Propinquity (Drama)

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EarlGrayScale
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Propinquity (Drama)

#1 Post by EarlGrayScale » Sun Jul 19, 2015 2:53 pm

*Edit: I have posted a more formal and hopefully comprehensive description below which I will be editing from here on in. You can read this intro if you want but I recommend going ahead to this part. http://lemmasoft.renai.us/forums/viewto ... 00#p379956

Hi there new friends. I'm here to introduce Propinquity.

This is my very first visual novel and likewise, it's taking a very long time to do. This project is almost 3 years in the making. (A little over 2 years if you don't count conceptualizing and start the timeline with when I started writing things down.) I decided to start updating progress here since I'm making headway with actually making this literal dream-inspired concept into a reality.

The (very) short of Propinquity is this: You are Lucia. She has been having dreams about being a drowning young man. They lead her to meet him and find that they are meant to prevent each others' deaths in a 10 day period.

I will formally introduce the main cast on here once I have basic sprites for them.

I will keep this as spoiler-free as I possibly can in case this (actually) catches on.

So far I have 26,465 words written of the script. Which is translated from page 15/31 (day 7/10) of the original written plot.
So I'm about halfway there script-wise.
I plan on having 3 endings. Maybe 4.
The one I'm debating putting in ends in romance.
To keep me motivated I've started translating the script onto Ren'Py, and learn how it works as I do so.

I will try to update regularly. How regularly that is, I don't know yet. But I'll get into a rhythm soon.
Between work and school I only have so much time on my hands but I'll work hard to make this work! (And figure out how this site works in the process. haha)

I don't expect hardly any feed back with this vague introduction, but if you made it this far:
What are your initial thoughts?
Any advice for a newbie (programming, music, artwork, in general)?

Thank you for bearing with me, and I won't let you down! :D

For now, have some pictures that I've come up with while conceptualizing and writing Propinquity, enjoy!
Attachments
colored cast of story thing.png
OLD first draft of my primary cast, drawn before the script was done. Lucia has gone through the most design changes since then.
Lucia & Caren.png
My first drawing of my 2 primary leads: Lucia and Caren when I started writing the plot about 2 years ago.
Propinquity prototype title.png
My initial title screen concept.Somewhat recent, but very liable to change.
(left to right: Caren, Lucia, Orion)
Last edited by EarlGrayScale on Tue Jul 21, 2015 1:11 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Propinquity (Drama)

#2 Post by trevers18 » Sun Jul 19, 2015 8:11 pm

I really like the concept of the story, and the designs for the characters you have so far are pretty good. I can't really give you an honest opinion without some screenshots or examples of what to expect, but I can say I like it so far. As for advice, keep your programming simple. Don't jump onto anything too complicated until you're well versed in Ren'Py. It's an interesting engine to figure out (I myself am simulataneously learning about and coding my own project as well, so I know the struggle) and it can be overwhelming for us beginners. Just stick to mainly dialogue and easy-to-track choices and you should be fine.

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Re: Propinquity (Drama)

#3 Post by Heiden » Sun Jul 19, 2015 9:58 pm

YOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!! Congrats in making a WIP thread!!!

You already know that I think your story and characters looks GR8T (omg Caren u qt) and wow! Congrats on having such a long script already!!

As for newbie advice:

AVOID FEATURE CREEP LIKE THE PLAGUE

Determine at the very beginning what you want in your game. And that's it. DO NOT ADD TO THAT. You can always subtract if things turn out a little too hard to write/program/draw, but DO NOT ADD ADDITIONAL THINGS outside of what you have already planned for.

Somewhat related to this, but I try to finish my script first, then start drawing art assets (besides concept art). It helps me to keep focused on what is essential and to leave out superfluous things that will only eat up my time. This is, of course, just what works for me and might not work for you etc.

I'm looking forward to seeing what you'll make! :))
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(I ran out of URLs I can have in my sig haha, you can find all the games listed on my itch.io page!!)

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Re: Propinquity (Drama)

#4 Post by EarlGrayScale » Sun Jul 19, 2015 11:30 pm

trevers18 wrote:I really like the concept of the story, and the designs for the characters you have so far are pretty good. I can't really give you an honest opinion without some screenshots or examples of what to expect, but I can say I like it so far. As for advice, keep your programming simple. Don't jump onto anything too complicated until you're well versed in Ren'Py. It's an interesting engine to figure out (I myself am simulataneously learning about and coding my own project as well, so I know the struggle) and it can be overwhelming for us beginners. Just stick to mainly dialogue and easy-to-track choices and you should be fine.

