Tagged: Visual Novel

My friends at GamingonLinux already posted about it, but in case you missed it I want to let you know that Winter Wolves, the company that specializes on visual novels is running a bundle on groupees, you can get 6 (and even 7) games – depends on how much you choose to donate.

Because the games use the cross platform Ren’py engine they all  have a GNU/Linux client.

 

The games are :

Planet Stronghold , Heileen 1 and Heileen 2 , Bionic Heart , Vera Blanc: Full Moon , Always Remember Me and if we pass the 1000 sales goal then we also get Spirited Heart !

Please note that some games have a minimum donation sum to download them.

25% of all donations go to the Rainforest Alliance !

 

So what are you waiting for ?! get the bundle here !

Devil Gene R – Episode I is an upcoming free visual novel that is being developed using the cross platform Ren’Py engine.

It’s very hard to get pledges when your project is going to be free, but they managed to reach their goal of $3k with 3 days left.

So if you want to help and make this project even better, now is your chance !

 

Photo-full

About this project

========== What is Devil Gene R? ==========

A dream project that has been worked on for the better part of 10 years now, it has been drafted out to be adaptable to many different types of medias and genres, but of course we all have to start small. This version of Devil Gene R is an episodic visual novel, which is of course a genre well known in Asian regions as a way to convey book length stories accompanied by a visual (and sometimes audio) element. This brings the reader deeper into the world and acquire a unique connection with it.

Devil Gene R follows the story of a young woman known as Raven Blackheart, she was birthed as a biological weapon to be used to bring the end to a long war between humans and demons, however shortly after her birth the war concludes on it’s own. Despite this her father, the one who turned her into a weapon, chooses to keep her on her original path, but Raven refuses to live a fate decided for her and escapes.

2 years have passed since she fled her father’s side, and the world has known a shaky peace for nearly 20 years now, but now these hard fought for halcyon days are being threaten. Either though cruel irony or twisted design, the man who would shatter this peace is the one who helped bring it about, praised as the hero of the great war—Kyosuke Blackheart. And with a declaration of genocide against humanity and the rise of his augmented children, the world slowly begins to churn and crumble anew.

Raven rushes to meet with her father, but not to join him, she wants to stop his insane ambition and free her sisters from a destiny of being weapons, the only way she knows how… But she is unaware of the spiral on conflict that Silent City, her destination, is about to become.

You can learn more about the world and characters by visiting the project’s official site (which should be seeing a remodel soon~)

========== Demonstration ==========

At the end of our last Kickstarter campaign we released a test demo, this time we made sure to launch with a much more comprehensive sample of the project. This latest demo build combines both finalized assets (such as the character sprites) and free-use assets (like the music and sounds), we wanted to make sure to have a clear representation of what we’re striving for and we hope that if nothing else this will convince you to help us further advance the project!

And of course we are interested in any and all feedback regarding the demo:

[ Windows version ]   [ Mac version ]   [ Linux version ]

========= Talented Artist & Powerful Software =========

Devil Gene R is being developed on the Ren’Py visual novel engine, which has been around for over 6 years, is widely supported, and has helped created over hundreds of games both free and commercial. It allows for many great options and fine polish.

The project also has two very skilled artist; Flora “Shadilyn” Li who serves as the lead character designer and has been drawing professionally for over 5 years. Chris “A Bad Idea” Lee and OverlordJC both serve as CG Artists on the project. Chris Lee is also apart of a small team known as SugarPunch Design Works and was a contracted Clean-Up Artist for the indie fighter Skullgirls.

And the team is always growing as we want to provide the highest quality product we can to our supporters!

========== Free to Play! ==========

That’s right, upon completion Devil Gene R will be released 100% free to download and play! Why? Well as much as I could use direct funds, seeing how I am offering a different product from the original one proposed, I would feel wrong to charge for it.

Besides money isn’t everything, thanks to the support of backers such as yourself I get the chance to work on something I’m passionate about, and if you like what you play and would like to see more than please donate. But if you (unfortunately) don’t enjoy it, at least you can walk away scott free.

