SYNC [Puzzle][Dark Sci-Fantasy][Romance][G/BxB]

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Valhalla
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SYNC [Puzzle][Dark Sci-Fantasy][Romance][G/BxB]

#1 Post by Valhalla » Mon Oct 31, 2016 10:04 am

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FORWARD
So I really love the locked room visual novels, where your life is on the line if you don't solve a series of wacky puzzles presented by some unseen antagonist. Think 999, Danganronpa and Sweet Fuse! Anyway, I wanted to have a go at making one, and also using it as an opportunity to learn a thing or two about coding!
Currently the only person working with me in the sprite artist, KARN.

ABOUT
Sixteen people are trapped in an underground bunker and forced to complete a series of puzzles in order to escape. The characters discover that they are all users of SyncTech, a relatively new technology which has been given to only a select group of people.

-Control Group-
Told from the point of view of Leonore. This story will explore SyncTech and it's effects on society since its introduction.
-System Reboot-
Told from the point of view of Bernard. This story will explore the lore and legends of the setting and they way they effect the characters.
CHARACTERS
DELTA CONTROL GROUP
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THETA CONTROL GROUP
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MU CONTROL GROUP
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PI CONTROL GROUP
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PLANNED FEATURES
  • Puzzle Mode vs Story Mode. So, for the moment the plan for this is that in story mode instead of doing the puzzles you contribute to escaping the room by interacting with the other characters and helping them to figure out the puzzle by encouraging them. Puzzle Mode, on the other hand, will require a much more heavy handed approach to the puzzles. You won't miss any scenes by doing it one way or the other, just some dialogue changes really.
  • Two different main characters with different romance options and story-lines.
  • The ability to save everyone! (And isn't that really what it is all about?)
  • Sort of comic book style art.
QUESTIONS
  • Do you think their should be extra content for story mode or puzzle mode? I guess I'm really asking if the joy of completing the puzzle will be enough to interest you in playing Puzzle Mode?
  • Which character do you think looks most interesting?
  • Any other comments or questions are welcome :)
Last edited by Valhalla on Fri Mar 30, 2018 3:30 am, edited 19 times in total.
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Re: Underground [Room Escape][Sci-Fantasy][Romance][Semi-Hor

#2 Post by Zelan » Mon Oct 31, 2016 7:07 pm

How do you feel about the plot? Does it seem compelling? I've kept it vague, should I give more information?
I love the idea! I've never played 999, but I've heard lots of good things about it.
Do the characters seem interesting/multi-faceted? Do you think there are interesting dynamics to work with, or will it fall flat?
They definitely seem interesting; I think the descriptions of how up-to-date everyone's SyncTech is gives a lot of insight on each character in a completely unique way. ^_^
Will unskippable puzzles bother you? I may only have them unskippable for the first playthrough, then give the choice. Would this be better?
I'm sure that I'll have trouble with some (puzzle games aren't my forte), but since the puzzles are an integral part of the gameplay I think I'll deal. cx There aren't too many VNs with gameplay on here, anyway - I'd love to see more of them. Having them be skippable after the first playthrough would probably be appreciated by a lot of people, though, especially the completionists who like to get every ending.
Any sort of puzzle that drives you insane in games? Any that you love?
I don't play puzzle games, so I can't really answer this well, but I guess anything that's timed usually doesn't go over well for me.
Any other comments or critisms you're prepared to throw at me! I welcome all feedback =)
Valhalla wrote:Her greatest strength is math, but she detests languages and social studies.
Since Leonore chose her own focus groups, I think it might to be entirely accurate to say that she detests social studies - a test group, especially like this, is sort of an intersection between science, math, and social studies. :]
Valhalla wrote:His greatest strength is social studies and language, but he detests music.
I don't know if this will ever come up, but if he's such a knowledgeable guy, he probably knows quite a bit about music history even if he hates music. Music history is sort of intertwined with world history, after all. ^_^ (Also, you use "fly below the radar" twice in his description.)

How old are all of the characters now?

Did Leonore set up this test for PUTREFY, or was she put in it against her will by someone else working for SyncTech?

