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TIGSource ForumsDeveloperPlaytestingI Remember The Rain
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jb
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« on: June 20, 2012, 07:42:38 pm »


'I Remember The Rain' is an interactive short story made in New Zealand over a period of about a month.

Download (Windows, 17.4 mb)

This is my first project of this kind so I was hoping to get some feedback on it! I wasn't really sure where a good place to post it would be since it's not really a conventional 'game'. I know there's a strong community for this kind of thing over at Newgrounds but that's more flashed based. Anyways, I came across your forums and it seems like a cool, friendly place so I thought I'd post it here.

It's only short but I'd be great to hear what people think!
« Last Edit: June 28, 2012, 03:04:34 am by jb » Logged

I Remember The Rain - An interactive short story
eyeliner
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« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2012, 08:25:20 am »

INCREDIBLE!
Great setting, color use and story. All very fitting.

I'd only change a thing, and it's telling people that Space is used to interact with the environment, though one can easily figure it out.

Good job.

And add credits, also. The voices and music are worth a mention.
« Last Edit: June 22, 2012, 07:01:59 am by eyeliner » Logged

Yeah.
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« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2012, 10:01:49 am »

I can't really think of any critique to give, since this was amazing. The cinematic style really grabs you, even though the visuals are so relatively simple.

The only thing I'd change, and that might be because I'm a pixel artist, is the main character's walk cycle. It felt kind of jarring because it's so visually unlike someone actually walking, while everything else was at least stylistically accurate.
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handCraftedRadio
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« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2012, 10:42:48 am »

Nice! Really good! The only thing that I found wrong with it was the way some of the text worked. At one point (I think it was directly after the pills part) some text popped up on the screen but I had already pressed another button for some reason which made the text fade away and I was unable to read it. Maybe a short delay between showing the text and allowing the player to continue would help?

Good job though, I really like it!  Wizard Hand Thumbs Up Right
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« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2012, 03:40:56 am »

Wow, powerful. Simple, yet very effective. Hats off to you.

 Gentleman
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« Reply #5 on: June 27, 2012, 09:25:24 am »

I strongly agree with the others that the cinematic style was great. You definitely seem to have talent for using cinematic elements in storytelling. Especially the transition from the hospital to the funeral and the character's appearance shifting at the graveyard were great. The pixel art was also quite nice; especially the first scene has a memorable look.

I have to say I'm less impressed by the story, though. The death of a loved one is a very common drama element in fiction, and as this story pretty much fit every cliche about it and there was nothing before the drama to build a connection between the reader/player/viewer and the characters, I couldn't help but remain an uncaring spectator watching a generic scene unfolding at a distance.

As handCraftedRadio pointed out, the text presentation has a few problems. Text disappearing before the voice finishes playing is very jarring, for example. Although it seems a minor thing, proper text flow is extremely important as problems with elements like that take the reader out of the story. Even a simple 'hey, that sentence disappeared before I finished reading it' can seriously break immersion, which is a large problem if you're making a story-focused game.

I also felt the voice acting was slightly bland, feeling rather unenthusiastic (more like reading a line from a script than actually acting out the voice). As such, I feel it didn't add much to the game.

Put simply: Style was amazing and has lots of potential, story felt uninteresting. If you could make a more interesting story with more original elements in that kind of style, I'd definitely want to play it.
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« Reply #6 on: June 27, 2012, 10:11:06 am »

Great job man. Simple and elegant. Don't want to give any spoilers but love the idea behind this.
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« Reply #7 on: June 27, 2012, 02:42:05 pm »


Pretty nice work ya got there. It was nice even when sometimes the player blended  with the background occasionally.
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« Reply #8 on: June 27, 2012, 05:08:00 pm »

I thought the girl was gonna pop out of the mirror and attack me like in the movie "The Ring" lol. Pretty good stuff there Smiley.
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jb
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« Reply #9 on: June 28, 2012, 04:17:00 am »

Thank you everyone for your comments, it's been great how well this has been received!
I was featured on Game Jolt the other day and IndieGames.com this morning so it's really cool to know people are getting to see it :D

@handCraftedRadio
I think a more advanced text engine will be a must for future works, some of the pacing issues came from matching it to the voice acting. It would be cool to have it follow along with the speech, maybe each line appearing as they are spoken would be better?

@VDZ
Thankyou for your in-depth feedback! It's interesting that you bring that up about the story because it was something that I was quite interested in exploring. As far as a film goes I agree with you that the plot is rather clichéd but I felt that this story had an appeal in an interactive form. The idea is less worn out perhaps because the themes in combination with the audio/visual atmosphere aren't what a lot of people expect out of the medium. I've been presenting this as an 'interactive story' because I think that definition suits it but there a lot of people who think because you press buttons/control a character on the computer that it must be a ‘game’. I was trying to push those boundaries and play with the assumptions that wider audiences themselves have constructed.

@ra51 Haha, that's kind of tempting now that you mention it Tongue

Oh yeah, I changed the download link to the Game Jolt one since the other ran out of bandwidth so for anyone having issues downloading, it should be working fine now.
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I Remember The Rain - An interactive short story
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« Reply #10 on: June 28, 2012, 07:06:58 am »

Wow.. I am really impressed on how fast I was pulled into the game.
Great job on keeping it simple, yet very effective.
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« Reply #11 on: June 28, 2012, 10:05:34 am »

Well done, that was really interesting!
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« Reply #12 on: June 28, 2012, 02:28:09 pm »

I've been presenting this as an 'interactive story' because I think that definition suits it but there a lot of people who think because you press buttons/control a character on the computer that it must be a ‘game’. I was trying to push those boundaries and play with the assumptions that wider audiences themselves have constructed.
Hm. Have you explored other games that push/cross those boundaries yet? There are a lot of often obscure games that blur or completely erase the line between 'game' and 'story'. Judging from IRTR, I'm guessing you've at least played Every Day the Same Dream, but there are many other games that cannot be simply described as just 'games'. Especially the visual novel genre (and games inspired by it) often come closer to stories - while there are VN-like games that can without a doubt be described as games (things such as the Phoenix Wright series, Time Hollow and 999: Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors), there are also games where gameplay is very limited and only an addition to the story (Little Busters!, Rewrite, Digital: A Love Story, every single visual novel with gameplay), "games" where the only user interaction other than clicking through the text is making choices (normal visual novels like Clannad, Ever17, Fate/stay night and Steins;Gate), and even "games" (?) which don't even have choices and just present a clearly linear story to the player (linear visual novels such as Higurashi no Naku Koro ni and Narcissu).

All of those titles take more inspiration from literature than from cinema, though, with narration mainly being text, text and more text rather than visual information (though there are exceptions - the recent Mahoutsukai no Yoru, for example, has mind-blowing animation for a visual novel, and School Days is fully animated like an anime series). It would be interesting to see more from the cinematic side of things.

From the less story-focused side of things there are also many games more aimed at delivering an interesting experience than presenting actual gameplay. Popular examples include Yume Nikki (Dream Diary), LSD and the games from Tale of Tales (though I haven't tried those myself yet).

If you're already familiar with all of this, just ignore my post. If you aren't, try them out, they might be inspiring.
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