"Morning Glory"

Today’s NaCreSoMo post is a preview of the upcoming visual novel Morning Glory.

…Just kidding! This is an excerpt from my NaNoWriMo story from last November, a story which I described as

A family trip in a haunted hotel goes exactly how you’d expect with a synopsis starting with “a family trip in a haunted hotel”.

Murder. It goes murder.

Like Clone from several years back, I do intend to let people read this one once I’ve finished editing the first draft. Unfortunately I haven’t been putting too much effort into that lately, so we’re not there yet.

My interest in the visual novel format started with the inspiration for Morning Glory, the mystery-fantasy Umineko: When They Cry.1 The combination of a textual narrative with pictures, sound effects, and a soundtrack is a powerful one for me that’s a bit different from just watching a video. Besides Umineko, I’ve also read the short but pretty Juniper’s Knot and the still-in-progress comedic My Guild Leader is a Demon. (I’d recommend the former to people who like the sweet parts of Steven Universe and the latter to people who like horrible nerdy puns.)

This visual novel—the scene from Morning Glory—was made using Ren’py, with liberal borrowing of assets from Umineko (the backgrounds, sound effects, and background music). The one exception here was the characters, which are based on SilverHyena’s “girl” and “guy” sprites. This is clearly placeholder art—just swapping clothes, expressions, and colors isn’t enough to disguise these all coming from the same template—but it’s enough to get the effect across. However, if someone were to sign up to make eight or nine characters’ worth of sprites—mostly just one pose with a dozen facial expressions and maybe a few different costumes—then maybe I’d consider trying to turn the whole book into visual novel format, just to see how it would come out.

I’d probably even pay you.

Part of NaCreSoMo 2017. Join us!

  1. Which, for the record, we still haven’t finished. ↩︎