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October 21, 2014, 07:08:47 AM
TIGSource ForumsFeedbackDevLogsAvant-Garde - Artist RPG in modernist Paris - Alpha released!
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Author Topic: Avant-Garde - Artist RPG in modernist Paris - Alpha released!  (Read 11693 times)
AD1337
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« on: November 01, 2012, 01:05:17 PM »

Gentleman Alpha Released!  Gentleman

http://playavantgarde.com/


WHAT IS IT?

Avant-Garde is an RPG/Simulation single-player web game set in Paris during the rise of modernism. You are an artist. Create paintings and even your own artistic movements, meet famous artists such as Monet, Van Gogh and Picasso at the parisian cafés. Win medals and fame at the Salons or drink your way into debt and commit suicide as a starving artist - it's your life and art.

BY WHO?

I'm creating this game mostly by myself in AS3. Music will be created by my friend Morvan - check out one of his songs here.

I've been working on the game for 2 months now.

WHAT ELSE?

I'd like to hear your opinion and feedback on this unique game as I post here with updates and news about its development. More screenshots will follow soon with details on what I have so far. I'm very interested in what you have to say about this project.

Please comment!
« Last Edit: March 05, 2013, 04:00:42 PM by AD1337 » Logged

AD1337
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« Reply #1 on: November 01, 2012, 01:10:45 PM »



ATELIER

Here's a screenshot of the Atelier, the artist's studio, which is basically an inventory, where players can see the result of their creations.

The player can resume an unfinished painting, sell it or create a new one. Another option appears once a month every year. The game is turn-based, and managing between whether to resume a painting or try a new one is an important dynamic - time is a limited resource.
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Shine Klevit The Utopian Peasent
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« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2012, 02:45:08 PM »

This is an incredibly fascinating original project. Definitely will be following.
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CorazonAzul
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« Reply #3 on: November 01, 2012, 03:59:17 PM »

Hand Thumbs Up Left Digging the aesthetics.

Hand Joystick I guess the obvious question is: do you ever have to draw something on a digital canvas, or is it a game of gamble/management/etc?
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AD1337
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« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2012, 04:51:38 PM »

This is an incredibly fascinating original project. Definitely will be following.

Thanks!

Hand Thumbs Up Left Digging the aesthetics.

Hand Joystick I guess the obvious question is: do you ever have to draw something on a digital canvas, or is it a game of gamble/management/etc?

Thanks, the backgrounds are all paintings of that time.

Excellent question. Short answer: you don't draw, it's more about management. The long answer goes below with a screenshot and more details:



CREATING AN ARTWORK

When creating a painting, the player chooses:
1) Subject (Still Life, Nude, Portrait...)
2) Medium (Pencil, Watercolor, Oils...)
3) Surface (Paper, Canvas...)
4) Movement (Realism, Impressionism, Surrealism...)

At first, the choices are limited. As the game progresses, more options are unlocked. These choices are quick to make - they only require 4 clicks, but they have a huge impact on the game. For example, if you make a realistic still life, pencil on paper, that artwork's quality will depend on only 2 of your stats: Form and Perspective, and it's going to take only 1 month to complete, selling for a small price. But a realistic, historical oil on canvas painting will take up to 10 months, depend on all your stats and sell for much more.

Jonathan Blow (Braid) actually made a prototype that involved drawing and painting on a digital canvas, it's in a talk you can find on youtube. Turns out it wasn't fun for the player because it took too much effort and time. I'll learn from that and make painting creation quick and effortless, but still with a big gameplay impact.

The positive response is encouraging, keep the comments coming guys!
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C.A. Silbereisen
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« Reply #5 on: November 01, 2012, 05:09:53 PM »

wow, what a cool idea!

the concept faintly reminds me of the game king of dragon pass because of the mix of adventure and strategy/rpg/sim gameplay. the painting mechanics sound like they could be a ton of fun.
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AD1337
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« Reply #6 on: November 01, 2012, 06:02:35 PM »

wow, what a cool idea!

the concept faintly reminds me of the game king of dragon pass because of the mix of adventure and strategy/rpg/sim gameplay. the painting mechanics sound like they could be a ton of fun.

Thanks! Interesting comparison. I think there are similarities considering both as turn-based strategy games with RPG elements. I found it hard to classify the genre for this game, I'm still torn between RPG and simulation, but I believe RPG speaks more to the player experience: living the life of an artist during modernism.