Why thank you!
That's fair though. Again, I wasn't expecting too much without proper progress so hopefully I'll give more to work an opinion around later.
That's fair. I want decision making and obviously for the decisions to shape the ending. But as far as in-game stuff, I don't plan on going much further than that. But I'm learning how to use Ren'py as I go along so I'm starting off with dialogue and maybe a couple pictures for now and going from there. The tutorial's been super handy so far. lol
I appreciate the input. :D

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Re: Propinquity (Drama)

#5 Post by EarlGrayScale » Sun Jul 19, 2015 11:43 pm

Heiden wrote:YOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!! Congrats in making a WIP thread!!!

You already know that I think your story and characters looks GR8T (omg Caren u qt) and wow! Congrats on having such a long script already!!

As for newbie advice:

AVOID FEATURE CREEP LIKE THE PLAGUE

Determine at the very beginning what you want in your game. And that's it. DO NOT ADD TO THAT. You can always subtract if things turn out a little too hard to write/program/draw, but DO NOT ADD ADDITIONAL THINGS outside of what you have already planned for.

Somewhat related to this, but I try to finish my script first, then start drawing art assets (besides concept art). It helps me to keep focused on what is essential and to leave out superfluous things that will only eat up my time. This is, of course, just what works for me and might not work for you etc.

I'm looking forward to seeing what you'll make! :))

No man, thank you for your continued support!! :DDD

(I had to look up what feature creep was. haha)That's pretty solid advice. I'll figure that out while its still in its early stages of programming and all that.

But nah that's fair. I want to keep progress steady so I'm probably gonna end up working on one aspect while I'm slow in another to keep it moving. But I'll definitely keep your thing in mind, its sound logic.

& thank yooooou~ I'll do my best!

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Re: Propinquity (Drama)

#6 Post by Harliqueen » Tue Jul 21, 2015 4:45 am

This is sounding really interesting! Liking the look of the sketches you have :)

And, wow, you've done tons to the script already! Looking forward to hearing more about it.

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Re: Propinquity (Drama)

#7 Post by EarlGrayScale » Tue Jul 21, 2015 12:52 pm

Propinquity (n) - the state of being close to someone or something; proximity. close kinship.

You are Lucia. You have been having strange dreams about being a drowning young man, and these dreams get clearer as time passes. While escaping the life you presently live, you find yourself meeting this man in your dreams. You two are fated to die, and you must prevent your dream from becoming a reality.
Cast
Image
Lucia Emerau -19- The primary protagonist in the story. She has a thirst for the unknown and some kind of break from her society’s monotony. A generally serious girl who has more to work out than her suffering academics.
Image
Caren Toell -17- The one whose fate ultimately determines yours. He is a generally amiable young man with a desire to help anyone he can. Though his personal freedom to think about doing anything other than this is limited by societal values & his distant, high-ranking family.
Image
Orion Hyacinth -21- A tradesman for his father's farm, he is an active young man with a strong sense of responsibility and passion for those he cares about. He also has this strange preoccupation with health and giving 110%.
Image
Fiera -20- A blind seer who has a vision of the drowning young man that kick-started the plot. She is a wise and gentle young woman whose status as oracle has made her isolated, but relied on by many.
Again, progress for this has generally been slow-going but ^here's^ a more solid introduction to Propinquity.
At this point, I have a written draft of the plot that's 30 pages long with at least 3 possible endings.
Of that draft, 15/30 of those pages have been translated into a script that has 27,620 words so far. Which just brought us to day 8/9 (I miscounted the days the first time, sorry guys). Incidentally though, day 8 is by far the longest day (taking up draft pages 16-24) so that may take a while to transcribe into the script.
I'll update when there are things to update but I'll leave this here for right now:

Now that there are some characters, what do you think of them/what are your first impressions? Do you have a favorite (and why)?
Any more newbie advice (programming, music, bg artwork)?
Do you have any questions for me? (If it involves revealing a spoiler, that'll be answered in a private message to keep this thread spoiler-free.)
I'm open for discussion of any ideas that can hopefully motivate me to keep pushing through this very long project.

