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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2011 5:44 pm 
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Break Chance Memento (BCM) is the latest (but technically first) visual novel by Cyanide Tea. BCM is primarily a story about family bonds across time and involves time travel, tracking down a serial killer, and potential gay romance. It is plot-heavy rather than romance-heavy and can be classified as slice of life, boys' love, and science fiction. We give the game a 15+ rating due to violent/horrific imagery and writing.

The big feature in this game is the ability to travel back and forth through time. [size=85](Note: I did a lot of research for the setting/culture, but of course a lot of places have been made up, so it's not going to be 100% true to life.) The gameplay involves saving serial murder victims by traveling through time and piecing together clues to solve the whole mystery. Time travel is only possible if you have the proper memento for the point in time you’re wanting to go back/forward to, so you also have to figure out and find these items and utilize proper game time management. Also, during lulls between the murders, you get some downtime in which you can live life as a normal student and further personal relationships. Romance is not the main point of this game, but of course part of the gameplay involves talking to the potential love interests and getting them to like you. It's entirely possible, however, to get the true ending of the game without being romantically involved with anyone.

BCM is set to release on December 16, 2015 for Windows, Mac, and Linux. The game will retail for $19.99.

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Four years ago, Shuuki's world was turned upside-down when his twin sister, Fuyuka, died in an accident at just 12 years of age. His parents blamed her death on the negligence of their eldest son, Natsume. The Amamiya family was never the same.

One fateful morning, Shuuki stumbles across the gruesome sight of his brother Masaharu's corpse. When all hope is lost and Shuuki must come to terms with the fact that his brother has been murdered, the mysterious Kyousuke appears before him with a proposition:

"Do you want to bring your brother back? To fix your family's broken relationship? You can…if you learn to travel through time."

Before he knows it, Shuuki is caught in a plot far more sinister than he could have ever imagined. He learns that the key to traveling through time and stopping innocents from being killed lies in mementos: items that are a link between the past, future, and present.

Trigger & Content Warnings: verbal and physical abuse, implied sex, slurs related to gender/sexual identity, blood/gore, murder, violence, student/teacher romantic relationship, glitch imagery, some flashing lights/white screens, and suicidal speech/actions.

Break Chance Memento is, at its roots, a story about a family that's very broken and trying to get back together again. It's about the uncertainties of life and time travel, how no issue is simply black or white, and focuses on teenaged boys who have to come to terms with who they really are and what they really want out of life.

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This is the main cast of characters. We have a complete cast of about 25, including secondary and minor characters... You'll have to wait and meet them all properly in the actual game, but we have posted up some of their sprites from time to time.

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Shuuki Amamiya (天宮秋希), 1st year, 16 years old. The "hero"?
Our protagonist. He is bright and quick-witted, but has a sharp tongue and won’t apply himself to anything he considers boring. Many of his peers find him hard to deal with and there’s a lot of nasty rumors floating around about him. Most of them are true. Though he loves his brothers, Shuuki often goes out of his way to try to annoy them.

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Natsume Amamiya (天宮夏目), 3rd year, 18 years old. The narcoleptic.
Shuuki’s eldest brother is asleep more often than not. While harsh and cold towards people he doesn’t know, Natsume is ridiculously affectionate towards his two younger brothers and Chiaki. He loves to cook, doodle pictures of giraffes, and read modernist Japanese literature. Incidentally, literature is the only class he isn’t failing.

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Masaharu Amamiya (天宮政春), 2nd year, 17 years old. The serious one.
Growing up, Masaharu always felt too normal compared to his brothers and developed a need to set himself apart from them. As a result, his personality is rather dry and he’s quick to anger. Masa is the captain of the basketball team even though that position is normally reserved for seniors; it’s a testament to his ability.

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Chiaki Sorata (空田稚空), 3rd year, 18 years old. The chibi.
Natsume’s childhood friend turned caretaker. Chiaki is somewhat short-tempered (especially if you mention his height) and a hard worker, so it's a wonder how he and Natsume even get along, but they manage. He has a shaky relationship with his own family and doesn’t like to open up much about himself.

