Birthday Cake [Free][BxB][+18][Slice Of Life]

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akhayashiii
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Birthday Cake [Free][BxB][+18][Slice Of Life]

#1 Post by akhayashiii » Fri May 15, 2020 7:19 am

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As his best friend's (and secret crush) birthday is just around the corner, Laurent sees the perfect opportunity to give him something special: a cake with his favorite flavor. His plans are to give it to him after they come back from the commemoration, but will things turn out just as he planned?

Birthday Cake is a short BL / Yaoi story with choices that can lead to two different endings. A small demo build (0.2) is available and briefly introduces the main character and the love interest.

DEMO ON ITCH.IO: https://akhayashiii.itch.io/birthday-cake

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- About 10.000 words in length
- 4 endings
- 6 CGs (8 CGs in the NSFW version)
- Reversible roles (choice for Laurent to be top or bottom in the NSFW version)

Current Progress:
I'm planning to finish the writing before I start working on the assets for the rest of the game, with the short demo being intended mostly for writing feedback purposes. I'd love to hear what you think about it, if you could answer some of the questions below it would help a lot!

A. What do you think about the characters for now? Do they feel interesting?
B. How's the balance between dialogue and narration? Is there too much monologue?
C. About the dialogues, do they feel natural?
D. About the pacing, do you think it's going too fast or too slow?

Feel free to also add comments about other aspects too!

Thank you very much for reading!

Edit: thread images & game features updated on 15.08.2020.
Last edited by akhayashiii on Sat Aug 15, 2020 7:31 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Birthday Cake [Free][BxB][Fluffy][Slice Of Life]

#2 Post by akhayashiii » Thu May 21, 2020 12:35 pm

New devlog published on Itch.io, about the current development progress and some features for the finished version: https://akhayashiii.itch.io/birthday-ca ... t-progress

And a in-game screenshot :3
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Re: Birthday Cake [Free][BxB][+18][Slice Of Life]

#3 Post by akhayashiii » Wed Jun 03, 2020 6:50 am

New demo is available on Itch.io, and it now features a Content Filter (which lets you choose between SFW and NSFW versions) and a translation to Brazilian Portuguese! I also did several revisions in dialogue, sprites expressions and GUI: https://akhayashiii.itch.io/birthday-cake
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Re: Birthday Cake [Free][BxB][+18][Slice Of Life]

#4 Post by High » Thu Jun 11, 2020 12:25 am

A. What do you think about the characters for now? Do they feel interesting?

I think the characters are fine. The demo is very brief so the player doesn't get to know them very well, but I found them interesting enough, and the game charming enough, to make me want to play more.

B. & D. How's the balance between dialogue and narration? Is there too much monologue? About the pacing, do you think it's going too fast or too slow?

I'm answering these two questions together because to me they are connected. I thought the game was well paced and the narration was not overwhelming, except for Jason's introduction. As soon as Jason shows up Laurent immediately goes on a multiple-screens-long retelling of how their friendship began, which harmed the pacing for me. I think the 'reminiscing on the friendship' scene could happen after Laurent goes home. Or, better yet, that story could be incorporated into Laurent and Amélie's conversation.

C. About the dialogues, do they feel natural?

Honestly, no. The dialogue wasn't very good. There were many problems with the writing overall. To start, the writing was too wordy. Several phrases could have been shortened, without losing anything. Rule of thumb is that you should avoid having more than 15 words per screen.

Most phrases are structured strangely, have grammatical errors, and use idioms that... don't exist. It feels like reading a bad translation. O que fez completo sentido depois que eu fiz minha jogatina em português. (Se você quiser ajuda com a tradução e a escrita do script me manda uma PM Akane.)

A versão em português é melhor, mas também não é perfeita. Eu acho que o dialogo, principalmente, poderia ser melhor. A conversa entre Laurent e Amélie, por exemplo, foi extra frustrante por que ao mesmo tempo que foi meio crua ela contem o meu momento favorito no jogo inteiro.

A conversa deles foi ao ponto rápido demais, faltou um toque do mundano. Laurent podia ter perguntado sobre como é Paris. Amélie podia ter reclamado sobre um novo hobby que o pai arranjou. Sei lá, alguma coisa para ser uma conversa mais natural.

Quando Amélie zoa Laurent sobre querer Jason pelado na cama foi o melhor momento do jogo inteiro para mim. Essa parte sim, foi natural. Essa parte da conversa realmente parece algo que dois amigos falariam. Eu queria que a conversa todo tivesse esse tom. O dialogo está um 5 eu quero que ele vire um 10. Fez sentido o que eu escrevi?

