VN Creation Workshops

A place to discuss things that aren't specific to any one creator or game.
Forum rules
Ren'Py specific questions should be posted in the Ren'Py Questions and Annoucements forum, not here.
Message
Author
User avatar
Applegate
Miko-Class Veteran
Posts: 806
Joined: Sat May 01, 2010 12:43 pm
Contact:

VN Creation Workshops

#1 Post by Applegate » Sun Oct 21, 2012 8:22 am

Sort of inspired by Obscura's topic about pitches, I realise that there are probably a tonne of things about VN creation that I have absolutely no wit of. Then I reckon there are plenty people like me, who don't really have confidence in every aspect of VN creation... and that having someone help you would be a cool and/or neat thing.

What I'm proposing would require quite a bit of community input, and a little bit of hubris: Organising workshops by people who are confident in their skills in a particular area that they'd like to help others hone those areas a bit.

These workshops wouldn't all run simultaneously: At most, two at once, for different areas. Key goals of the workshops would be to give people a sense of competency in that area; a workshop on drawing would, for example, have the goal of making everyone in the workshop draw a simple character. It won't need to be quality that has everyone awed, but to show everyone that, yes indeed, you too can do this.

Ultimately, once all workshops have been run through, it'd be nice if the results of each workshop separately can be combined to form a Visual Novel from each participant. A short one, of course, but you should have coded something, written a plot, invented characters, drawn sprites, maybe even CG'd, plastered a few backgrounds. This, then, would make everyone a successful developer, which is a rare resource I feel we should have more of.

Of course, the questions I'd like to raise are:

1) Would people be interested in participating in these?

2) Are there people who'd be willing to devote time and effort to lead one or more of the workshops?

3) How long should a workshop last before we'll move on to the next one?

4) How to work out all the specifics?

I think it's definitely worth the effort: It'd produce some Visual Novels and raise the basic quality a little, assuming there is no one person who can learn nothing at all from any of the workshops.

User avatar
TrickWithAKnife
Eileen-Class Veteran
Posts: 1261
Joined: Fri Mar 16, 2012 11:38 am
Projects: Rika
Organization: Solo (for now)
IRC Nick: Trick
Location: Tokyo, Japan
Contact:

Re: VN Creation Workshops

#2 Post by TrickWithAKnife » Sun Oct 21, 2012 10:42 am

Generally I'm a strong believer in helping each other. By doing so we raise the quality of VNs in general, and the overall profile of VNs. A better reputation would be beneficial to us all.

That said, I'd be unlikely to join in any workshops, just because I wouldn't want to be pointed in a particular direction. There are many VNs that are very similar to others. If that's what people want, great. But not everyone wants to go the easy way.

And just to make sure I sound hypocritical, if there were some coding workshops, I'd be all over them.
"We must teach them through the tools with which they are comfortable."
The #renpy IRC channel is a great place to chat with other devs. Due to the nature of IRC and timezone differences, people probably won't reply right away.

If you'd like to view or use any code from my VN PM me. All code is freely available without restriction, but also without warranty or (much) support.

User avatar
Deji
Cheer Idol; Not Great at Secret Identities
Posts: 1592
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2007 7:38 pm
Projects: http://bit.ly/2lieZsA
Organization: Sakevisual, Apple Cider, Mystery Parfait
Tumblr: DejiNyucu
Deviantart: DejiNyucu
Location: Chile
Contact:

Re: VN Creation Workshops

#3 Post by Deji » Sun Oct 21, 2012 11:05 am

I'd be happy to help with a drawing workshop, though I don't know how we'd organize this online? ^^;
I'm thinking I could put together tutorials for the workshop, a recorded livestreaming session or two and have a limited number of participants able to "sign up", so I can supervise their progress and help them out individually? (because if it's an open thing, I won't have the time to help everybody X_X).

Then we could release the materials to the public ,and repeat he workshop once every couple of months or so? (:
Image
Tumblr | Twitter
Forever busy :')
When drawing something, anything, USE REFERENCES!! Use your Google-fu!
Don't trust your memory, and don't blindly trust what others teach you either.
Research, observation, analysis, experimentation and practice are the key! (:

User avatar
Blane Doyle
Miko-Class Veteran
Posts: 809
Joined: Mon Dec 21, 2009 10:00 am
Organization: Autumn Eclectic
Location: Mountains
Contact:

Re: VN Creation Workshops

#4 Post by Blane Doyle » Sun Oct 21, 2012 1:44 pm

I think this is a great idea, but it is going to need a lot of work. If organized online you would probably need to record it for people who cannot make it to the workshop on time. (This is how the college I went to handled online classes)

I would enjoy participating, but with my schedule I am one of those "I have no idea if I can show" people. I don't think I am qualified in any way to lead a workshop, unless there is one called "How weird people react to things in your games".

