Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [FUNDED!!]

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Zelan
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Re: Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [Commercia

#46 Post by Zelan » Sun Oct 30, 2016 6:40 pm

The opening music is a bit awkward since it starts partway through the song; I would suggest having the fade-in last longer so that it's not so sudden.

The animations seem to be sort of overdone, in my opinion. I don't really know any people who moves their shoulders when breathing unless it's a very deep breath; if the sprites are just going to be breathing normally, stick with a (very subtle) rise and fall of the chest. It's also a little weird that most of them are moving their heads at the same time; it's just a lot of movement happening all at once.

This trailer does a great job of showcasing the art and music, which are two crucial parts of a visual novel. The other important part, though, is the plot and writing. Of course, having some Star Wars text float across the screen probably isn't going to catch anyone's interest. It would be cool if you could add something like character quotes when each character is shown, to show off a bit of their personalities. (This would also mean that you should leave each character up a little longer, so that the quotes can be read. That would lengthen your trailer a little and might make it possible for the song to play in full instead of picking up in the middle.)

CGs are usually expected in VNs, so it would be a good idea to add some of the finished ones into the trailer. Ideally, you would have one spoiler-free CG for each girl, but if they aren't ready in time for the Kickstarter it can't really be helped. At the very least, though, you should put the one of Takako (the one in this thread) in there. (If you have any completed H-scene CGs, you might be able to crop them so that nothing questionable for KS is showing and use those as well.)

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Re: Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [Commercia

#47 Post by Crazy Cactus » Mon Oct 31, 2016 10:40 pm

@Zelan

Hey, thanks for the comment and feedback again, as always! This is a quick response, and I will be able to answer more of what you bring up in your response with my next update but want to say this: we are still working on the trailer a bit and will definitely be taking some of what you say into consideration. I don't know how much we can tone back the animations a bit, but will see what can be done. As for comments about adding some more text, to give the trailer a bit more fleshing out with each character, the quotes is an excellent idea and might be something we might also consider incorporating. Time is of the essence right now though, so I can't make any strict promises about what might actually be changed, but your response is very appreciated!

And as mentioned I will try to address each of your points in my next big update!!

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Re: Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [Commercia

#48 Post by Crazy Cactus » Mon Nov 07, 2016 10:37 pm

UPDATE #12:

Hey everyone, sorry for the gap in usual updates there... (for those who have been following our development closely - THANK YOU!!)

I was away on vacation and am also in the middle of closing on a place I just bought, plus am continuing to go full steam to have Maid Mansion debut on Kickstarter on November 15th, around 11-11:30am EST. As I mentioned before, if I need to push it back a little for last-minute polishing, I will do so, and will of course keep everyone here updated on the situation.

Anywho, onward with the updates!
CG SAMPLES...
Image
Looks like Takako is being bent over a desk... I wonder why?
CG SAMPLES PART DEUX...
Image
Image
For those of you that pledge high enough for the art book level of the campaign, there will be many more opportunities to see a step-by-step look at how these CGs are made (similar to what you see above). Pledging at the artbook level will allow me to invest more time in showing how the posing, sketching, inking, coloring, shading/lighting, layers for expressions, and more is created. As you know, these fantastic CGs are courtesy of Shunkaku and her impressive mad skills. :)
STEAM BANNER
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Also, wanted to share what Atomic Invasion created for our upcoming STEAM page -- this is one of the sample banners with this style of expressions for Narumi and Takako. They are the main initial draw for the game, hence why I wanted them to be front and center for our STEAM Maid Mansion banner image.

UPDATE ON PRICING!

Currently, Atomic is working on a revised pricing sheet for the "Rewards" graphic, several things have been lowered and two things raised (just a dollar for the raising amount, to make the numbers more even). Where the prices have been lowered is for the lower tiers. This should hopefully make the game more appealing for more potential buyers and as possible gifts for other otakus out there. Here's what the new rewards pricing will look like, plus new maid-related names for the tiers, for fun. :D

Reward Chart
$1 – Scullery Maid
$8 – Earliest Bird (Limit 150 copies)
$9 – Early Bird (Limit 250 copies)
$10 – Kitchen Maid
$15 – House Maid
$30 – Chamber Maid
$50 – Lady's Maid
$500 – Governess (Limit 3)
$1,000 – Lord of the Mansion (Limit 1)

**all mentions of bronze, silver, gold, platinum, diamond, and ultima will be removed and replaced with the above maid-related names**

Because of our agreement with DEVGRU-P, we are also able to drop the initial funding goal from $8,500 to $7,000. This should help us reach our goal, hopefully with your help, and get people excited for the earliest stretch goals! Thanks for tuning in tonight!

