Hey there! Wow, thank you very much for taking your time to leave a comment on here :) Really appeciate it! I'm happy that you resonate with Raphael, he was the last character for the main cast I came up with and it was clear from the beginning that he'll have to play some central role in driving the story. But it was a long journey to this iteration.
The bonds between the party members is a bigger focus for the upcoming chapter! If you liked this one, you'll love what's to come :) I also already added a sort of "Heart"-meter like you mentioned to get a rough feel on how your companions feel about Shawn.
Thanks again for sharing your thoughts! I hope you stick around for the next release!