The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

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The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

#1 Post by EppleBloom » Sun Nov 27, 2016 3:27 am

An idea I had while working on "Down in the River" for a more action based VN, that I'll officially start work on after that's finished. For now, I just want to get the idea down and get some feedback on it for future reference. It's basically the opposite of that game, as it's more action based with a stronger lead character and a more cheerful tone despite the subject matter. The art style would also be far more cutesy and a friend has already said she may draw it for me, though I do have vague sketches for the characters.

Cecily Poole, age 15. Cause of death: Blunt force trauma, as her face was bashed repeatedly into the mirror of a third floor bathroom in the all girls boarding school, Saint Mechtilde, by an unknown assailant.

Or at least that's how the news will report it, should you fail. You play as Cecily, a young girl on the boarder of life and death, who's soul has been temporarily separated from her body by the aforementioned attack. Your goal is to solve your attempted murder, protect your friends from suffering the same fate, and then return safely to your body before you're officially dead at dawn. Along the way you get caught up in the mysteries and drama of the other school ghosts and they can either help or hinder you in your efforts.

Setting: Saint Mechtilde's is an all girl boarding school renowned for its music and art programs, established around twenty years prior to the game. It was built over the ruins of an older co-ed school that burned to the ground and as such is home to many restless spirits. The campus itself is surrounded by forest, but the buildings are immaculate and modern.

Characters:

• Cecily:
-Ghost: Pink hair, Brown eyes; Human: Brown hair + eyes
-The direct, driven, no-nonsense main character. She's known amongst friends and classmates as something of a scary upperclass bitch, though she isn't completely sure why. Separated from her body, she doesn't remember much of her former life-possibly as a result of the massive head injury she just incurred- but it doesn't matter too much to her as she's focused on the task at hand.
-Can vaguely manipulate objects at the start and reset time in short amounts
-Very strict, very catholic

• Klaus "The jumping ghost"
-White hair, Red eyes; Age: appears around 17
-A pretty boy relic from the late 60's. He's the first ghost Cecily meets upon waking, who'll show you the ropes early on. Klaus is outgoing, flirtatious, and a bit much to handle. He's something of an older brother figure to the majority of the other school ghosts and they all cling to him and look up to him in adoration. If you let him, he'll stick to you like the white on rice, whenever he's not busy tending to his hoard of followers.
-Known for occasionally being seen staring out windows or jumping from the third floor
-Has no readily apparent abilities but will lend you the power of some of his many followers depending on the situation
-Despises Jasper

• Blaise "The theatre ghost"
-Red hair, yellow eyes; Appears around 15
-A reclusive young ghost who hangs around the theatre, messing with various things. He's artistic in a sort of unintelligible way, compulsive, and manic. Keeping his attention is difficult as he's often preoccupied with thoughts of what to ruin next and getting him to help you is a struggle.
-Known for breaking machinery, destroying sets, and causing various problems in the theatre
-Vaguely pyrokinetic and able to manipulate electronics
-Because he keeps to himself, he isn't involved with the drama of the school and is often forgotten about. Despite this, he obviously makes the other characters a bit uncomfortable.

• Leo "The singing ghost"
-Purple hair and eyes; Appears around 15; Actual name = "Leonie"
-The most recently departed of the main ghosts, having died only the previous year. She was the star of the choir, becoming somewhat famous for her beautiful voice and taking the lead in every musical. After being approached for a big role outside of the school, she "accidentally" fell down some stairs... In death she's known as Klaus's right hand and is often seen at his side. Her appearance is that of a callous prince, and she's easily mistaken for a boy until she speaks.
-Known for occasionally singing in the choir room after hours
-Able to manipulate shadows and vaguely push/pull living people
-If you go for Klaus, she'll remain cold and disapproving of you the entire time, but in her own route she'll reveal a softer interior. If you go for Jasper, she'll fight against you at every turn.
-Has a history with Cecily that she'd prefer her not to remember and may be the "cannon" route

