Thursday, May 26, 2016

Blog Post of Doom

Greetings and Salutations, everyone.

I'd like to say that this year has been a little rough for Somnova, but really, every year has been rough in one way or another. Over the course of the last eight or so months, we've lost (or lost touch with, in some cases) writers and editors. Fortunately, we've secured a very talented pair of writers plus a superb editor to help us out. That said, we still need at least one writer for one of the routes.

Although the route in question was already drafted some time ago, there are some issues that need to be addressed. Without the original writer, it wouldn't be right for the rest of us to pick at it in an attempt to patch things up. Instead, we'd like to have someone dedicated to the route who can make it work from the ground up.

Although there is an existing framework to work within, the new writer would have the freedom to change the plot, within reason, as well as their characters and associated backstory. We also need someone capable of carrying the route beyond act 1. For more details, visit the forums and leave a message. If you've applied with us before and haven't heard back, (probably because we weren't hiring at the time) please do reconnect.

Moving on, let's have a status update:

Editing, as always, is progressing. I myself am inserting stage and sprite directions into my scenes.

Lena doesn't cry, she just gets madder.

I know that simply saying that we're editing is rather vague, but it's a huge job. The mere act 1 of Missing Stars is in the neighborhood of 100,000 words and has gone through a number of comprehensive rewrites.

Fun fact: At one point, the main character had amnesia and at the end of Lena's route, he overdosed on MDMA while attending a rave in the catacombs under the school. 

Things get pretty sticky when elements get added to the story only to be removed. You get things referencing other things that aren't there anymore, and eventually you get two consecutive scenes that feel like they've come from two completely different VNs. It's a long and frustrating process but we've been fixing that.

Also, this girl should be wearing trousers.

Our intrepid background photographer, amarsh1138, is pulling double duty and doing some editing. He spent a small fortune at the print shop to give us the red-marker treatment.

Scenes 1-45(The first half of act 1)

The whole demo.

Merlyn's been pumping out tech demos whenever we revise the script. These mockups don't have much in the way of graphics, but are used to test the user-interface and path functionality.

Dat Splash.

Thanks for sticking with us this long.

Click here to discuss this post on the forums.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Another Year, Another Blog Post!

It's 2016! That means leap years, presidential elections, and a progress update from Somnova!

2015 has been busy for a lot of us. Some of us moved across the country, others got new jobs and responsibilities, and several members have had to leave due to changes in their lives.

But what hasn't changed is our dedication to this project. Despite our silence, we assure you guys that we're working hard behind the scenes to bring you Act 1! Let's go over where we're at in terms of writing, sprites, and other stuff.

Writing: As of writing this blog post, we've entered the final stages of writing and editing Act 1. Our new editors have done a great job in helping us make some great improvements for the story and our lovely characters. Kosherbacon and myself have slowly begun work on Act 2 for Lena and Jeanne, respectively.

Sprites: Morthaisik, AngryEvil, and Hexagod have been champs of sprite making. Check these sweet-ass sprites below:



Other Stuff:  Aaron joined us late this year willingly offering his generous services for background work. He's taken some great shots for our school campus, so stay tuned for some stellar backgrounds!

I've also been working on an actual website for Missing Stars, which we'll have up before the demo is released.

Speaking of, the scripting and design of the demo is going well. All it really needs to get started are some finished sprites and backgrounds!

Once again, we thank all of our fans for being awesomely patient and cool. It's thanks to your support that we've been able to keep going and getting that much closer to making this project a reality.

Thank you!


Discuss this post on the forums.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Resetting Panic Levels

Oops it's been three and a half months since our last blog post. My bad. So, where to begin? I guess there's some good news, and some bad news. Which is which depends on how you feel about this project as a whole.

Let's start with what I consider the bad news:

At the start of the year, we said some very bold things about setting ourselves an ultimatum for having our demo completed by the end of the year. If we couldn't achieve that, we were just going to call it quits.

We're now entering the last quarter of 2016 and we're nowhere close to the level of completion that we need to be. It's not that we've made no progress, it's just that we haven't made enough. When this project was started, I wasn't even a member. I joined a couple years into its development, personally. So did a large percentage of the current team. For most of us, we were in the early years of college, or working part-time jobs to make ends meet. Now, a lot of us have graduated, and gone on to get real jobs. Some of us will be starting university soon and don't know what to expect. While it's not that nobody cares anymore, it's just that we can't always put in as much time as we once could.

