Mikaela’s birthday present

October 26, 2018 at 9:30 am | Posted in Artwork, Birthday, Characters, Plans, Progress, Screenshots | Leave a comment
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Hey folks! It’s my birthday today, so I’m sharing some significant progress of Café Memoria Deux!

CMD - in-game screenshot

Mikaela: “H-happy birthday! I-I’m not saying this because I like you, you know!”

Click to view larger. Here’s a preview of an in-game demo scene, in its full glory with sprites and BGs! I’ve spent the past weeks copying the script to Ren’Py code, in particular the first in-game day. It’s mostly done, I just need to do a run-through making sure all the script is there, some debugging / improvements, and of course adding in the food artworks. Then I have to do the second day, as well as hangout days exclusive to Anna and Mikaela (and waiting on some title artworks, ahaha).

Also, Ryne’s sprite artwork has not been done yet and therefore will not be in the upcoming demo, as well as some rating stuff (that could change though). But nevertheless we’re inching closer towards a demo release! I’ll announce it once I feel confident about setting a definite date.

For those wondering, Mikaela and Jacob are not sister and brother! They kind of look like it, yeah, but they’re not related. Though, I’m sure Mikaela would dread having a brother like Jacob; saying he’ll piss her off on days end is an understatement.

Now, I’m going to take the rest of the day off and celebrate my birthday with family. Work will resume tomorrow! In the meantime, look forward to more significant progress in the coming months!

-Ryne

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Elena’s café management

August 28, 2018 at 9:08 am | Posted in Artwork, Characters, Commissions, Plans, Progress | Leave a comment
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Hey folks! Her sprite is done, so let’s meet Café Memoria owner, Elena!

Elena's outfits

As always, click to view larger. She’s the boss of Mikaela, Tristina, Aurelia, Julia, and most certainly of her daughter Anna. Elena can be a pretty nosy and mischievous lady, wanting to get into others’ personal business. But most notoriously she likes teasing her daughter lots (as mentioned in an older post). Of course Anna doesn’t like it which fuels her insecurities. It doesn’t mean that Elena hates her daughter; like all mothers should, she loves her daughter, and wants the best for her.

Things aren’t all fun and games for Elena, though. When the going gets rough, she can be pretty strict, especially when it comes to Mikaela and her anger management. Or kicking out unruly customers ^^;

As for the status of the rest of the project, I’ve been busy implementing major changes (as mentioned in last month’s post) in the script. It’s amazing when you re-read it you discover all these minor grammatical errors (ex. “if” when you really mean “it”). Am I glad that I’m giving the script another rundown! As mentioned in previous post, these changes will not be reflected in the first demo, but in subsequent versions.

We’re getting closer to a CMD demo release! Not giving a definite release date just yet, but I’ll give one out once I feel comfortable doing so.

See you next post!

-Ryne

Waking up next to Aurelia

June 28, 2018 at 8:44 am | Posted in Artwork, Backgrounds, Commissions, Plans, Progress | Leave a comment
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Morning, folks! Let’s wake up inside Aurelia’s room (and next to her), shall we? I would’ve posted food artworks here but they’re still being worked on as of this writing – because I know they have some pretty amazing detail ^_^;

Aurelia's room, evening

Click to view larger. Her color scheme is a sky blue + lemon yellow. Despite her airheaded and flirtatious nature, she’s a gamer chick. In fact she’s pretty skilled, and it is said that she easily beats arcade games on her first try. It kind of baffles her on how she wins games so easily. She doesn’t look like it but she likes racing and FPS games (who wants to play Fortnite with Aurelia? 😉 ).

Of course even if she’s an avid gamer she takes her studies very seriously, earning straight A’s, is the top of her class, and is cooking club president. Don’t ask how she’s an airhead gamer and yet excel in school – that’s how she is! Well, perhaps her only weakness is her cooking, despite being cooking club president (because her peers love her!).

Aurelia: Why do they call chicken wings, “chicken wings”?
Julia: Uh, because they’re from the wings of a chicken?
Aurelia: Oh, that’s right! Ahaha, silly me!

As far as other progress goes, character art is still in the works, hopefully we get to see one of the male characters done next month (for you ladies out there, ahaha). And maybe some finished food artworks!

Enjoy!

-Ryne

Let’s go to school

March 27, 2018 at 9:52 am | Posted in Artwork, Backgrounds, Commissions, Plans, Progress | 4 Comments
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Hey folks! Hope you’re doing well. Let’s go visit the CMD world’s school.