I hope the painting mechanics are fun! It's the core mechanic, everything else is built around it. Incidentally, it's also the most finished part of the game.
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t-recx
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« Reply #7 on: November 02, 2012, 01:46:16 AM »

It's always nice to see a different take on the rpg genre and this one is looking great. The HUD is pretty crisp as well; hope to see more soon Smiley
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kinnas
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« Reply #8 on: November 02, 2012, 02:17:09 AM »

Holy shit

Awesome!

Will you have random events where Apollinaire invites you to his home for your inauguration as a new face in the Parisian avant-garde scene? Joined the surrealists at one point but failed to meet the strict commands of Breton and now face expulsion? Move to Zurich to join the Dada scene as triggered by the onset of the war? In later stages have the option to be disillusioned by the conservative nature of the so-called avant-garde and move to America and invent conceptualism? Or just slowly die in poverty as the world moves on and the values of the new modernist aesthetic you held dear in your youth loose ground to more modern apporaches from america?

Can you publish manifestos? Is there a 'hip & now' slider which shows who you hang with, whether you side with the more avant-garde but poor and socially shunned Impressionists in the Salon of the Rejected or join the ranks of the new realists and mingle with the bourgeois and old aristocracy and paint portraits (you sellout you!). Or can you do the ties-to-russian-avant-garde pro-communist peredvizhnik thing in Paris? Can you choose to be an immigrant artist living in one of the bohemian colonies? Choose which hill you inhabit and do some silly petty hill vs hill thing?

Holy fuck the possibilities for awesome story beats are endless!

Son, this topic is waaay too cool to let suffer the shallow-indie-experiment syndrome, this needs to be HUGE. HUUUGE! Addicted
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« Reply #9 on: November 02, 2012, 02:25:21 AM »

I love the idea of this! May I request game mechanics for models and muses, please. Oh, and absinthe!
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« Reply #10 on: November 02, 2012, 05:56:17 AM »

Jonathan Blow (Braid) actually made a prototype that involved drawing and painting on a digital canvas, it's in a talk you can find on youtube. Turns out it wasn't fun for the player because it took too much effort and time. I'll learn from that and make painting creation quick and effortless, but still with a big gameplay impact.

No, damn, you have to implement this. This is so cool feature, adds a lot. Thinking of this game, it feels like it would be the essence of the game. I understand however that it is impossible to paint in like Caspar David Friedrich, but it could work more in impressionism/expressionism/abstract axle of art.

Then you create algorithm that reads the painting and through whatever conditions the game then values it.

Anyway, it is lovely to see game project like this.
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« Reply #11 on: November 02, 2012, 06:23:54 AM »

This is an art style I can get into.
Yes.
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« Reply #12 on: November 02, 2012, 06:31:45 AM »

I love everything about this! The idea is fantastic and the art style looks great. Looking forward to seeing this progress.
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Shine Klevit The Utopian Peasent
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« Reply #13 on: November 02, 2012, 06:47:31 AM »

Actually, I'm wondering now if there's any way that I can help contribute to this? Even if it's something small, I'll do what I can.
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AD1337
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« Reply #14 on: November 02, 2012, 08:07:07 AM »

Thanks t-recx!

Will you have random events where Apollinaire invites you to his home for your inauguration as a new face in the Parisian avant-garde scene? Joined the surrealists at one point but failed to meet the strict commands of Breton and now face expulsion? Move to Zurich to join the Dada scene as triggered by the onset of the war? In later stages have the option to be disillusioned by the conservative nature of the so-called avant-garde and move to America and invent conceptualism? Or just slowly die in poverty as the world moves on and the values of the new modernist aesthetic you held dear in your youth loose ground to more modern apporaches from america?

Can you publish manifestos? Is there a 'hip & now' slider which shows who you hang with, whether you side with the more avant-garde but poor and socially shunned Impressionists in the Salon of the Rejected or join the ranks of the new realists and mingle with the bourgeois and old aristocracy and paint portraits (you sellout you!). Or can you do the ties-to-russian-avant-garde pro-communist peredvizhnik thing in Paris? Can you choose to be an immigrant artist living in one of the bohemian colonies? Choose which hill you inhabit and do some silly petty hill vs hill thing?

Holy fuck the possibilities for awesome story beats are endless!

Son, this topic is waaay too cool to let suffer the shallow-indie-experiment syndrome, this needs to be HUGE. HUUUGE! Addicted

Thanks a lot for this huge post, your excitement is very inspiring and so are your ideas.

