Hi! I’ve been wanting to make a visual novel for about 6 years and, even though I developed (and completed) the story and upgraded my art skill, I didn’t do much regarding sprites, backgrounds, music etc. Aka, my story is still a fetus.
I’ve learned about CoG fairly recently and I realized my life would be much easier if I would just write it. However, I still love the idea of a visual novel as well.
I have two issues.
1 - I came up with this idea and I’m wondering about your opinion:
- I would write the story using ChoiceScript and publish it on Dashingdon
- Once you reach important scenes (like endings, kisses, sex scenes) you would get a link (which you can click or not, it’s up to you)
- That link will take you to itch.io where you would be able to play that scene in your browser as a visual novel and see pictures, music, sounds, etc.
2 - Because this would partially be a visual novel, that means the MC will be pretty much locked completely. I could allow the name change, but the surname stays the same. The pronouns could be she/her and they/them, but he/him is out of the question (because of the story premise). Also, the appearance couldn’t be changed since I would draw CGs. Or maybe I would allow that, but I could only draw my canon version not every option
So yeah, let’s start from here. Thanks for reading!
This sounds potentially interesting! I would be cautious about the constraints on the main character. I don’t think having a set surname or genders is necessarily a bad thing but because you wouldn’t be going through the usual gameplay of a visual novel you’ll kind of have the worst of both scripting methods - players won’t be regularly seeing their sprite except for in CGs, and nor will they have the freedom in appearance-customisation that comes with a text-only medium. Again I’m not sure that’s a dealbreaker, but if you search this forum there is a lot of discussion about how much people like to be able to personalise their characters and there is a bit of an expectation that there will be more freedom.
You can embed images in ChoiceScript, so if you wanted you could use that as a CG display. I think though that I would personally find it a bit jarring to move to a totally different website/type of gameplay while I was playing what seemed to be a ChoiceScript game. Were you considering including gameplay in the Ren’Py sections, or simply displaying CGs and music? (I feel like I’ve seen people put audio into ChoiceScript games, but I’m not totally sure.)
I advice you to put it a big disclaimer about the mechanics and the fact of another pages being involved same with images.
I personally wont play anything that goes to a different medium and willl distroy my personal image of character in middle game
I am romancing x I have a mental image and suddenly I am kissing X version of the writer that has nothing to do with mine. If I want to play a gamebook powered by vast powered of your imagination I dont want to be suddenly a character is not mine and not in my control and dont even look like I want.
For me a Virtual novel is one thing and A gameBook is other. But I am sure you will have a very numerous audience here.
Hannah, first of all, thank you for your quick and elaborate feedback!
Completely understandable, name and gender are so important. I do like CoG stories because of how immersive they are, among other things, and mc customization is one of their biggest assets.
I would include a bit of gameplay, like the whole scene, and then the CG in the end.
Yes, if I do this, I would put disclaimers and warnings.
Very understandable. Thank you for your feedback!
I am sure you will have a big market here, lots of virtual novels fans. If You will put a clear design of romances I recommend you put in front page so people would know since minute one the characters look to don’t get upset when cg images arrive. It also will help you as promo material!
Oh certainly! Any kind of promo material would include the MC and/or explanation about the MC, I do not want to upset anybody.
Do you by ‘here’ mean CoG forum? Is that allowed? Because I honestly don’t know any forums other than LemmaSoft for indie creators, specially focused on visual novels.
If you have a working demo you can made a wip thread using as wip promotion, You can also made a thread of other interactive fiction with you other engine games I have a thread for mine for instance
As someone who plays a lot of VNs and a lot of Interactive Fiction, I love the idea of mixing a text-only game with some scenes in Visual Novel style, but I don’t know if it would be practical to link a dashingdon story to a visual novel on Itch. I never saw any link in a dashingdon game and, to be honest, I don’t even know if it’s possible.
In my opinion, the best option would be using images inside your Choicescript game (and maybe sounds, if that’s possible) OR using another source and then publishing all your story on Itch. This source could be even Ren’py, if you make clear in your game description that it’s an interactive fiction with some Visual Novel scenes. Take as an example the introduction of Infinite Stars:
You can put links into ChoiceScript but I’m not sure it would feel great to be doing several clicks from one play experience to another - I feel like it would feel a bit jarring and maybe feel like two separate games (which it kind of would be).
Thank you so much!
Yes, I’m starting to feel like using both together (writing in ChoiceScript with links to itch) would be inconvenient, BUT, like you said, making a game using Ren’Py with mixing the text-over-screen plus sprite dialogues would help me feel less overwhelmed with art lol.
One more thing I need to check is, how possible it is to turn Ren’Py game into html so that it could be playable on web. I know it’s possible, but not often used, probably because of the sheer size and media files.