Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

Because less is more: Noncommercial games of < 1 hour playtime and < 2 month development time.
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PyTom
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Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

#1 Post by PyTom » Fri Jul 03, 2015 1:25 am

This is a forum for the announcement and discussion of short noncommercial visual novels and story-based games. These games are an important part of visual novel development, as they provide a place for new creators to create their first game, polish their skills, be experimental, and work with other creators - all without the massive investments of time required by larger projects.


For a project to be suitable for this forum it should be:

A visual novel or story-based game that falls within the mandate of the forums as a whole.

Short, in terms of playtime and development time. Games in this forum should be planned to be no longer than one hour of playtime - around 3000 text blocks. Games in this forum should planned to take less than two months to develop - with one month or less being ideal.

Noncommercial, taken to mean no money changes hands. Games here should be released freely, and made with no money changing hand between creators, such as commissions. If your game is large enough to be supported by Kickstarter, Patreon, etc. it's a better fit for the main WiP section.

A Work in Progress, where at least some progress has been made.

Games that are out-of-scope for this forum can be posted in Works in Progress (if in production) or Ideas (if not).


This forum is intended to serve as a year-round version of the WiP: NaNoRenO section, with the same sort of relatively light moderation. Games are expected to be posted here relatively early in the development cycle, with the same sort of emphasis on relatively quick progress. The admin team will be happy to move threads into and out of this section - please report the thread so we can move it.
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Re: Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

#2 Post by Rinima » Fri Jul 03, 2015 5:56 am

This is a great idea! I do have a question about this bit though
PyTom wrote:Noncommercial, taken to mean no money changes hands. Games here should be released freely, and made with no money changing hand between creators, such as commissions. If your game is large enough to be supported by Kickstarter, Patreon, etc. it's a better fit for the main WiP section.
Does that mean that even if your no selling the vn/kn, you're not allowed to post the project here if say, you've had to pay for sprites or other assets?
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Re: Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

#3 Post by Mad Harlequin » Fri Jul 03, 2015 7:44 am

Rinima wrote:Does that mean that even if you're not selling the vn/kn, you're not allowed to post the project here if say, you've had to pay for sprites or other assets?
"No money changing hand between creators" is a pretty clear indication that the answer to your question is no.
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Re: Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

#4 Post by burnt_offering » Fri Jul 03, 2015 8:15 am

I almost feel like there should be a recruitment section for this. The free project section doesn't make any guarantees about how much work there is to be done, but this does.
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Re: Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

#5 Post by Rinima » Fri Jul 03, 2015 8:28 am

Mad Harlequin wrote:
Rinima wrote:Does that mean that even if you're not selling the vn/kn, you're not allowed to post the project here if say, you've had to pay for sprites or other assets?
"No money changing hand between creators" is a pretty clear indication that the answer to your question is no.
It's not a pretty clear indication if I needed to ask. For all I knew, it could have meant between creators in terms of paying for the full game.

Anyway, no harm in asking for clarification, and it was pretty rude to assume my understanding. Just because something is clear to you doesn't mean it is for everyone else.
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Re: Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

#6 Post by Mad Harlequin » Fri Jul 03, 2015 9:17 am

Rinima wrote:It's not a pretty clear indication if I needed to ask. For all I knew, it could have meant between creators in terms of paying for the full game.

Anyway, no harm in asking for clarification, and it was pretty rude to assume my understanding. Just because something is clear to you doesn't mean it is for everyone else.
I didn't mean offense, but I apologize for any harm done, and I certainly didn't mean to discourage questions. My post was meant to be a restatement of what PyTom said, which includes a reference to commissions. I didn't want to quote somebody twice. That's all. I guess I need to work on writing less confusing posts.
Last edited by Mad Harlequin on Fri Jul 03, 2015 9:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

#7 Post by Rinima » Fri Jul 03, 2015 9:19 am

Mad Harlequin wrote: I didn't mean offense, but I apologize for any harm done. My post was meant to be a restatement of what PyTom said, which includes a reference to commissions. I didn't want to quote somebody twice. That's all.
Sorry, I know you didn't, I'm just feeling edgy at the moment, ignore me.
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Re: Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

#8 Post by PyTom » Fri Jul 03, 2015 9:51 am

Rinima wrote:Does that mean that even if your no selling the vn/kn, you're not allowed to post the project here if say, you've had to pay for sprites or other assets?
I think that's basically right.

