December 2017 – Back on the saddle!

Howdy y’all! It’s been WAY too long since there’s been a blog update, and I sincerely apologize for that. The good news as to the reason for that is that I’ve just been a little lazy with blogging, so I have been making quite some progress with Sagebrush since I’ve last posted. The writing for this game…is almost DONE! Right now I’m just working on finishing up Lorenzo’s route, and after that, I have a couple of smaller scenes (around 7) to write. I’m sure I’ll end up adding extra things to the game by the end, but I’m still very happy to say that things are looking good for Sagebrush in the writing department.

As for art, I’ve been trying to switch over and get cracking on those elements. I’m experimenting with different ways to display CGs, which has actually been a lot of fun to play around with. As opposed to the way I’ve traditionally handled CGs (which are usually just one whole large image) I can switch backgrounds and change very small parts of the images (like movements and expressions) and make the game feel more dynamic in my opinion.

Another note is that I’ve decided that the backgrounds in the game will be hand drawn by myself. Yep, quite a huge feat; but I do feel that there’s really no excuse for me to not draw my own game BG’s at this point, and plus, I feel it will also help me improve my sucky interior skills, haha. There’s something very magical about being able to illustrate what you’ve written and imagined. (Well, magical until I get sick of drawing 40+ BGs. 😂)

Something I also want to include is drawing people in the backgrounds. I recently had a conversation with some friends of mine who aren’t really VN junkies, but we talked about a popular VN they had started playing and was surprised to hear that they were very nitpicky about this game not having people drawn in the backgrounds. At first it was strange to me since I’m so used to people never being in VN backgrounds, but realized that going that extra mile really can make a difference in the game and make it feel lively. Although I understand why most background artists stay away from it, due to backgrounds usually being overused in the game and the art would require new people in the same BG to remain consistent. Doing this requires a bit of planning and also paying a close attention to your script, but I’m willing to really push the limits with the art for Sagebrush. I just want the game to be the best it can be and in hopes the experience will be pleasant when released.

Lastly, as of right now I’ve commissioned 6 original tracks from the talented Noyemi K, though knowing me I’m very particular about having a LOT of soundtracks. I’ll figure all that out later once I’m getting near the end of the development of Sagebrush, though.

That’s pretty much it for now. If you want to see more updates, feel free to follow me over on twitter where you can get the quickest updates, or check out the LS thread every so often. Thanks for reading!

End of March Sagebrush progress

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Two blog updates in a month? I must be on a roll! 😄

I’m excited to announce that writing for Sagebrush has been progressing pretty well. I’m nearly done with writing Dion’s route, but I’ve encountered a bit of a snag in the writing so I’ve decided to take care of some general scenes for now. Better to be writing things I can get to than to be stuck on one scene, so that’s good!

For the purpose of the blog, I’ve drawn up a quick visual flow chart to show the writing progress of the script. Right now, I’m finishing off the smaller writing tasks first than to tackle Lorenzo’s route.

And also a little off topic, but if you have an adblocker running on the blog, consider turning it off on the vnovel domain! All the ad revenue money will be supporting my efforts to maintain and create my games.

Thanks, and hope to be posting again soon!

Back on the saddle (Sagebrush updates + FMN translation)

Hiya all! It’s been a long ride, but I’m happy to say I’ve got my writing game back in action. I’m currently finishing up Dion’s route, which is now just about 18k words in total. (And still going, since I still have to write his last romance scene, map scenes, and the ending.) After Dion, I’ll be off to writing Lorenzo’s route.

My game plan right now is pretty much finishing up all the written scenes I’ve planned, properly organize them into the script, then figure out if there’s anything else I’d like to add to the game. Once all the scripting comes in though I’ll be excited to share lots of screenshots on here and twitter. (So apologies for the boring part of dev work, which I’m currently in, haha.)

I wanted to also mention that I’ve been contacted by a Russian translation team who wants to translate Forget-Me-Not into Russian, which is super awesome! 🌟 It looks like they’re making some good progress into the translation, so I’ll be excited to announce the translation release on here and my other usual networks when it’s available to download. If you can read Russian, check out their page since they’re working on some other visual novel projects as well!

Though this entry is short I still wanted to keep this blog as active as I can. I’m also trying to update the Sagebrush Lemmasoft thread more as well which you can check out for all the project info if you haven’t seen it already. Thanks for keeping up!✌

Sagebrush updates + news

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Hi all! 😉

I admit it’s been awhile since I’ve written Sagebrush, but the good news is I spent my afternoon organizing all my notes, ideas, and written scenes (because I’m a messy person and write all my scenes in only two documents) on a trello board. I’ve made a neat timeline of all the scenes by the order they occur in game, and also a list of scenes that I need to write. Tallying up all the rest of the planned scenes, there are 19 in total. Categorizing them even further, there are pretty much 7 “big” scenes to write, but 12 smaller scenes leftover. Bigger and important scenes are just about 3 or 5k, but the smaller scenes are usually 1 or 2k. I’m guessing I’d probably have to write about 40k or more to reach my goal, which is kinda a lot, but considering I’ve managed to write about 30k in June/July; I’ve been pretty good with writing on an organized schedule.