Pensamentos Avulsos

Tem certas coisas do lado técnico que eu acho que poderiam ser melhoradas:

*A caixa de dialogo poderia ser reduzida para ela não ficar sobreposta sobre os dois primeiros botões.

*A mudança de cena da lanchonete para o apartamento foi muito brusca. Um efeito de transição de tela poderia ser usado facilitar essa mudança.

*A sprite de Laurent também poderia ser reduzida de tamanho. E também, eu não entendi por que ele está com a mão no peito o tempo inteiro.

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Re: Birthday Cake [Free][BxB][+18][Slice Of Life]

#5 Post by akhayashiii » Fri Jun 19, 2020 5:15 pm

Hi! I don't know why I didn't receive a notification about your response ;u; I only saw it today.

Thank you so much for playing and for leaving your feedback! The writing part is indeed the hardest for me because it's my first time writing something this long in english, so I'm trying to improve that by doing some editing to the text. I'll take into consideration the points that you mentioned and see what I can do to make them better :3

--

Sobre a parte do diálogo com a Amélie, gostei da sugestão! De fato, mesmo que Laurent tenha ligado para ela com a intenção de falar sobre Jason, seria estranho pular direto para o assunto... Também vou tentar melhorar a parte da apresentação do Jason, realmente ficou muito extenso.

Quanto às questões técnicas, a versão final do jogo terá telas de "loading" para transições de um local para outro (ainda não estavam prontas na época da demo). Não entendi muito bem a parte da caixa de diálogo... Os botões que você mencionou são os do quick menu?

E sobre a sprite do Laurent, acho que dá para mudar a pose dele. No começo eu achava fofo mas agora ele já deve estar cansado de ficar com essa mão no peito XD

Se quiser falar mais sobre o jogo e tiver Discord, me chama por lá: akhayashiii#0526. Quase sempre estou online!

Muito obrigada pelas dicas!
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Re: Birthday Cake [Free][BxB][+18][Slice Of Life]

#6 Post by High » Fri Jun 26, 2020 5:06 pm

akhayashiii wrote:
Fri Jun 19, 2020 5:15 pm
Hi! I don't know why I didn't receive a notification about your response ;u; I only saw it today.
Você só recebe notificação se alguém quotar o seu post, como eu fiz agora.
akhayashiii wrote:
Fri Jun 19, 2020 5:15 pm
Não entendi muito bem a parte da caixa de diálogo...
Esse ponto é mais um TOC meu do que qualquer outra coisa. No momento a caixa está mais ou menos assim:

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e eu acho que seria mais elegante se o texto fosse centralizado assim:
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Eu pensei em outros pontos. Acho que seria interessante se a narração estivesse em itálico para ajudar a diferenciar do diálogo. E cada personagem poderia ter uma cor diferente para o nome. Esse é um "truque" muito comum, várias VNs usam.
akhayashiii wrote:
Fri Jun 19, 2020 5:15 pm
Se quiser falar mais sobre o jogo e tiver Discord, me chama por lá: akhayashiii#0526. Quase sempre estou online!
E quem disse que a timidez permite?

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Re: Birthday Cake [Free][BxB][+18][Slice Of Life]

#7 Post by akhayashiii » Sun Jun 28, 2020 7:05 am

Ah, agora entendi a questão da textbox! Vou ver como consigo melhorar esse ponto, além das demais dicas :3
Também não sou muito falante, então estamos quites XD Mas seu feedback está sendo muito útil para melhorar essa VN, agradeço demais!
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Re: Birthday Cake [Free][BxB][+18][Slice Of Life]

#8 Post by akhayashiii » Sat Aug 15, 2020 7:51 am

It's been a while since I updated this thread, so let's see how the development of "Birthday Cake" is so far!

I revamped the sprites because I felt they needed some polish, and also included new outfits that will appear in certain scenes of the game! Plus, Amélie is going to have her own sprite too (the convo with her is a lot better when we see her face lol):

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I'm working on the game's GUI as well, and it's pretty different from the current demo:

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Now we're going to have animated sprites: they blink and move their lips while they're talking! I also decided to go with CC backgrounds to save me some time, because I'm not very good at drawing them yet and I often ended up frustrated with my results.

Since the game is in a more polished state now, I plan to release a new (and final) version of the demo soon, as well as an Android version of it. For now I'm taking a break because I kinda overworked myself in the last weeks, but I can't wait to be back to working on this game!

Your feedback has been very helpful for me to figure out the points I had to improve, so thank you so much for letting me know your thoughts about the game!
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Re: Birthday Cake [Free][BxB][+18][Slice Of Life]

#9 Post by anh0814 » Sun Aug 30, 2020 1:36 am

I love your art so much! This looks like such a short and sweet game. I'll play the demo when I have time and let you know what I think.

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