Anything I make off this project will come from donations, and if I receive enough I will continue to make more, but I pretty much want this to be my only Kickstarter (for Devil Gene R at least).

Your feedback and support is worth a lot more than turning up a profit!

========== A Goal Already Once Met ==========

This is actually the 2nd Kickstarter campaign for Devil Gene R so you may be asking “if it failed once, why try again?”

The original goal was for $10,000 which was a very ambitious range and while the project didn’t make it to that point it was able to raise $4,187 thanks to 93 supporters, which is a lot more than I was expecting to raise being an “unknown” project. Tons of great people showed interest in the project and I appreciate any and all support, that is why I restructured the development process and cut back on some features to make sure I could complete the first act for $3,000. Of course if we can hit the goal any beyond that just ensures a finer quality project!

To original supporters please back us once again, and to new pledgers thank you very much!

========== Stretch Goals ==========

$5,000 – I want to improve the higher tier list rewards, shipping out physical artbooks and soundtracks, it was always in the budget to set aside $2k for making rewards in the original Kickstarter, thus it’s higher entry barrier.

$6,000 – We can start immediately on the next chapter of DGR (visual novel sequels are often a bit cheaper to make considering you aren’t making a whole new cast of characters since you can reuse old sprite and just worry about making new CG).

$8,000 – I would like to also start working on a more interactive game based on DGR (the project was NEVER intended to be solely a visual novel, we actually have ideas for a “bullet hell”, classic Megaman style platformer, and even a fighting game).

$10,000 – Dedicate $2k to funding others Kickstarters (both big and small)

========== Supported Platforms ==========

Thanks to Ren’Py this project can and will be released and ready to run on Windows, Mac, and Linux operating systems.

 

several days ago LGN had a Trivia contest asking “What game engine is being used in the largest number of GNU/Linux games ?”
I frankly thought that this would be an easy one, but only after several days and two big tips someone managed to guess the engine I thought about.
Many readers said id tech engines as the most popular answer but some people got more creative with PyGame, nethack, OpenBor and Eamon Adventure System. (some of which aren’t really game engines).
The trivia answers were interesting to read..someone even suggest Unigine (I wish) and SDL (it’s a library, not a game engine).

My answer was the visual novel game engine Ren’Py which has over 240 GNU/Linux games and growing.
I thought that LGN readers should have known it because I post a LOT about visual novels and all of them use the Ren’Py engine.

So the current winner is failsaurus BUT as I’ve said before nothing is set in stone and you can still prove me wrong.

Just some notes about what I call games…
Games should be stand alone and executable and not relay on some engine or a program (apart of the OS) to be installed on the users system.
For example MAME is NOT a game engine but an Emulator, it’s ability to run games of different systems still doesn’t make it a game engine as you can’t develop with it.
PyGame is “a cross-platform set of Python modules designed for writing video games. It includes computer graphics and sound libraries designed to be used with the Python programming language.” , but I doubt that it counts as a game engine on itself.

If you think that I’m wrong, please discuss here at the comments.

If until Friday the 7/10/2011 my answer won’t be disapproved then I’ll grant the winner failsaurus the key for Achron.

Sakura River is another visual novel developer that uses the GNU/Linux friendly Ren’py visual novel engine for it’s games.
If there is one game genre that we don’t miss on GNU/Linux (and have plenty of) is Visual Novels, thanks to this wonderful FOSS cross-platform engine.

Sakura River released 2 games so far :

Infinite Game Works
About
Play the role of Justin a high school student as he embarks on his dream journey to become a game developer. Having just won a programming contest he enlists the aid of Cleo the artist and Aki the music composer. How will the team grow and take on the hardships along the way?

Features
* Indie game management-sim
* Manage funding, game ideas and your team
* Multiple endings
* Multiple growth paths for team member
* Discover the story behind each member

Fading Hearts
About
An interactive story/game where you play the role of Ryou, a seemingly normal high school student in the land of Sorayama. Solve the mysteries that surround him while maintaining his friendships and saving Claire. Remain ignorant of the secrets and live a normal life or choose to learn the truth. Be careful where you put your priorities for it may prove fatal.