Now onto something else I’ve been thinking about: will Sagebrush be freeware? Right now, the answer to that may be a “No”. It’s not a statement set in stone, but it’s definitely a thought right now. To be honest, with the way my creative projects have been going at this time, I feel like my comic may actually be taking over my life for a couple years. (Dramatic, but…y’know 😂) On the off chance I never get to write Dakota Wanderers or any other VNs, there’s something I really love about Sagebrush and I hope that with enough polishing, other people might really love it too. Since this is the first game I’ve made with multiple love interests, I think I overestimated the workload juuust a smidgen when it comes to this project, so a huge part of me is pretty iffy about releasing another free game. In terms of price, I’m doubting the sale price would be higher than $10, and considering it’s length, maybe $5 or less? It depends on how much I spend on the soundtrack and editing. Either way, Sagebrush being a commercial game isn’t completely set in stone, but it is something I’ve been thinking about a lot, so I’ll keep you guys updated on that aspect when I get deeper into the development.

For all the folks who have been wanting to hear updates about this project; there’s still hope for Sagebrush!! I apologize for keeping everyone so out of the loop, I’ve honestly been neglecting VN work for some time now. Things have been hectic for me, but I’m still really excited to get this show on the road. I want to thank everyone who’s been keeping up with me and those who’ve taken the time to chat with me every now and then, I seriously appreciate it!

Thanks and take care! 💖

Long awaited updates

Hey all, it’s been awhile! Life has been really hectic for me again, I’ve barely had the time to open the renpy launcher in the longest time. 😰

Firstly, the page for Sagebrush on the blog has been updated, and the demo link can be downloaded from itch.io.
All in all, I’m really glad to see people seemed to enjoy the demo. It’s definitely a step back from FMN and Cry Girlhood in the drama department. It has drama of course, but Sagebrush is a little more laid back.
Even though it’s been awhile, I still want to get the ball rolling on Sagebrush, but in between managing my comic, my patreon, and writing a narrative exclusive to patrons, I’ve been pretty bogged down. It makes me sad when I see other visual novel updates and I think, dang, if only I had the time to work on my VNs!! And at the same time, I still love working on my comic. 😭 Still, I don’t want to let Sagebrush sit too long, so I will definitely try to manage writing all the rest of the routes when I can fit it in my schedule. 👊

As for Cry Girlhood, I think I’m going to take an official hiatus from it; I can tell at this point I’ve been forcing myself to finish it and not so much because I want to. I want to come back to Cry Girlhood when I’ve replayed it and figured out why I really want to release it. I still love the story and characters there, (Kim being one of my most favorite female characters I’ve ever written ever) but a huge part of me knows the story came out of a dark time period for me, and in some ways doesn’t fully represent how I feel or want to feel. The story is a little heavy and I think that when I come back to it I hope to look at it from a different angle. Sorry if that’s a little vague, but I’ll definitely be coming back to the game since the writing is complete.

If you’re interested, there’s two playthroughs of the Sagebrush demo you can check out if you’re curious.

Other than that, this is all for now. Updates will probably still be very sporadic, but I’ll try my best. See ya!

YaoiJam 2016 is coming to a close

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Over the past two months (June-July) I’ve accidentally gotten myself into a bit of a jam. Well, a game jam for that matter. 😄 I wasn’t originally planning to participate, but I ended up caving in anyway. I kept swatting away the idea to do a college AU setting called “Sagebrush” with my characters from Dakota Wanderers, which I’ve been a bit hesitant to write these days. I’ve been so worried about that game, to be honest! I felt that my passion for my characters and the motivation for actually writing it was slowly dying away, it’s not a great feeling to have. To be fair, it’s been about three years since I originally came up with the idea, but writing all the ideas I’ve had has been a challenge in between finishing up Cry Girlhood and keeping on schedule with my webcomic.

It’s pretty odd that I’d think juggling yet another project was a good idea when I already have…3, but honestly, believe me when I say it was a good decision. 😂 I’ve had a ton of fun working on my project for this jam. I threw all my cares out the window, just wrote what I wanted to write, and tried to remember why I love these characters in the first place. When I was planning Dakota Wanderers, I had a lot of personal writing expectations that were keeping me back from actually writing. With Sagebrush, writing in Ezra’s voice came easily. Even after transitioning them into a modern setting, their relationships are definitely different than the original, but still feel authentic to Dakota Wanderers. After writing so much for it, I think I’ve realized that I can get over that first hurdle in writing Dakota Wanderers. I just simply need to stop being afraid, I just need to tell the story.

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As my progress for Cry Girlhood almost reaches it’s end, the design aspect of the game has been stale due to my unwillingness to code the GUI, hence the borrowed graphics from FMN. With yaoijam this year, it forced me to sit down and actually learn how to put together GUI better. I’m so glad that I finally realize that imagebuttons aren’t my enemies and actually understand xpos and ypos, though I might have to reload the game 20 times. 😆 I actually can’t wait to start designing the new GUI for Cry Girlhood. I mean, I’m actually looking forward to coding? Man, what’s come over me???

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There’s just something really awesome about participating in a jam. You make new friends and get excited for everyone’s projects. All in all, it’s really rekindled my love for making visual novels again.

The deadline for this jam is August 7th, when I release the demo, there will be a separate post on the blog. Until that time comes, thank you for reading! 😉✌