[WIP] Smoke & Velvet: The Gnawing Chronicles UPDATE 11/19/20

Call me Roast or Cela, whatever works.
I’ve wanted to write a choicescript game for years now but hey, quarantine does things to you, like kick your ass into gear and gets you to start writing.

This game updates on the 19th of every month
This is changing in 2021–Public updates will be once every two months on the 15th of that month. November 19th 2020 is the last update of 2020.

Play the demo here!
Check out the official tumblr @smokeandvelvet-cog
And the patreon! Where patrons gain early access to art I make for the game and an alpha version that is updated every two weeks, starting 08/07/2020! Patreon
And check out the discord!

Smoke & Velvet is a cosmic horror story based on a world dissimilar to ours full of monsters and magic.

You play as a monstrous parolee in 1913, forced to work for a company that investigates magical and monstrous phenomena. You’re set on a conundrum of a case with no easy answers, plaguing a town like the mysterious illness that plagues your body and has stolen bits of your memories–that are slowly starting to come back.

Solve the case, survive, get answers.

  • Play as either a Basilisk, Hellhound, or a creature known as Living Porcelain.
  • Play as non-binary, intersex, or trans. You can also choose to have top surgery or not.
  • Play as any variation of Aromantic or Asexual (including sex comfortable Ace)
  • Choose between four romanceable characters, three of whom you can choose their gender, the fourth being an AMAB trans woman.
  • Deal with the mysterious sickness that’s plagued you and stolen your memories.
  • All the while being forced to work for a company who charged you with a crime you may or may not have committed.
  • Enjoy variable dialogs/flavor text based on your species, friendship levels, and rivalry vs. amiability levels with characters.
  • Experience unique text and dialog based on your developing personality traits. Currently there are eight (8) personality types.

Things in the works:

  • Polyamory! The poly relationships will be Nico/Danny, Danny/Isla, and Fatima/Isla.
  • Personality/Stats balancing will be an issue throughout writing, working on it
  • Romance either one of your handlers, your mysterious monstrous counterpart, or the terribly bashful attendant

Please be aware of the content warnings. Some of them sound scarier than they are but I want everyone to, first and foremost, be safe.

I would greatly appreciate any feedback, comments, etc!
What is available right now is a first draft that will go through a lot more edits as I write.

As of 11/19/2020
Demo word count w/command lines: 171,311 (+17,036)
Demo word count w/o command lines: 153,325 (+15,159)
Average word count per playthrough: ~51k

CHANGELOG:

11/19/20
Smaller changelog for this month

  • Heterochromia option now available in character creation!
  • Fixed some stats page issues
  • Continuing personality balancing – most options should be fairly equal by now
  • Friendship and amiability v. rivalry balancing
  • We learn more about the goings on at the museum!
  • And learn a little more about both Isla and Fatima’s histories.

10/19/20

  • Filled in the charming personality past in the Nico conversation when asking about what you were like before all this.
  • New romantic intent variable! Now, when you show obvious romantic intent (such as clear declarations or begging for a kiss) this variable will flip. It does not lock you into a romance, merely states that your character has every intention of romancing another character, and will be used to trigger poly scenes and future conflict scenes if multiple characters have this variable flipped.
  • Fleshed out touch-averse in the romance options
  • Nico can now reject a low friendship or cruel!MC in their romance paths. (This needs a bit of polishing I think, and let me know if you get a rejection when you think you shouldn’t! Send me your stats too if this happens so I can investigate)
  • Low friendship and cruel!MCs now have an option to want to change, to be better, thereby resetting their friendship to default with Nico so they have a fresh start.
  • Hiding behind Nico in both scenes gives you shy points now
  • Personality traits are more balanced now. Getting shy dominant shouldn’t be too hard now but lmk.
  • She/they, he/they pronoun options in non-binary select. Pronouns are also now visible in the profile
  • Pronoun changer available in the stats page!
  • Additional hellhound kiss option in Nico’s scene
  • Choice now to pursue Nico’s romance w/o kissing them
  • COCKATRICE BASILISK SUB-SPECIES :smiley:
  • AND Marble porcelains!
  • And porcelains now have a ‘scar’ feature scene where they can pick and choose what their scars are filled in with (kintsugi, glass, as seamless as possible, etc.)
  • Earlier scene to determine if your mc is currently crushing on Fatima/Isla or both of them. This is not a pre-req for pursuing a romance with either of them!

