Word Count!

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DrakeNavarone
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Re: Word Count!

#16 Post by DrakeNavarone » Tue Dec 18, 2007 7:27 pm

Time to take a peek at old notes... I know I keep those lint files somewhere... Ah, here they are...

Starlit Sky:
The game contains 1980 screens of dialogue.
These screens contain a total of 19624 words.
For an average of 9.9 words per screen.
Really, this is my ideal length right here. Most people seemed to have taken an hour to play Starlit Sky, so it's decent length playtime wise. It's a very manageable length for the author. And I'm particularly proud of this range in regards to SS, because I wanted to be concise but have a decent length at the same time. I think I managed really well here, nothing feels unnecessary and nothing feels like it's missing. In my eyes, it's just the perfect length for the story.

So, while I'm here, might as well rattle off a few more numbers...

Songs of Araiah:
The game contains 2925 screens of dialogue.
These screens contain a total of 34206 words.
For an average of 11.7 words per screen.
This is the final FINAL proof of the script (whose word count probably increased noticeably, but not incredibly since DaFool last saw it) and it shouldn't change. Really, "final FINAL" proofing only consisted of expanding some of the smaller lines (to match my "old" style of needlessly long-winded sentences and roundabout way of saying things, since this was started Pre-SS where my writing style changed to more controlled and concise... Man, was that hard to go back to...)

Evergreen Valley Demo:
The game contains 1162 screens of dialogue.
These screens contain a total of 16475 words.
For an average of 14.2 words per screen.
I have to include this cuz it is technically the first thing I ever released, even if it is only a demo (and the project it was demonstrating is now dead...). It was at the time one of the longer demos released, and still is probably, so it is worthy of mention. Of course, that number is pretty bloated, benefiting from not only that EVTV extra nonsense, but again from my way-too-wordy-for-my-own-good (or anyone else's for that matter) style of the time. Still, it's a sizable glance at what could have been, and I play through it sometimes just for nostalgia's sake...

Then there's the 4 or so projects I started but haven't committed to yet, but their word counts combined probably don't add up to even 3k, so they're not worth mentioning. I really should pick one of those to work on sometime soon.....
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Re: Word Count!

#17 Post by DaFool » Wed Dec 19, 2007 12:05 am

Sorry for the slightly new direction of this thread, but after telling what our wordcounts are, what do you think are optimal wordcounts for the following:

1.) doujin pure text-based visual novel of near-commercial / commercial quality
2.) doujin hybrid gameplay of near-commercial / commercial quality
3.) doujin sex game of near-commercial / commercial quality

This like asking a bunch of moviegoers what's the ideal length for a film? 2.5 hours? 2 hours? 1.5 hours? When I watch a 75 min movie I feel a bit ripped off regardless of the quality.

So to answer the above, for me it would be
1.) 20K words
2.) 10K words
3.) 5K-7.5K words

How about you?

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Re: Word Count!

#18 Post by papillon » Wed Dec 19, 2007 12:56 am

You're first going to have to define what 'doujin' means to you. Not to mention that 'hybrid gameplay' can mean a zillion different things. I don't think that question is even vaguely possible to answer. It depends on the story and the project and the audience.
When I watch a 75 min movie I feel a bit ripped off regardless of the quality.
I'd feel ripped off /if I paid a full-price movie ticket for it/. But I watch plenty of programs on television that don't come up to movie length. Are they too short? It depends on the program!

You admit that yourself when you present different game categories and attach different lengths to them.

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Re: Word Count!

#19 Post by F.I.A » Wed Dec 19, 2007 2:40 am

Winter Shard
The game contains 2230 screens of dialogue.
These screens contain a total of 22256 words.
For an average of 10.0 words per screen.
The game contains 11 menus.
I am in league with Mr E and Blue Lemma - I can hardly elaborate on my writings.
DaFool wrote:This like asking a bunch of moviegoers what's the ideal length for a film? 2.5 hours? 2 hours? 1.5 hours? When I watch a 75 min movie I feel a bit ripped off regardless of the quality.
I think I will still take quality over quantity. That means, the meaning of the story over its length. I know of many who dozed off watching Lord of the Rings etc.
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Re: Word Count!

#20 Post by chronoluminaire » Wed Dec 19, 2007 6:41 am

I don't have the source code to hand, but I think I remember Elven Relations having 45000 words in "say" statements, and about 55000 words by my text editor's wordcount (including the combat engine etc).