Let us know if you have any comments or questions!

(Demo is coming along nicely by the way, and we're trying to have it done by the weekend so there will be several days to try it out before the launch)...

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Re: Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [Commercia

#49 Post by Crazy Cactus » Thu Nov 10, 2016 12:29 am

UPDATE #13:

CG SAMPLE (continued from before)


Here's a small update tonight with an additional CG almost done. In fact, I do have the finished version with multiple layers, but would like to save that for the completed demo and final game. Hope to see you all soon for Kickstarter and demo in a few days (game to launch on Kickstarter still planned for November 15th)...
Image
Thank you for your continued support and comments.


Let me know if you have any ideas about what you think would be good to include in a "Maid Mansion" artbook that's included in the $30+ tiers!!

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Re: Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [Commercia

#50 Post by Zelan » Thu Nov 10, 2016 4:19 pm

One of the few artbooks that I've actually read through was the artbook for Nachtigal by Cyanide Tea, which can be downloaded for free from their itch.io page.

The things that it included which I liked a lot were the meanings behind character designs, as well as the design and process that went into each CG. In fact, almost everything had some sort of little written note, which made it feel like the developer was talking to me about her art. That's something that was done well.

Some of the notes are sort of tutorial-y (namely the ones on the backgrounds and the CG of all three characters), which is not a bad thing, but might not be what your audience is looking for; those of us who aren't artists won't understand all of the technical talk about using different brushes and the composition of each piece and all. A little bit of that is cool and interesting, but if you put that on every page there are people who will be unimpressed.

Something that wasn't in this artbook but that I think is cool is guest art from artists who didn't work on the project itself but contributed art specifically for the artbook. You would have to work this out with the artist, of course, since I know some don't like their work to be redistributed, but it's always cool to see the characters is different styles.

Concept art is almost always pretty great. It can be especially interesting if a character's design has changed noticeably from the original concept sketches.

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Re: Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [Commercia

#51 Post by Crazy Cactus » Thu Nov 10, 2016 11:15 pm

Zelan wrote:One of the few artbooks that I've actually read through was the artbook for Nachtigal by Cyanide Tea, which can be downloaded for free from their itch.io page.

The things that it included which I liked a lot were the meanings behind character designs, as well as the design and process that went into each CG. In fact, almost everything had some sort of little written note, which made it feel like the developer was talking to me about her art. That's something that was done well.

Some of the notes are sort of tutorial-y (namely the ones on the backgrounds and the CG of all three characters), which is not a bad thing, but might not be what your audience is looking for; those of us who aren't artists won't understand all of the technical talk about using different brushes and the composition of each piece and all. A little bit of that is cool and interesting, but if you put that on every page there are people who will be unimpressed.

Something that wasn't in this artbook but that I think is cool is guest art from artists who didn't work on the project itself but contributed art specifically for the artbook. You would have to work this out with the artist, of course, since I know some don't like their work to be redistributed, but it's always cool to see the characters is different styles.

Concept art is almost always pretty great. It can be especially interesting if a character's design has changed noticeably from the original concept sketches.
All excellent points made here. I will definitely take heart in the fact that we shouldn't come off too preachy or "tutorial-y" so as to not bore or overwhelm people. I would simply like to share, in a more visual way, how these things are done so people see all the care, effort, and dedication that goes into artwork of this caliber.

I also very much like the idea of dissecting the designs of the characters and leaving little "notes" or tidbits about each of them, so you get more of a feel for them beyond the confines of the visual novel itself. Its another way to "flesh" out the character, and is something I think would be an excellent idea.

On your final note about getting additional art, I don't know if I could do that. Its a brilliant and beautiful idea to be sure, and would add a lot of coolness and uniqueness to our art book, but the cost of it might be too much. If some fan art was done, I would happily include such things if people submitted for it, but to commission more art, solely to be in the art book, may be a bit too much for us. If we are really, really successful, this might be a viable thing to do then, absolutely!

Next update coming in a few minutes, and your help (and everyone else) would be very much appreciated!!

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Re: Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [Commercia

#52 Post by Crazy Cactus » Thu Nov 10, 2016 11:19 pm

UPDATE #14:

Hey everyone, this is the mock-up of our Kickstarter campaign page and we would like to have you take a look and offer feedback!


LINK: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/cr ... n=bbbaddff


Please feel free to leave feedback there or here, and I will answer any questions or suggestions offered to us. Because we may not be able to submit this page for review by Kickstarter until tomorrow, it may mean delaying the game a day or two. In which case, we will keep you all closely informed!!