09/19/20

  • We’ve hit 100k!!
  • And finished chapter 2!
  • Learn more about your missing memories from Nico themself. And… other things involving Nico :wink:
  • Added a wood grain option for porcelains
  • Added a stained glass option for porcelains
  • Swapped out family decisions for hellhounds with something a little more pertinent to the story.
  • So! Hellhounds can now choose the gender, name, and nickname of their little sibling! As well as their relationship dynamic.
  • Due to some feedback, I’ve offered a choice to decide on top surgery for your character later on in the game, instead of just in the character creator! This scene will probably be some time chapter…. 3??
  • I haven’t proofread basically anything since the train station argument scene so uhm, it’s all very fresh, you could say. If you see any typos, tense swaps, gender oopsies, lmk!
  • OH–and added a custom pronouns section in the non-binary section. It’s… a static read but I wasn’t sure how to go about adding it with the way I code in pronouns. I will continue to polish this so it’s not as clunky.

08/19/20

  • Decided to cut up where we’re at between chapters 1 & 2 so uh…. Welcome to chapter 2 everybody! My original idea for where to end chp 1 is still a long ways away and that’s just ridiculous so here we are.
  • Added rattle option to basilisk tails
  • Added spiraly horns for basilisks
  • Added a touch averse option during the scene with Fatima on the train. This allows you to choose to play a touch averse character without the variable being only triggered by being mean to Nico during the panic attack in the car :stuck_out_tongue:
  • Added a resistant flirt option to Nico’s scene–this is a character who is resisting the idea of pursuing a romance…but also can’t help it
  • Added trigger warning toggle. You can choose whether or not you want to see trigger warnings before particular scenes and choose to continue with the scene in question or read a summarized (but still thematic!) version.
  • Added a ‘what waits for you’ section in the stats that goes over your character’s choices in the character creator involving their past.
  • Added a few more monsters to the index
  • Added alt-text toggle. This shows un-dramatized text in certain scenes ex: “doN’T mOVe!” will show as “don’t move!” with alt-text on.
  • Renamed hellhound sub-species. I was never wholly happy with it being inspired from Dante Inferno’s circles of hell especially considering how homophobic the base material is. I’m happier with the new names anyway and I hope you all are too! :slight_smile:
  • Added a new hellhound sub-species with lithium coals. I felt bad about adding just so many add ons to basilisks so I want to beef out the other species.
  • On that note–you can now customize your ear shapes as a hellhound! :smiley:
  • Added curly fur option for hellhounds

07/19/20

  • Polished randomized mixed trait bit - shouldn’t get duplicates anymore but let me know if you come upon any weird bits of text that don’t seem to make sense/are repetitive
  • Introduced toggles for flirt and personality choice options, now you can choose to see if choices change your personality or are flirt options.
  • Rewrote basically everything from the last update to accommodate more choices. I feel better about it now.
  • Also learn more about both Nico and Isla with the rewritten updates.
  • Made it so not just basilisks who chose the farm can decide last minute which one they’d like to go to.
  • Rewrote stoic personality trait scenes to be less mean bc they were totally hella mean and that’s not the intention :stuck_out_tongue:
  • Added hair colors!
  • Added a cute stumpy tail and a forked tail for basilisks
  • Adde horn options for basilisks (saw fanart with horns on basilisk!MCs so I had to)
  • Added a curled tail and dual tail for hellhounds
  • Added topsurgery for trans individuals who start off with an AMAB/Intersex body that didn’t develop breasts.
  • Nonbinary individuals can now pick their pronouns between the ‘big three’ she/he/they
  • Personality trait balancing. You should be able to get more charming and stoic options/easier to trigger charming/stoic text.
  • Added a small specific item you can include in your room decorations regardless of initial style choice.

06/19/20
Relatively small update this time :'D
• Added no relationship past to romantic/sexual experience choice
• Introduce new system to handle mixed trait personalities. Now, if your character has multiple personality traits equal to each other, the game will read which of those are dominant and randomly choose which text of those traits you’ll see in game.
• Expanded on character hair (just, there’s text now for when you pick your hair, no big)
• Other small edits and fixes.
The last scene in the demo is REALLY ROUGH imo and so needs a world of polishing but I also didn’t want to leave it out for the update since it’s already a pretty small update as is.