• Jasper "The sobbing ghost"
-Deep blue hair, light blue eyes + Glasses; Appears in his early to mid 30's
-Formerly a teacher, before the old school burned down. A kindhearted, sensitive ghost confined to the nurse's office by Klaus and company. He's obviously depressed but tries to give you positive reassurance and help you as much as possible, despite being unable to leave. You remind him of his wife.
-Known for the quiet sobbing that can occasionally be heard from the nurses office
-Able to vaguely control water and create barriers
-Has some unspoken history with Klaus, to the point that he's obviously afraid of him. The swarm of young girls who follow Klaus around will often bang on the door and walls of the nurses office and shout insults at him, but for whatever reason they can't enter. And if you choose to side with him, they'll all actively work against you. Especially Leo.

Living Characters:

Mayris:
-Blonde, age 15.
-Stated to be Cecily's best friend from the get go. She's first encountered when Cecily wakes up as a spirit, threatening Astrid with a box cutter in the same bathroom as Cecily's bloody corpse. While the situation is unclear, she certainly doesn't look good.
-An outspoken foreigner with a stronger spiritual sense than the other girls. She can sense your presence occasionally and act against you. Over the night she'll get more adept at it and eventually start to communicate with you directly.
-Possibly a romantic interest, more than likely as an offshoot of Leo's route rather than having a full one dedicated to her.
-As a quick note, she's not the only danger you'll face over the night

Astrid:
-Auburn hair, age 15
-Despite coming to the school that night with the others, she's obviously an outsider to their friend group and the other girls tease her and refuse to listen to her. She's first encountered being threatened by Mayris in the bathroom and has many chances to die over the course of the night.
-There are a few times her death is unavoidable and you have to reset time to find alternate means of saving her. Her spiritual sense is pretty weak but sometimes after her death you can speak with her before resetting things and she'll help a little.

Petra, Sofia, Lotte:
-Cecily's other friends who's personalities I haven't distinguished yet. First encountered playing together with an Ouija board, blissfully unaware of the danger they're in. If Cecily tries to contact them through it to warn them, they'll just giggle and ask to speak to Klaus again.


Game Stuff: So the game would be action and investigation based, inspired by Phoenix Wright and Ghost Trick (not a vn but w/e). You go places, talk to people, get things, use things in different situations, and so forth. Depending on which ghosts you're cool with, their different abilities are useful to you in different scenarios together with Cecily's ability to turn back time after a tragedy. You collect the memories of the ghost you're pursuing as you go, though they may be distorted at first. It's your job from there to figure out which parts are wrong and point them out, to find out the truth of their story and getting their good ending depends on it. The romance is all chaste, likely not going past a kiss -if that- and is focused more on helping them move on.

Questions:
-Is it interesting?/Does it sound fun?
-Is Jasper's age difference too much, even if the route is chaste and other characters disapprove?
-Do you get a good understanding of the characters from their descriptions?
-Which character do you like best?/ Who sounds most interesting?
-Who do you like least or think sounds least interesting?
-Any questions, concerns, or critiques?
Last edited by EppleBloom on Fri Dec 30, 2016 1:47 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

