Finally finished the Demo. I'm not into Visual Novels, but if there's one thing that can hook me up, is the musical theme. Keep in mind that the following opinion, as well as the suggestions, come from a guy who never played VN before, at least not enough to fully understand the common structure of the genre.
Does that mean I didn't like it? Nope! I actually enjoyed it a LOT! I believe the most important element to create a good story is contrast - comfy scenes, light conversations and exposition, along with tension, mystery and even sadness.
Another mechanism that I'm a fan of: Indirect character building - basically, when the player gets to know a character only by dialogue from other characters. The Prince of Ice, while serving as a Mcguffin at first, has become one of the most, if not the most interesting character in the Game for me. I really liked the way you shifted his role in the story.
I like the way the Game progresses in tone. Not only that, the subtle changes from "waking up late" to "waking up earlier than expected" show how much thought was put in every small detail. I also have to mention that my favourite scenes were the ones at my bedroom, looking at the phone and talking to myself - I like monologues and inner thoughts - Also, the music helped a lot! Reminds me of Chrono Cross =)
Placeholder Backgrounds, oh man, I love it! I really do. I'm one of those kind of guy who watches 1 hour of speedpaint, but closes the video before the final result... So looking and analysing the Background Images was kind of a "guilty pleasure" (is this the right term? Ah, doesn't matter).
I could talk for hours about the Game Flow, story bits, but let's move on to the suggestions.
> Choices: We all know a game can't have real consequences for every choice the player makes... it simply wouldn't be worth the effort. So why not include a little bit more of "shallow choices"?
- Let the player choose his food at breakfast table;
- You woke up late? Do your hair; brush your teeth; find matching clothes. Only one choice: Go!
And last but not least, I'm always thinking about ways to insert gameplay bits amongst dialogue, and dialogue amongst Gameplay sequences... I know it's not a goal in VN, but why not some more simple "Reaction choices"?
For example: Oliver asks: bla bla bla?
> Polite answer
> Sarcastic answer
I believe this is it for now. The game's structure is really solid - you focused on what's important and despite the placeholder art, as mentioned before, you managed to create a strong identity. Congrats!