As for how long... I honestly have no idea, given our medium of choice.

User avatar
Applegate
Miko-Class Veteran
Posts: 806
Joined: Sat May 01, 2010 12:43 pm
Contact:

Re: VN Creation Workshops

#5 Post by Applegate » Sun Oct 21, 2012 4:53 pm

TrickWithAKnife wrote:That said, I'd be unlikely to join in any workshops, just because I wouldn't want to be pointed in a particular direction. There are many VNs that are very similar to others. If that's what people want, great. But not everyone wants to go the easy way.
I don't think it's particularly the easy way. A lot of subjects all have the same base; most stories are built using the same building blocks, and as far as I care all drawings of characters have an anatomical base. I know plenty of people who consider "I can't..." to be the very first response to "Why don't you...", when with just a few building blocks they're able to do passable work.

Maybe they won't be an amazing artist from the getgo, but from what I understand and have experienced, no artist will be upset if you can use simple drawings to bring across what you're looking for. With writing, knowing the basics of building a plot may sound very banal and obvious, but I still find would-be writers who haven't mastered the basics yet.

Too many people want to skip over the obvious basics when a solid base carries the best results.
Deji wrote:I'd be happy to help with a drawing workshop, though I don't know how we'd organize this online? ^^;
I'm thinking I could put together tutorials for the workshop, a recorded livestreaming session or two and have a limited number of participants able to "sign up", so I can supervise their progress and help them out individually? (because if it's an open thing, I won't have the time to help everybody X_X).

Then we could release the materials to the public ,and repeat he workshop once every couple of months or so? (:
Organisation is a bit of a problem. One thing we could do is periodically post a thread with an instruction, then allow a day for people to catch up with the instruction, then post a new instruction and so continue until people've reached a certain level. I'm not entirely sure yet on the specifics, mostly because we'd need to see the skills people can contribute and what we want to do: For a writing workshop, written form probably works. For an artist, it seems obvious a livefeed is much better since you can draw along and see how it's drawn.

I think "signing up" is only natural. Everyone has a different number of people they can effectively supervise, so it's a good idea to have an idea of how many you can handle and only allow that many people at a time. That may come off as elitist, but you can't just take on a hundred potential Visual Novelists and deliver results.

User avatar
OokamiKasumi
Eileen-Class Veteran
Posts: 1778
Joined: Thu Oct 14, 2010 3:53 am
Completed: 14 games released -- and Counting.
Organization: DarkErotica Games
Deviantart: OokamiKasumi
Location: NC, USA
Contact:

Re: VN Creation Workshops

#6 Post by OokamiKasumi » Sun Oct 21, 2012 8:48 pm

As an idea on how to conduct a workshop...
-- I've actually run a few fiction-writing workshops online though a yahoo group.

What I did was post a lecture on How to do something, then posted a simple 20 minute exercise. (Literally, an exercise that could be completed in 20 minutes.) Over the next two days I corrected the exercises and answered questions on what worked, what didn't, and why (using examples from modern movies,) and how to apply what they'd just learned to their own work.

I did this 3 days a week, with 32 to 36 students. The workshop took 6 weeks to complete, but then that workshop was on how to write an erotic romance novel from scratch.

Sign-up was not only necessary, it was how I kept track of how many people were in the class and who was actually completing their homework. Lurkers were Not Allowed, mainly because I needed to be sure that everyone participating was Over 18, but also because I needed the participants to do ALL the exercises to grasp the full picture of what I was showing them -- how to THINK like a writer.
Last edited by OokamiKasumi on Sun Nov 25, 2012 3:41 am, edited 1 time in total.
Ookami Kasumi ~ Purveyor of fine Smut.
Most recent Games Completed: For ALL my completed games visit: DarkErotica Games

"No amount of great animation will save a bad story." -- John Lasseter of Pixar

User avatar
dramspringfeald
Miko-Class Veteran
Posts: 825
Joined: Tue May 03, 2011 2:45 pm
Projects: The Echo, CBlue, Safety_Dance
Location: ABQ-USA
Contact:

Re: VN Creation Workshops

#7 Post by dramspringfeald » Sun Oct 21, 2012 10:26 pm

1) Would people be interested in participating in these?
~ Indeed I would this sounds fun

2) Are there people who'd be willing to devote time and effort to lead one or more of the workshops?
~ I hope there are cause I am SO lost on so much.