As for ideal length, I really don't think such a concept exists. I suppose I like things to take more than 15 minutes for a single playthrough, but it depends on so much else. For example, Starlight is shorter than I'd ideally like if it were a stand-alone game, but works beautifully as a first episode.

One thing I'd say is that I don't think a hybrid game necessarily needs to be any shorter than a corresponding pure VN.
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Re: Word Count!

#21 Post by Jake » Wed Dec 19, 2007 8:09 am

DaFool wrote:When I watch a 75 min movie I feel a bit ripped off regardless of the quality.
I can't answer the question, really, and the quoted sentence is the reason why - I just don't. I would far rather watch an excellent 75-minute movie than a tedious 120-minute movie. Some things fit better in shorter packages, and if that's the case I'd rather they stayed short rather than trying to pad themselves out for the sake of nothing but runtime.

Case-in-point: I'm not a huge FPS fan, although I enjoyed the odd tournament game in my youth. I recently bought The Orange Box, at the behest of several of my friends; so far I've played through Portal, which I think took about six hours in total, and not looked at the other titles in the package at all. Having done so, I'm content with my purchase; I'll probably go back and look at HL2 someday, but I don't feel like I need to in order to get worth out of the package - the one six-hour game was enough to justify the purchase, because it's an excellent six-hour game. At the same time, when I bought my 360 I took advantage of a bundle deal that netted me a copy of Blue Dragon for £5 (one-fifth the price of the Orange Box). So far I've put about twenty hours into that game, and I've literally just moved onto the second disc of three, so I'm at the very most half-way through the game. And frankly, it's such an average and uninspired game - not bad, just not great - that I'd only really consider myself breaking even on the fiver I spent on that one.



Some games are 20kword games; some games are 5kword games; some games are 80kword games. So long as the number of words used is the right number of words for the story told, I don't really care how long that is.


chronoluminaire wrote:One thing I'd say is that I don't think a hybrid game necessarily needs to be any shorter than a corresponding pure VN.
I think it can be - in word count terms - simply because you're typically telling story through other means. In Magical Boutique you decide where to search for what and what to make, and racing to meet deadlines is a story element which would otherwise require significant amounts of prose to give the player the same sense of urgency and uncertainty; in MorningStar, the player's first defeat in battle would otherwise require exposition, and the showdown with Shichiro would need dialogue and description. These games aren't shorter in story terms, or in terms of the time it takes the player to complete them, but they do have fewer words than they otherwise might.
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Re: Word Count!

#22 Post by eezergoode » Wed Dec 19, 2007 9:55 am

Now that I've started actually entering the script into Ren'Py, I'm up to about 1200 words, but I haven't even finished typing in the intro chapter yet. I'm ESTIMATING somewhere around 50k by the time I'm done typing.... That's if I don't get anymore idea's between now and then. Not having an artist yet, I'm not really feeling bound to my initial outline :)
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Re: Word Count!

#23 Post by scorlight » Sun Feb 12, 2017 6:12 am

Me too, my project currently has 20k words and I'm not even done half of the script yet! X'D So, I think it's gonna be around 50k words when it's finished ỤvỤ)

Ps: My game is a zodiac kind of game with 10 routes... Don't follow my path, it's hell..... OTL
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Re: Word Count!

#24 Post by RotGtIE » Sun Feb 12, 2017 5:35 pm

Blue Lemma wrote:what's the word count of your game? Using the lint tool, that is.
I keep the entire story in documents which are separate from the game code, so wordcount is easy to calculate. Deirdre, My Blade stands at just shy of 156k words after editing in the main story alone. Extra content will probably push the total of written content up to around 160k.
Mr. E wrote:How can you people write so much? I am suffering to complete my 20K script...
Writing the story took me about eight months in total - six months of which were dedicated strictly to writing the prose itself, while the other two were spent worldbuilding, plot outlining, and making revisions to the prose outside of formal editing. My average rate was about 750 words per day - my process involved coming home from work, shoving dinner into my face, writing one or two scenes to completion, then passing out, waking up, and going back to work.