#2 Post by nekobara » Sun Nov 27, 2016 6:53 am

-Is it interesting?/Does it sound fun?
It sounds incredibly interesting. I like your idea a lot and am pretty sure that this game would be one that I would be very interested in playing. In fact, after downloading, I'd probably put your game as a top priority, meaning I'd play it before any other games that I had previously downloaded. It just sounds so freaking amazing! :)
-Is Jasper's age difference too much, even if the route is chaste and other characters disapprove?
No. Not for me. Others may disagree, but I wouldn't mind the age difference at all.
-Do you get a good understanding of the characters from their descriptions?
Hmm. Somewhat. Some of it is a bit confusing, but from looking at what you already have, I'm already extremely interested, if that tells you anything. I think it should tell you something like "You don't have to say much about them or state everything about their personalities, backgrounds, abilities, and their parts in the story clearly for them to catch my interest. They sound amazing enough already." :D
-Which character do you like best?/ Who sounds most interesting?
I hate this question..but here goes. Possibly Leo? I like how she seems to be the most malicious spirit, and her appearing to be a cold-hearted prince when she's actually a girl is an interesting concept. I especially like how in certain routes, it seems she could end up up being your worst enemy. It really makes me want to see that "soft" interior of hers and find out if it actually exists. :lol:
-Who do you like least or think sounds least interesting?
Umm...well...Klaus sounds like a bit of an ass. Since I assume he tells his "gang" what to do, he probably has at least something to do with them harassing poor Jasper. I just feel bad for the poor fellow, you know? He's already crying his eyes out and probably missing his wife, and then here's this jerk... However, even with that being said, if I started playing the game and got to know Klaus, the fungus and his flirtatious ways would probably start to grow on me. (I apologize for calling Klaus fungus. I couldn't come up with anything else on short notice. :lol: )
-Any questions, concerns, or critiques? Well, first of all, I'd like to say that I think the title you have come up with is wonderful. It's interesting and unique, and has a really nice ring to it. A question I have is: Does Agnes threaten herself in the bathroom? :lol: It was a typo I saw. I know you meant to put Ingrid there. But it would be interesting to have her threatening herself. I wonder how that would work, though. Haha. As for a critique: I wish there was a bit more romancing going on. I know that you said you wouldn't focus too much on it because you have to focus on the main thing at hand-helping the characters move on-but with such wonderfully interesting characters, it just seems like a bit of a waste. :(

Good luck, by the way! Your idea is great and should make a terrific game! :D
*meow*

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Re: The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

#3 Post by Zelan » Sun Nov 27, 2016 1:29 pm

-Is it interesting?/Does it sound fun?
Absolutely. :o (I love all of your ideas ahhhh)
-Is Jasper's age difference too much, even if the route is chaste and other characters disapprove?
Usually, I'm not all that comfortable with such a huge age difference, but since they're both ghosts and the romance is going to be much tamer, I think I would have an easier time looking past it. (If a lot of people are uncomfortable with it, maybe 25 would be a good age to lower him to? It's always seemed to me that 10 years is a lot of people's max.)
-Do you get a good understanding of the characters from their descriptions?
I think so, yeah. Obviously I don't have everything since everyone's super mysterious, but I think I understand the basics of everyone's character.
-Which character do you like best?/ Who sounds most interesting?
For the ghosts, probably Klaus. I'm interested in the fact that he doesn't have any powers. And I have a soft spot for any characters who help the main character out in the very beginning.
For the living characters, I'll go with Agnes. I'm curious as to why the other girls tease her so much, and the idea of her helping Cecily out after dying is interesting.
-Who do you like least or think sounds least interesting?
I really like all of the characters, actually. I guess the obvious answer here would be Petra, Sofia, and Lotte, since they don't have defined personalities yet.

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Re: The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

#4 Post by ForkAndKnife » Tue Nov 29, 2016 2:37 am

This thread really piqued my interest, and after seeing that your profile picture was Mac from Always Sunny, I felt compelled to comment haha. We must be kindred spirits.

-Is it interesting?/Does it sound fun?
Yes! I'm really interested in the supernatural (probably a little too much), so it would be fun to play a game like this. I especially like that the ghosts' "powers" are mostly things ghosts are rumored to do in real life - messing with electronics, staring out windows, reenacting their death, etc.

-Is Jasper's age difference too much, even if the route is chaste and other characters disapprove?
It's comes across as a little creepy to me - he's literally twice Cecily's age - but it is the ghost world, and that's probably creepy in itself. It may be a little less weird if she were 17 or 18. But as long as he doesn't constantly mention "I'm 30" it probably won't make too much of a difference.

-Do you get a good understanding of the characters from their descriptions?
Yes! You'll probably have a bit more detailed character work to do when you get deeper into working on this project, but it provides a good, vivid description of everybody's basic characteristics.

-Which character do you like best?/ Who sounds most interesting?
I'm most interested in Klaus, and mainly because I want to know why he keeps jumping off the third floor! Or maybe Blaise. I like a fiery, angsty character.

