SoS: The Mortal Coil (WIP, Poll Link in Post 2022 for RO Portrait)

I wonder… are the humans aware of the supernatural events happening around them? Do they know angels and demons exist? And are we going to encounter / deal with priests, nuns and other religious folks throughout our journey? Hell, I wouldn’t mind scaring the crap out of some occult-dabblers, not the cultist kind mind you, just some punk-goth kids who thinks demons are monsters made-up to scare children. I would love to see their reaction to an actual arch-angel…

You could definitely pull some interesting strings here, including how some people use faith to further their own goals… or mislead others into doing the wrong things - encountering a delusional murder who thinks they’re doing God’s work, a corrupted priest, an undergrown BDSM club underneath a church, etc. PS: I’m not trying to start a religious debate here, merely dropping some plot suggestions.

2 Likes

@KuraiHeka
Hmm… I wonder :wink: Actually, Gabriel will have the opportunity to change their Angel Blade shortly after the half-point of the story. The new options will vary depending on who your Gabriel has chosen to associate with and learn from.

@avidreader
In terms of afterlife for mortals, they typically are left to whatever religion they were part of in life. In terms of agnostic/atheist, reapers exist to take these souls to more of a limbo realm. (I don’t want to get into it too much here as bits and pieces will be revealed/explained by various characters).

@Ventura
Ramiel’s romance path is one that I foresee as being full of heartache and misunderstandings… There’s a lot of history and not of all of it is really good.

Michael does have a more humanistic view of romance than many angels who never leave Heaven, but he has no personal experience–just what he’s seen/read about. So if you do end up romancing him, you can shape his expectations. But romancing him is by no means easy… 18 years in terms of angel time is practically nothing, so while Gabriel is raising Daniel, Michael is back in Heaven doing archangel things.

Without the flashbacks/knowledge Gabriel acquires throughout the story, Michael’s behavior can’t really be properly explained nor understood… and because I’m keeping the reveal a surprise, he’s going to remain a seemingly one-dimensional jerk for the time being.

@IvoryOwl
Normal, average humans are not aware. Iain, for example, is probably the most unaware of the supernatural world around them in terms of the Homicide Department where you will be working. Now Iain, as a character, is a Catholic, so he believes in angels and demons… just not quite the literal, physical presence that is Gabriel. Subsequently, when/if he finds out about Gabriel, he has a crisis of faith and goes to speak to his priest, who is more grounded to the point where he just looks at Iain and goes: “You believe in God. You believe in angels. Why is it so hard to imagine that they can walk among us?” There’s some opportunities to interact with others and reveal yourself, especially in the first half where you are supposed to be incognito. The second half of the story gets… interesting.

And while most humans are not aware of the supernatural, there is a special branch of the government that deals with such things (but which is completely off the books, and is just a “conspiracy theory”).

As for manipulating faith, that’s one area where I hope to appeal to the manipulative/dark Gabriel’s who can play upon people’s beliefs and ideals. You also encounter quite a wide variety of people and whatnot.

9 Likes

Am hi have you finished gabriel’s pov in their 1st meeting, i really like the other 3 and would like to see gab’s impression

I’d go with dual pistol and name them “Ebony & Ivory”…
Oh, wait, we’re actually angels. So i’d probably name them something angelic…

And there isn’t an option to name your weapons, that’s a must-have!

That would be cool to have.

@Zassuen
I didn’t think of that! Definitely have to find a place to squeeze it in somewhere… hmmm…

So a few thoughts/questions concerning the next few scenes/a few revisions.

A. Concerning character gender: I’d like to add an option for gender fluid for the PC. Now, saying that, the way I’m positing treating that would be under a toggle that appears under stats to flip the way the gender of the PC is seen/treated on a certain day. Does that seem like a viable approach for treating a gender fluid character?SoS: The Mortal Coil (WIP--Update 07/15/2017)

B. The binary selection of the player character’s mortal shell. From my standpoint, the shell is really not representative of who Gabriel actually is (it’s a fancy disguise, kind of like the puppet in @malinryden’s Fallen Hero) but as you know from the prologue, eventually Gabriel gets forcibly merged with the shell. This would then seem to force the player into a binary representation, but to a certain degree, they will be able to manipulate their shell as it is a magical construct after all, so this isn’t supposed to be limiting for the entire game. However, for the first part of the game the player will initially be perceived as a binary representation due to their shell. As relationships develop they will be able to reveal themselves/explain who they are beyond the initial binary gender appearance. In the scene I’m currently bashing my head against Sabriel explains why the shell is only binary–because it’s a disguise–and will also express her genuine sympathy if the PC is non-binary for being forced into a binary shell. Does this still feel like too much of a railroad and/or a deterrence to play? To be blunt, is there anyone going “no way am I playing this game because of this?” or “it still depends on how this is handled?”

