Author Topic: Enki makes a game  (Read 960 times)

Rococo Modem Basilisk

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Enki makes a game
« on: July 04, 2017, 02:18:16 pm »
I'm working on a VN based on a pitches I posted to the Original Story Ideas thread years ago1.

The elevator pitch is:
Groundhog day in a universe where all conspiracy theories are true
A more accurate description is:
Our protagonist dies unexpectedly and finds herself manifesting as a voice in the head of her previous self from the beginning of that day. Each time she dies, she is sent back to the beginning of the day, and must negotiate with her past self in order to find clues to prevent her own murder. However, the town in which she lives is full of shady dangerous dealings just below the surface -- ranging from organized crime and government conspiracies to UFO cultists and supernatural events -- any one of which could be involved in her death, and many of which will kill her even earlier. Each time she dies in a new way, and many times when she relives events with new context, she gains new clues that open up new options for behavior.

In other words, the mechanics of the game are like a first person version of Groundhog Day: you have a very limited time period you repeat, and by learning about the circumstances of the world new possibilities open up for different things you can do during the day, all of which can feed together. Content-wise, it's a bit like The X Files, where the town is full of mostly independent horror/thriller tropes.

Being a VN, the game is mostly dialogue and still images with the occasional menu. (This is a good fit, since having more flexible mechanics would distract from the important part of the game, which is the slowly mutating story tree.)

I've got about two hours of content thus far2. Right now, all of the art and music3 is also mine, though when I've finished the story I expect to commission new art (particularly sprites and splash screens), because my drawing skills have really gone downhill.

1 The original pitches are:
Ghosts, formed from the juxtaposition of traumatic deaths and strong dying wishes, live outside the bounds of time but have limited effects on the physical world unless they possess someone. However, possession is difficult, and works best when the ghost is possessing someone similar to themselves (and when the person they are possessing is not lucid). Under these circumstances, a ghost possesses the body of himself in the past while asleep in order to solve the mystery of who murdered him – and in the course of his investigations, sets up the series of circumstances that led to his murder.
After our protagonist dies on the table during surgery for ten minutes, he spends the rest of his life literally haunted by the ghost of the person he used to be – which becomes irritating as both he and his ghost develop independently and their personalities begin to diverge.

2 A recording of the first twenty minutes is here. I have the source on github, and will be keeping it relatively up to date. It's written with ren'py, a domain-specific language for writing VNs.

3 For many years I've been writing music under the name "Infocalypse". Most of it recently is in the style of horror movie sound track music. I went through and mined previous albums for possible BGM for the game. I have something like forty-six albums worth of material.

I am not “full of hate” as if I were some passive container. I am a generator of hate, and my rage is a renewable resource, like sunshine.