Your ideas describe my goals for the game very well. Important figures such as Apollinaire, Victor Hugo and Nadar will be in the game. Participating in movements such as Surrealism will be in the game as well. Travelling around Europe will be included, but I think I'll keep Paris as the main location of the game (you can go to other countries, but you return to Paris). America isn't currently in my plans, as the timespan of the game is intended to be 1863-1914 and the american scene wasn't majorly important yet. I guess I need some limits to be able to finish this game, and not including America is an important one. Perhaps in another game?

You can publish manifestos, it's how you create a new artistic movement. I have considered that "artistic taste" slider, and it could be included. Yes, the fight between conservative realists and revolutionary modernists will be a main theme. Again, the scope will be limited to Paris for now.

I am focusing very heavily on allowing the player to create his own cool narrative by playing the game. For example, a player's game experience could be described as: "I started as a starving artist, studied under Bouguereau, became rich, won the Salons of 1883 and 1887, then joined forces with Monet and the Impressionists, broke off with them and created my own revolutionary artistic movement, slowly destroyed academism with modernist expositions and manifestos, then went broke and committed suicide."

The game's scope will be big, but it has to be manageable for me. I could always leave things for other games, such as other countries and times. For now, it's Paris 1863-1914. I think that's what I can manage.

I love the idea of this! May I request game mechanics for models and muses, please. Oh, and absinthe!

Thanks and yes, models and inspiration will be included, as well as alcohol. I am still unsure how to include models, but the game couldn't be without them, considering their importance at the time. The other two elements I think will work as modifiers, think of "buffs" and "nerfs": they make some stats higher and others lower. In this game, stats aren't "strength", "intelligence" and so on, but the fundamentals of art: "form", "perspective", "color" and so on.

Jonathan Blow (Braid) actually made a prototype that involved drawing and painting on a digital canvas, it's in a talk you can find on youtube. Turns out it wasn't fun for the player because it took too much effort and time. I'll learn from that and make painting creation quick and effortless, but still with a big gameplay impact.

No, damn, you have to implement this. This is so cool feature, adds a lot. Thinking of this game, it feels like it would be the essence of the game. I understand however that it is impossible to paint in like Caspar David Friedrich, but it could work more in impressionism/expressionism/abstract axle of art.

Then you create algorithm that reads the painting and through whatever conditions the game then values it.

Anyway, it is lovely to see game project like this.

That's exactly what he tried to implement, and it was a failed prototype. His program could correctly judge the player's painting and it was completely functional, but it wasn't fun or engaging for the player. I agree it could work for a more modern approach, in which the player paints abstract paintings, but that's not what I want for Avant-Garde. Maybe in another game!

Actually, I'm wondering now if there's any way that I can help contribute to this? Even if it's something small, I'll do what I can.

I think I'm okay working alone for now, but thanks for the offer.
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AD1337
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« Reply #15 on: November 02, 2012, 08:37:33 AM »

I've talked a little about stats, so here's a bigger post on them:



CHARACTER CREATION

In Avant-Garde, the player has stats like any other RPG. But these stats are not "strength", "intelligence" and so on, but the fundamentals of art. I call them skills.

These skills determine the quality of your paintings and how much they will sell for. They can be improved through experience and learned from education. At first, the higher your skills, the better your paintings will be. But as time goes by, the opposite can happen: the lower your stats, the better your paintings will be. This happens depending on the artistic movement you are a part of. If you paint a cubist watercolor, having a low "Form" skill will actually make your artwork better, because Cubism rejects the fundamental of form that realism valued so much.

It's this unique take on stats that brings everything together in Avant-Garde.
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« Reply #16 on: November 02, 2012, 10:54:05 AM »

This sounds like a fun way to learn some art history. I've already learned a bit just reading this thread, didn't know about the cultural scene in Paris and so forth.
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AD1337
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« Reply #17 on: November 04, 2012, 11:45:34 AM »

This sounds like a fun way to learn some art history. I've already learned a bit just reading this thread, didn't know about the cultural scene in Paris and so forth.

Yes, it should be a fun way to learn art history. It's a bit sad that educational games have such a stigma on them. What's wrong with learning? We always learn about history from movies and nobody calls them educational movies. I'm just rambling now.

Here's a gif that shows how details are presented on mouse hover:



In other news, my music guy is making some awesome music. Expect it soon!

Oh, and thanks to Dom2D for showcasing Avant-Garde in the TIGSource Devlog Magazine!
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AD1337
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« Reply #18 on: November 04, 2012, 06:53:09 PM »

And here's a bigger gif that shows the entire process of creating, finishing and selling a painting:

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« Reply #19 on: November 04, 2012, 07:24:38 PM »

wah interesting, I imagine this would be a weird meta trip for some, I'm excited what this turns into
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