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Re: Underground [Room Escape][Sci-Fantasy][Romance][Semi-Hor

#3 Post by Valhalla » Tue Nov 01, 2016 3:06 am

Hi Zelan! First of all, thank you for your comments! It's good to get feedback.
Zelan wrote:I love the idea! I've never played 999, but I've heard lots of good things about it.
I know you have a back-log of visual novels to play already but I HIGHLY recommend 999... It's a great game.
Zelan wrote:They definitely seem interesting; I think the descriptions of how up-to-date everyone's SyncTech is gives a lot of insight on each character in a completely unique way. ^_^
I'm glad! I think it definately says something about the characters. Also, SyncTech is obviously an integral part of the story, so the way it's used comes up a fair bit.
Zelan wrote:I'm sure that I'll have trouble with some (puzzle games aren't my forte), but since the puzzles are an integral part of the gameplay I think I'll deal. cx There aren't too many VNs with gameplay on here, anyway - I'd love to see more of them. Having them be skippable after the first playthrough would probably be appreciated by a lot of people, though, especially the completionists who like to get every ending.
Yeah, I figured that would probably be the best way to go. The puzzles shouldn't be too difficult. If anything, I'll probably make them too easy... Haha.
Zelan wrote:I don't play puzzle games, so I can't really answer this well, but I guess anything that's timed usually doesn't go over well for me.
Good news, I hate timed puzzles too. Rest assured... Haha

Zelan wrote:Since Leonore chose her own focus groups, I think it might to be entirely accurate to say that she detests social studies - a test group, especially like this, is sort of an intersection between science, math, and social studies. :]
I'm guessing you meant to say 'not' entirely accurate. That's probably true really... I should probably say something more along the lines of disliking 'history' and 'geography'.
Zelan wrote:I don't know if this will ever come up, but if he's such a knowledgeable guy, he probably knows quite a bit about music history even if he hates music. Music history is sort of intertwined with world history, after all. ^_^ (Also, you use "fly below the radar" twice in his description.)
That is probably true... I've changed it to "has no interest in the arts"... Although even that insinuates he wouldn't study it... I'll think about a better way to word it. (Also, whoops... He was flying too low)
Zelan wrote:How old are all of the characters now?
I'll update the top post to include their ages.
Zelan wrote:Did Leonore set up this test for PUTREFY, or was she put in it against her will by someone else working for SyncTech?
Good question. In short, no. She is just as confused as everyone else why they are there.

SPOILER!
Her father is responsible. He was the largest shareholder and when he discovered that she was weaponizing the technology he saw a potential to make a lot of money. The PUTREFY got in the way of that, so he had to find the best way to get rid of the virus. Since the virus so far has only presented when the subject is under stress, this was his solution. He's not a great dad.
Thanks again for your feedback! I hope you stay interested, and I hope I can deliver a decent product XD
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Re: SYNC [Room Escape][Sci-Fantasy][Romance][Horror][GxB]

#4 Post by Valhalla » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:13 pm

Have started work on the character designs recently, at a somewhat slow pace due to Christmas and other work... But I finished the basic design for Leonore.
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I tried to go for semi-cyberpunk (whatever that means), and I'm not unhappy, but she may change. Haha.

I kind of want to do the sprites myself but I'm nowhere near that good in terms of skill-level to be happy with the end product so I will almost certainly end up getting someone to do the art. ANYWAY, all that aside, there you go =)
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Re: SYNC [Room Escape][Sci-Fantasy][Romance][Horror][GxB]

#5 Post by Zelan » Thu Dec 15, 2016 5:20 pm

Oooh, I like Leonore's design! It looks sort of like a cross between cyberpunk and fantasy. Nice attention to detail with the wires hanging out of her hand. ^_^

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Re: SYNC [Room Escape][Sci-Fantasy][Romance][Horror][GxB]

#6 Post by Valhalla » Fri Dec 16, 2016 9:22 pm

Thank you! I was a little nervous about showing the design so it's nice to hear it's well recieved... haha

Also, here is the design for Valentine and Xavia respectively. I don't like Valentines hair, but other then that I'm pretty happy (I'll fix it later. It's late now.)
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Re: SYNC [Room Escape][Sci-Fantasy][Romance][Horror][GxB]

#7 Post by Emilily » Sat Dec 17, 2016 12:46 pm

How do you feel about the plot? Does it seem compelling? I've kept it vague, should I give more information? The synopsis is short, but it is inarguably concise. I think it is compelling, but lately, I have run into so many of these types of games; the ones where many people get stuck in a bunker or room and have to get out. I think the information you gave is plenty enough, but I would think about revising it to the point where you're on the verge of spoilers, but you never actually reach that point. That way, you can probably get your readers to ponder a bit more about the story. Because, to be brutally honest, I would forget all about this story's existence within a few days, given the current synopsis.

