Using images of characters when they're introduced/on the stats screen


#1

I’m a brand new writer (and new to the forum, HI!), currently working on a contained story based around a small-scale sports tournament- the story starts at the start of the tournament, and runs through to the end of it. Really, I’m using the project to get back into writing, to get to grips with ChoiceScript and get familiar with how things work and test out what I can and can’t do. I’m impressed at the documentation for it, and have so far made some inroads into getting something coherent together.

One thing that I haven’t seen much of in the CoG games is images- I confess I’ve not played any Hosted Games myself, having only just stumbled upon the category, so it may be that they’re more prevalent there. I’m thinking specifically about using an image (say 300x300) as a kind of avatar when first introducing each character, which would then be reproduced in a smaller size by the relationship stat on the stats page.

I wondered if anyone had any particular thoughts or experience with doing anything along these lines? Is it worthwhile- do you find it adds to the story by giving a visual cue, or takes away from it, by leaving less to the imagination? I’m in two minds myself- if there’s one thing that I’ve struggled with in some of the longer CoG games (particularly fantasy/superhero ones), it’s keeping straight in my mind who is who.

Thanks.


#2

It’s something I love.

I did this for my first game. Well I didn’t have the portraits show up when you met them, I did have a character screen though with blurbs about each character and a portrait of them courtesy of a very good friend of mine.

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/154988802/Julia/web/mygame/index.html is the very outdated link and https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/154988802/Julia/web/mygame/scenes/choicescript_relationships.txt is the relationships page. (Don’t do it like I did though since my method’s unsupported, make it a section on the stats screen.)

I just had a NPC_Met flag whenever you meet someone and *if NPC_Met


#3

I think it’s a good idea, if you want to do it. I like illustrations in games, and I know a few of the more popular Hosted Games had character illustrations. (Way Walkers, and I think Zombie Exodus had some as well.)

If you want to define the characters, illustrations are a good way to do it. I prefer this, but some people like appearances to be vague so they can interpret it themselves.


#4

I actually tend to shy away from images of people. I used a few images in Eight Thrones for things such as banners and coats of arms, things that I knew most people were not going to be able to get the image of (or at least not perfectly clearly), and I plan(ned) on including a small map in Aeon Sage which kept the player continually updated on their location and the location of any objectives (under the premise that the player character could constantly look at the map.)

Images of scenes that might have a lot to follow, or that might include give the player a stronger sense of things, I also like, but images of people always make me pause and consider the game intellectually, rather than emotionally. I examine the image rather than read the description (of course I do both, but the image becomes overriding to the description for me), and from there, the character perpetually looks like they did when the image was shown. Whatever emotion they had colors their character very strongly.

But that is just my opinion (and I’m not sure it’s the standard.)


#5

I love the idea. The only game(s) I’ve really seen images implemented well with are the Way Walker games in the Hosted Games section. They show up at various points in game and it really adds something.

Something important to keep in mind- you’d need to use your own art, or art that you have permission to use. There are a lot of awesome character portraits out there, but it could cause trouble to use someone else’s artwork without their knowledge/permission. Just something to keep in mind.


#6

Have you played Trial of the Demon Hunter? The art isn’t constant, but it shows up at key points. I liked the way the illustrations were paced.

My own idea is that I’m going to do a sort of bio/glossary page for each species that gets introduced, and if I have art to add to those pages at some point, all the better. I love the work my cover artist is doing, so that’s where I’m planning to get any character art I use.


#7

I’ve not tried that one. Got a google play card today though, so I have a bit of money for it- wanted to get Time to Kill.

Oooh, I should do a bio/glossary for the NPCs in my game! :smiley: Wonderful inspiration, Sashi!