Runaway [WiP] [New Chapter Out: 26 February 2021]

  1. I love the premise
  2. The writing is extremely skillful
  3. I like the unfolding of the mystery (Zorah’s magic et al)

That being said, I feel like you’re rushing this into “print” just a little too soon.

Spend some more time, alone, writing this thing out - letting it grow and breathe. Feel the mystery and the solidity of this world. Give more depth and personality to the NPCs.

Lastly, add in some meaningful choices - so far, all I see are flavor options and customizations. Throw up an obstacle to challenge the MC and let me see how I (as the player/reader) will handle it, all the while learning more about the MC and their world.

There’s a solid gold story here, and you’ve got the writing chops to develop it. Just lock yourself in a room for a few months, and I think you’ll really be glad you did :smiley:

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I agree

When it comes to writing books at least in my opinion one really has to feel like they are actually living in the world or timeline the book takes place in. For example: the main character in the book I am writing lives on a planet mostly like our except with several key differences. 1. Is that instead of nations there are kingdoms each kingdom being a different element.

Another is where the mc is from and how they were raised. Making each kingdom in the book I am writing seem different is a great way to make the reader understand just how different the mc is from everyone else. One kingdom may be ruled by a pacifist while another is ruled by a warmonger. however the problem begins when you have your characters visit to many different places. I personally recommend choosing where you want the story to go, then plan out how the characters will get there. Try and think of it from your characters point of view. If you feel like it is too short than expand it a little, if it gets to the point where you are starting to feel things are repeating themselves shorten it. In the end try and find what you think fits best with your story. There is no one fits all kind of story telling and even if there is. You still have to think about how you want the story to feel.

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Thanks for the feedback guys! I don’t want to “clog” up the forum space too much, so I’ll go into PM’s, but thanks for raising up your concerns about the character depth/personality and worldbuilding. Definitely a lot to learn and think about! But yeah, if you could check PM’s, I feel like this could be really helpful and I would like to discuss it further.

Regarding more meaningful choices, I’ll see what I can shift around, but hopefully in later chapters you can “see” more of the impact of a select few early choices and make a few more big, story altering ones!

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You are good at writing, it went all really smoothly and was refreshing compared to some of the other stuff I read recently.

A thing that I liked is that the character doesn’t feel, act or speak without our players’ input, I felt in control of the protagonist all the way.

A thing that left me wondering is that there was no character physical customisation apart from gender. It’s not a bad thing to leave it blank, but if you plan to implement it I would suggest to make it counts (meaning to throw here and there reactions from the environment and other characters about our looks), many times we can set even our hairstyle but this is irrelevant to the story and never mentioned again.

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Thanks for the encouragement and trying out the game! There will be physical customization in chapter two - I couldn’t find a place to plug it in for the prologue/chapter one without it feeling a little forced, so it got delayed a little. Sorry!

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I’m sold on the premise, and excited to see where it goes!

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yo you got me. i’ll be waiting for the game keep it up

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Thanks for the kind words guys!

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Hey everyone! Chapter 2 is now out in the demo for everybody to test :smiley:! Somethings to note

  • I’ve received feedback from a few people I’ve shown it to early that they would prefer if they could run through all the routes instead of just picking one. I’m going to take a look at more feedback from everybody and see if I can change it up a little so all three can be chosen, but for now you can only interact with one character option in detail per playthrough. Sorry!

  • I’m told earlier saves will not work and you have to start from the beginning. I’m not sure what determines this, but I’ll try to avoid this in future updates once I figure it out.

  • A good friend of mine made me chapter pages! They said they would prefer to not be named, but you know who you are! Thanks a lot for the help!

  • And as always, please leave feedback on anything you think didn’t feel right!

Slightly related news, but under the cut because doesn't directly relate to the update

I’m going to be a little busy the next few weeks with school + after talking with some more experienced authors, they recommended me to go a little slower. What this means is that the next update will likely come later, (I’m thinking maybe a month to 6 weeks?) but will have more content to play through. I will be trying this out to see if it fits my style, and then reevaluate after the release of the next update. Thanks for the patience!

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found this bug:

chapter2 line 12: Non-existent variable ‘efirstimpression’

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Sorry! I uploaded an old version of the chapter, so some things were a little off. Should be fixed now. Tell me if there’s still any problems!

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Hey! Glad to see a new update. I took a quick look through the routes, so here’s my random commentary on all that. Good luck and have fun with the next part!

words about things

Personally, I think the scenario presented justifies only being able to spend time with one person, so I’m fine with not getting to see all paths in one go. It can be frustrating if it’s a case where I feel like the situation should allow me to talk to more people than I can, but I think this example is fine. Of course, if you can find a way to make visiting every character work, then that’s also cool. :slight_smile:

I liked all three paths, Arlen’s in particular. I struggle a lot with balancing characterization and exposition with characters that are naturally in a good position to be expositors, and I felt like you struck a good balance with him. That said, I asked Arlen if he would be comfortable answering some personal questions and he seemed okay with that, but then I didn’t get any new personal questions to ask – were there supposed to be?

I like the chapter banners, but I think the quote on the prologue one is pretty off-putting considering this is an interactive fiction game. It makes sense given the character and their situation, but it also kind of opens the game with a message of “Don’t expect your choices to matter in this game about making choices”, if you see what I mean.

Crashes

run1

Game crashed when I tried to reject the duel with Ezra a second time. Replaying and accepting the duel the first time didn’t cause any problems.

Typos

I found several places where I saw the word “his” when it should have been “him.” I assume this is a multireplace error or some such? Here are the ones I caught.

When walking with Nikolas to the library towards the end of ch1, the crushing options say I have a crush on “his”

Later, right at the beginning of Nik’s path, it happened again. “Nikolas beams at you as you follow his out”

Also at the beginning of Arlen’s path. “…only beckoning for you to follow his”

And not the same error, but possibly also a multireplace issue… “he hesitates briefly before continuing”, he should be capitalized.

This isn’t a typo per se, but with the passage “You make to nod, but realize that he can’t hear you…” The first bit sounds odd to me (maybe just “You nod”?), and hear should probably be changed to see – he can hear me, but he can’t see my nod.

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Oi @EricClem there are save files from some other game, lol there are files that are saved couple months ago and yours came out eight days ago :joy_cat::smile_cat::roll_eyes:

O.o I have zero idea how that happened lol. Can you give me a quick breakdown of what you did?

Thanks for the feedback as always! I’m probably going to spend most of today + the weekend studying, but I’ll make sure to go back and fix all the problems sometime before Monday and get back to you. Pronoun coding makes my head hurt sometimes. :angry: I’ll take a look at the banner as well, thanks for pointing that out :stuck_out_tongue: .

Edit: I uploaded a quick patch for the pronoun issues, the other ones I’ll take a look at later! Enough procrastinating from me ;-; my lin alg test isn’t going to disappear into thin air.

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The reason this happens is because Dashingdon stores its save files based on the keyword you use in the *sm_init line. “mygame” is supposed to be a placeholder—try replacing this with something more unique to your game, e.g. *sm_init runaway | 5. This does mean old saves will be inaccessible, but it also means the game will stop sharing save slots with other projects.

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Thanks for the help!