Features
* Change the ending AND the final climax!
* Daily Life-sim
* RPG Battles!
* Shocking plot-twists!

Screenshots

Each game is available for $15.

Links
Sakura River
Ren’py visual novel engine
Infinite Game Works
Fading Hearts

Thanks to Grzegorz Budny for letting us know of the Infinite Game Works releasestrong>

Winter Wolves released Spirited Heart Girl’s Love which is the yuri expansion to the popular fantasy life simulation game Spirited Heart.

You can now pursue 6 beautiful and interesting girls and unlock new different endings (different for each race).

Both the expansion and the main game are now merged into a single installer, using one-time online activation which eliminates the need of any extra downloads.

If you already own the original Spirited Heart game, you can buy the expansion with 50% off discount. Just enter the email you used to purchase the game to see a 50% off coupon that you can use to buy Girl’s Love.

GAME FEATURES
- Girl & Boy and Girl & Girl romance options
- Three different races to play, each one with different dialog options
- Six male and six female romanceable characters for a total of 12 different subplots!
- Different ending for each race for a total of 36 unique marriage endings
- Detailed fantasy life simulation with optional dice minigame
- Complete a special “Goddess” mission for each race unlocking an extra unique ending
- Get a title by reaching special skill levels
- Many random events hidden in the game!

From the Winter Wolves Blog Post.
Spirited Heart Girl’s Love is finally out! Well, to be honest since I started this project only about 3 months passed, but seems an eternity…! I’m really pleased by the result, each girl has a very different personality, goals, and behavior. I am also happy because the race you choose really has a big impact over the story (even more than in the original game). It’s particularly evident in some characters, like Leah or Reid: playing it with an Elf character will be a very different experience than playing it wih a Demon one.

The original game and the expansion now are a unique installer: I decided to adopt this system so is easier for the users, using the one-time online activation system already implemented in my latest games. This way if you want only one version of the game, you can buy it, but if you want both versions you can buy at once (with 25% discount) and enter the email one time to get instantly both versions activated without any need of extra downloads.

As promised, if you already own the original game, you can get the expansion for 50% off. For more informations, visit this page.

if you enter the email you used to purchase the original game in the input field below the game description, you will get a unique discount code, valid for a one time 50% discount on the standard price.

Screenshots

Spirited Heart Girl’s Love – Ria

Thanks to our usual contributor Grzegorz Budny for the newsflash.

Links
Winter Wolves
Spirited Heart
Spirited Heart Girl’s Love
Winter Wolves Blog Post

Sake Visual which I’ve posted about earlier has released a new visual novel named Kansei.
Kansei is the sequel to Jisei, you can still play it without playing the first game, but you can get a 15% discount if you buy them both.
Kansei has an impressive amount of characters and voice actors, so if you like visual novels you should at least try the demo, and if you like it – support the indies and buy the full game.

About
A teenager with the ability to relive the death of any corpse he touches finds himself tangled in another murder case when the owner of a high profile corporation dies under mysterious circumstances. This time, however, he’s forced to team up with a group of kids with abilities as strange as his own. Unfortunately, these new team mates might be more dangerous than the killer they’re hunting.

Everyone has something to hide, and the past never stays hidden for long. Interrogate suspects, explore the house of the wealthy deceased, and unearth the secrets of others while you try to keep your own hidden.

Screenshots

Links
Sake Visual
LGN Article About Sake Visual
Kansei
Jisei
Kansei Demo
Buy The Games

Many Thanks To Our Great Contributor Grzegorz Budny For The Good News.