C. Non-diegetic vs diegetic stats raising. Personally, I like Samurai of Hyuga’s style of telling stat increases via attunement. I hate having to flip to the stats screen to check to see if an action has raised a certain stat. I’ve played around with a few styles in this next scene, but can’t decide on one so I’ve decided to ask all you lovely folks.

  • Only show stat changes in the stat screen.
  • Show stat changes with a choice (non-diegetic, explicitly stated).
  • Show stat changes after a choice is made (non-diegetic, explicitly stated).
  • Have the option to show stat changes with a choice (toggle in stat menu).
  • Have the option to show stat changes after a choice (toggle in stat menu).
  • Have the stat increase/decrease diegetically communicated (a little more than it is now, revealed by the PC/other characters)

0 voters

Thanks everyone for the feedback! (And please ask if my explanation of poll choices don’t make sense–I’d be happy to clarify) I’m hoping to get the next update up soon, but getting some feedback on these questions will help break the walls I’m butting up against. :sweat:

5 Likes

Hmm. Personally I like to know how my choices will effect my stats prior to making them. That way I don’t screw up my playthrough by accidentally making the wrong choice and then having to go back and play through the whole game again while trying to remember all the choices I’d made up to that point.

7 Likes

Regarding B. What is the reason we can’t at least get an intersex body. (I can somewhat understand that we can’t get a body exactly like our angelic gender, but intersex humans do exist. As far as Sabriel knows, nobody should be checking our intimate parts anyway. (if the reason is more technical from your side, do to the large number of ro, perhaps you could just close off the options who are strictly into one gender )? I just think it might be a little triggering for some players to first be given a fantasy body and then stuck in a no you have to have a binary. Espicially when we know we get stuck in that body. . (And if it is magically modifiable I can’t see my Gabriel waiting 18 years to do it or how long it is untill halfway.)

I would certainly like in real life to be able to just beam into people’s head what pronoms I would like to use today. And have people just do it. It does underscore how much the binary gender body suck. (I am sorry to harp on this, but it bothers me for some reason. It bother me a lot.)

I don’t mean to pick a fight or sound accusatory when I say this, but as an intersex person I’d personally (and most likely more people who share this condition) would be quite offended if being intersex was an option. I’m only really speaking from personal experience here, but being intersex is a medical condition that generally comes with a lot of complications and I can imagine most of us would prefer it if we weren’t born with said condition.

I think making intersexuality an option for human beings would make light of said issues, since the option probably wouldn’t contain any extra writing addressing these sort of matters, and therefore the writing could make intersexuality out to be some sort of gender that you can identify as, when this clearly isn’t the case. I think the best way to describe it would be by comparing it with trans-identities: a trans-woman is still a woman, but being nonbinary doesn’t make you intersex.

Again, I’m really not trying to be rude or mean or anything, and I could definitely understand if the option is implemented in order to avoid causing any dysphoria or something of the sort. I guess I just really want to ensure that something that I suffer from very greatly won’t be trivialised or treated as anything else than it is: which is a medical condition. Again, I hope I’m not coming off as rude.

8 Likes

@Wisteria No, you are not coming off as rude, but in fact has a very good point. It was just me reaching for the most obvious solution without thinking the implications through, sorry.

I don’t really know, why going from the angelic gender to the binary bothers me so much so I can’t say why it is triggering me. I don’t even suffer from so much physical dysphoria in real life, so I can’t explain why it so…

To be honest I don’t think there is a pretty way around this problem. It is a situation which sucks, and I don’t think @Dae-kalina can’t write around it without bumbing into some issue. No matter how I think about it I can’t come up with a solution which doesn’t have unfortunate implications once you think them through. In that case the best option is obviously to keep it simple. Personally, I am just going to be skipping through that section without really reading it.