*Edit: Look at the questions and advice of others who have replied in case a topic/question has been addressed already.
Update 1: I tried to make a couple edits to Orion and Caren's eyes. And ended up giving Caren an older design in the process. Probably going to clean up the girls' pics at some point but the problems were with the guys so I did that first. Also if it's still not that great, I'm not that well versed with digital art yet so it'll get better as it goes along.
Update 2: Made edits to the sprites in general: bigger eyes, simpler styling, and 3/4 instead of forward facing. Let me know what you think!

Hope you guys enjoy and thank you for checking this out!
Last edited by EarlGrayScale on Wed Sep 16, 2015 8:22 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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Re: Propinquity (Drama)

#8 Post by trevers18 » Tue Jul 21, 2015 1:39 pm

Here we go, now we're cookin'.

1.) I like Fiera. She has a great design and the fact that she's blind is very interesting. She seems like she has a lot of potential.
2.) Feel free to disregard this as I am in no way, shape, or form an artist, but it seems like the eyes on your male characters are really small and far apart, and it looks a bit unusual. I'd recommend making them bigger and moving them closer to the nose. Lucia's eyes are a fine distance from the nose, but again, they could be bigger to make them look more natural.

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Re: Propinquity (Drama)

#9 Post by EarlGrayScale » Tue Jul 21, 2015 2:10 pm

trevers18 wrote:Here we go, now we're cookin'.

1.) I like Fiera. She has a great design and the fact that she's blind is very interesting. She seems like she has a lot of potential.
2.) Feel free to disregard this as I am in no way, shape, or form an artist, but it seems like the eyes on your male characters are really small and far apart, and it looks a bit unusual. I'd recommend making them bigger and moving them closer to the nose. Lucia's eyes are a fine distance from the nose, but again, they could be bigger to make them look more natural.

With regards to 2: It's all good, I did ask for feedback. lol That's understandable, I was concerned about that while drawing my boys. I normally do better with proportioning stuff, but I'll work on that as I get used to digital drawing (and drawing them facing forward).

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Re: Propinquity (Drama)

#10 Post by EarlGrayScale » Sat Aug 15, 2015 1:26 am

Update:
New place to live for the next few weeks, friend drama, and people leaving work to go back to school (therefore I get more hours), needless to say my progress is slower than usual. But that's not why I'm updating.

I made a draft the other day about moving a major plot point from day 2 to roughly day 4. This won't change up much except how much exposition and personality exposure we get on which days. Day 5 and onward should be at least roughly the same. Obviously if I make this plot move, the personality exposure will come up sooner, but we've gotta wait longer for the plot point to happen.

I think this'll get a better chance to know the boys and Fie, but I just have to be good enough at writing to make that work.

I want to get opinions on this change and if you don't mind spoilers, I would love feedback and on how to make this change work. Message me here, send an ask on tumblr, ask for my skype, however you want to do the thing.

This'd be much appreciated and I'll start working on the changes now but I'll keep this posted. Also, the sound on my laptop is currently not working so until then I'm going to be stuck. I've got a while before I get to that point anyway but still.

Thank you for your attention and have a lovely day!

9/12 Further update:
Having a hard time adjusting to school but the plot change is turning into a good idea. Since this is an edited section I didn't plan well for decision making or how to make the changes of the first days correlate with the later days. But I'll work that out once I don't have as many things due at once.
9/15 - Definitely following through with the changes now, I have more to catch up on before I'm back to where I was. But more time has opened up to me. Thank you for your patience. Also: coming as soon as I color these guys in: doing something different with the sprites that will hopefully be more comfortable for me to draw and for you to look at.
9/16 - Initial sprite ideas updated, hopefully they look cleaner. Also did some programming stuff, lots of script writing/editing in the past day. I'll start up BG's and more of Lucia's sprites soon since the first day is solely about her.

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Re: Propinquity (Drama)

#11 Post by EarlGrayScale » Wed Oct 21, 2015 12:18 am

Update!
So sorry it's been a while, I think I put myself on an accidental hiatus due to schoolwork. But I should let you all know how things have been going since I last posted, as noted on my tumblr (on which I post more frequently) https://www.tumblr.com/blog/paradoxal-sketches:

Image
After getting accustomed to school stuff I’m finally getting around to my first CG! (This is a WIP in case y’all couldn’t tell. I promise she’ll have a face and nicer coloring and yeah. D:)

I have a lot to work on with Day 1 alone. This is going to be my sort of “test day”. By that I mean since this is all still new and I’m learning how to do everything, I’ll focus on this day to 1) Introduce Lucia and give players time to take in who she could be in the story. 2) Practice programming my sprites and effects since this is a generally stagnant day aside from moments from Lucia and her mom. 3) Have something to present (even in beta) while I’m working on polishing the rest of the story.

