We're making a video game - Esperia
Posted: Tue Oct 07, 2014 1:58 pm
We're making a video game. It's a big project. This is going to be a real learning experience and an interesting ride, for sure. You can follow along with our progress in this thread, and I'd love to hear your input.
Last December, I began working on a new project titled Esperia. I've done some work on it since, inbetween paid and other work, and discussed it with several programmers including Paul Thacker. I think it's time I shared the project here.
Adelaide. Our heroine. Bright. No-nonsense. An old soul. An unimaginably old soul, perhaps.
Esperia takes place in a dreamworld, with the lead character Adelaide, and later her friends, exploring stages which change as she goes through them. She is discovering, gradually, powers that she has. She fights various monsters.
She has been recruited (after her death) by a mysterious man, Gideon, to fight the Nightmare creatures that have infected dreams everywhere, and replaced hope with fear, leading humanity into a dark age. She must learn to create her own reality and fight back. It turns out that Gideon is himself the Lord of Nightmares, looking for someone to fight against, and restore the balance of the world.
Gideon. Lord of Nightmares. A man of considerable power looking to restore some balance and sanity to the dream realm, and willing to use Adelaide and her friends as pawns to achieve that.
The first stage starts out as a hazy white void, which reveals itself as a sort of hospital of the mind, which gets more solid and distinct as we go on. Like a white palace. Monsters exist in the shadows, at the edge of reality.
Later, Adelaide is on a college campus (also in a dream world), trying to recruit her friends to join her. She enters dream worlds based on her friends' personalities - such as a rave, a musical number, a savage forest, and a sort of Egyptian area. She's also accompanied by a robot cat named Basil. Throughout she's trying to save a troubled young man named Siddhartha, and find her lost friend Otsana, who died some years before, and who has nearly forgotten how to be human.
Basil. Robotic companion, assistant, helper.
Siddhartha. Mentally scarred from years of bullying. Needs rescuing.
Otsana. Has been dead too long. Living in the shadows, listening to the trees, fighting back against the Nightmares. Adelaide must bring her back to humanity.
Vikki. Fun-loving party girl who Adelaide will have to save first.
Cloe. Has a taste for the outdoors, and for exploration. Perhaps she was born to be an adventurer. Perhaps she was born to be something more.
Dominique. Diva. Entertainer. Extrovert. Seemingly unbreakable, though more easily wounded than she lets on.
Serafina. Introvert. Fragile. Adelaide will fail her, and watch as she is corrupted. She can't be saved until she can save herself.
A considerable amount of story and dialogue has been written and planned out, and the lead characters designed. Paul Thacker has begun programming demos in Unity, and I wrote out an early dialogue demo in Ren'Py.
Technically this isn't my first video game project, as I started off programming in BASIC as a kid, and did a bunch of small game projects in the early 2000s. But this is certainly my first large-scale game project. I am not a programmer, but for me this is just another form of storytelling.
I had considered doing another year's worth of work on my comic The Chosen Ones, but the script for that piece was originally written back in 2005, and I feel, to an extent, that I've moved on since then. To me, Esperia is a natural continuation. It is a female-driven story, and I'm excited to peel back the layers of it and share it with you.
So, here we go then.