3) How long should a workshop last before we'll move on to the next one?
~ Well about 20 minuets of instruction and about 40 minuets "independent study" then another 15 / 20 minuets fallow up and showing off our stuff.

4) How to work out all the specifics?
~ Well basic story telling, Character Development, Graphic placement and maybe simple coding?

The could be on http://new.livestream.com/ or something. They can record about an hour and a half and can be reviewed as many times as we want, also lets lets us chat with the instructors.
Don't be a Poser! Learn to Draw
Learn to Draw with Stan Lee
Learn to Draw with Mark Crilley
If you want you can brows my art. My art can be found at...FA // IB // DA Neglected for a few years so I'm just now updating it

Learn to break a bone to break a bone,
Learn to build a house to build a house,
Learn to make a Game to make a Game.

User avatar
fioricca
Veteran
Posts: 333
Joined: Fri Feb 19, 2010 3:17 am
Completed: Rising Angels Reborn (2013), Rising Angels Fates: Allegiance (2017)
IRC Nick: souten
Contact:

Re: VN Creation Workshops

#8 Post by fioricca » Sun Oct 21, 2012 10:31 pm

I will definitely try to sign up for a workshop if I have the time! :D I remember seeing something an attempt to guide users on how to make a simple VN once. We'd start with writing the basic script in the first week or so, then adding pictures, then music and so on, so after one or two months, anyone who followed the thread would have a ready VN... I can't remember if that was held in this forum or a different one though oops

Maybe the workshops could have themes, like how to write romance games/mystery games, or how to design effective GUI (I need this so badly orz) and so on, instead of generic "this is how you prepare sprites"? It would be really cool to have a workshop in which participants are paired up/grouped as well, so participants also learn how to work effectively in a team, and about the possible problems and tensions involved. A workshop that starts with a participant coming forward with something (say a character sprite) and help them to improve said sprite, either by correcting anatomy or suggesting different poses and such, would be interesting, too; it'd be super useful in helping participants identify the mistakes they've made.

EDIT something that just flashed across my mind, but what do people think of a peer-review system in which participant A and B, who sign up for the same workshop, would not only have to complete the exercises involved but also assess how well their peer is doing from time to time

User avatar
OokamiKasumi
Eileen-Class Veteran
Posts: 1778
Joined: Thu Oct 14, 2010 3:53 am
Completed: 14 games released -- and Counting.
Organization: DarkErotica Games
Deviantart: OokamiKasumi
Location: NC, USA
Contact:

Re: VN Creation Workshops

#9 Post by OokamiKasumi » Sun Oct 21, 2012 11:23 pm

fioricca wrote:...something that just flashed across my mind, but what do people think of a peer-review system in which participant A and B, who sign up for the same workshop, would not only have to complete the exercises involved but also assess how well their peer is doing from time to time
Through my personal experience of running a workshop, that is a Bad idea.
-- The one running the workshop, the instructor, is trying to teach how to accomplish something that they personally know. When students add their opinions to the lessons, it not only gets in the way of what the instructor is trying to teach, it can cause the class to go wildly off course. I've seen professionally run workshops shut down uncompleted because of this.

Once the class is completed THEN peers can air their opinions on what they just learned and how they would apply it.
Ookami Kasumi ~ Purveyor of fine Smut.
Most recent Games Completed: For ALL my completed games visit: DarkErotica Games

"No amount of great animation will save a bad story." -- John Lasseter of Pixar

User avatar
fioricca
Veteran
Posts: 333
Joined: Fri Feb 19, 2010 3:17 am
Completed: Rising Angels Reborn (2013), Rising Angels Fates: Allegiance (2017)
IRC Nick: souten
Contact:

Re: VN Creation Workshops

#10 Post by fioricca » Sun Oct 21, 2012 11:53 pm

OokamiKasumi wrote: Through my personal experience of running a workshop, that is a Bad idea.
-- The one running the workshop, the instructor, is trying to teach how to accomplish something that they personally know. When students add their opinions to the lessons, it not only gets in the way of what the instructor is trying to teach, it can cause the class to go wildly off course. I've seen professionally run workshops shut down uncompleted because of this.