So where does that put us now?

Well, it's time for the good news: fuck the deadline.

Our pride and dignity may suffer as we go back on our word (even after specifically saying that we wouldn't) but we're going to keep at it, even after the year ends. The deadline was imposed because we didn't want to keep wasting time indefinitely if it wasn't going to get anywhere. But honestly, making the last three years a waste would be just as bad.

We'll keep working, even if people stop caring or give up on us. Because we've come to far at this point to give up on ourselves. Everybody has a midlife crisis - we just have to get over ours.

If you have an urge to join us in our struggle of self-improvement, we're currently taking applications for all roles, including writers. Our biggest need is still a background artist. If you'd like to apply, please post on the relevant section of our forums or feel free to PM me (raithfyre) there directly.

And as always, you can talk about the post on there too.

Kind of irrelevant but I've included a couple actual colored sprites. One is the hands-down best romance option in the game, and the other is Isolda.

(Just kidding, it's actually Erik's dad)

Monday, June 1, 2015

Blog Post - June 1st

Summer's here, and Summer always brings warm feelings, good tidings, and a whole host of other nice things. Right? Right.

Sorry that we haven't posted anything lately. Just like the last few posts have said, there's not a whole lot to report. Most of our announcements tend to follow either something very good, or very bad. There's been neither, for a long while now. But still, people have been getting kinda antsy, and with good reason, so here's the scoop:

A while ago, we said that we were done with the script, barring some editing and minor revisions. Well, as our new editors looked things over, it became more obvious that the needed revisions weren't exactly minor after all. So, there's been a lot of heavy reworking. Scenes are being rewritten, new scenes are being added, and even the general pathing of Act 1 is being adjusted slightly. All that's going well, and at a good pace, but it's not particularly thrilling to hear about, so we haven't made a big fuss over it.

On the artistic front, you've probably noticed but our old friend ProNice has rejoined us, as well as Nyki. They're both helping out with CG's, and ProNice is also doing some sprite work. Relatedly, if you're a background artist looking for a project to join, hit us up.

Moving forward, I can't promise more regular updates, but do rest assured that we'll inform you if anything big happens. With summer starting, all of us should be able to make faster progress than we have been. Most of us have been held back by school, moving, or working on other projects. Summer resolves a few of those issues, and so the train of progress should be getting back on track. Here's hoping, at least.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Friday, March 20, 2015

Oblogatory Blogress Update

Hi all,

There's not a whole lot of significant news to report or anything like that - I just wanted to make a post because I don't like going too long without one. Recently, we picked up two editors and an additional programmer, just to lighten some of our collective workload. Sprites continue to chug along at a pretty good rate. By my estimates, we have 4 or 5 more side characters and one or two more main characters who need sprited. After that, it'll be time to work on CG's. We're not really aiming for a super high CG count, simply in the interest of time. There might be an updated version of Act 1 released later on with more CG's, but that's not a certainty.

On a side note, I'd like to personally apologize to anyone who applied or otherwise contacted us and didn't hear back. We only recently finished going through yet another rough patch in our development period, and were bad about responding to inquiries. If you had questions or comments that we didn't answer, feel free to resubmit them and I'll get back to you ASAP.

Until next time,


Saturday, February 14, 2015

Happy Valentine's Day!

We're flattered that you could pull yourselves away from the 50 Shades premiere to be with us here today. After all, nobody loves us like you do. Because we believe that relationships should be equal part give and take, we've got a couple gifts, coming from Honitsu and Sendo respectively.

Natasha by Honitsu

Isolda by Sendo

There's also a bit of good news to share today. Our art roster has once again grown: we've a new background artist named Zion joining up with us. This doubles our number of background artists by bringing us up to two. I'll post some samples of his work once there's more of that.

Here's hoping that you have a lovely holiday, whether you're spending it alone or with your significant other (2D or 3D - we won't judge). If you'd like though, come chat with us on the forums. See you 'round!