-Who do you like least or think sounds least interesting?
I think he sounds interesting, but I probably like Leo the least, judging by his description. I'm sure he will be a dynamic character when the script is actually written, but for now he just sounds like a sad boy :(

-Any questions, concerns, or critiques?
I think you're taking this in a great direction! I'm excited to see how this story progresses :) Good luck!!
Last edited by ForkAndKnife on Tue Nov 29, 2016 4:03 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

#5 Post by LadyOfGatsby » Tue Nov 29, 2016 3:07 am

I'm shook. lol seriously though, this sounds fantastic! Perhaps characters can have a deep backstory and better names but hey this is early phase anyway
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Re: The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

#6 Post by EppleBloom » Thu Dec 01, 2016 9:40 pm

Thanks everyone for the responses! I'm really happy to see people interested in this idea. :) Going to try and respond to everything here in one post and then post another with some sketches and junk in a bit.

@nekobara
-I'm glad Leo caught your eye! The more I think and write out this idea, the more I think she'll definitely be the canon route.
-Klaus is totally an ass. How much he orders his girls around or they act on their own, is still kind of up in the air but he will personally go out of his way to make Jasper more miserable. Maybe there's a good reason for it, though? Whether you think so or not will probably be the defining factor in if he can grow on you. If you like Jasper though, Klaus's storyline is not going to be fun. (at least the part of it I have thought out thus far)
-Fixed the typo! Can't believe I missed it after re-reading everything... On the topic of romance, even knowing that the characters are dead and at the end of their route you won't be able to stay with them, would you still want more of a focus? Because I can flesh things out more, I just worry that if I do it'll be unfulfilling given the bittersweet at best ending.

@Zelan
-I'm super flattered that you like both of my ideas! I just hope I can deliver on them...
-Honestly, I like the idea of people being uncomfortable with the age difference as long as they're somewhat willing to look past it, if that makes sense? Though if the response is too negative, I could push him a little closer to the 10 year gap... Or as mentioned by ForkAndKnife, I could raise Cecily's age a little.
-Ooh, some interest in Agnes. She'll be around a lot, so I'm glad she got a mention. It's weird trying to balance her previous bad experiences and distrust of Cecily with her mutual need to help her though. I'm debating making it so all ghosts experience a little memory loss after death or having her remember her time being dead when she returns to life between Cecily's rewinds so that she can warm up a little more naturally.

@ForkAndKnife
-First off, Always Sunny is life. So hell yeah we're kindred spirits!
-A little creepy is good. The age difference will probably be brought up a good amount by other characters to try and push you away from him, but rarely giving the actual number and Jasper himself will probably express a little guilt over it. Not sure if that helps or hinders things?
-Two votes for Klaus! Most of what I have written out about this idea as of now consists of his words and Blaise's actions...
-Jasper is sad, Leo is angry. But yeah, hopefully you'll come around on her more with more information. :)

@LadyofGatsby
-You dislike the names? I guess some of them are a little ugly... And Blaise is a bit on the nose. Any in particular you'd rather I change?
-Their backstories are all the crux of their routes so I can't share much about them, but I do have some interesting things planned for a few of them... ;)

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Re: The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

#7 Post by Zelan » Thu Dec 01, 2016 11:07 pm

EppleBloom wrote:-Honestly, I like the idea of people being uncomfortable with the age difference as long as they're somewhat willing to look past it, if that makes sense? Though if the response is too negative, I could push him a little closer to the 10 year gap... Or as mentioned by ForkAndKnife, I could raise Cecily's age a little.
-A little creepy is good. The age difference will probably be brought up a good amount by other characters to try and push you away from him, but rarely giving the actual number and Jasper himself will probably express a little guilt over it. Not sure if that helps or hinders things?
I get what you mean. c: I'm assuming that you're saying you like to see people being open-minded about uncomfortable ideas? And that second bullet I quoted DOES help a lot. Large age gaps are one thing, but large age gaps where the older one is super pervy and weird about it are just... really squicky to me. It makes the characters more appealing to me when they hesitate on relationships like these.

