Gray Valley (WIP - updated April 30th)


Hey, everyone. I edited the main post but forgot to actually update this - oops! Anyway, I released the demo today. Please play it and give me your honest opinion. :slight_smile:


I like it. The town’s is giving me an empty, midwestern gothic vibe~ (The name really doesnt help haha)

Some scenes seemed to whiz by quite rapidly though, not sure if that was your intention.
Looking forward for more.

Edit: a nibblet of an error in the first bit “i’m yet to see” I think it should be “i have yet to see”?


Not very far into it so far, but as a note, reading a 16 year old girl being described as hot is a bit uncomfortable :persevere:


Sorry, this probably isn’t helpful but I can’t concentrate on the demo properly until I ask because I’m so excited. Were you referencing Daria? I noticed the English teacher was called O’Neil and thought, maybe, it could be a coincidence but then the reference to Joey or Jeffy cropped up and I thought you were referencing Daria for sure. Sorry again, just interested because I’m on my third run through of the series now and immediately noticed. On a slightly more helpful note, I love the idea of this WiP and the demo was coming along nicely before I got distracted. Thanks for a good read!


I’m liking the demo so far. Seems like exactly what I was looking for.


Very intriguing. I love playing mystery games. Keep it going. Like what I’m seeing.


Looks interesting, and Ren is cute. :blush: I’m interested in seeing where it’s going.

Noticed a typo:

“I’m sorry. I know what it’s like to say the wrong thing ad the wrong time. I’m sure he’ll forgive you soon”.

Should be “at”.


Celia’s mother is named Naomi when you call the house and Vivian when you visit the house as a group.

I’m looking foward to reading more of this story. :slight_smile:


I noticed that the games says that Cecilia’s mother died, and then later we see her mother at her house. I’m assuming that she’s supposed to be Cecilia’s step-mother, or that I misread something somewhere along the line, but I haven’t seen this pointed out and wanted to make sure.


Thank you all for the replies! I’m glad people seem to like where I’m going with this - to be completely honest, I was afraid you’d all hate it hahah
Anyway, I’ve fixed all the grammar mistakes (thank you for pointing them out, @ParrotWatcher and @BoisterousBumblebee), and some continuity errors:

That was a mistake! It was supposed to say her father, but for whatever reason I wrote her mother died. It’s fixed now.

Her original name was Vivian, which is why it was written like that - it’s officially Naomi, though. Thanks for pointing it out.

Yes, I was! I’m glad someone caught that reference hahah I actually rewatched Daria a couple months ago.


Thanks, that’s so cool, I love catching references to things I like, and it meant I could focus properly on the demo this time around so I had some proper feedback now. Firstly, as I think was mentioned before, the school day does seem to go by a little quickly, this isn’t a problem, because the all the characters are introduced and have dialogue, but it feels a bit sudden. Not in a bad way, I’m just used to slightly longer intros. I don’t know if you want to maybe add another class scene, or perhaps add a choice to choose your favourite subject, I don’t know, I’m just throwing ideas around. I know you’re still working on the intro, so sorry if that feedback was pointless.

The second piece of feedback, it’s kind of a nitpicky thing about the choice in regards to popularity versus intelligence. I’m just finicky in that I like the choices to be in ascending or descending magnitude. Currently the first choice is incredibly popular but not so smart, smart but unpopular and half and half. This is kind of irrelevant, but I would have done it, Popular, semi-popular and unpopular in a sort of descending order. Sorry again, that’s kind of weird.

Finally, I did the library scene with Silvio and it kind of hurt my immersion that there was no dialogue option to outright agree with him in disliking sports. You could call the focus on sports unfair, but you couldn’t express your own hatred/dislike of team sports and all the attention they got.

Thanks again for a great piece of writing, I hope I didn’t bother you with this stuff, have a great day!


Yes, I was afraid it might be too fast, which wasn’t really my intention - I’ll work on it!

I’m not sure if I understand you. Would you mind elaborating?

Ah, I didn’t think of that choice, for whatever reason! I understand why it would hurt immersion, so I’ll add that choice next time I update. Also, semi-related question: what did you think of Silvio, as a character? I was afraid he came across as unlikeable.

No, thank you for your very nice feedback - I appreciate it. :slight_smile:


Oh sorry, yes, that was a bit vague! How do I explain this? What I wanted to say was, you know how you can list things in order from highest to lowest? Like say there’s a choice, how much do you donate to charity and the choice says, $10, $5, $1. From highest to lowest, see? That’s what I would have done with the popularity choice, have option one be ‘I am very popular’ next one ‘I am sort of popular’ and the last one down, ‘I am not popular.’ Does that make sense? If it it doesn’t, don’t worry about it, It’s just a silly thing.

To me Silvio wasn’t unlikable at all, I thought he was quite cool, he didn’t come across as shallow as Emilia and I liked his sarcasm. The slacker genius is one of my favourite character types. I got into character as someone who’d known Silvio long enough to understand his quirks, and therefore not be bothered by some of his more anti-social behaviour. Like when he says ‘are you lost?’ it sounds rude, but as a character you understand why he said it. And it was good to see him get passionate about the poor condition of the library, it gave him some depth because a lot of people wouldn’t care about that. Thanks for asking!


