Zelan wrote:I just played it! I love Amaranth, she's such an adorable MC. The bit with her meeting Kennith was hilarious, I loved it. cx
And I like all of the extra features that the phone had! Definitely not something that you see in many VNs (the only other one I can think of is don't take it personally, babe).
Not much to say on the plot since it was basically just "introduce the characters," but the character interactions were so cute. Hisashi is amazing ("yeah I'll just hire this girl it'll be fine") and I love how he just sort of... stands around smiling at everyone.
And of course youR ART is so wonderful, I can't even. <3 I love Amaranth's angry frown expression, it's so clearly showing "this pisses me off and I want you to know it." And it took me way too long to notice, but you've got Shamrock Cafe in that one background. c; Nice reference, bro.
Thank you so much for giving it a try, Zelan! I think Amaranth is the most fun (funnest?) character I've written in a long while. Her awkward encounter with Ken was a joy to write, but I could feel secondhand embarrassment... Amie, you poor girl. :'D
I'm really glad you like Hisashi! To be honest, he turned out a bit
different from how I originally conceptualized him, but I think that worked out okay.
I thought he was a nice guy, but not this nice; he's like a big bro??
and I'M SO HAPPY SOMEONE CAUGHT THAT REFERENCE. If I'm really sick of drawing backgrounds by the time I get to the ones for BL4NK, I *might* recycle that (unlikely, though, because of some stylistic differences... I'll just have to suffer.)
Thanks for leaving a comment! Feedback is super appreciated <3
MagusDei wrote:So, just tried this out.
Hello, and thank you so much for trying the demo! Your feedback is very helpful, and I really appreciate that you took the time to write it out. I'll reply paragraph by paragraph, because you cover a lot
of great points.
MagusDei wrote:First, the things I am less qualified to comment upon: the visual design was gorgeous, I really liked the character designs, the gui, and everything else. The only comment I can perhaps say, I would have liked more animation, in the sense of transitions and transforms. The music was likewise both fitting and a pleasure to listen to, somewhat mystifying, yet peaceful.
I'm glad you enjoyed the visual aspects of the game; I'm primarily a designer and illustrator, so it makes me really happy to hear that. I don't think I used any transitions other than dissolve, so you're right, I can definitely try to do more animation-wise. I'm not great at python, but I'll try to program in more effects and whatnot!
It's also great to hear that you enjoyed the music. I'm really grateful to Caelem for helping me arrange the music, since while I write (really simplistic) music, I can't mix music for my life.
MagusDei wrote:Then, moving to my own forte, narrative design. I liked the phone. While the idea is not new as such, it is well-done and believable. I felt that the mechanic added to my engagement rather than distracting from it.
This is a relief to hear! The phone was added more as a last-minute gimmick than anything else, but I had a lot of fun implementing it and thought it could be a nice addition to some of the scenes later in the story. I wasn't sure if the whole updating features thing was clear, though.
MagusDei wrote:Of the characters, Amaranth certainly kindled my protective instincts and tender feelings (by which I mean she was cute. Sorry, my diction alternates between the erudite and the 'just plain confusing'). The second most likable character was Hisashi, if only because he was the most developed of the boys. I recognize the character archetype that Ken represents, but I can't say I warmed up to him just yet. Still, his relation to Ross did interest me (is Ken a mad scientist? Some form of time manipulation is certainly implied.) So to sum it up, I find Ken interesting, but not likable (yet), while I find Ross likable, but not interesting, and Hisashi I find both likable and interesting.
Amie's paranoia was also pretty funny (is this the beginning of a running gag?)
That's a very good evaluation, actually, and I agree with it. (Not giving away what Ken does right now, but that's an interesting guess.)
And yup, Amie's tendency to jump to conclusions is pretty important throughout the story, and is a core part of her personality/characterization!
MagusDei wrote:One thing which I found somewhat problematic here, which is more of a personal grudge than anything specific to a(t)rium, was the long introduction scene without choices. The phone mechanic alleviated this somewhat, so kudos to you for that! But I have something of a personal preference for beginnings which provide you with choices almost immediately. Again, this is just my preference, and long introductory scenes are typical for visual novels, so it's not actually that much of a problem.
That is a very good point. While writing the demo outline (which was shorter than I would've liked), I realized that the demo wouldn't include choices, and that players might not enjoy that. However, I wasn't able to figure out a choice that wasn't arbitrary. I'll see what I can do for the updated demo, however! Thank you for your feedback on this.
MagusDei wrote:So overall, my experience was very positive, and I'll be looking forward to the full version! Thank you for making this!
P.S. What is behind the door, you ask? I should think it is rather obvious. A portal to the netherworld of archetypal consciousness, guarded by incomprehensible, sentient fractals, the color of amaranth, observing creation from beyond the limited dimensions of space and time known to man, while serving their dark lord Azathoth, the kernel of madness and existential angst who lies screaming at the center of the universe!
Why, that is the only conceivable possibility.
That is hands-down the best guess I've seen thus far.