So far, though, it seems like no one has a huge problem with the age gap. It doesn't seem like you'll have to change anything. ^_^

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Re: The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

#8 Post by nekobara » Fri Dec 02, 2016 4:49 am

EppleBloom wrote: -I'm glad Leo caught your eye! The more I think and write out this idea, the more I think she'll definitely be the canon route.
-Klaus is totally an ass. How much he orders his girls around or they act on their own, is still kind of up in the air but he will personally go out of his way to make Jasper more miserable. Maybe there's a good reason for it, though? Whether you think so or not will probably be the defining factor in if he can grow on you. If you like Jasper though, Klaus's storyline is not going to be fun. (at least the part of it I have thought out thus far)
-Fixed the typo! Can't believe I missed it after re-reading everything... On the topic of romance, even knowing that the characters are dead and at the end of their route you won't be able to stay with them, would you still want more of a focus? Because I can flesh things out more, I just worry that if I do it'll be unfulfilling given the bittersweet at best ending.
I'm so happy to hear that Leo may be the canon route. :D I definitely found her to be the most interesting. Plus the history with Cecily that she prefers not to remember really intrigues me.
As for Klaus and the way he acts, I'm kind of a sucker for the whole "reasons why people(or ghosts)do bad things" kind of thing, so that could be a factor in me beginning to like him more.
More romance could definitely make it harder to let them go at the end, but even so, it would make the ending even more bittersweet, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. I think it could end up making the impact more powerful and add a bit more of a dramatic feel to the story. However, if you feel that it would take away anything from the story, or cut down on the emotions that you would want the reader to feel, then don't sweat it.
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Re: The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

#9 Post by Zelan » Fri Dec 02, 2016 7:58 pm

nekobara wrote:More romance could definitely make it harder to let them go at the end, but even so, it would make the ending even more bittersweet, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. I think it could end up making the impact more powerful and add a bit more of a dramatic feel to the story. However, if you feel that it would take away anything from the story, or cut down on the emotions that you would want the reader to feel, then don't sweat it.
What nekobara said. More feels isn't necessarily a bad thing. In fact, I really like it when a piece of media is able to make me feels emotional - it means that the creator has made something that I was able to deeply invest myself in. c:

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Re: The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

#10 Post by EppleBloom » Fri Dec 30, 2016 1:45 am

Realized what I typed out before was too long and details that only I really need so I'm revising this update a bit and adding a few questions instead.

Living girls:
-Petra is a typical, backstabbing two faced mean girl. She actively talks shit about Cecily whenever she isn't around and is more than willing to let her other friends perish if it means she can escape. Sort of the co-captain of the group who clashes occasionally with Cecily, but is usually loyal to her face.
-Sofia is the spacey, cheerful girl who tags along with a mean clique despite being a generally well meaning person. Believes fully in the supernatural but is far more fearful of Cecily than any ghost. Kisses up to both Petra and Cecily when they're around but will agree with any badmouthing they do behind the other's back.

And then for the questions:
What does a character have to do to become irredeemable?
Would you be willing to pursue a character even if they went that far?
Is it okay for a character to have only one ending for their route or just a bad and neutral ending, instead of a good one?
Should there be gore? If so should it be optional?
Should I start a dev blog or wait until things are a bit further along?
Attachments
klaus.png
stmechinoneimage.png
Concepts of characters and such with notes. Hopefully I won't be the artist on this so the style will be very different and everything is still subject to change as it's still early.