I really enjoyed the demo! You might want to include in the title of the thread when you’ve updated–just like a day and month so people know when things are added.

It seems like you’re leading up into a cool plot, and all of your characters are really cool and unique, definitely a fun read and looking forward to more!

I think right now, I’d take a little issue with having a choice where being popular and being intelligent are opposing stats. I understand that you probably don’t want to make a choice that’s just bad–like making the player just flat say their character is unpopular without getting anything for it, but I’m hoping there will be more chances to increase both stats so that after the choice it won’t feel like the player has to choose one or the other. If that makes sense?


I really like the characters, reminds me of my group of friends school. Can’t wait too see more, hopefully soon :slight_smile:


Okay. You asked for brutal honesty and so I guess that’s what I’m going to give you. Don’t be too scared, I’m not that brutal (I hope).

Also I know you’ve probably heard this from everyone else before me but I’ll say it again: while yes, your idea is typically labeled a cliche, you must know that there is a reason that such a premise for a narrative is a cliche. People enjoy it despite it being regurgitated constantly over the years, and I suppose I’m no different.

In retrospect I probably should have phrased that better. Sorry,

Now to my opinion on the demo. To be honest I quite enjoyed it. Yes, the premise is cliche, but it doesn’t come across as such, which is refreshing when most of the published books (I’m not talking about any of the choice games, I’m talking paperback books and the like) don’t grab my attention as much as they probably should. So that was nice.

One criticism I do have is that the beginning of the story doesn’t really inspire me to continue reading after the first line, and I find that quite sad since I genuinely did enjoy most of it. Maybe not beginning it with dialogue would be better, but this is your story and I’m not going to force you to make any changes if you believe that it’s fine as is. Another thing I noticed was how… I’m not really sure how to describe it… awkward some of the dialogue between characters were. I’m probably just nitpicking, but it just makes the characters seem more like robots than I know they actually are. I can’t quite place what’s wrong; maybe it’s too much information given, maybe they don’t sound like a person when they talk… Sorry I can’t be more specific.

I liked how you described things in the story, that particular line about anyone who thought an art class so early in the morning is a monster was particularly funny, though probably because I relate.

Anyway I wrote far too much than what I said I would and I’m sorry if I’m coming across as blunt or rude or whatever… I just tend to take someone asking for ‘brutal honesty’ to heart…


There will be, later on in the game! That first choice was to give the player a headstart and determine his personality.[quote=“ExquisitePumpkin, post:36, topic:23382”]
Another thing I noticed was how… I’m not really sure how to describe it… awkward some of the dialogue between characters were

You know, I hadn’t thought of that - I based the dialogue over how my friends actually talk in real life. Anyway, I’ll definitely work on it. [quote=“ExquisitePumpkin, post:36, topic:23382”]
I’m sorry if I’m coming across as blunt or rude or whatever…

Hey, I asked for brutal honesty and you gave me just that - thanks. There’s a difference between constructive criticism and being a dick, and so far I’ve only gotten the first one out of everyone, which is great.

I could’ve sworn I’d answered you, but it seems I forgot. I understand you completely, but please note that this game is being written by a high schooler, which i why I felt comfortable writing the character like that.


Hey, everyone. I just updated the game with some rewrites, and a new scene at the intro. I’d appreciate it if you could answer these few questions about the demo (it’d really help me with the next update, which will definitely be bigger):

  1. Overall, how’s the game like? Is it fun? Is the writing good, or tedious?
  2. Do the characters feel like real people, or are they unlikeable and weird?
  3. Similar to the second question: how’s the dialogue? I’ve been told it’s good, and I’ve been told it’s robotic; what do you think? Does it sound like how real people talk?
    That’s it for now - as always, please be brutally honest, and thank you for the feedback I’ve gotten so far. You’re all awesome.


Love the new intro, I think you did a great job on your rewrites, you’ve improved everything that was a little off. I like how you extended the school day a little, so the intro didn’t feel so rushed this time around, and gave readers more time to settle in. The flashback was a nice touch, it helps us connect a bit with Cecelia this time around when in the original she never had any dialogue because she was gone. Also, thanks for adding the option to agree with Silvio in the library, that made my day, and it’s good from the point of given people more options to express themselves as well. Now, I better actually answer your questions.

  1. I enjoy the writing to be honest, it’s light and doesn’t take itself too seriously so far. I think that fits the tone with the high school setting. I didn’t find it tedious at all and always have a great time when I go over it.

  2. The characters definitely feel like real people, I could name people exactly like them I knew when I was in high school so they aren’t bizarre or out of place here. They definitely go with the setting. In my opinion, the characters are likeable enough as it stands. You already know Silvio is my favourite. I find Emilia a bit shallow but I don’t dislike her for it, she has a very forceful personality and isn’t afraid to speak her mind which is cool.

  3. The dialogue, you can put me in the camp of people who think it’s okay and makes sense, I didn’t see any glaring problems with it and didn’t think it was robotic. For an example, the opening page where Emilia mentions hating the teacher’s cheerful attitude and Silvio snarks back felt very real, the sort of thing that goes on all the time.

That’s it I guess, hope it was of some help to you!


Aaah, thank you, you’re too nice. :slight_smile: