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Alucard1621 Aug 7 @ 7:29pm
So I had an idea for a visual novel~...
As the title says, I wanted to make a visual novel based around a text-based choose-your-own-adventure I created last year, but first let me give a little history lesson...

Once upon a time, a young man in high school that happened to be me thought it would be fun to make a CYOA game, which I typed up on MS word in less than a week. It was a very bizzare tale about saving the world while strange happenings and shameless pop-culture references both proceed and impede you. All in all, it was a very simple thing, and despite a lot of its forced humor my friends and colleagues who played it had a great time.

So~ in the middle of playing Katawa Shoujo I suddenly thought to myself,
"Why not turn my piece of trash into a visual novel??!!!"

I figured if I did, I'd make sure to
  • make the story more focused and coherent while still keeping its absurdity
  • be less direct with my references and be smarter when I make any nods
  • increase the length of the original, short routes
  • draw up some art
  • create original music
  • and if I could manage, get some of my droogs to voice act. Maybe even decently!

So I guess the questions I ask you all out there include
  1. Is there a visual novel engine I can use?
  2. Any specific coding language to learn?
  3. This may sound a little dumb, but how long would a decent visual novel take to make?
  4. What specifically should I do to ensure the highest quality for my little vanity project er uh I mean idea for a pasttime?

Thanks for wasting a bit of your time to read this. Any feedback, whether it's positive, negative, critical, or trolling, is appreciated. Maybe not the last bit, but again, please help a guy out. :)
Last edited by Alucard1621; Aug 7 @ 7:30pm
Showing 1-8 of 8 comments
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AusSkiller Aug 7 @ 9:57pm 
1. Not that I'm aware of, visual novels are so simple I doubt anyone would bother creating an engine for them.

2. For a visual novel you could get by with almost any programming language. As much as I hate to suggest it though using flash is probably going to be the easiest to make it, I'm pretty sure you could do it with little to no actual code, though it's been well over ten years since I last used it.

3. Once you have the script and the art it will probably only take a week or so if you know what you are doing, though without any experience maybe a month or two depending on how quickly you get the hang of it.

4. Ensure the writing is good, no spelling or grammatical mistakes, have a compelling story regardless of the choices you make, and ensure the choices are often meaningful. Similarly get good art that matches the text, make sure your characters have expressions that match up with what they are saying too. Voice acting is a risk in visual novels, it's better to have no voice acting than mediocre voice acting, remember the voice acting has to compare to the imagination of the reader.
Alucard1621 Aug 7 @ 11:06pm 
Originally posted by AusSkiller:
1. Not that I'm aware of, visual novels are so simple I doubt anyone would bother creating an engine for them.

2. For a visual novel you could get by with almost any programming language. As much as I hate to suggest it though using flash is probably going to be the easiest to make it, I'm pretty sure you could do it with little to no actual code, though it's been well over ten years since I last used it.

3. Once you have the script and the art it will probably only take a week or so if you know what you are doing, though without any experience maybe a month or two depending on how quickly you get the hang of it.

4. Ensure the writing is good, no spelling or grammatical mistakes, have a compelling story regardless of the choices you make, and ensure the choices are often meaningful. Similarly get good art that matches the text, make sure your characters have expressions that match up with what they are saying too. Voice acting is a risk in visual novels, it's better to have no voice acting than mediocre voice acting, remember the voice acting has to compare to the imagination of the reader.

Great, thanks!
TrickZZter Aug 8 @ 12:11am 
Originally posted by AusSkiller:
1. Not that I'm aware of, visual novels are so simple I doubt anyone would bother creating an engine for them.
There are several engines for VNs. Anв one of most popular ones is Ren'py
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ren'py
Last edited by TrickZZter; Aug 8 @ 4:25am
AusSkiller Aug 8 @ 4:04am 
Originally posted by TrickZZter:
Originally posted by AusSkiller:
1. Not that I'm aware of, visual novels are so simple I doubt anyone would bother creating an engine for them.
There are several engines for VNs. An one of most popular ones is Ren'py
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ren'py
Good to know, I'm glad I qualified my statement to allow for that ;).

@Alucard1621, definitely worth looking into that, anything purpose built for VNs is likely to be a lot better and easier to use than flash.
C0untzer0 Aug 8 @ 6:45am 
Of course, there's the problem of certain engines where games end up looking the same. We constantly see floks ragging on games just for their engines (particularly RPGM). Essentially a VN just needs to throw up a page, add a click box for each choice, rinse and repeat, the rest is all gravy. Which basically means that anything or anybody who can make a modern website can make a VN.
Last edited by C0untzer0; Aug 8 @ 6:47am
PistachiStudio Aug 21 @ 10:42am 
Time it takes to make VN really depends on the quality of the game. If you're looking to make something that only takes 20 min to clear, couple weeks should be enough. (Taking time to learn, creating art assets, etc). Right now I'm making Vn myself and so far its taking solid 4+Month and we're only 15% done. u_u
BlAcK^v!p3r Aug 21 @ 1:55pm 
:P
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