Story – The first screen and the title screen

Hello everybody,

Today, I would like to talk about the title menu of the game or more precisely the first screen seen. We know that the first images are very important for a gamer. He has to be seduced by what he’s seeing. So, if the result is not attractive, or disturbing, or strange, the gamer will no want play the game.

That’s why the idea, which is the same from the beginning, is to create a screen full of cockroaches. The player doesn’t understand why, he doesn’t know what to do, he just open the game and see his screen with dozens of cockroaches.

Of course, it’s a wink. The reference is the great novel, The Transformation, in which a young adult became, one day, after a normal night, a giant cockroach. His family will reject him and he will loose his job.

Insects are very common in Kafka’s writing. He always talks about insects to depict himself or his vision in society. So, with the first screen, the gamer is immersed in the strangeness of Kafka’s novels. After one click, he’ll discover the menu title, more classic.

You’ll see some pictures of the evolution of this title menu

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Last version

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Story – Dialogs with multiple choices (gameplay)

Hello everybody,

For this new message, I would like to talk about the dialogs in our game. It will be a very important part of the gameplay. So, we are working very hard on it to give to the player a really interesting experiment.

The idea is to purpose in the game some fights that take the form of dialogs with multiple choices. For example, you’ll meet someone and this person we’ll try to take your money. You’ll have three possible reactions and you have to take one. You could lie, be aggressive or be honest. Of course, the reaction of the other character will depend on your choice. Each choice has consequences; it’s the key of the game.

For the moment, we are created a tool for the dialogs. Your action will give you an answer from the character and, again, three others choices. If I take again my example, the homeless person wants first to take your money. You could lie to avoid a fight or choose the fight by being aggressive or be honest and try to calm this person.

The most important, in our tool your choices will be registered. So, if you was aggressive with this man, the next time he’ll probably be nervous to see you and…and you’ll see the consequences in the game.

So, be careful, each choice will have consequences. Now and later.

To finish, one picture from Twine, just to show you the complexity of our dialog system.

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Visuals : The colors as a vector of the meaning of the game

Hello everybody,

Because it’s the beginning of this blog, I would like to share with you some pictures of the first steps of our development. As you know, the game was originally created with the software Ren’Py. A very interesting tool to create visual novels. The aesthetics at this moment was pretty simple : already a cartoon style but a choice of three colors : white, grey and black.

The goal was to create an atmosphere with the story, the dialogs, of course, but also with these graphic elements. It’s so important to immerge the gamer since the beginning in your world and the choice of the colors could help with that. For us, it was a strange world without vivid colors that creates a feeling of uniformity.

Now, the choice is to use vivid colors but for the skin we continue to have a kind of grey to avoid the “pink” of the skin or a too realistic color for us because we want to respect the strangeness of the Kafka’s world. And, by the way, a brown filter will appear progressively and makes all the game look more and more sad as the mental health of the character is. So, we continue to use the colors as a vector of the meaning of the game but…differently.

cuisiniere gouvernante

kafkaenfant4

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Story – The core gameplay of the game

Hello everybody,

We would like to talk about the gameplay of the game today. Most of time, we present our game as a combination of a point and click and a visual novel. What does it mean? It’s pretty simple.

A visual novel is a good choice to develop a strong scenario and to create a lot of dialogs. It’s much more difficult to do that with a platformer. Could you see Mario in a visual novel? Strange, isn’t? Interesting by the video game as a new way to tell a story, visual novel was our first choice, that’s why the game was originally developed with Ren’Py.

But, step-by-step, the project became more and more ambitious and a simple visual novel was not enough. That’s why we decided to combine the gameplay of a VN with a point and click.

In the game, the gamer will see several environments, still images with a small animation for the NPC, he could click where he wants to interact : see, take and talk with. The gamer is able to take some objects in his inventory for later, so like in a point and click you click everywhere! But, when you would talk with someone, the gameplay will be like a visual novel but with dialogs including multiple choices. Choices with consequences, now and later! So be careful!

Enjoy some screenshots of the game :

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