Asphyxia is a relatively short (around 65k) visual novel with choices and multiple endings based loosely around the real lives of various British Romantic poets. The story is set in the modern day, but the writing is rather ornate to suit the ‘Romantic poet’ theme. The game will be commercial.
Samantha is depressed. She’s been depressed for a long time, almost as long as she can remember, but it’s slowly been getting worse.
She thought Lillian was her friend, her best friend. Perhaps she even thought of her as more than that.
Why, then, did their relationship have to fall apart? Was it really her fault? She didn’t do anything wrong. At least, she didn’t intend to.
Now, three months later, Samantha finally has her chance. Forced together on their geography field trip to the Lake District, will she finally be able to repair her relationship with Lillian – or will it collapse all over again?
Samantha Taylor Coleridge
Based on Samuel Taylor Coleridge.
A girl who enjoys talking, but often gets carried away with her own ideas. Conversations with her have a tendency of becoming rather one-sided.
She’s been depressed lately, and has been a lot quieter than usual. Her reasoning is, what's the point in performing when Lillian isn't there to appreciate it?
She has low self-esteem and can be very clingy – unhealthily so. Maybe this is a side effect of being the youngest daughter of such a large family.
Based on William Wordsworth.
An aloof girl who doesn’t get too close to others – not even to her supposed ‘best friends’.
She is mature for her age and dispenses good advice to others, but often does it so bluntly those she tries to help get upset. That never seems to bother Lillian, however.
She is incredibly close to her younger brother, Theodore, whom she hasn't seen in several years.
Tabitha De Quincey
Based on Thomas De Quincey.
Lillian’s self-proclaimed biggest fan, De Quincey is a strange girl who follows Lillian around like an over-eager puppy.
She has fairly macabre interests, and often talks about serious subject matters in a disconcertingly offhand manner.
She has a good deal in common with Samantha, and the two are rather close friends – or at least, they were. Now, after an unfortunate incident Samantha would rather not recall, Samantha tries to avoid her.
Based on Robert Southey.
One of Samantha’s oldest, closest friends. Roberta is a sensible girl who places a great deal of faith in the rules, and invariably gets angry when people break them.
She often gets frustrated with Samantha, but cares for her a great deal.
She tries to act as cool and aloof as Lillian, but always caves in and gets angry/embarrassed when people (particularly Georgia) start making fun of her.
Based on Lord Byron.
A general nuisance who derives great pleasure from making other people (particularly Roberta) unhappy.
She says all kinds of outrageous things she doesn’t truly believe just to offend other people, so it’s often difficult to tell what she really thinks.
She is a genuine lady, coming from a well-connected family, and takes great pride in this fact. Sadly, her title is nothing more than mere decoration, as her family is almost destitute.
Based on Percy Shelley.
A girl who, at first glance, seems to be shy and softly spoken. However, when brought onto the topics of women’s rights, the meat industry, or police brutality, she can become very outspoken.
She’s an optimistic do-gooder who attempts to convert others to her own ideals, often without success. Nevertheless, she refuses to give in – which is nothing short of a miracle, considering the cynical and misanthropic Georgia is her best, perhaps only, friend.
She used to be bullied quite badly but now, given her friendship with Georgia, nobody dares to say a bad word against her. Not to her face, anyway.
Based on Alexander Pope.
A bitter English teacher who bemoans the fact she has to act as a chaperone on the year 12's geography trip. Why? She doesn’t even teach geography.
Miss Pope is incredibly, unusually short, but more than makes up for her lack of height with her gleeful sadism and caustic comments.
Why she became a teacher is something of a mystery, but most assume she did it in order to make as many of her students' lives as miserable as possible.
Writing, programming: Ebi-hime
Music: Various places
At the moment, the writing for the game is more or less finished. All the text has been written, and it’s all been proofread, though a few more rounds of proofreading probably won’t hurt. The art and GUI, however, isn’t finished, and might take a couple of months.
This story is also something of a continuation of a previous, free KN I wrote a few months ago, Dejection: An Ode, which also that turns Romantic poets into cute girls. Asphyxia, however, is set in a more modern universe, while Dejection was set in the late 18th century. The writing styles of both stories, however, are very similar (3rd person and somewhat fancy), and so is the subject matter. If you want to know whether you would enjoy this story or not, it might be a good idea to play Dejection. You can DL it here~
If you have any questions, feel free to ask me here, on on twitter, or tumblr, or... anywhere, really : >