Thanks for the invite. Will take it.
Recent community posts
No DokiDoki themes then, but still having doki-doki feels because the creator replied. Oop-
Looking back, you're right, all the backgrounds are photos- it completely slipped my mind since I was fixated on admiring the sprite art of Jayda wearing the jacket and how nice the houses behind her looked. I forgot that the scenic backgrounds are different from sprite backgrounds. My bad.
Also, I'm sorry about that 'takeaway' stuff. I wasn't aware it was a thing and I brushed it off as a typo. My bad again (at least I learned something straight from the creator). I've just never heard of the far-off magical made-up land called Australia before.
All that stuff aside (since I've already started this thread, I better make the most of it), I do feel like I have to reiterate how amazing this game is.
It's great to see different body types (and skin color- I feel represented, although it wouldn't really be an issue if Jayda wasn't brown, considering the setting of the game). I don't think most of us have a problem with Jayda being thicc, but rather, it's the disproportioned legs to torso to face ratio thingy. However, we do see the allure in the artist's drawing and it's still good nonetheless.
*Minor Spoilers Ahead in case you're a reader checking out comments on the game*
Maisy... I don't like her. She has good points tho- her feistiness being the reason we got served Mexican food, her compassion towards her bro, and that time she tolerated 0 bull in the game store (also, the way she bounces back from a heavy atmosphere). She is an amazing character (and I myself partake in making inappropriate and lewd jokes) but I just can't help myself from rolling my eyes the way she flirts and latches on to Syd. She's smarter than she lets on and is fully aware of how Nacho ain't nacho husband/good boyfriend material but she doesn't wanna taco 'bout it *grumbles*. Since she and Syd are supposedly BFFs, I get their dynamic. It's fun but I just couldn't see myself tolerating someone who forces herself on me like that IRL, especially considering her selfish actions towards the other characters. BUT.
But that's what so surreal about it. I was super annoyed with her but somehow, I got through my designated scenes with her. AND it wasn't a drag. I probably rolled my eyes too much and muttered to myself but I enjoyed the game nonetheless. I'd rather not spend time with Maisy, but the fact that I can h a t e a character but still be able to acknowledge and even appreciate their presence in the game? It's quite new. A welcomed feeling. I can't quite... grasp how to say it exactly, as I said, this is quite new. Yes, I have seen a ton of flashbacks here and there that defends and sometimes even justifies a hated antagonist's actions, thus making them beloved characters. Usually, a tragic backstory is thrown into the mix (looking at you, anime and teleserye). But you didn't do this with Maisy. Yeah, her bro is in the hospital and that could be traumatic for some, but Maisy is consistently herself. Not to say she never felt sad, but just that who she was and is now is consistent with her character (development). I accepted her being an integral part of the game long before I met her lil' bro. She's shown a different side of herself, but not in a super unrealistic or uncharacteristic kind of fashion. It was so subtle and obvious at the same time- so... human. Basically, it's like avoiding a vegan that acts better-than-thou but still allowing them to sit with me at lunch if they have nowhere else to go. Strangely specific but technically accurate analogies are my specialty. *cackles*.
Anyways, that's how I know a game is a keeper. When a character I really dislike is a pillar- not just a filler character or a plot driver- and I willingly accept that, without it having been shoved into my face, and while still not aware of her full story. That is a good game. That is a great game (especially when the driving ideals they stand for are yet to be revealed).
The pop-culture references are a hoot (even tho there's just a handful of them). My favorite was the Longbottom HP reference. It might not mean much to others, but it was cathartic for me. It was the perfect segue from disturbed desperation to a cry of hopeful resignation (tho Syd wasn't as relieved). The moment Stuart left after telling Syd his observations, I knew what had to be done. Syd, on the other hand, spent a good chunk of time brooding over the subject, frustrated, and clueless. I'd usually raise my eyebrows (can't raise just one) when the character I'm supposed to be controlling does (and/or heavily considers) the thing that is most certainly gonna make stuff worse. But getting immersed in Syd's track of mind (which considers different sides) was actually very nice because of the execution. Some stuff are a little repetitive but that just shows how anxious and giddy Syd is, and it shows how important it is for him, somehow amplifying Jayda's own anxieties at the same time. It was a little long for me, but that's only because I've made up my mind (the pacing itself is perfect). I knew what I (Syd) was going to do. I refuse to rig the contest, Syd's reflection already explains enough as to why. I was going to support Jayda in other ways because I am painfully aware of how temporary the dopamine that's pumped out will be- for people like me and Jayda. I liked the art of the Girl and the Beast. it's similar to the style I used before, and the style of a close friend of mine. Jayda reminds me of that really close friend. She has similar issues, does art too and is thicc (I have no reservations as she will never find this comment!).
I wanted to 'educate their asses' but I was doubtful as I wasn't sure if that was Syd's forceful way of rigging the contest. So I chose to be quiet. A few sentences of introspection later (by Syd), I felt like a dick (most likely because I was playing a male MC despite being a girl). So I went back and educated some assess. The more I defended the art, the more I felt secure. It was pretty obvious what the 'right' answers are to win the debate, but it was executed so well I couldn't help but finish them (like in the good old Mortal Kombat). It was beautiful. I stumble on my words when speaking despite being 'fluent' in writing. What Syd did (and some stuff Maisy did too) is what I aspire to be able to do when facing such conflicts (I don't usually encounter much conflict tho). I honestly want to pat Syd on the head. It doesn't really matter if he knew (or not) who the painter was. I mean, in the beginning, yeah. It let him know what to look out for. But if Jayda wasn't able to draw what she drew, Syd wouldn't have been able to defend it like that. The shadow was a minute but important detail that, if missing, would've made every stand (Syd made) void. So yeah, Jayda does have the talent and I can't wait to make my own Jayda in real life play this (she plays everything I ask her to and she ends up loving them). (Will do when the game is finished, coz she's broke like me and can't donate. I also cannot allow her to play on my laptop online with this comment being up as she'll turn beet red).
