Dec 16

Weekly Update 489: Credits & Working With Limitations

As mentioned in last week’s blog post, I have now moved on to working on the credits for GENBA no Kizuna. Just like in SHINRAI, they aren’t just a sequence of development categories and names, but get interspliced with some short dialogue exchanges between the characters you have met throughout the game. As such, they do require quite a bit of work, but I’ve mostly wrapped them up over this past week. Of course, they will also need some more polish, but I’ve written everything out at least. Well, except for the very last scene. That one poses some difficulties, but I can’t really get into those due to spoilers.

In general, despite how short they are, it wasn’t quite as easy to write these mini scenes as it might seem. The main problem here being asset restrictions. There’s a lot of fancy stuff I would’ve liked to do, buuut… it’s not really worth it to draw entirely new sprites or backgrounds for an exchange between two characters, that doesn’t even last a minute, haha…

For instance, I wanted to show what became of our two witness characters. Last time you get to see them is at the start of chapter 4 and you more or less just get told that they basically leave once you are done with them. I did want to include them in the credits, however. The question just was… how? Or rather “where”? They’re not at the residence anymore and I literally have no BGs outside of it, so where does the scene take place? What do you see in the back? Their homes might be a logical answer, but again… I’m not gonna spend tons of hours drawing new BGs for this. So I had to come up with a different solution. And in this case, it was to simply repurpose one of the later SHINRAI BGs (from the epilogue). Now, granted, that wasn’t super easy either, because those BGs were made for a completely different screen resolution, the time of day wasn’t right and the style doesn’t fully align with how I do BGs now. So it still required some editing work, but it was obviously a whole lot quicker than whipping up something completely new!

Just finding a usable BG wasn’t my only worry, however. Because, even though I had one now, I also needed to write the scene around it in a way. Why are the characters in this place now when it would actually make so much more sense for them to be at home? Like, it’s late in the evening and pretty cold, so why are they walking around out in the street? Of course, I didn’t want to give full on explanations for such a circumstance, but there needed to be some sort of remark within their dialogue to address this.

And to be honest, I think it led to a really fun result that even ties back into a particular running gag, you now get actual pay-off for!
I really wish I could fully explain all this by talking about the exact scene and the characters and I will certainly do that in the future, once GENBA is out, but for now… I sadly have to keep things more on the vague side again, so I’m sorry about that.

To me, it’s an interesting example of trying to work within limitations, though. By trying to keep the extra work as minimal as possible, I was forced to come up with creative solutions and I think it actually made the result much better than if I would have gone with my original “dream scene” instead.

Anyway, it’s certainly been a lot of fun to work on the credits, especially since this is where I can really tie SHINRAI and GENBA together. I really hope that, when players see these scenes, those who have played SHINRAI will get a smile on their faces while those who haven’t will be thinking: “Okay, I gotta check out SHINRAI now!!”

But that about wraps it up for today’s post, so as always, please enjoy the rest of your weekend and, until next Saturday, take care :3