Hi Konoi, you are so sweet! Thanks so much for your encouragement. <3 It really helps to hear that you're still looking forward to our game, even though we're taking our time with things. ^^; And yay, someone who knows a2! It makes me super happy to hear that you played and enjoyed it, given that it's an older game that isn't as well known.
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Hi Littlebittsy! Don't worry, you're not stupid - game formats can be weird sometimes. ;) For this game, you can either use the itch platform like Eurasia suggested, or you can unzip the ZIP file you downloaded. Once it's unzipped, you'll see an application inside called "The Pirate Mermaid (Demo).exe" - double click on that application to start the game. Hope that helps, and let us know if there are any problems!
Hi Koko, I'm so glad you and your friends liked our game! We don't know when the full game will be released yet unfortunately, but we'll definitely make an announcement when we are more confident of our schedule. Thanks so much for your support and patience, and I hope you'll enjoy the full game once it's done!
My apologies for the delay, and thanks very much for your interest in our game! We are definitely still working on it, just going at a slower pace due to real life issues. I (Aro) am currently writing Malik's path, and Nellie is working on CG arts. I think most of it is still too early to share, but once I move from writing to coding again, I can make some screenshots! I'll check with Nellie and see if we can post some sketches to our blog later too.
We're also planning to release an updated version of the demo with some new features and scenes, but are waiting for the next big release of Ren'Py (the game engine we're using), which is expected to have major improvements for graphics. I'm excited to see what the new capabilities will be!
As for the final release date, it's still hard to say because things have been erratic. We're a two-person hobbyist team with other commitments IRL, so the time and money that we can spend on game dev is often limited and can vary a lot. We wouldn't want to make promises that we can't keep given our current situation. So for now, we're just proceeding at our own pace and trying to complete things when we can. Thanks for your understanding, and we really appreciate your patience and support for the full game!
Thanks for your interest, everyone! We're definitely still working on the game, but things have been slow lately because of personal difficulties IRL. :( As a result, it's hard to give an accurate estimate of completion right now, and I'd feel more confident in giving an update once things are a little more settled. Sorry for not having a clearer answer yet, and we really appreciate your patience and understanding during this time. :)
Glad you're enjoying the demo so far! Currently, we’ve been thinking about offering both a free and paid version of the game. The free version would be simpler and shorter (for example, no voice acting, no hint system, fewer routes/endings, etc.), whereas the paid version would have more features and extra content.
I hope that's a good compromise! We’d love to make everything free if we could, so that everybody could have the full experience. But at the same time, we really don’t want to go broke, else we won’t be able to make more games in the future. :'D
No problem, here are some tips! It's easiest if you turn on the hints in the Options menu too. ;)
For Sea #3, try lowering affection with Malik, but choose to get to know him better at the party.
For Sea #4, try building your evil karma. Raise Mikali's affection higher than Malik's, but choose to get to know Malik better at the party.
For Land #4, try lowering your affection with the sorcerer, but still return to the island.
Glad to hear you're looking forward to the full game! We haven't chosen the release date yet, but will but sure to announce it when we do.
Thanks for stopping by, and glad to hear you enjoyed the demo! It's very sweet of you to offer your support for the game. :)
For the scenes you are trying to 100%, let me know which variations you are still missing, and I can try to point you in the right direction. If you're not sure which variations are missing, you can replay the scene from the "Scenes" gallery in the Extras. A menu will pop up in the top right corner of the screen whenever there is a variation, and the variation you are missing will be grayed out.
My apologies for the delayed reply! Thanks so much for taking the time to do our survey - we love reading long, well thought-out responses. ;) Getting good feedback as we're working on the rest of the game is definitely helpful to us!
Glad to hear you ended up liking all the characters. We're trying our best to make all of them fun or appealing in their own way, and at the very least have an interesting relationship with the MC. Also happy to hear that you liked things like the animations and story logs! We really enjoy adding those little details, but don't know if they're necessarily noticed by players. So it's good to hear that our efforts are paying off. :D Hope you'll enjoy the full release once it's out!
Lots of love to you as well! <3 It's a honor to know that a2 is one of your favorite games. We definitely wanted the story to be strong since the setting and number of characters was limited, so I'm very happy to hear that it worked out. :)
Thanks also for your encouragement on our new game - we hope you'll enjoy The Pirate Mermaid too once it's released!