School, day

Click to view larger. This is a (fictional California) high school where the characters go. While the game takes place in the summer and therefore most are in summer vacation, there are characters who are taking remedial summer classes due to poor marks in the regular semesters. Like Anna and Mikaela – their grades tend to be poor compared to the other three girls. There’s also some club activities during the summer as well, like the cooking club, and is visited in-game (I do have a cooking club BG planned but that’ll be done later).

(sample snippet of script of Anna and Mikaela studying with Aurelia)
Aurelia: There! Isn’t that easy?
Anna: Waaah, I-I’m so confused!
Mikaela: Stop going too fast, dammit! I guess Relia can’t relate to our struggles, Anna.

Yes, Aurelia is the perfect girl to study with! Especially during summer vacation 😉 Well, unless you’re Mikaela or Anna, you’ll only be more confused.

Aside from that, I’ve spent most of this month working on another small side project. No, not the lollipop VN, but something different. Depending on how things go, I -might- be able to release it sometime this year! A little hint on its content – no connections to my Memoria projects (or maybe so in subtle ways?), but it’s a romance VN that explores a problem one might face when looking for a relationship.

Of course, again I’m not neglecting CMD. I do have more sprites being worked on, namely Anna’s mother Elena, and one of the male sprites. I’m sure you ladies out there would like to see some of Café Memoria male characters =)

See you next month!

-Ryne

Julia’s Love

February 26, 2018 at 9:32 am | Posted in Artwork, Characters, Commissions, Plans, Progress | Leave a comment
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It took months, but Julia’s sprite artwork is now complete! You can tell how happy she is, all colored up and ready to serve you!Julia's outfits

Click to view larger. Julia is noticeably shorter compared to the other girls – well she is the shortest of the five girls – but that doesn’t stop her from trying to give you great service! And also a small girl with a big talent for cooking. She’s in her school’s cooking club and people often ask her for help with cooking, including the club president 😉 And don’t you love how her glasses give her character? She’s not the strict student council president / class president type, but more of a sweetheart to her friends and everyone around her – well, maybe not as much as Aurelia but she makes a great (girl)friend nonetheless!

What do you guys think of her? Let me know!

In addition, I’d like to say all BG art for the demo is done; might post some more of them in the coming months. As for food artwork recruiting, still working on it! I will post an update on Twitter and here when I’m ready. Don’t want to end up commissioning artworks I won’t eventually need, and breaking the budget. Was kind of tempted to rush in and start recruiting, but going through the checklist and script already revealed that several are nothing more than just taking up space >_<

We’re getting there, right? I can’t wait to see the rest of the characters done! I really would love to see Elena done next. Because I know we would love to see an attractive business owner, and uh, mother. Ahaha. ^_^

Enjoy, and see you next post!

-Ryne

Step One to Releasing a Demo

January 30, 2018 at 9:46 am | Posted in Artwork, Backgrounds, Commissions, new year, Plans, Progress | 2 Comments
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Hey folks! Hope your new year is going well so far! As for me, it was going well early and mid-January. And ever since last week came down with a cold that’s been keeping me from working on CMD. In fact I’m battling a headache as I type this. x_x (I guess I need a break from the project a bit?)

One of my goals this year is to release something, before the end of this year (December or earlier). It could be a CMD demo, or a Lollipop VN, or even both! Because, you know, showing words and pics on this blog are just… well, words and pics, and I know you all want something from me to play with. 🙂 Note that I said it’s a goal for me to release something this year – I can’t really set a concrete release date if other factors of the project get bottlenecked. But I’ll make sure this project and the team stay motivated!

In the meantime, let’s take some more looks at the world of CMD (aka: more BG art):

Path to school, day

Here’s an urban area, or path to school, complete with a strip mall and such. This is where characters stop by to have a cup of tea (or coffee, I’m not a coffee person BTW) on the way to school. Yeah, there’s always Café Memoria, but they need alternatives, right? 😉

Lastly, some things that are coming soon:

  • Julia’s sprite is nearly finished. I hope to show her next month!
  • Depending on the situation, might be doing some recruiting within a month or two – yes, this is for the food artworks.

That’s all for now. This is only step one (corresponding to the first month of the year), hopefully leading up to a release sometime this year!

