(This dev blog post is a bit redundant with “Meet Ari Cader,” but I feel it’s worth mentioning again.)
Stumbled across this amusing little video today; a short take on what it’s like to be railroaded in supposedly non-linear storytelling games.
It struck me as amusing and thought provoking… because Arcade Spirits is be the same, but different.
Many of the choice moments in Arcade Spirits don’t really result in massive non-linear branching. The difficulty in writing a story where you can wildly change outcomes at the drop of a hat is pretty extreme, even in a more limited format like a visual novel compared to an RPG. But instead of giving you the illusion of choice while actually providing no choice… we give you the opportunity to roleplay your reaction to events.
Will you crack a joke? Are you going to take a bold move? Are you more composed and thoughtful? Do you want to just let it slide? What kind of a person are you? That’s what you’re deciding in Arcade Spirits, when prompted with a choice. It’s less about deciding between going to lunch or assassinating the prime minister and more about deciding what KIND of lunch you want or what bullets you want to use, and what those decisions say about you as a person.
Behind the scenes, scores are tracked, and yes… decisions are remembered, when they impact the plot. While not every choice is life and death, or wildly divergent, all of it speaks to who you are and what you want out of life.
And now… game production news.
Patreon kinda screwed us over and didn’t charge anybody for the entire month of May, except folks who were nice enough to join in after the 1st. Which sucks. But we’re chugging along, regardless; Chapter 01 is now about 95% complete, just waiting on a few bits to slot into place.
Chapter 02 and 03 will be interesting… because we’re working on them in parallel. I’m writing 02 (which heavily features Gavin and Naomi, in an arcade culture setting), and Aenne’s writing 03 (which heavily features Ashley and Matteo, in a PAX-like setting). I’ve got the industry knowledge to carry off 02, and she knows communities and social interconnections that’ll help her write 03.
Now, this may result in slower production on demo builds, as we can’t split the work on 02 up between us, but we have to present material to you in linear order. At the very least the June build will have the rest of 01, though.
Got any questions about production? Any comments? Any feedback on the May demo? Let me know! Thanks.