of chocolate cake.

Love Interests
  • Brooklyn LaVoie: Sucre + Lait's long time baker and the quote unquote "official love interest". A feminine tomboy with a motherly disposition, she is the person you look towards when things go wrong, although she herself is far less willing to reach out when things in her life begin to spiral.

    Aimi Dunst: Your high school friend and current roommate. An energetic spitfire of street fashion and spiced cocktails, Aimi has been a bit absent lately, choosing instead to frequent the party scene. However, she's thinking about signing on to Sucre + Lait as an assistant baker and is now going to great lengths to show that her affection for you is still visibly boundless. Maybe a bit too boundless perhaps...?

    Sapphire Robbins: A famous heiress and an elegant, sharp-eyed business woman with seemingly effortless style. She supposedly wants to buy out Sucre + Lait to merge it with her family corporation, but what are her motives for this big move and why does Brooklyn seem to have such a grudge against her? Although she may appear to be a sarcastic and self centered ice queen, there may be more to her than she wants others to believe.

    Émile: Sucre + Lait's most frequent and by far their quietest customer. She often stays huddled up in a corner, typing away at her laptop from noon until well past closing time. Since you've showed up though, she's been coming into the cafe far earlier than usual. Why is she coming in so early and just what is she doing on that computer of hers?
Game Features

There are two things that I think will make this game stand out from the rest:
  • 1. Dressing up your player avatar in certain clothes can either help or hurt the points you earn with each interaction, and each combination of clothes differs between love interests. Ex. A smart pencil skirt/blouse combo in silver and navy may win over the heiress, but absolutely kill the mood with your roommate; while a chunky, mothball-scented sweater you found in the back of your closet will gain suspicious looks from your baking mentor, but greatly encourage snuggling sessions with the residential bookworm.
    2. If you can't choose between love interests and you play your cards right, you can pursue happy polyamorous relationships with two of your favorite girls. You have to be careful though: one wrong move at the wrong time will instantly trigger a bad end, so these routes are advised for only the most hardcore players!
In addition to that, the game will feature...
  • • The option to turn adult content on/off
    • Protagonist customization (Three different skin tones will be available)
    • Multiple different, vastly varying endings (over fourteen so far) and...
    • Unlockable in-game recipes for different flavors of French macarons that you win after every route
Development So Far
  • Outline: 60%
    Script: Bit murky, but I'll say 10% so far
    Sprites: >1%
    Backgrounds: 0%
    CGs: 0%
    Music: >1%
    Coding: 2%

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Re: Pastel Sweets [GxG, Dating Sim, Commercial]

#2 Post by gekiganwing » Mon Aug 18, 2014 6:40 am

I read the synopsis, and was intrigued. A couple of comments and questions, when you have time...

1. Have you sold anything else before? Do you have experience selling your stories, games, music, and other creative works? If not, then carefully do some research before you enter the world of indie video games.

2a. It sounds like the main character has already had a number of life experiences. Does she have a defined personality? Is her personality defined by the player through actions or stats? Is she a blank slate?

2b. Would you benefit by creating an alternate protagonist, or letting the main character's be either male or female? This could help widen your audience, and potentially help you sell more copies. However, it would also be a lot of work.

3. When/where does the story take place? Outside of the cafe's walls, is there anything interesting about the setting?

4. There are adults-only visual novels written in English, and there are VNs that are sold as indie games. As far as I remember, those two categories have overlapped once or twice. (I know that Otchi Kocchi had an adult spinoff called Noda & Naruko's Naughty Nights, which wasn't freeware.) You could sell it through your own website, and perhaps both DLSite English and Mangagamer's site. Be sure to research this.

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Re: Pastel Sweets [GxG, Dating Sim, Commercial]

#3 Post by RosyInk27 » Mon Aug 18, 2014 1:08 pm

gekiganwing wrote:I read the synopsis, and was intrigued. A couple of comments and questions, when you have time...

