No, of course not; where would be the fun in that?
I admit I do enjoy bittersweet stories from time to time, but I only like them when they are designed in such way and there’s absolutely nothing I can do to change them (because they are “regular” novels or stories); if they are interactive fiction, I hate it when it always ends in tragedy, regardless of what I do and the choices I make (because then it’s not interactive, there’s no point).
I meant that the romances are not going to he light-hearted or easy; the ROs have a lot of emotional baggage, great faults and ambitions that don’t quite match “just being with the MC,” so there’s going to be a lot of adversity and hardships with them. Of course, there are happy endings with them, but maybe you’re interested in seeing them fail once or twice, just to see how much the characters can change; I won’t spoil you about the ROs’ inner turmoil, but it’s going to be dramatic
That’s a good idea; if you play certain way, the NPCs will comment on how alike your MC is to Datura/Aquilegia (both in looks and/or personality-wise)
Why not, it does sound interesting! Given how different those two are, you can get a really intriguing character that will be both delightful and terrifying
Yeah, you’re the very first one to ask (or even notice, maybe? No one mentioned it before or asked me), you are very insightful! I’m working on my subtlety, so I try to leave little hints about the characters and their backgrounds without giving too much away (yet I believe I still tell too much sometimes). Why do you say it feels familiar? Do you have depression, too (or used too)? I’m sorry to hear that
Portraying depression properly is an intricate thing, and may be even way beyond my (current) skills (without taking into account not being able to use the word itself or with characters who don’t have the same comprehension about it as we do), but I really, really wanted to make it a part of the story. The fact that someone close to the MC, the player, has it, makes it more real, and not just “something that’s there” or an element added just for the sake of dramatism. I want to show people that depression is not as simple as “my feeling are hurt/no one loves me, I want to die,” and that it can happen to anyone, even kind souls like Datura, who give their all to everyone, until there’s nothing left.
Datura’s case is gradual; it starts as mild depression, making the people around him think it’s just melancholy (because they don’t have the knowledge we do about depression), and it gradually worsens over time. Not only the Nightshade line has a lot of history with affective (mood) disorders, Datura’s situation is really complicated and turbulent, which doesn’t help with his condition at all, along some crucial events that will shape his attitude and outlook on life.
The concept a lot of people have about depression is that whoever is going through it is because they don’t “try hard enough to snap out of it” or do it for attention; the MC’s Father, a hard-working man who tries his best to be kind and generous, and does his best to make things better, suffers it in silence, even thought he doesn’t meet the “criteria” or “checklist” for it, because depression can happen to anyone.
I believe it’s extremely important that I do a proper job of it and don’t botch it up. It’s vital that the player perceives Datura as a good man who is doing his best, working himself to the bone for the children he loves ( and who also happens to make mistakes because he’s human and too trusting for his own good), and that just like anyone else, can be a victim of depression. I want people to see how much it can take away from someone, that it’s not just “feeling blue” or only upset/sad/down, and that it can’t be ignoring or dismissed as something minor. I want the player to feel the loss of Datura, to see him as a lovable and vibrant character who ends up as a shell of his former self and realize how serious depression is.