Yes, we do still read everyone's comments! Though sometimes we do not have time to reply right away - our apologies for the delay! - we appreciate everyone who takes the time to stop by and share their thoughts on our work. It makes us especially happy to know that people are still playing a2, since it's an older game. :)
I'm very glad that you enjoyed the story and themes of a2! We've actually been hoping to do a "remastered" version of the game (maybe after we finish The Pirate Mermaid?) that would have an extended epilogue and other improvements. In the meantime, maybe you'd be interested in checking out this sweet little fanfic that provides more closure on the ending of the game?
So sorry for this incredibly late reply (I must've missed your comment before D:), but I'm really happy to hear you liked a2! We definitely wanted the relationship between Sona and Hao to shine since it was the focus on the game, so I'm glad that you enjoyed it too. :D
Glad to hear you're looking forward to the full game! We haven't finalized the release date yet because there are a lot of factors involved right now. We're a small team (only two people) with other jobs full-time, and the amount of time/money we have for game development varies a lot. We wouldn't want to disappoint anybody by announcing a premature date, so we're waiting until more of the game is completed first.
Once we decide the release date, we'll definitely make an announcement. If you’re following us here on itch.io or on our dev blog, you'll see the news there right away. Thanks for your patience, and we hope you'll return for the full game! :)
It was so much fun to read through your live reactions to our demo! Thanks for taking the time to write them up. My favorite part was the analogy about the steak, haha! It was really sweet and flattering to hear you enjoyed the game that much. :D
It was also really great to hear how much you liked the special options we included - things like the extras galleries, skip to choice, stats updates, naming saves, etc. Even though they're optional and aren't part of the main game, we still put a lot of effort into implementing those features. So it's very satisfying to hear when they are used and appreciated by players. xD
And, of course, it was awesome hearing your impressions of all the characters! Malik is Mr. Popular so far, it seems. xD I hope you enjoy his path in the full game! Also, I agree it would look nicer if Jack has something to stand on in his non-flying bird pose. We'll see if there's anything we can do to adjust it.
Thanks again for sharing your experience with our demo, and we hope to see you back for the full game once it's ready! :D
Sorry for any confusion! This is just the demo for now. Any donations will be used to help us complete the full game. If you'd rather not donate now, please feel free to cancel your payment.
Thanks for stopping by to give us this bug report! I replayed Mimi's introduction a few times, but was unable to see her disappear. Would you mind taking a screenshot of the part where you see her disappear? You can take a screenshot by pressing "s" on your keyboard.
Thanks a bunch for your help in tracking down this bug! :D
Aw thanks, glad to hear how much you liked the demo! Sorry we haven't announced a release date yet. It's hard to say right now because a lot of factors are involved. We're a small team with other jobs full-time, and the amount of time/money we have for game development varies a lot. We wouldn't want to disappoint anybody by announcing a premature date, so we're waiting until more of the game is completed first.
Thank you so much for your patience and support! We'll make sure to let everyone know as soon as we have a more solid release date!
Aw thanks, we’re glad you liked the game so far! We haven’t decided the release date for the full version yet, but will definitely make an announcement once we do. If you’re following us on here on itch.io or on our dev blog, we’ll post the news there right away. Hope to see you back for the full game! :D
That's a good point about the underwater physics! At one time, we actually wanted to animate floating hair for everyone, but it turned out to be too difficult. :'D So our current thinking is that the mermaids do use some magic to keep things put and also use heavier things in general. I think it's a great idea to have the MC comment on it! Maybe we can add a funny scene where she has trouble getting stuff to stay down and another mermaid has to help her. xD
About the Sea and Land Paths, your first intuition is correct. The Sea Path is for Mikali and Malik's routes, and Land Path is for the Sorcerer and ???'s routes. However, all the characters can have scenes in both the Sea and Land Paths (for example, Malik's scene and CG at the beginning of the Land Path), so we encourage trying out both. There's also an option to split your time between land and sea that will be unlocked later on, which will open up a new path with more group events.
Hi Konoi, thanks for filling out our survey and also stopping by here! You're the one who offered to help with translations into Spanish, French, and Polish, right? That's really sweet of you (and it's so cool you know so many languages)! Thanks for sharing your thoughts about the demo and characters. We love reading in-depth replies and hearing everything about players' experiences!