Once the class is completed THEN peers can air their opinions on what they just learned and how they would apply it.
Oh, okay XD; I raised it because it's a little like learning from the mistakes of others, but if it does more harm than good...

User avatar
Auro-Cyanide
ssǝʇunoƆ ʇɹ∀
Posts: 3059
Joined: Sun Jul 25, 2010 9:02 am
Completed: http://auro-cyanide.tumblr.com/visualnovels
Projects: Athena
Organization: Cyanide Tea
Tumblr: auro-cyanide
Deviantart: Auro-Cyanide
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: VN Creation Workshops

#11 Post by Auro-Cyanide » Mon Oct 22, 2012 9:14 am

It's a really interesting idea, but I shouldn't volunteer for something that would be this much of a time sink. At least not at the moment. Plus, the only thing I could really teach with any authority is something like logo design since that is what I have my degree in. Anything else I could teach could probably be done by someone else better and would involve a lot of me going 'Ummm, well, this is how do it. Maybe.' Expect maybe how to use photoshop, and even then. But yeah, I'm tempted, but that would be irresponsible of me >_<

User avatar
Anna
Miko-Class Veteran
Posts: 708
Joined: Sat Dec 25, 2010 10:30 am
Completed: Binary Soul, Days of the Divine, Nanolife, Firefly
Projects: current: Path of Dreamers
Organization: Circle Pegasi
Location: The Netherlands
Contact:

Re: VN Creation Workshops

#12 Post by Anna » Mon Oct 22, 2012 12:14 pm

Before you know it, we'll be creating our own VN-school here :').

Anyway, this sounds really fun and I think it would even be fine to do it online; create a topic for lesson #X about X and have those who signed up participating? Even those who didn't sign up can learn from reading the contents of that topic, they just won't be guided personally.

The only problem is finding 'teachers' who are good at explaining, know what they're doing and don't randomly disappear.

User avatar
TrickWithAKnife
Eileen-Class Veteran
Posts: 1261
Joined: Fri Mar 16, 2012 11:38 am
Projects: Rika
Organization: Solo (for now)
IRC Nick: Trick
Location: Tokyo, Japan
Contact:

Re: VN Creation Workshops

#13 Post by TrickWithAKnife » Mon Oct 22, 2012 2:05 pm

Anna wrote:The only problem is finding 'teachers' who are good at explaining, know what they're doing and don't randomly disappear.
Yup. Hopefully people with skills in a particular area will realize that helping others raises their profile a lot, and increases the chances that people will pay attention to anything they release...
"We must teach them through the tools with which they are comfortable."
The #renpy IRC channel is a great place to chat with other devs. Due to the nature of IRC and timezone differences, people probably won't reply right away.

If you'd like to view or use any code from my VN PM me. All code is freely available without restriction, but also without warranty or (much) support.

User avatar
dramspringfeald
Miko-Class Veteran
Posts: 825
Joined: Tue May 03, 2011 2:45 pm
Projects: The Echo, CBlue, Safety_Dance
Location: ABQ-USA
Contact:

Re: VN Creation Workshops

#14 Post by dramspringfeald » Mon Oct 22, 2012 6:48 pm

As a perk if the "teachers" do a good job change their Site title to "Instructor"
Don't be a Poser! Learn to Draw
Learn to Draw with Stan Lee
Learn to Draw with Mark Crilley
If you want you can brows my art. My art can be found at...FA // IB // DA Neglected for a few years so I'm just now updating it

Learn to break a bone to break a bone,
Learn to build a house to build a house,
Learn to make a Game to make a Game.

User avatar
myapple
Regular
Posts: 151
Joined: Sat Jun 30, 2012 12:34 pm
Projects: RoG2.0, Stirling
Organization: red inc.
Location: Tokyo
Contact:

Re: VN Creation Workshops

#15 Post by myapple » Wed Oct 24, 2012 10:44 am

1) Would people be interested in participating in these?
Definitely! I'm always looking for places to learn new things~

2) Are there people who'd be willing to devote time and effort to lead one or more of the workshops?
I'm willing to help with art related stuff (I posted in the thread that Deji made).

3) How long should a workshop last before we'll move on to the next one?
I think for art shops having anything open for submissions longer than a week after the initial lesson (or two weeks for more complex things) kind of... defeats the purpose of learning to draw better. I think it's more worthwhile to have to pinch time a bit and actually get something done than spend forever on a picture and give up halfway because of lost interest or something. That might be just me though. I have no ideas for timelines on writing or anything else.

That's my thoughts on this anyway :)

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users