Do the characters seem interesting/multi-faceted? Do you think there are interesting dynamics to work with, or will it fall flat? Personally, none of the characters revealed appeal to me. However, I would say it is a bit difficult to appeal to me through characters, as they are hard to catch my full interest. But, like Zelan mentioned, I do agree that stating how updated they are does give them more insight about them. I would think about subtle quirks or indirect characterization, but these are things that could come through as you're writing, but it is good to have a "base", per se.

Will unskippable puzzles bother you? I may only have them unskippable for the first playthrough, then give the choice. Would this be better? To be honest, yes. Sort of. I do not want to be harsh, but it is something I prefer to skip, since puzzles are - admittedly - one of my weaknesses in games. However, it does seem to fit the atmosphere of the game. If you want me to play the puzzles though, I would probably put in something like unlockable scenes with certain characters if you solve certain puzzles. In other words, I would give out puzzles, but make it optional for whether the player solves it or not. So, they can skip and read through without worrying about potential frustration, but it just would not give them a more-than-normal scene (CG scene, more cute scene, etc.). Giving the player some sense freedom is good (in my opinion), after all.

How difficult do you find the puzzle sample above? Should puzzles be easier or harder? I believe that different people think very differently in regards to puzzles. Some people love challenging puzzles, and others hate it down to their core. If you are able, I would let the player choose the difficulty. For me - on a personal standpoint - I would prefer easier puzzles. It would save me time and frustration to read through the actual story.

Any other comments or critisms you're prepared to throw at me! I welcome all feedback =) I think all the things I wanted to say were addressed above. Oh, but one thing. This will be in a spoiler box, because I can understand that this can sound quite harsh. However, understand that I am not trying to put you down in any way; in fact, I want this to be a very great visual novel that people will enjoy.
If you are so bad at writing, then I would seek help from others, seriously. Or, recruit an editor to help you give feedback and fill in potential plot holes if you are serious about this project being finished. Personally, this project interests me enough for me to be willing to help you on that scope, but if it's a one-man project, I wish you luck as well.

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Re: SYNC [Room Escape][Sci-Fantasy][Romance][Horror][GxB]

#8 Post by Zelan » Sat Dec 17, 2016 6:27 pm

Oooh, I love Xavia's paint splatters. c:

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Re: SYNC [Room Escape][Sci-Fantasy][Romance][Horror][GxB]

#9 Post by Valhalla » Sun Dec 18, 2016 12:55 am

@Emilily

Thank you for your feedback! All of it will be very useful =)
Honestly you didn't need to spoiler tag that last comment, I agree 100%. I think I will probably find a co-writer to help me out. It's really only the programming I want to try and do 100% by myself.

@Zelan

I'm trying to include something of their personality in their outfits, So I'm glad you like it =)
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Re: SYNC [Room Escape][Sci-Fantasy][Romance][Horror][GxB]

#10 Post by Valhalla » Sun Jan 01, 2017 1:50 am

Update to Valentine's design =)

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Re: SYNC [Room Escape][Sci-Fantasy][Romance][Horror][GxB]

#11 Post by Valhalla » Fri Jan 13, 2017 12:36 pm

Complete character redesign!

Because I dunno... I wasn't happy with the other designs. Unlike the original designs, this is more costume and character traits design. More of the fine detail will be added in the final design by the artist.

In order: Leonore, Gaius, Valentine and Xavia

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Re: SYNC -Control- [Puzzle][Dark Sci-Fantasy][Romance][GxB]

#12 Post by Zelan » Fri Jan 13, 2017 4:23 pm

I think Xavia's design is my favorite. ^_^ The purple really makes her stand out.

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Re: SYNC -Control- [Puzzle][Dark Sci-Fantasy][Romance][GxB]

#13 Post by Valhalla » Sat Jan 14, 2017 11:44 pm

Zelan wrote:I think Xavia's design is my favorite. ^_^ The purple really makes her stand out.
Thank you! I think the redesign improved all their designs...

THAT SAID, more detailed designs!
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Re: SYNC [Puzzle][Dark Sci-Fantasy][Romance][GxB]

#14 Post by Valhalla » Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:28 am

Updated the top post with new profiles showing the new character art. Also, the cast has been extended from four characters to 16, and will be split into two separate stories that run adjacent to each other (AKA. I have no chill, lol). One will be GxB, with Leonore as the player character, and the other will be BxB, with a separate cast. I will update with more details over the weekend!
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Re: SYNC [Puzzle][Dark Sci-Fantasy][Romance][GxB][BxB]

#15 Post by Zelan » Thu Mar 23, 2017 2:33 pm

Wow, 16 characters is ambitious - good luck! And I love parallel stories, so this expansion is exciting. ^_^

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