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Yukinari Hosokawa (細川行成), 2nd year, 17 years old. The dreamer.
The outsider in this group, Masaharu’s dreaming, scheming classmate Yukinari grew up in a strict, old-fashioned family that maintains influence and power in national business and government. There's a certain amount of privilege coming from that background, but mostly Yukinari feels a burden of restrictions and keeping up appearances.

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UI: 100%
Art: 100% though Auro's now doing promotional art and some extra stuff.
Writing/programming: The writing and programming is complete minus some last-minute polish/extras.

Trailer/Screenshots:



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The official website for Break Chance Memento is bcm.cyanide-tea.net and the game's itch.io page is here. Other points of interest are my dev Twitter and Auro's Twitter, where we both tweet about the game a lot. Cyanide Tea related links: the Cyanide Tea blog, Twitter, and Facebook page.

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Last edited by Camille on Wed Dec 16, 2015 4:11 pm, edited 9 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2011 5:48 pm 
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And to start off discussion, I have a few things to draw people's attention to...



I put together a video of a few scenes and gameplay from the beginning chapters of the game, including the parts where you have to find mementos and use them to time travel. You can view the video in HD here on YouTube. Any comments regarding what's shown in the video would be very welcome.

Recently I've been working on coding two things:

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This is an alternate NVL screen for the recurring dreams Shuuki has about drowning/his sister's death. Is the text legible? I've been trying to work on this with my beta testers and Auro and we settled on this gradient text style, but is it still too hard to read?

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This is a gallery that keeps track of the mementos you collect (and use) throughout the game. It also allows you to view the scenes again, either in Action or Stealth mode, so it's both an item gallery and a scene replay menu. Would you use such a feature? If I were to create a separate scene replay menu with the romantic/important scenes, would that be something people want? That sort of thing seems to come up a lot in JVNs and I personally enjoy it, but I'm not sure if it'd be useful to anyone else.

Aaaand I suppose that's it for the moment.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2011 5:57 pm 
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Camille wrote:
This is an alternate NVL screen for the recurring dreams Shuuki has about drowning/his sister's death. Is the text legible? I've been trying to work on this with my beta testers and Auro and we settled on this gradient text style, but is it still too hard to read?


I think the answer is yes, but perhaps not for the obvious reason. To my eye, the light coming from the top right of the screen is really interesting, so my eyes keep getting drawn towards it. That tends to break up the top-to-bottom flow of the page, making it harder to read then it otherwise would be.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2011 6:57 pm 
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PyTom wrote:
I think the answer is yes, but perhaps not for the obvious reason. To my eye, the light coming from the top right of the screen is really interesting, so my eyes keep getting drawn towards it. That tends to break up the top-to-bottom flow of the page, making it harder to read then it otherwise would be.

Hmm that was something I considered and, in fact, one of the testers brought up the point that the aspect of that BG that makes the text hardest to read is the gradation of light streaming from the upper right. Though I think we were mostly talking about colors and not about the eye being drawn to the light source, as you mentioned. But I think background images need a light source to look more real and this NVL screen would certainly look a lot flatter if that light was taken out. Ultimately, players can just spend a while longer staring at the screen to read everything (this dream is fairly short and over after two NVL screens) and after seeing this a few times, hopefully their eyes just get used to it? But maybe that's just wishful thinking on my part.

Would it look better if I perhaps just put a color overlay on top of the BG instead of putting the text directly on top of it? Though I think that'd be sort of ugly-looking, it's a preferable alternative to removing the light (though Auro painted this BG, so I'm not sure if she even CAN remove the light without redrawing the whole thing) because I think it's pretty. :C Or is it the contrast of color the draws the eye? Because the contrast will still be there even if we put an overlay on top of it.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2011 7:16 pm 
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have you tried what it looks like if you flip the bg so that the light-source is in the left corner and where the reader automatically looks to start reading? It wouldn't require any redrawing because the water bubbles will probably look good either way.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2011 9:14 pm 
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Camille wrote:
And to start off discussion, I have a few things to draw people's attention to...