-Ryne

PS: I really hope this headache goes away…

After Christmas Dinner

December 26, 2017 at 9:40 am | Posted in Artwork, Backgrounds, christmas, Commissions, new year, Plans, Progress | Leave a comment
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Morning folks, hope you all had a great Christmas, and spending time with family and friends! I hope Santa Aurelia brought you lots of hugs, loves, and gifts, because she, uh, gave me some nice presents 🙂 And here’s some art progress as a little gift! (click to view larger)

Ryne's room, day

Let’s spend some time at my the protagonist Ryne’s room! One of his hobbies include computers, more specifically building and troubleshooting them (hardware / software-wise)! He’s not much of a gamer, but he built his computer with a, uh, Core i5 + GeForce GTX 1050, along with a somewhat high-end monitor. He’s also a bit of an anime fan (but not as much as Tristina… just wait until we get to her room!), with various figures in the cabinet – can you make out some of them? 😉 And like Mikaela, his room is of a green color-scheme. What do you guys think?

Considering the slow pace of Café Memoria Deux, I’m considering picking up my lollipop VN project and refining it some more. No, that doesn’t mean I’m cancelling CMD, more like multitasking on those two projects. Because you know, it’s been a couple years since my last VN release (the first Café Memoria), and I kind of feel things are going… stale. I need a refresher working on a smaller project and releasing it. The slowness is a little beyond my control, but might as well use that time to work on another project, as other aspects of CMD get sorted out (like Julia’s sprite art, event CG planning, etc).

Can’t really recall if I mentioned it before, but the lollipop VN will have a connection to the Café Memoria series! I hope to show some content in the next year. Especially some art of the lollipop protagonist, Li-, erp, don’t want to give out her name just yet! I think she’ll be a welcoming addition to the list of Memoria girls: Anna, Mikaela, Tristina, Aurelia, Julia, Elena, and ???.

That’s it for now. Another year has come and gone. Once again, thanks for sticking around my projects! Hope to see you again next year, and hopefully we’ll see significant progress.

-Ryne

Belated Thanksgiving dinner in Mikaela’s room

November 29, 2017 at 9:30 am | Posted in Artwork, Backgrounds, Commissions, Plans, Progress | 2 Comments
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Hey folks! Hope you guys had a great Thanksgiving last week (to those who celebrate it). As for me, spent most of my time at work – my job is one of those 24/7 establishments and therefore working holidays. I guess it kind of goes both ways, take a day off and spend time with family, or come to work and receive holiday pay. Eh, can’t really complain I guess (though my last several Thanksgivings were spent at work).

Anyway, let’s celebrate a belated Thanksgiving with new BG art! Let’s go inside Mikaela’s room, but remember that she doesn’t like it if you touch her stuff 😉 Click to view larger:

Mikaela's bedroom

Decided to go for a green color scheme, as it’s her favorite color. 🙂 While she may not look like it, one of Mikaela’s hobbies include sewing and fashion, as shown here spools of thread and some other sewing materials. In fact, her sewing hobby plays a bit of a role in the story, her past, and her personality. I’m a little tempted to post here as to how she picked up the hobby, but I’ll leave it to you to find out when I release a demo. Lastly, of course, she uses this room to, uh, study – her grades are already bad enough that she needs some time to herself to concentrate!

As for character sprites, it’s been slow this month; my sprite artist is on hiatus for almost a month due to college. Hopefully she’ll return soon and we’ll see some Julia in the next post or two! On my end, as I wait for artworks I’m still in the tedious process of planning event CGs. It’s not that bad, only have to be mindful of the time of day, what the characters are wearing, backgrounds, and whatnot. We don’t want the girls inadvertently wearing swimsuits while working in the café, right? 😉

Anyway, happy belated Thanksgiving. Thanks for sticking around and following my projects, despite progress being slow. As cliche it may sound, it means lots to me, and keeps the project going! Hope you guys stick around long enough to see CMD’s completion.

Thanks again!

-Ryne

Celebrating my birthday in Anna’s house

October 26, 2017 at 9:56 am | Posted in Artwork, Backgrounds, Birthday, Commissions, Plans, Progress | Leave a comment
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Good morning! In last month’s post we saw the exterior of Anna’s house. And now Anna wants to invite you inside to celebrate my birthday today (and have some cake)! ^_^

Living room of Anna's house

First, a comfy living room / kitchen (as almost always, click to view larger). This is where Café Memoria days start, where Anna and Elena spend time having breakfast before work. And, on their days off, lunch, dinner, as well as watching a movie or documentaries together. BTW, that red thing next to the flat-screen is not an ashtray, it’s a fragrant candle! This is a non-smoking household. Care to have some bread from the basket?

