Development on this is going to be lightning fast since I have to finish it on time to turn it in.
We don't have a whole lot in terms of art concepts right now, so I'll just wax poetic a bit about the story and the characters. I'll update the post with pictures once the official character designs are done. The entire game has only two characters with sprites (and one minor character without a sprite) and two settings: the elevator and David's office. The entire thing should take no longer than 20-25 minutes to complete from start to finish.STORY/CONCEPT
The working title we have for this VN (a working title that is beginning to stick) is The Elevator
. It takes place in the not-too-distant future and the story centers on a jaded, middle-aged detective. Every morning, he rides a rickety old elevator up to his office on the top floor of a run-down building. For the last couple of months, he has met a young woman every day in this elevator. She always gets off a few floors before him. Sometimes they talk, sometimes they spend the entire elevator ride in complete silence–but how will the relationship between these two people change?
The Elevator is not a dating sim by any stretch of the imagination, but there might be some light romantic elements to it. I can't say much more about the story without spoiling it, but it's kind of about the monotony of daily life and how things that seem normal might not be when you look back on them.SETTING
This story is set in the future, but not so far out that our society is run by robots and everyone teleports everywhere. At this point in time, there is no more central government. Countries, states, and cities have been fragmented and each district has its own local government. The police, healthcare, and other social services are no longer national government-funded, so the power of, say, the police force depends highly upon how wealthy that particular district is. Many services are now privately-run enterprises instead of guaranteed for all citizens. Without any welfare programs to speak of, people who don't have enough money to feed themselves or pay taxes end up in debtors' prison or dead. Poorer districts often seem like chaotic anarchies and in some places, private detectives and volunteer militias have more power than the police. With local governments having to do so much, it's easy for illegal immigrants, criminals, and the like to slip through the cracks. The bureaucracy hasn't changed much despite being on a local level, so many people choose to subvert the system entirely. Though a lot of of places are now a lot more urbanized and approaching the sleek Jetsons look of the future, there are many abandoned areas or pockets of old buildings that were never renovated and still stand.CHARACTERSDavid Carmichael
: The main character, a detective in his late 30's/early 40's. He was once a young hotshot in the homicide department of the police and became famous after he personally apprehended a notorious serial killer. However, David soon found that he couldn't handle the attention, pressure, and expectations that were stacked on top of him after this case. He ended up quitting his job and quietly starting a private detective office with his best friend Jonathan North. For years, they've mostly handled small cases like finding people's lost pets or spying on cheating spouses, though sometimes David's past in the homicide department comes back to haunt him. The years have changed David from a young, optimistic officer to a jaded, somewhat bitter middle-aged detective. He has had rotten luck with women and has spent many years alone. He is the dry, lightly sarcastic type, but he's by no means an introvert, freely offering his opinion to anyone who will listen. Despite his bad experiences, David can't help but rush into situations and make the same mistakes over and over again, always saying that "it's too late to teach an old dog new tricks".Elena
: "The girl in the elevator", an intern who appears to be around 22-26 years of age (David hasn't asked). She is a quiet, but positive, girl who is always in the elevator with David every morning. However, she always gets off on floor 54. (David works on floor 78) He doesn't know much about her except that she is an intern working at an office in the same building as him. It's unclear as to what company she works for, but judging by the stacks of papers and folders she's always holding, it's some sort of research group or perhaps a journalist publication of some kind. Because Elena is on the shy side, she doesn't often initiate conversation, especially at first. Eventually she begins to warm up to David and perhaps even develops a bit of a crush on him...? David has never been good with women, though, so sometimes he's not sure about how to deal with Elena/her growing affection for him, but she seems to be a nice, bright young woman so he at least finds her to be pleasant company. Though he finds himself wondering about who she is and what she does in the building, David feels that it's not really his place to pry; even though they have seen each other every morning for months on end, they have yet to pass the level of acquaintances.