For me, the preparation work was critical. I needed my worldbuilding and outlines to be clear and detailed, but flexible enough to make adjustments when it came time to write the scenes. For a short time, I renamed my "outlines" folder to "lies." Nevertheless, having a top-down organizational structure in which to contain my prose allowed me to focus entirely on each scene while it was in the writing, knowing that I had already taken care of the overall direction of the plot down to each individual scene. To elaborate, I used a process like this:
StoryPlanning.png
I pretty much filled in this chart from the top to the bottom except for the "detailed scene" portions, and then began writing. As they say: measure twice, cut once. Revisions to the script were few and far between once it was written. Any roadblocks while writing were easily overcome by referring back to the purpose of each scene, and if that were not enough, referencing the purpose of the chapter, act, or premise of the entire story would get me back on track.
DaFool wrote:Sorry for the slightly new direction of this thread, but after telling what our wordcounts are, what do you think are optimal wordcounts for the following:
More. OELVNs have a tragic reputation of being very short in length, and an even more tragic reputation of "yoge kosuge" outside of that. It would behoove the creators of OELVNs to make Katawa Shoujo - a now five year old release - to be the standard, rather than an anomaly. That said, it would also behoove the OELVN audience to make that a profitable endeavor.

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Re: Word Count!

#25 Post by Imperf3kt » Sun Feb 12, 2017 6:33 pm

Such an old thread xD

According to my editing software that I originally wrote it on, my prologue contains 55,207 characters (inc. spaces), 45,532 characters (without spaces) and a total of 9552 words.

This is after substantial editing and deleting more than half of the content that doesn't suit the VN format.


I have planned a further 6 chapters, but as of yet they are nothing more than key points.
Warning: May contain trace amounts of gratuitous plot.
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Re: Word Count!

#26 Post by PassiveChicken » Mon Feb 13, 2017 6:25 pm

Let's see...uhh, I guess my current project is sitting pretty at 70,000, but it's not done. It'll be closer to 100k when it's complete.
With a quiver full as this, I'm bound to hit something eventually.

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Re: Word Count!

#27 Post by Imperf3kt » Mon Feb 13, 2017 7:39 pm

While trying to find a copy of my current script, from my mobile smartphone, I managed to stumble across a scrapped chapter one draft.
Apparently, when I say 'they're nothing more than key points', I guess I meant 'they're several thousand words of ideas.'

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Re: Word Count!

#28 Post by Morhighan » Tue Feb 14, 2017 6:24 am

Here are the stats for the last few games I've done! :D By which I mean programmed. I only wrote one of these.
Also this thread is just about as old as the length of time I've been reading VNs!

A More Beautiful World (Demo):

Code: Select all

The game contains 900 dialogue blocks, containing 10,693 words and 56,406
characters, for an average of 11.9 words and 63 characters per block.
Forgotten, Not Lost:

Code: Select all

The game contains 745 dialogue blocks, containing 14,130 words and 73,633
characters, for an average of 19.0 words and 99 characters per block.
When Our Journey Ends:

Code: Select all

The game contains 964 dialogue blocks, containing 19,391 words and 103,208
characters, for an average of 20.1 words and 107 characters per block.
You, with Me:

Code: Select all

The game contains 1,965 dialogue blocks, containing 44,518 words and 232,942
characters, for an average of 22.7 words and 119 characters per block.
So for 2016 I programmed 88,732 words into 4 games. :3

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Re: Word Count!

#29 Post by scorlight » Tue Feb 14, 2017 9:13 am

PassiveChicken wrote:Let's see...uhh, I guess my current project is sitting pretty at 70,000, but it's not done. It'll be closer to 100k when it's complete.
Amazing, that's one huge project you are doing fren @@ Is it commercial?
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Re: Word Count!

#30 Post by wyverngem » Wed Feb 15, 2017 12:41 am

The first game I ever finished only had 721 words. Most of the game play was actually trying to beat the computer at blackjack. Yet, it had a cute story and I am happy with how it turned out. It really depended on luck to get the free play unlocked, but then you choose when to stop playing.

My longest project was 81,112 words. It was a stat builder with a main character having a year to achieve her goal. In the story there were only ten characters, four had romance routes on top of the actual story. It had about 8 hours of game play and that was incomplete.

Simple as Snow, a kinetic novel, that was 14,323 words. It was a short story and didn't have any choices. Even if you read fast it takes over an hour to read.

Aether Skies demo has 9,000 words, and the outline itself has 5,000 words.

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