What do you think? What are your thoughts?

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Re: Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [Commercia

#53 Post by Zelan » Sat Nov 12, 2016 11:49 pm

A few grammatical fixes:
Now he is the lord of the manor, with only one restriction left by his grandfather, he may never fire the head maid, Takako.
You should use a dash instead of a comma after 'grandfather'. :]
Every decision has consequences, will you be kind and caring, heavy handed and cruel, or take advantage of your maids?
Use a period or a semicolon after 'consequences'.
Some story elements, are both funny and more often than not, very risqué.
"Some story elements are both funny and, more often than not, risqué." --> Even with the grammar fixes, this bullet point sounds awkward - I would change it to something along the lines of "Funny and risqué moments throughout the story."
He wasn't even all that close to his own grandfather to begin with, as the shared a troubled, strained relationship.
They ;)

I'm not sure how much I like the new theme song, but that's just my opinion - I've never really been a fan of vocal songs in video games.

I think you should put the note about the change in funding above the list of stretch goals (maybe even in bold) to avoid any confusion. If possible, it would be a good idea to get the graphic itself changed, but I figure that's not really an option since it's almost go time and graphics aren't cheap.

Other than those things, everything is looking great! ^_^ Congrats on coming this far!

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Re: Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [Commercia

#54 Post by Crazy Cactus » Mon Nov 14, 2016 5:17 pm

As always, you are the best Zelan!!

BIG NEWS: As of right now, Maid Mansion SHOULD launch on time tomorrow on Kickstarter at 11am EST.

Image
If the situation changes (if there is a delay) we WILL let you know A.S.A.P.

Also, the demo should be done (hopefully by the end of the night and uploaded to our setup page so we meet LemmaSoft criteria before we launch)...

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Re: Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [Commercia

#55 Post by Zelan » Mon Nov 14, 2016 5:33 pm

:D Launch hype!! I'm looking forward to it. ^_^

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Re: Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [Commercia

#56 Post by LadyOfGatsby » Mon Nov 14, 2016 5:36 pm

Congrats on launching soon!! Everything in the kickstarter link is looking really neat so far. The only thing I'm concerned about is having more reward levels to reach your additional goals since it seems very limited. Otherwise I'll totally be contributing for the success of funding! :D
ImageImage

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Re: Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [Commercia

#57 Post by Crazy Cactus » Mon Nov 14, 2016 5:47 pm

LadyOfGatsby wrote:Congrats on launching soon!! Everything in the kickstarter link is looking really neat so far. The only thing I'm concerned about is having more reward levels to reach your additional goals since it seems very limited. Otherwise I'll totally be contributing for the success of funding! :D
One of the people I trust the most with Kickstarter advice is Jamey Stegmaier and his book and blog are incredibly useful tools.

He recommends having 10 or less tiers so as not to confuse people. I myself often get overwhelmed by some visual novels that offer almost 30 different tiers and go all the way up to a $5-10,000 reward.

Since this is my first visual novel, and first thing launched on Kickstarter period, I want to keep things as simple and straightfoward as possible. Not only for myself, but for people who are interested in pledging too. That way they aren't wondering with a multitude of rewards, "Wow, can they really handle all of this?" or "Will this many rewards be a burden to delivering the game on-time?" and other questions like that.

(Deep down, I would love to have more tiers and offer more cool things - the only thing I can think of that's not included and *may* be doable is a $100 tier where maybe you can get a waist-up sketch by the excellent Shunkaku, our CG artist). Though she is already doing such great work on our CGs and will have dozens more if we meet our goal (and stretch goals) so I don't want to add more to her workload as it might be.

BTW @ Zelan -- I did take your feedback into consideration, along with B E A N (my writer) who looked over Kickstarter page for edits and grammer, and I think we look pretty solid. Definitely getting HYPED!

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Re: Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [Commercia

#58 Post by Zelan » Mon Nov 14, 2016 5:57 pm

Yuu wasn't very close with his grandfather to begin with, and their relationship was definteiyl troubled and strained.
;) Now you're solid.

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Re: Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [Commercia

#59 Post by Crazy Cactus » Mon Nov 14, 2016 6:14 pm

Zelan wrote:
Yuu wasn't very close with his grandfather to begin with, and their relationship was definteiyl troubled and strained.
;) Now you're solid.
Ah, crud. Will fix that for sure.

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Re: Maid Mansion [BxG] [Eroge/Dating Sim/Romance] [Commercia

#60 Post by B E A N » Tue Nov 15, 2016 3:41 am

Hooray for last-minute bugfixes! Now we're playing in the same league as the Triple-A's! :P

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