I’ll offer a quick TL;DR for those who don’t want to read too much or just need to know straight away if they could be interested. I would, however, advise you to read the whole post to get a clear, distinct idea!
In few words, we’re developing a psychological VN with occasional NSFW and dating sim elements, focusing on the theme of human relationships and their faults: maintaining friendships, letting go of them, forming stronger bonds, struggling for them… all from a sober, realistic perspective, in opposition to the more exaggerated tone of other stories in the genre. We’ve got the programming. writing and music department set up; we only need an environmental artist and a character artist.
Realistic storytelling, no over-the-top plotlines or stories.
We’re working on a prologue first to gather crowdfunding support. The profits will be distributed then. If popular reaction is positive, we’ll continue to develop the project to completion!
We’re going for a semi-realistic, mostly Western style. That said, we’d have no problem accepting more Eastern designs if you are proficient in them!
It will contain NSFW scenes and themes, additionally.
We’d expect you to be fairly active, though reasonably so. Let us know what your availability is, and how committed you can be! Everything can be discussed.
Reach out to me through Reddit first with your contact details and portfolio!
And now for the long version:
I. Who we are
We are a small team of indie game developers looking to engineer a visual novel. We believe it’s an ideal medium for profound, meaningful storytelling, and one that offers minimal obstacles in terms of tangible resources. As such, we plan to delve right into it with “You’re another“, a project that we have so far defined as follows:
“You’re another” is an original Western visual novel based on the RenPy engine, meant to initially release for Microsoft Windows, MacOS and Linux. Its core style could be defined as “sentimental naturalism”. In this sense, it can be understood as a psychological VN with dating simulator characteristics, told through a semi-linear storyline with multiple endings and limited player choice, containing, however, notable sexual and erotic themes at select points throughout the plot.
What is that which we call “sentimental naturalism”, however? In a way, it’s a term to define our philosophy regarding this project. We don’t believe in the over-the-top plots and elements you may find in other VNs/dating sims/slice of life of the same genre; rather, we think there’s much to see in depicting human relations as what they are: human. We want to represent a more sober, serene style of storytelling; one that emphasizes the virtues, issues and faults of human social life, and wishes to grant the player the opportunity to explore them in a uniquely immersive way.
II. The themes we deal with
The story orbits around a teenager who, after years away from his secluded hometown, returns to find things simply aren’t the same. Old friends have changed, grown distant, become different. His family has been torn. Even he, himself, isn’t who he used to be. Change is the central theme of our VN. What makes us who we are, despite the passing of time and the changing of space? Why do we struggle to let go of the old, and fear the new? Should we accept that nothing is eternal, and that all things can appear or disappear in an instant, including the people around us?
These are the questions our VN reflects on, and intends to explore. By putting the player in the shoes of our main character, they will be able to interact with the cast, learn of their stories, reconnect with a few old faces and meet some other new, unearth their secrets and, perhaps, form much stronger bonds with them. Will a relationship simply not work out? Will it become platonic? Romantic? Purely sexual? Each character will be a different challenge, a different mind to understand, and a different story to be told. Other themes worth noting that may be touched on are mental health, social exclusion, common youth dilemmas and personal identity alike.
III. Who we need
We are looking for two people to complete our team:
a) A character artist to draw the various sprites and specific scenes. We are going for a mostly semi-realistic, Western-style, but please let us know what your aesthetic is either way! We are open to exploring all possibilities. More details on contact.
b) An environment artist to render/draw the background images that illustrate the VN’s various locations. It’s going to be a mountainous rural town, rather bleak in general. Exteriors and interiors. More details on contact.
IV. What our scope is, and your rev-share
We understand, however, that it’s far too ambitious to go for a complete novel at first. Rather, we’re aiming to make a prologue first to see if we work well together, if the story flows steady, and if our audience would be interested in seeing more of our project. That way, we can gauge our prospective future with only a reasonable amount of effort, remaining modest and understanding of our condition as independent developers. The earnings from our crowdfunding upon the release of the prologue will be distributed as agreed on between the team members. There is also an additional budget prepared for minor aspects: royalties for sound effects, other licenses, etc.
Shoot us a PM! This account will be used to answer all your doubts and applications. If you want to know more about the terms of collaboration, conditions and what’s not, feel free to ask!