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Re: The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

#11 Post by Zelan » Sun Jan 01, 2017 10:58 pm

EppleBloom wrote:What does a character have to do to become irredeemable?
This is an extremely tough question to answer, but I'll do my best.
"Irredeemable" to me, in the most general way that I can put it, is when a character does something terrible without reasonable justification for it. The problem with defining it more clearly is that "bad" and "reasonable justification" are both hard to define. To demonstrate my point:
"A woman kills a man." She's irredeemable.
"But he killed her mother." Then that's reasonable.
"But she killed him in an overly torturous manner." Okay... I guess she's irredeemable, then, because I don't think he deserved that?
"Well, she was traumatized by that other thing that happened." Well... I guess she can't help it if she's traumatized...
"Then again, this other character went through really similar things and he didn't torture anyone." Well now I don't even know what to think about this girl.
The point is, so much of it depends on context, personality, even other characters, that it's tough (at least for me) to define a point where a character would be truly irredeemable.
Even if I were able to do so, there are two things that I think will always redeem even the irredeemable: remorse, and action. (Action is a broad term, so I'll explain that in more detail a bit later.) In my opinion, though, they have to go together - just one by itself isn't enough to redeem the character.
As for remorse, that's always been fairly straightforward to me. No matter what the character did, that moment of realization of the consequences and effects of their previous actions, that moment of "Oh God, what have I done?" shows that the character understands where they went wrong and that they might just have the capability to change.
What then needs to happen is for them to use that capability to change. The remorse will give me a bit more sympathy for a character, but unless the character actually tries to fix what they've done, or at least make up for it in some other way, I don't think that I'd consider the character redeemed. It's all well and good for a war criminal to lament all of the innocent blood on his hands, but it does no good if he escapes and goes right back to his commander to keep on committing those crimes. For him to be redeemed, I need him to do something like, say, work as a double spy against his former commander. Bonus points if he's so guilty about those deaths that he insists on serving jail time after the war is over and his spying services are no longer needed.
That question was like a little exercise in character development. Thanks for asking it. ^_^ I enjoyed thinking about that.
Would you be willing to pursue a character even if they went that far?
I would. The character probably wouldn't be my favorite character, but I would be interested in seeing how the relationship developed as a result.
Is it okay for a character to have only one ending for their route or just a bad and neutral ending, instead of a good one?
If it makes sense for the story and the characters, yes. It can be frustrating for readers, though, so you need to sort of strike a balance between staying true to your narrative and making a game that your audience will enjoy.
Should there be gore? If so should it be optional?
If it makes sense, yes. Having the option to turn it on or off is always a good idea so that a wider range of people will play your game, although you should probably also mention just how explicit that gore is, so people know whether or not they need to turn it off. (For example, if by "gore" you mean images of
intestines hanging out, I'll probably turn off the gore. If you mean lots and lots and lots and lots of blood, I'd probably be fine with that.)
Should I start a dev blog or wait until things are a bit further along?
Your choice. It's always a good idea to get a following early on, but it won't be easy to get that following unless you actually have updates to show. (I'd probably follow it either way, if it was on a platform that I have an account on.)

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Re: The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

#12 Post by nekobara » Thu Jan 05, 2017 11:51 pm

Since I pretty much agree with Zelan on every aspect, I see no need to provide you with the same answers only using a different combination of words. You can see how that would be a pointless waste of time, right? (No, this is not my laziness talking.)

However, I will say this: Cecily is so freaking adorable! Even if she is a concept sketch, I still want to eat her up. >_< She looks like a bit of a tsundere-she reminds me so much of Louise from Zero no Tsukaima-but at the same time she looks like a cute pink cupcake.~
*meow*

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Re: The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

#13 Post by Zelan » Fri Jan 06, 2017 5:46 pm

Ha, we're two peas in a pod, nekobara. ^_^ Glad I could save you some time.

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Re: The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

#14 Post by nekobara » Fri Jan 06, 2017 7:18 pm

Zelan wrote:Ha, we're two peas in a pod, nekobara. ^_^ Glad I could save you some time.
Yes, we are pod sisters. I also can't tell whether you were being sincere or not. But I don't care since I'm also a fan of sarcasm. >.< Isn't Cecily the cutest, though?
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EppleBloom
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Re: The Devil of Saint Mechtilde (Horror, Otome, GxB, GxG)

#15 Post by EppleBloom » Wed Feb 15, 2017 5:05 am

I'm glad yall like her design! And thank you so much for all the feedback!
In the earliest sketches Cecily looked even more like Louise. I changed her hair to offset it a bit but...Her pouty, stuck up expressions really don't help.

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