1. Have you sold anything else before? Do you have experience selling your stories, games, music, and other creative works? If not, then carefully do some research before you enter the world of indie video games.
I have not, but I've been doing my homework for things like marketing, distribution, proper budgeting, taxes, and the general legal side of indie game retail.
2a. It sounds like the main character has already had a number of life experiences. Does she have a defined personality? Is her personality defined by the player through actions or stats? Is she a blank slate?
I plan to give the protagonist a very sparsely defined personality (in the same vein as games like the Persona series and to a lesser extent, Katawa Shoujo) but the player is ultimately the one who gives her a name and fills in the blanks through their choices.
2b. Would you benefit by creating an alternate protagonist, or letting the main character's be either male or female? This could help widen your audience, and potentially help you sell more copies. However, it would also be a lot of work.
I don't plan on making it so. This game is mostly aimed towards women, and drawing all the sprites and reworking the CGs for a male protagonist would be incredibly time consuming (especially since I'm not very good at drawing the male form). With the alternate skin colors, it would be fairly easy/cost effective to just leave those areas of the protagonist's body blank and then properly flesh them out once everything else has been drawn up.
3. When/where does the story take place? Outside of the cafe's walls, is there anything interesting about the setting?
The story mainly takes place in a densely populated city where the cafe happens to be. It isn't completely fleshed out right now, but the best I can describe it is as a cultural blend of San Francisco and Seattle with a lot of emphasis on exploring a choice few of the city's subcultures through the love interests (which I'll expand upon once the outline is entirely finished and polished). Gentle pastel colors along with the obligatory gray will be incorporated into its BGs with the cafe ultimately functioning as a hub for you to interact with the characters.
4. There are adults-only visual novels written in English, and there are VNs that are sold as indie games. As far as I remember, those two categories have overlapped once or twice. (I know that Otchi Kocchi had an adult spinoff called Noda & Naruko's Naughty Nights, which wasn't freeware.) You could sell it through your own website, and perhaps both DLSite English and Mangagamer's site. Be sure to research this.
The initial plan was to give myself enough time in the development process to try and get it onto Steam's Greenlight while making a separate website for the game and any other future endeavors that I would be selling/distributing. I'm a bit worried that this might blow up in my face though, since this is my first ever game and one would normally need to generate a lot of publicity for a game to sell. Do you think it would be better to just make it free or perhaps pitch it to an already well-established visual novel team? Either way, thank you for the feedback - I greatly appreciate it!

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Re: Pastel Sweets [GxG, Dating Sim, Commercial]

#4 Post by LadyOfGatsby » Mon Aug 18, 2014 1:14 pm

I really love this idea and the custom features, what stood out the to me being customizing your own character because shucks I would so play that and want to make something like that as well one day. I really wish you luck and great things of this VN. Usually I'd reccomend for you to try a free visual novel first so people can see what you are capable of/your team or just to develop some experience beforehand ^ ^
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Re: Pastel Sweets [GxG, Dating Sim, Commercial]

#5 Post by RosyInk27 » Mon Aug 18, 2014 5:57 pm

Thanks LadyOfGatsby! Truth be told, I'm also working on a free-to-play visual novel, but it's much more experimental and Pastel Sweets has just been progressing farther ahead at a smooth pace. Hopefully I can keep them both on/ahead of schedule and release the two relatively close to each other.
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Re: Pastel Sweets [GxG, Dating Sim, Commercial]

#6 Post by Glitterbark » Wed Aug 20, 2014 3:03 pm

I absolutely adore the concept of this game; it seems very sweet! The characters, just from their short descriptions, seem to have a personality and interest to them, and I really like the idea of a character like Sapphire being pursuable. Too often it seems like the "famous, rich heiress" character is demoted to a one dimensional villain in popular media! I'm definitely supportive of GxG games - there just plain aren't enough of them for my tastes! I like the idea of alternate skintones, as well, even if it's a little customization, it's still a really nice touch. Good luck on your project! I'll be watching it.
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Re: Pastel Sweets [GxG, Dating Sim, Commercial]

#7 Post by RosyInk27 » Sat Aug 23, 2014 9:17 pm

Thanks FoxTrotMuffin! I'm definitely devoting a lot of effort into making every love interest equally likable and appealing for the players while letting them be flawed human beings. I'll do my best to keep the project updated for everyone in between school and work :)
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Re: Pastel Sweets [GxG, Dating Sim, Commercial]

#8 Post by verysunshine » Thu Nov 06, 2014 10:44 pm

This looks like a lot of fun. I'll be watching this.

Build the basics first, then add all the fun bits.

Please check out my games on my itch.io page!

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Re: Pastel Sweets [GxG, Dating Sim, Commercial]

#9 Post by RosyInk27 » Wed Mar 08, 2017 2:41 am

I'M ALIVE

DEAR GOD AFTER ALL THESE YEARS I ' M A L I V E

anyways, couple updates:
* i've decided to release the game for free once it's done and just put a button style link to a virtual tip jar somewhere on the title screen.
* the polyamory idea was nice but i just couldn't find a conceivable way to program all the checkpoints and hidden options into the game without completely overloading the development process. perhaps it'll become DLC in the future but as of now, consider the idea axed.
* any additional features will be shelved away as potential DLC so that this game can actually be finished within half a decade.
* character cards will be coming next week and put in this thread.
* i'll update this thread semi-frequently, so you can expect my needy no0by butt will be bounding through the help sections on a weekly basis.
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Re: Pastel Sweets [GxG, Dating Sim, Commercial]

#10 Post by DarkSin » Thu Mar 09, 2017 11:04 am

Multi-route GxG games are such a rarity, and I find this one in particular very interesting! The LIs all sound lovely, though I think I'm somewhat partial to Sapphire Robbins :P Will be keeping an eye out for updates, cheers!
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