I've been debating back and forth on an exception for pre-existing content - like sprite packs and music, since those are created by a third party that isn't really one of the creators of the game. What I really want to avoid is having members of the team that are paid to be here, or who are worried about recouping their costs - basically, if you're worried about a "business model", this isn't the forum for you. (And the main WiP is.)
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Re: Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

#9 Post by Laiska » Fri Jul 03, 2015 4:50 pm

PyTom wrote:I've been debating back and forth on an exception for pre-existing content - like sprite packs and music, since those are created by a third party that isn't really one of the creators of the game. What I really want to avoid is having members of the team that are paid to be here, or who are worried about recouping their costs - basically, if you're worried about a "business model", this isn't the forum for you. (And the main WiP is.)
So then, could non-commercial be clarified as, "games that will not be sold or crowd-funded in any way, ones in which direct collaborators do not expect payment, and which are not intended as direct advertisement for a commercial work," or something along those lines? That would allow creators to pay for things such as music licenses, which can be one of the trickiest parts to obtain.

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Re: Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

#10 Post by Taleweaver » Fri Jul 03, 2015 5:10 pm

burnt_offering wrote:I almost feel like there should be a recruitment section for this. The free project section doesn't make any guarantees about how much work there is to be done, but this does.
That's why you're always required to tell people the scope of the project when you're recruiting. It's mandatory for the Recruitment section.

Also, there's nothing stopping you from tagging any Recruitment post as [Short NonCom].
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Re: Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

#11 Post by PyTom » Fri Jul 03, 2015 5:26 pm

I'd also point out we can be conservative and use tagging, rather than jumping ahead and creating multiple new forums. That's especially true on the Completed games section - I don't know if [Short NonCom] is the right tag to use, but if the graduates of this forum get _some_ tag, we can later sort them out into their own Completed section, if we want one.

(To some extent, this forum is a bit of an experiment - we think the forum will benefit from this section, since there are a lot of first games/jam games/etc that can go here. But ultimately, it's up to the community to decide what use to make of this forum.)
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Re: Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

#12 Post by Kuiper » Fri Jul 03, 2015 5:38 pm

PyTom wrote:I've been debating back and forth on an exception for pre-existing content - like sprite packs and music, since those are created by a third party that isn't really one of the creators of the game.
The issue I see is that many people purchase royalty-free asset libraries (especially for things like music and sound effects) not specifically for their NaNo-esque project, but simply because making a one-time purchase gives them assets that they can use for future projects, both free and commercial. It's not like I buy a package with 1000 SFX files with the expectation that all of them (or even a significant portion of them) are going to go into my one-month amateur project. Some people make that investment because making a one-time purchase of $150-200 to get a sound library makes more sense than spending $30-50 to buy assets piecemeal for every new project that they make, and some people like the freedom of knowing that if they decide in the project to increase the number of SFX files in the game from 50 to 100 it won't suddenly double their game's sound budget.

In my eyes, a visual novel dev spending $150 to buy an asset library seems akin to a graphic designer spending a similar amount on a USB drawing tablet, or an aspiring voice actor investing in a high-quality microphone. The thing that they buy gets used in their project, but it doesn't get "used up" in the same way that funds spend to commission custom assets would. If someone uses the royalty-free music loops that come with Garageband in their visual novel, do they then factor in the cost of their Macbook when calculating the game's budget?
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Re: Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

#13 Post by FDQ » Fri Oct 09, 2015 7:15 pm

I've made a short 5-10 minutes VN game with the TyranoBuilder software, is it suitable to post in the Short noncommercial Games section? All was made by myself, with the use of royalty free music. Or is it only Renpy games?

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Re: Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

#14 Post by PyTom » Fri Oct 09, 2015 7:30 pm

Any engine is fine. We don't discriminate when it comes to what we allow in our forum or jams. If your game is complete already you'll want to post it in the completed games section rather than here.

I'd also check to make sure you comply with the LGPL. We don't enforce that, but it's a legal responsibility that's on you, and Tyrrano had been bad about that a few months ago.
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Re: Welcome to Short Noncommercial Games

#15 Post by Noekony » Sat Aug 06, 2016 7:03 am

I'd like to ask. If I am working on short non-commercial novel, but due to real life it took more than 2 months to make it, should I post it here, or in main WiP? Or it just counts like 2 months work without rest? Thanks.
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