This is an alternate NVL screen for the recurring dreams Shuuki has about drowning/his sister's death. Is the text legible? I've been trying to work on this with my beta testers and Auro and we settled on this gradient text style, but is it still too hard to read?


looks fine to me, i like the gradient makes it easier to read when the background fades to a lighter color.

Camille wrote:
This is a gallery that keeps track of the mementos you collect (and use) throughout the game. It also allows you to view the scenes again, either in Action or Stealth mode, so it's both an item gallery and a scene replay menu. Would you use such a feature? If I were to create a separate scene replay menu with the romantic/important scenes, would that be something people want? That sort of thing seems to come up a lot in JVNs and I personally enjoy it, but I'm not sure if it'd be useful to anyone else.


i like all those ideas, i would really like to see stuff like this.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 01, 2012 8:00 am 
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natsumachi wrote:
have you tried what it looks like if you flip the bg so that the light-source is in the left corner and where the reader automatically looks to start reading? It wouldn't require any redrawing because the water bubbles will probably look good either way.


That... could work. And it's something I reeeeeeeally should have though of. Omg, so embarrassing //)>_<(// I should know better. Thank you for giving the suggestion!

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 01, 2012 11:19 pm 
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I have to say: this looks brilliant. I'm not a BxB fan, but this is a visual novel that I am very, very eagerly anticipating. It looks ridiculously great and the story is quite compelling. Will this be out soon?


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 02, 2012 3:27 am 
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I ended up tweaking it based on Natsumachi's suggestion (thanks, Kei! ;;). I also added a very very light color overlay to help with contrast, as well as edited the colors used in the gradient, of course. I think this looks better now:

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(click to enlarge)

@applegirl: It's hard for us to really give a release date until we get closer to finishing, but if we continue at our current pace, I'm pretty sure we should be done by this summer. I'm almost 100% sure we'll have it done this year, just not exactly sure when. XD Sorry I'm being so non-committal, I just don't want to give a date and then not have the game done by that date. But thanks so much for your support! We really appreciate it.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 02, 2012 3:44 am 
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Oh wow, the gradient looks really, really good now O_O Just a suggestion, but since there's a bit of empty space in the bottom-right corner maybe the bubbles could be moved there slightly? The bit of text on top of the biggest bubble is a bit hard to read, also moving the bubbles would kind of help them "frame" the text. If you know what I mean >>; But if you can't do it I don't think it'll be a big issue xD

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 02, 2012 3:51 am 
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Haha coincidentally, I've actually been IMing back and forth with Kura about this and based on their suggestions, added a bit of a gradient to the BG itself to fade out that bottom bubble:

Image
(click to enlarge)

Does that help? :O

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 02, 2012 4:01 am 
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Yes, it's spot-on *A*

Regarding a scene replay menu for important events etc., I'd like having it around and I don't see why anyone would have a problem with it. \o/ (sorry for not being terribly helpful orz)

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 02, 2012 7:40 am 
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Regarding the legibility of the words, I do agree that the background light is less distracting when it's flipped to the left side, but the words are hard to read (for me) when you changed the gradient on the text as well. I know it makes the entire image "flow" better if the text has a similar gradation to the background, but wouldn't the words also be easier to read if the gradient flowed in the opposite direction? (i.e. if the background goes light-->dark, left to right, the words should go dark-->light, left to right). ...Does that make sense? ^^;

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 02, 2012 4:12 pm 
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@Joey: I think I'll go ahead and code it, then, though not until the game is further along since there aren't that many scenes to be replayed yet. XD I mean, people can just ignore the feature if they don't like it. It'll be in the bonus menu, so it shouldn't bother anyone, really.

@Reikun: The reason I flipped the gradient is because we originally started off with darker text on the light part and it was nearly impossible to read because of the lack of contrast, so I knew from experience that if I flipped the bg, I'd also have to flip the gradient. XD; Here's the screen with the gradient unflipped. Not sure about you, but I find the text over the lighter parts (especially the upper left) very hard to read. XD

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 02, 2012 5:47 pm 
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Oh yes, I see xD;;;;; Sorry for the unhelpful suggestion ''OTL
It should probably be fine then with the gradients going in the same direction.

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