I (Aro) actually really like shy and nice characters too! (looks at Mikali and Mimi) They're one of my favorite types, and it's a pity they are often written off as weak and boring. Like you said, it all depends on the execution of the character and how interesting they are. I'm glad you thought our MC was interesting. xD She can definitely get a bit crazy, haha! We wanted to her to start as a morally ambiguous, chaotic neutral type character, which you can then shape as more good/evil depending on your preference. I often lean towards the "good" side as well, but I think the "evil" choices in our game can be a lot of fun.
Malik does indeed like it when the MC fights back - he'd get too bored with someone who just takes his bullying. :'D I'm not sure if as many people know this, but Mikali also likes it when the MC acts strong and assertive. He really admires people who can stand up for themselves, since he's on the shyer side himself. So I think Mikali would appreciate your MC as well! :)
Thanks again for your support and the well wishes. We hope you'll enjoy the full game!
Oh my starfish, you are awesome! Thank you so much for taking the time to write up such a thoughtful, in-depth response for us. Don't worry, it's not a bore at all - we love hearing from players and have a lot of fun reading all your thoughts!
By the way, I'm happy you liked the meaner MC! I was worried people would only pick the nice choices, which would greatly limit the content they'd see. A meaner MC gets along better with certain characters too. I don't think Malik, for example, would like the MC as much if she didn't give him a hard time. xD And yes, definitely get what you mean about jerk guys being frustrating in otome games, especially when they bully more passive MCs. :/ I think Malik works better with our MC because she's more than happy to bully him back haha, so glad to hear you thought so too!
And yes, please do send us feedback on anything that seemed confusing or inconsistent! We want to make the best game we can, so any areas for improvement are definitely of interest to us. For the voice acting in particular, were there specific lines or characters that sounded off? I can ask our voice editor about it if there are certain ones causing a problem.
Thanks once again for the feedback - we really appreciate it! :D
Thanks so much for trying our demo, and glad that you enjoyed a2 as well! The Pirate Mermaid was approved on Steam Greenlight a few months ago, so we are definitely putting it on Steam once it's complete. Feel free to follow the game on Steam here if you want to know when it's released.
About whether the full game will be PWYW, we’ve been thinking about offering both a free/PWYW and fixed price version. The PWYW version would be simpler and shorter (for example, no voice acting, no hint system, fewer routes/endings, etc.), whereas the fixed price version would have more features and content. We’d honestly love to make everything PWYW like a2, so that more people could play it. But at the same time, we really don’t want to go broke, else we won’t be able to make more games in the future. :’D
Thanks again for your support, and hope you enjoy the full game once it's out!
Ooh wow, thanks so much for doing a Let's Play of the demo! It was a lot of fun to watch! And so sorry that your computer didn't save the video for the second half. That sounded super frustrating. :(
FYI, if you play again, there are shortcuts to save and load without opening the menu. Just press the Q key to do quick save and L to do quick load. Hopefully that makes it a little easier. Thanks again for sharing, and hope you enjoy the other routes if you decide to try them too. :D
Thanks for the encouragement! :) To unlock music track #2, try switching the MC's voice acting language from English to Japanese, then replay the intro or ending of the game. Let me know if that doesn't work for you!
Aw thanks, so glad you're looking forward to the full game!
I'll ask the artist about the protagonist's eyes. To make sure I understand, are you talking about when she blinks, or when she's looking down/to the side? You can take a screenshot of it by pressing "s" on your keyboard, if that's easier. Thanks for your help!
Hi Kirie, thanks for stopping by! Glad to hear you're enjoying the demo so far. :)
To get that scene, try building a really good relationship with Mikali, but hanging out with Malik at the party. I hope that puts you on the right track. Let me know if it works or not!
Hi miyacrown, thanks for the report, and sorry to hear it's not working on your desktop! Can I ask for some more details to help figure out the problem?
Which version of the demo (Windows, Mac, Linux) did you try, and what kind of specs does your desktop have? Also, what exactly happens when you try to open the demo? Does the game crash or give any error message?
Thanks for stopping by the Pirate Mermaid community forums! We'd love to hear from you about the game.
Feel free to post here or create a new topic about any questions, suggestions, and other things you'd like to share.