I also like the time when the fourth wall was a l m o s t broken, when Stuart admitted that in retrospect, the secrecy was a little too much (coz... you know, for plot and intensity feels and I think this is the writer's own way of apologizing to us lol. Even if it wasn't, still made me chuckle). Also, I remember Albie is in room 20. While it's being mentioned, we stop and look at a door numbered 44. Once in the room, I see the half-opened door numbered 20. Hehehe (I muttered 20 the moment I saw 44 and I feel like you've already heard me from the future so it changed immediately when we're in Albie's room), hehehe.
But why, you might ask. What is the whole point of this? Is it because I just simply wanted to write an essay? Or is it because the characters geek out a lot and even though it's charming, the VN player just smiles and nods along not fully understanding the stuff but loving them anyway, so the VN player wants to tease the developer back by geeking out too as a teeny-tiny form of revenge? We may never know.
PS. The tutorials weren't presented in the same way as most VN's do. It was a nice subtle change and the 'instructor' is ever so polite, and self-aware enough that they're not that good with naming things.
Tl;dr: Player geeks out the way some fictional characters geeked out at her and Syd.
So ummm... I've been on itch.io for like almost two years and I've never really commented or anything but I feel like it's high time that I do. (It took a lot of debating with self because I'd rather not put myself out here but the creator is so passionate and well...) So ummm... I'm enjoying the game so far. The art, characters, music, the dialogue and script are all amazing. I really look forward to the finished game. That being said, ummm there's some stuff you might want to fix. On Week 6, Day Thursday, Lunchtime, everyone is present and gathered for luchtime (tho no one seems to eat anything at lunch aside from Syd, lol).
I take a moment to explain to Jayda that Steph lent me a book.
Jayda: Mind if I borrow it after Sydie, Stephanie?
Syd: Of course, you're more than welcome to.
I think Steph was supposed to be the one to say this. Also, Jayda moves forward, completely blocking out Stephanie in this scene. IDK if that's a foreshadowing or something and if it was meant to be on purpose, but if its aim was to make me lie back and and make me have DokiDoki Literature flashbacks, then spot on.
Stuart then also says, "That or to finish up or touch-up or projects". I think that should've been 'our' projects.
Those minor details aside, and since I'm already making this post, I'll mention some other even more minor stuff that are more personal than technical.
I feel like the background art (that's drawn) are better than the background taken from photos. (Ex. the art for the background and character when Syd lent Jayda his jacket). The photographic background are still cool though, and serve as really good sceneries. It's just that on some instances, where it's supposed to be late, the lighting is bright enough to still be considered mid-day. An exception was when we got to Maisy's house at evening, the sky was purple and orange so that was a nice detail. Um, the characters pop out because of the bold coloring and I really like it (it's like straight out of a comic book). An example would be the luchtime scenes. The characters wonderfully blend in the background, without making us overlook them. Sometimes though, especially on scenes with Maisy, it feels a little forced, like the colors are too saturated so it clashes with the background. Also, the art with Jayda was wonderful but I think the part where Syd plays video games with her and then we're shown a sprite, umm... she's uhhh... p r e t t y umm.. thicc? Sorry, I don't mean to be a weirdo. Anyways, I just think the body structure is a bit disproportionate. I'll uhh... I'll see myself out.
PS. I hope the constructive criticism on the first part of my long message helps you out. Please don't fret and take what I said on the latter half with a grain of salt.
PPS. I love this, especially how the choices affect other characters and how they affect future events. The more it branches out, the more complex and intriguing it is (like The Letter) and I don't really get to play many games that have such diversity and effect on the playthorugh (that aren't abandoned like Queen's Crown). It really shows how much work and time you've put into this and if I had the means, I would send some cash to back you up but... *cries in broke*. I hope you get to continue to do things you're passionate about (without burning out). Thank you so much for this.
Update: When Stuart and Syd talk about Jayda's self-confidence, Syd says, "That's... that's so cruel to herself." This sounds off, like grammatically incorrect. I think "That's... she's so harsh on herself." would sound better (just a suggestion).
II. On the same day, same evening, Syd debates with himself. "... maybe I can't make this decision alone. I can't condemn the other students who tried so hard to failure, all just to help Jayda's ego." I think this will flow better if it was tweaked to "... maybe I can't make this decision alone. I can't condemn the other students to fail when they've tried so hard, all just to help Jayda's ego".
The Neville Longbottom joke was amazeballs.
There's some minor thing around this part and I was going to mention it but I was so caught up in the story that I told myself 'maybe later'. It's now 'later' and I lost it, can't find it. I also thought, 'I shouldn't' because I've already written a long message but here I am, on my 4th edit. *facepalm*
III. Ummm... When we go to the hospital to visit Albie, the term for food from (fastfood) restaurants put in boxes is 'takeout' not 'takeaway'. Also, after that when Syd texts Albie, Albie says "... d'you know anything about it?". The font used was different from the font that shows when Syd is texting and recieving texts.
IV. On week 7, Monday morning, Syd says "Dont tell you guys have retired in your prime already...!". I think it should be "Don't tell me you guys have retired in your prime already!"
V. I've been thinking about it for a while now. The d in Syd's name tag looks a little farther away. It looked like there's a space added to it. I'm not sure tho... Nevermind, Jayda's was the same too. It's probs just how the font is.
Game is still phenomenal. I love the mini tutorials.