Friday, January 29, 2010

These Impossible(?) Projects

So I'll be honest with you all. I've been a fan of Visual Novels since I was fifteen years old. I'm eighteen now. I discovered the OELVN community right before my sixteenth birthday and, of course, set to writing my own game.

I'll tell you this - that game got finished being written in July of last year. That's right - July 2009.

Granted, I took a large break in between there to apply to college and focus on graduating. Other things became more important for awhile. There was probably a whole year there where I did absolutely no writing on my game. It stayed in the back of my mind as one of those "I'll finish that one day" projects. I'm actually a bit proud of myself for really jumping on it in 2009 and writing until it was finished. This was no tiny project either - we're talking a 400 page Microsoft Word document of just script. This is an accomplishment.

Still, I realize that a script does not make a game. There's still plenty of stuff to be done, including but not limited to coding, art, developing the UI and more.

But I'm convinced that the hardest, most arduous part of the Visual Novel development process is the writing. Making yourself sit down and write out all that script takes a lot of discipline. And it's a easy thing to let a story lose its steam.

I used to keep my project entirely secret. Considering I consider Magical Girl Studios nothing but a hobby studio, I really didn't want outside pressure for me to finish and release my game. But showing my script to my dear friend/editor really has inspired me to pursue this hobby until I have a finished product.

The point of Magical Girl Studios is to make quality free Visual Novels for old fans to enjoy and new fans to discover. I want to bring this still rather niche genre to a larger community. And the only way I'm going to do that is with a polished final product. So I guess I've still got a lot of work to do!

These projects are hardly impossible. Just overwhelming. This is still a hobby - a side project in comparison to my real life which requires far much more focus and effort. I'm going to keep going at it as a hobby - something I love.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Arduous Editing Process

So I'd say the development of my original Bishojo game is pretty laid-back. That is, it's, for now, strictly a hobby.

But that doesn't mean I'm not approaching it seriously. That is, with every intent to finish it and make it polished and professional. The script is completely written - the game looks like it'll take roughly three or four hours to play through once.

Right now I'm in the editing process, that is, I'm having another set of eyes read through the script and send me edits. There are PLENTY of them. Not only is she proofreading (which is vitally important) she's editing for flow, consistency, and character. Her edits are always really insightful, I think.

Editing is an important part of the process that I think gets skipped too often. Rough drafts are just that - rough. And it's SO important to have someone other than yourself edit your script. Because often times you'll just glaze over errors or things that don't make sense. Often times, since you wrote it, it'll read just perfectly in your mind, but it might make no sense to another reader.

The editing process is out of my hands. Right now I'm tackling another project. Once I get my finished script back, the process will start up once again. :)