05/19/20
• Revamped the personality system to a pillars of eternity inspired version (numerical personality types). HUGE Thanks to @SpokesWriter for providing the code for this. Mine was an awful awful mess.
• Expanded on the species backstories. Each species option has a unique backstory with different origins and experiences.
• Implemented relationship history, allowing your character to choose between a promiscuous romantic history, one that’s not so much, asexual, aromantic, aroace, and sex comfortable ace.
• Meet the rest of the cast! You can now meet Isla, Fatima, and Nico!
• Implemented tail options for hellhounds and basilisks
• Probably more that I’ve completely forgotten.

Play the demo here!

514 Likes

Not working for me… Keeps loading forever

Edit: as they say, 3 for luck :. Works now

3 Likes

Yeah I noticed that too :confused: I’ll work on it and see if its a problem on my end. Thanks!

2 Likes

I’m really liking where this is going, I love playing non-human characters. Can’t wait to meet the rest of the characters!

15 Likes

I am liking it so far. The world seems quite deep, and I look forward to learning more about human and monster relations. Especially Fatima and the ERA.

I love the selection of species. I went straight for the living porcelain and the detail with that path was incredible.

Dana is the only character we meet but they were pleasant. I am interested in seeing what María is like.

5 Likes

great so far can’t wait for more keep up the awesome work

2 Likes

Color me intrigued! Looking forward to seeing where this goes. Also, Danny is adorable so far!

4 Likes

I liked it. Very unique.

3 Likes

Very nice. I like it so far.

2 Likes

Howdy! I adore this here story. Anyone in which I can be something other than a human already gets points in my book. Splendid species to choose from. And your writing is very clear and concise. Splendid job, and I’ll totally not be stalking this page.

5 Likes

It’s soooo good! I love playing as a living doll. The idea and as well as your story is refreshing. Can’t wait to play it again! :smiley:

5 Likes

It would be hard to make something I’m more interested in. I love it.

2 Likes

This is really cool! I’m already interested in how living as these three different kinds of monsters works. I’m excited to see more if you decide to keep working on this!

5 Likes

where were you hiding this gem? cose I love it!

Btw…do porcelaine actually sweat ? :thinking:

5 Likes

This is really well-written, especially the opening scene, and the various character branches were intriguing. I also appreciate the smooth way character creation was integrated into the overall narrative.


I wonder if it would be better to hide the unknown variables in the description instead of having them show up as “Unknown.” There’s also a stray period at the end of the description.

I also caught a few minor grammatical errors:

Nitpick City


*flare

*reek

The first letter should be capitalized.

The apostrophe shouldn’t be there.

3 Likes

@E_RedMark I actually have a post-it note nearby saying ‘Reminder: Porcelain not flesh’ for this reason. So any bodily descriptions are going to be scripted correctly in the future when I have the energy for it. It’s just so easy to put in references to sweat, blood, etc. so that’s on me :'D

That being said, porcelains do ‘bleed’ in a sense and have internal structures that will probably be talked about later in the game.

@EclecticEccentric The description for porcelain is by far the one that needs the most work–you shouldn’t even be seeing all that until all the descriptors are coded in so I need to do some code troubleshooting there. And I totally appreciate nitpick city! I’m much more used to posting second or third drafts but I decided to bite the bullet and post a first draft where all these things are still glaringly visible.

10 Likes

That was an amazing read :smile:

4 Likes

Seems like an interesting concept so far, and I’m looking forward to see where you take it :3

3 Likes

this was a thoroughly enjoyable read so far!! really cool concept and your writing flows exceptionally well!!
more horror is always a welcome treat :eyes:

as a side note, any game that allows me to play as some manner of beast race automatically gets extra cookie points :joy:

6 Likes

I really, really like this! Definitely going to keep a close eye on this. :star_struck:
I got a little curious about the Basilisk race. I was wondering, are there any other special features, aside from the arms and the unique eyes, that they have (like do they have normal legs or…)?

I wish you the best of luck with this and I’ll be anxiously waiting for an update! :grin:

7 Likes