Day 2 is going to basically introduce every other important character in the story, but I need to do this to make sure I’m making progress.

Unfortunately, Day 1 is still going to take a long time due to its introductory nature. I have about 6 CG’s planned (this one included, not including alternate versions of the same image), 6 BG’s, Lucia is going to require at least 6-10 sprites, and Louisa is going to require 3-8. Basically I have a lot going on. I’m not at a point where I can work out music yet, so when this gets off the ground, I doubt I will have much for sound with it unless I do some research before I get around to programming or if it’s recommended that I include it.

As a whole to anyone who’s been keeping up with this: I’m so sorry that I haven’t been able to work on this more. I’m even more sorry to the story itself that I’m neglecting it. I still want to do this and put in the time and effort, but at least right now it’s time I don’t have much of.

More on Day 1 & writing in general as it develops.

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Re: Propinquity (Drama)

#12 Post by EarlGrayScale » Wed Jan 20, 2016 10:13 pm

Update!
I know I'm basically coming back from the dead right now. Unfortunately I've only gotten done a couple more CGs since my last post in October. It's been a while but I have been completely swamped (Master's degree + internship + work). I'm trying to get more writing done but I also want to do Day 1 stuff. So In sum, this is still a long process but I still want to work on it. I'm likely going to be busy still considering the semester is coming up, but hopefully I'll have some time in between doing work (preferably ahead of time) I'll get to work on it more.

In the mean time: I have gotten a chance to flesh out the edited parts of Propinquity (I have a solid plan for days 4 & 5 now, the ending stuff is the same). I'm intending at this point to shorten the timeline to about 7 days instead of 9 in order to 1) give the individual days more depth, 2) weed out the filler time I initially had, and 3) put the time pressure on Lucia by having a week (plausibly exact) timeline. Also, I have an updated sprite/design! Namely, I wanted to give Lucia her poncho back (that I was determined to keep in the first place).
Enjoy guys. :)
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Re: Propinquity (Drama)

#13 Post by EarlGrayScale » Sun Mar 20, 2016 4:56 pm

Update:
I had many concerns about my story (mostly plot/character/topic wise) that needed to be addressed before having the motivation to continue writing. I was literally about to scrap this project and do it all over. But yeah, this is my story and some of my edits will still need to happen, but I'm feeling better about this as a whole after a couple of conversations about it. I will likely not have much time between now and May to continue it because of (master's) school but I will try to write and do artwork for it when I can and maybe I'll post some stuff, maybe even early-on spoilers here (because 1-2 of them give me so much life and drive when it comes to the story). SO despite the odds, I'm continuing Propinquity, just need to pick up back from where I was.

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Re: Propinquity (Drama)

#14 Post by EarlGrayScale » Sat May 14, 2016 8:54 pm

Update!
First and foremost, I'm not dropping the story. I got my issues addressed with the main plot but I do have to admit that this project will have to go on an official hiatus. Not for the original issues that I had with the story. But I'm accepting that this project with me being completely new to the vn world is too big for me for the time being.
In light of this realization, I'm starting two smaller projects that act as predecessors to this game. The intent is for these to be short stories with a linear path. Since they both lead up to Propinquity, I doubt that I would have much room for variation with the stories there so that's why I'm keeping those linear.
Spoilers from here.
The first story I'm going to write centers on the Caren and Orion and the start of their relationship that will end up being a core subject of Propinquity considering the environments in which they live.
Orion is the perfect stranger, Caren can't help but be drawn but he can't place why. He wishes to be closer to him, as a friend at first. What will they do as they learn more about each other, what will shape their romance?
I will form a link to a WIP thread of this as soon as I have one set up.

End spoilers
The other story centers around Lucia and the end of her relationship with her now ex boyfriend. Things started falling apart early on, Lucia didn't want to admit it. She fought the notion that they would start falling out of love. She couldn't bear it. The harder he pushes away, the harder she fights for him to stay.
This one I might have 2 endings for to see what terms they end on.
Again, link to WIP thread when one is established.

I'm working on the spoiler-y story now because I'm honestly more invested in it and it is planned to be linear. I will aim to work on these soon as school is over and hopefully have them done and presentable by the end of the summer.

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