I'll list down several common elements below to get started. These will comprise of the very basic building blocks of such posts in the WIP section. And from there, there'll be some specific instructions on how we're going to rank them. (So that we may create a bar chart after that to have an idea of where majority of the community stands.) So the common elements will be:
1. Summary of Story/Plot (Includes characters)
The foundation of which will be the basis of the VN you're trying to make. Basically the summary of the overall idea and sequence of events which will unfold within the game. This is usually a big part of any of the posts in the WIP section which will set the tone for the game and the overall feel of what's to expect. (Usually will be on the the top part of the post)
The look of the characters and the backgrounds which will be part of the game. (Usually will be below the summary of story/plot in some way) Also includes the tunes that would play in the background of the game.
The various themes/genre the story will touch upon. These can be hidden within the Summary of Story/Plot or it can be separated from them to give the readers an expectation of what will be touched upon without going into detail of the events which will unfold later in the story. It also includes the general categorization of the story and whether it fits into certain niches such as - mystery, historical, romance, fantasy, yandere, etc.
4.Various Game Details
The Length of the game/word count, whether the game will be commercial or free, the overall age rating of the game, how many paths or ending there is to the game. Essentially the more minute details of what is expected of the game from a more 'developer/admin' perspective. Doesn't concern the story/art/theme in anyway.
The people who are behind the project - who they are and what they are in charged of. Next to which, the completion status of the project.
Anything else to which I have missed out, you may list it out but must be written under this section only. (In other words, we will be lumping all other consideration factors within this category unless it blows up into something huge and then we'll find some way to split it up) This may include how the overall presentation of the post looks, the tone and language of the post, the questions they pose, the demo provided and so on and so forth.
Now that we've gone through the very five basic elements, here are the following assumptions we will be using, just so that we're all on the same page. This is required because we would want these factors to be controlled, and only the above elements become as variables.
1. The developer of the game will always reply you in the event you respond to his post.
2. The developer of the game will provide consistent updates on the progress of the project. (Biweekly or Monthly)
3. How the developer responses to the posts will always be in the same tone of voice and he will always be nice and accommodating.
Now that we have our variables and controls addressed, let's go on to the main activity and rules of the game here:
1. Each poster will be given 6 different cards to rate the above 6elements. The top card with the highest priority will be rated 6*, while the lowest card will be rated 1*. Essentially, you would have the following cards from strongest power to lowest: 6*, 5*, 4*, 3*, 2* and 1*.
2. You may only use each card once and only once for either category of the 6 elements above. No two elements can share a card of the same power. Essentially, no matter how similar in importance is one category is to the other to you, you will have to choose which to rank higher on your scale.
3. You must play your cards from highest to lowest. You cannot skip cards. Such as choosing to rank 6*, 5*, 4*, 2* and 1*. You cannot skip the 3* card. It must always be ranked downwards. HOWEVER! You may choose not to vote on your lowest cards. This means that you can choose to rank the elements with 6*, 5*, 4* and 3* but leave out the 2* and 1* if for you, the last two categories seems to be of no importance to you. (I don't recommend this, but it is a valid move)
4. You may write a short description/elaboration under your vote on why you decided to vote with that power card and in that sequence after you are done. Next to which, what are you always looking out for when it comes to those sections. What are your preferences and in what kind of information/expectations you would like to see in those sections.
The template we will be using will look like the following and I will go first as an example:
That's roughly how the response would look like. You may choose on whether to elaborate on the way you ranked the elements, but it's by no means a necessary thing to do. After we have enough posts, I'll just bring out an excel spreadsheet and plot it on a bar graph to see how it looks overall I guess. In a way, this post is trying to address the issue of marketing a VN and which elements should developers concentrate on when writing up their introductory posts in WIP. Can't say I've been getting comments on my project page too, so I'm interested to see where it is most people are looking towards when going through an introductory post. Maybe I'm doing something wrong or something, lols. Well, maybe this exercise will help clarify it up a bit.Rating of Elements
1. Story/Plot [5*]
Story or plot is pretty darn important IMO, afterall, it's the backbone of the entire project. It'd be nice if the story/plot comes off as more bombastic as it will catch the eye, but essentially, I'm always looking for something unique in this section which separates the story from its competitors. It can be the characters, or the overall plot line, but generally, something which has to be different from the overall market.
2. Art [6*]
Personally, art is pretty important to me. Specifically since I really like the japanese anime-ish art style. Usually, to get me to be attracted to a game, the first thing that catches my eye is the art. If I like it and it looks appealing to me, only will I progress on to see what the story/plot is about.
3. Theme [3*]
Not much comment here.
4. Various Game Details [4*]
For the various game details, on the other hand, I tend to have a liking towards more 'True Route' games, mostly KNs like Rose Guns Days. In that sense, I do have an affinity to single routes although multiple routes are okay too, but I guess, how many endings or routes do still play a part in what I consider to be important in the introductory post of the WIP section.
5. Development Team/Progress [1*]
Not much comment here.
6. Others [2*]
It'd be nice if the presentation of the introductory post is presented in a nice and consistent way, as it catches the eye when I go through it. But it's mostly eye candy for the most part to build the overall feel of the story and how it is linked to the post.
Also to note, you may reply to a comment and so forth, this thread isn't some stringent thinger ber jiggy exercise of some sort. Things are up for discussion as long as the discussion is civil and all that. But if you would like to be part of the rating rather than just commentating, it would be good if you could make it known by using the template which begins with Rating of Elements, so I know where to extract the information from. But even if you don't do that, I'll use my own discretion to pick apart the posts who want to rate and those who are commenting. Shouldn't be too hard to separate I guess.
Anyways, cheers! And let's hope to create a beautiful bar chart through this!
'Other' elements that are seen to be important:
5. Thread Layout and Organization
6. Screenshots and Samples Images
Current Sample Size: 10 (7 Vets, 3 Regs)