Recently the GNU/Linux friendly visual novel developer Winter Wolves Games, posted their plans for the future :

Role Playing Games
Beside Planet Stronghold, which will be finished at end of January 2011, I plan to start 2-3 more RPGs.
I love RPGs and I always wanted to make them, but in the past I was lacking proper funds and/or technical knowledge to make decent ones.
Now, using Planet Stronghold RPG framework I can expand it and create new RPGs.
Most of them will be in fantasy setting though, since it’s the most common/popular one (unless Planet Stronghold is so successful that convinces me to make add-on/sequels).
I have already a good collaborator of mine who is starting creating the main game plot, character sketches, and so on. Another one should start hopefully in next months, and I want to do another myself as well.
So the 2011 will be surely full of RPGs!

Adventure Games
I am still in love with my character of Vera Blanc, despite the first two episodes not being really topsellers.
As I posted several times if I make a third episode, it will be an adventure (first person) and not a visual novel, since the adventure style integrates better with that kind of game.
I have already a plot for the story, but since it requires lot of money, it’s still a risky decision, so if I make it, won’t be before next summer, or even later during Fall/Winter of 2011.

Visual Novels / Dating Sims
Of course I’ll keep making them! Flower Shop 2 release is really close, is just a matter of few months. But since is tied to external factors (artists finishing some pieces) I won’t dare to name a date for it.
Instead I can already say that very likely the otome game “Remember Me” will be ready around February/March 2011, since the plot is completely written and need only to code the “simulation part” of it and do testing/balancing.
Depending how my other projects go, I could make more VN/Dating Sims, but they’ll be mixed with simulation games.

Strategy / Simulation Games
In 2011 perhaps I will finally release the sequel of Spirited Heart. I have yet to start coding it though, so is probably more accurate to say that in 2011 I’ll begin coding it, which is a bit different. It won’t be ready probably before 2012, also because I have in mind some online-features (probably optional) that could improve the gameplay a lot, so I am not sure yet I’ll use Ren’Py to code this one.
There will be for sure more strategy/simulation games coming in 2011 though. A remake of my game Universal Boxing Manager, this time with the fights completely in 3d realtime, is under production! Is made in partnership with a good 3d coder who is going to use Unity3d to power the 3d simulation. It’s probably my biggest/most ambitious game to date and the 2011 will be mainly focused on it. I hope will do well since I’d like to port more of my old games into 3d or start new ones.
As I said I might also find the time to do a sort of light-strategy/time management game based on Heileen settings. In particular, Heileen 2 settings (pirates, the caribbean).
The game could be played as normal strategy game or with visual novel cut-scenes (they’ll be optional). This will be a sort of experiment since I am not sure if/when I’ll finish it. Let’s say I’ll work on it on my spare time and when it’s done, is done :)

Online Games
Almost every year I say “next year I’ll make one”. So, this time I won’t say it! But, I would like to try making one, even if I am not sure I’ll find the time…or better, if I’ll find the right person, since I’m probably going to outsource the coding (will be most likely done in Flash or HTML5). Or if the new interesting BRL:monkey project from Mark Sibly (creator of Blitzmax) gets released, I might use that and do everything myself.

So in conclusion, looks like the 2011 will be a year full of new releases! Happy New Year again!!

I’ve asked for an explanation about his decision to use Unity3D which doesn’t support GNU/Linux for a Universal Boxing Manager remake :

LGN : I’m sad to hear that you will use Unity for the Boxing game, as Unity doesn’t support Linux.
Also, when you talk about cRPG’s, you mean the “visual story” cRPG’s – right ? or the other kinds (isometric, 3D, 1st person…the usual…).
I mean there is a HUGE difference between visual story cRPG’s and games like Fallout, Realms of Arkania, Eschelon books, NWN etc…).

WWG :Yes it’s sad that unity still doesn’t support linux :( unfortunately I had to go with the tool my coder knows better… (don’t know honestly if there are any linux 3d engines comparable to unity). I hope unity adds linux support somewhere in near future!
About cRPG, yes mainly using Planet Stronghold system so more visual story, even if one of them has also some basic map2d system. I won’t dare yet to try an isomap because is rather complex for my standards, but maybe in future… and there is also a dungeon master style game that is still in stand-by (have to wait for the coder to finish another game first) but that could still be started next year (and that would be a true cRPG!).