Anna's bedroom

Now, let’s go to Anna’s room! Decided to go with a pink and white scheme. Anna loves nature, so there’s a few potted plants and pictures of such. I think the woody texture of the furniture makes it more nature-y, while keeping it somewhat modern. And of course, Anna bought a laptop with the money she makes at Café Memoria. It’s an, uh, Acer laptop powered with a Core i3 + Windows 10! She’s not a gamer, anyway; she mostly uses it for schoolwork.

What do you guys think of these interior BGs? I think my BG artist did a marvelous job!

Backgrounds aside, this month has been somewhat plagued with computer problems. Some of them include a minor malware infection, to an automatic update breaking some of my software. Fortunately it wasn’t that bad thanks to scans and backups, but it did take hours to fix.

Despite the above setbacks, I tried my best to get stuff done! Among them include planning food artworks. Unlike the first Café Memoria, CMD will not be using any food stock photos, but instead will be drawn (still debating if I should hire a separate artist for this).

I’m also in the process of planning out event CG artwork. Of course this will be done by my character artist. How does one plan out event artwork anyway? I have quite a bit of CGs, and I can only gather so much references. Maybe the BG art will help a bit, for the artist to get an idea of the environment? For example, there is a scene where Ryne and Anna are studying in the latter’s room – I’m hoping the BGs will make doing CG art less complicated!

You know, I kind of regret not commissioning an artwork of Anna presenting a birthday cake. Though, at the same time it’s probably best if given from the thoughts of others, and not expecting / asking for anything. Perhaps one of the most important things I learned in my life is “it’s the thought that counts.”

Enjoy! I think I’ll celebrate my birthday by relaxing a bit today.

-Ryne

Don’t slander your waitress

August 30, 2017 at 9:18 am | Posted in Artwork, Plans, Progress, Screenshots | Leave a comment
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Modified rating system

Hey guys! I bring to you CMD’s rating system, making a return from Café Memoria. Looks mostly the same, right? Sure, I might’ve copied and pasted old code and assets into the newer, but there’s quite a bit of changes:

  • Removed the yes/no questions: “Did your waitress do something exceptional”, “Would you like to come back here again”, and “Did you like the waitress overall” – I feel these don’t offer any flexibility in the girls’ reactions
  • Added a 1-10 rating: “Tip amount” – yes, you can tip your waitress now 🙂
  • These remain the same: “Friendliness”, “How quickly food was served”, “Food quality”, “comments”
  • In the previous Café Memoria, each girl had three possible reactions: “bad, neutral, good”. For flexibility, CMD offers five possible overall reactions: “bad, mediocre, neutral, good, best”
  • Above reactions have an impact on your relationship with the girls. Relationship gained / lost varies between girls as well, e.g. relationship gained from Anna’s “good” rating is different from Aurelia’s “good” rating.
  • To prevent hair-pulling in getting the girl you want, there’s a hint box you can open, as to which words to type in the comment box. Sample words you can type in:
    • “Negative” words: irk her with words like “bad”, or ruin her day with words like “incompetent”
    • “Positive” words: put a smile on her face with words like “good”, or make her love you with words like “vivacious”
    • Each word has a varying weight to her overall reaction score
  • There’s also various major changes to the system’s backend you probably wouldn’t care about, just as long as it functions as it should, right?

I think this way, the rating system is simplified a bit, but at the same time a little more flexible. GUI would have to be reworked a bit, though.

Lastly, quoting from previous blog post:

There’s a chance I’ll be doing some recruiting next month.

Well, it’s not going to happen. Mostly because I did some scouting and I found someone for the job. Yes, I’ve already found a background artist for Café Memoria Deux. Apologies if any of you were looking forward to working with me and doing BGs, but I’ve been eyeing this BG artist for quite a while already, and waiting for her spots to be open. Her style is really what I’m after.

Note: My BG artist and character / sprite artist are different people – I say that because I know some character artists out there do BGs as well (and vice-versa)!

With that said, I hope you look forward to seeing her work for CMD! I plan to reveal the name of my BG artist and hope to have some samples by next month’s post.

Thanks for reading! (PS: Don’t slander your waitress, even if you don’t like her! 😉 )

-Ryne

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