@Wisteria
By no means did you come off as anything other than informative and helpful! This is precisely why I did not have that as an option: I have only had one intersex friend and the medical complications were not something that they wished on anyone. Thank you for chiming in!

From the angelic perspective, humans biologically are binary and they see the shells as such. Gender as a whole can cause them quite a bit of confusion since they have no sex at creation, and everything associated with gender/sex is borrowed from other races.

@DreamingGames

[quote=“DreamingGames, post:345, topic:15298”]
Personally, I am just going to be skipping through that section without really reading it.
[/quote] I really would hate to have the creation of the shell cause this. Hopefully it won’t come to that, but we’ll see when I actually publish it. But on that note, Sabriel points out that sex and gender are not the same, so while the shell will be biologically male or female, how the world perceives you is up to you.


And now the good? stuff? I’ve finally gotten a handle on this scene. It’s mostly beaten into submission. However, because of the fickle and irritable nature of this particular beast of a scene, I want to get content out there as much as possible, but it will be a partial branch at a time. This means that if you want a polished scene with all options available… you might be waiting for a while :sweat_smile: This is rough and ugly, but it’s progress.

Normally I don’t like posting incomplete scenes, but I’m making an exception for this one. I need it to see the light of day. So take this as proof of life and feel free to read if you want to. I’ll update the title with an update note and other stuff when I actually have at least one full branch complete (and the shell customization).

This update: If you don’t want to cause issues, play from the beginning. As much as I have been trying to avoid edits to earlier chapters (thus causing issues with loading old saves) some of my lazy coding moments came back to haunt me with a vengeance :head_bandage: Plus, the new stat toggle required me making changes in all previous scenes. The branch mostly available at the moment is a combination of Michael, Israfel, and Daniel.

  • Toggle in stats screen for showing stat changes (of non-hidden stats). All stat changes should now show what changed if this is on.
  • Pronouns. Oh boy, did I mess this up a wee bit. Might still be a few issues lurking (though hopefully not…) Had to change the names of the variables to try and make it easier for me to remember as well as check for a few noun/verb agreement issues. Not my favorite thing to work with. Definitely causes a few hiccups when writing. To this end… is anyone using they/them/their/themselves as a preferred form of address? (because this is probably the address that still has some issues, probably of the noun/verb agreement form and not being plural when it should be). Please speak up if you are! ((I would hate to be doing extra work too if no one is using it…))
  • Part of the new scene! A very linear part, but a part nonetheless!

Feedback I’m looking for:

  1. How does the initial conversation with Sabriel feel? It’s a little more non-digetic than I like, but I wanted a way for players to sort of ‘set’ their base personality, and it mostly fits with the scene.
  2. Page breaks are most definitely lacking. If you happen to spot a good point for one, please feel free to throw me a bone and point it out. Thanks :slight_smile:
  3. I’m still working on balancing the depth of choices compared to the pacing of the plot, so do the conversation choices in the available branch feel of appropriate length? Would you like more tonal options available?
  4. Anything else you feel like bringing up!
12 Likes

I’m assuming the ‘railroaded’ part means only being able to choose the option to leave the room and head left, but I encountered this when I tried.

2 Likes

@Alexodia
Erk, sorry, that would be an issue with compiling a file that uses gosub_scene (I forgot to add it in the list). This is what happens when I bug test the non-compiled version :expressionless: Should be fixed now. And yes, the railroad part is just temporary because the other options are still under development. I left them in but greyed out so people could get a sense of what other options will be available when the scene is completed.

2 Likes

I love the fact that you explained all the classes of demons! Could you maybe explain the Angel classes? :smiley:

1 Like

[quote=“Prof_Chaos, post:30, topic:15298”]
When we start creating Gabriel I imagine the angels look like the ones from Diablo, all armor and robes without faces or flesh until deciding on their form.
[/quote] Haha i imagined the same thing!

If you check the glossary of the demo it’s there.

2 Likes

Ah! I love the update! c: really makes me wanna draw Gabriel (if I have time I definitely will!)

1 Like

There’s an error when trying to intimidate Sabriel… And why can’t we intimidate her?!

Then there’s also an error if you try to charm her…

3 Likes

Are some of the choices in the new scenes unavailable on purpose or do I just not have the right stats?

1 Like

They’re unavailable at the moment.