I could off course suggest the more then comparable Unigine engine, but then I would be passing the MacOS users.
There are many FOSS tools like Ogre3D, but I’m not a programmer to say what suites for their game.
Yet, there is a lot to expect this year from Winter Wolves Games, I wish them a fruitful year with lots of new titles !

Links
Winter Wolves Games
Blogpost
Ren’Py
Planet Stronghold
Vera Blanc
Flower Shop
Spirited Heart
Universal Boxing Manager
Heileen

There are several “unknown” game companies which are very friendly towards GNU/Linux, yet because of the poor publicity none heard about them.
One of those GNU/Linux friendly gaming companies is Sake Visual.
They released 3 games so far and all of them have a native GNU/Linux client, 2 of the games where released as freeware.
This small indie company specializes on Japanese manga style visual novels.
Here are the games they released so far :

Jisei – Supernatural, Mystery Adventure
Jisei is a supernatural mystery game produced by sakevisual. A young teenager with no name and no home has the unique ability to relive the death of any corpse that he touches. When he stumbles upon a dead woman, he’s immediately branded as the primary suspect in a murder investigation. Step into his shoes and search for clues, interrogate witnesses, and find the true murderer. Even with your extra abilities, it will still take solid facts and logic to prove your innocence!

RE: Alistair++ – Freeware Dating Sim
Merui loves video games, especially her favorite MMORPG, Rivenwell Online. Merui also has a very short temper, so when some JERK named Alistair steals a rare item from her, she’s determined to exact revenge on him. Unfortunately, she has no idea who he is in real life. But hey, that’s never stopped anyone, right? Take control of Merui and make new friends, balance schoolwork and fun, go shopping, search for the culprit, and maybe even discover a new romance.

Ripples – Freeware Romance
Ripples is not a game, nor is it really much of a novel. It’s the beginning of a journey. A few years ago, I stumbled upon the Ren’py visual novel engine.
A friend of mine was going through a really rough patch, so I decided to make a visual novel to encourage him. I had no clue where to start or how to go about doing it, but after a week of work, I managed to create a simple visual novel. It was a short story featuring a single character sketched roughly on the computer, voices recorded on a laptop mic, and some bland music I generated with a MIDI maker. I called it Ripples and released it to the world. The reception was more than I could have hoped for. The story struck a chord with many people, and I received a lot of encouragement from people.
Inspired by the feedback I got from Ripples, I pressed on to make more visual novels, each more ambitious than the last. Now, all these years later, the story of Ripples is still one that I wish to share with the world. But this time, I’m not alone. I’ve made wonderful and talented friends over the years, and with their help, I’ve remade Ripples. The art is better, the voices are better, the music is better, and the writing is better, but it still tells the same story. This is the story that started it all. It’ll only take a few minutes of your time, but I hope that Ripples will be the first step in your journey as well. Please enjoy.

Screenshots : (in order)

Links
Sake Visual
Jisei
RE: Alistair++
Ripples
Ren’py Visual Novel Engine
Sake Visual Facebook Group

Tycoon games which specializes in manga style novels, and made many games for GNU/Linux have now released their latest game Card Sweethearts !

About
Card Sweethearts is a dating sim game with a twist. Billy is an IT worker who suddenly finds himself out of a job. The only person willing to hire him is a shady private investigator with a tight wallet and a fondness for poker.

Step into Billy’s shoes as you investigate sexy ladies, play poker with people all across town, and rub elbows with the rich and famous. And with women this beautiful, money isn’t the only thing you’ll be playing for! Win a woman’s affection, and you’ll be treated to a game of strip poker.

Card Sweethearts is a story-driven poker game with a dry sense of humor and beautiful artwork.

The game contains mild language and has sexual themes and intended for players age 14 and up.

Links
Tycoon games
Card Sweethearts

Thank mateo for those great news !