*Warning: Some violent, morbid and creepy content. This is not a child friendly game despite the cute kittens. If your not interested in this project but can think of something that could make the concept more interesting to you, please let me know. Xerhoul's Creatures: A Cat's Story A Survival Horror About Animals *gifs not of sprites in prototype which, mostly has placeholder assets, but to demonstrate what direction I'd go for of sprites I'd utilize in a completed game. Spoiler: Premise Mama Kat used to live a peaceful life family: her owner and her owner's other pets. She had everything she needed, and the only thing she had to worry about was her brother and the family dog annoying her. Now the humans are gone and the town pets are either dead or want Mama Kat dead. All that remains of her family are her three young kittens. To keep what's left of her family alive, she must hunt and avoid being hunted. But feral dogs, and territorial and cannibal rival cats, are not the only creatures she has to fear. In absence of man, strange and terrifying beasts have begun to arrive. Some from the cold forests of the north, others from the dark ruins to the south. These deadly creatures now fight to claim rulership of this land, with Mama Kat's family caught in between. This is a prototype for a game concept I've wanted to make for a long time: A post apocalyptic open world survival horror game about animals trying to raise families in a savage land where man has left behind ruins... and nightmares. A strong emphasis on creature interactions in a dynamic ecosystem where the player is small and not special to the world. Each creature has it's own ways to hunt or avoid being hunted (the prototype has 32 different species of creatures, 12 of which prey animal for the player) Many creatures are individuals with unique personalities. Various habitats and regions that require different playstyles having different dangers and prey sources. The animals, especially the player, can use foliage and their environment to their advantage. Such as hiding in the grass or using trees to escape predators. A combination of artstyles such as pixel and photomanipulation Some Influences: Shelter 2, Call of The Wild, Raptor Red, Rainworld, Tokyo Jungle, White Fang, Warrior Cats, Spoiler: Other Influences Silent Hill, SCP Containment Breach, S.T.A.L.K.E.R, Resident Evil, Isolation (a 2005 Irish film), various flash horror games such as Exmortis and Vorago, and various rpg maker horror such as Snow Drift. --------------------------------- Here's a download link to the prototype. I should warn though it's VERY buggy and the controls are terrible. If you'd rather not play this mess (which I honestly wouldn't blame you) then please at least look at one of the videos.The prototype was created more as a concept test than to be a game in of itself. http://www.mediafire.com/file/el0ax103saq0mci/Cat+Story.exe I would like opinions on concepts, but more importantly, what would make this project more appealing to you ----------------- Here's some WIP sprites to give an idea of what sort of art a proper game would have whereas the art used in the prototype is mostly placeholders. Spoiler: WIP Sprites for Future Work" Some of the sprites in the below images were not originally made for RPG Maker (or this project) but they do give an idea of what art direction I intend to go with (and some could be repurposed for rpg maker). Ignore the dinosaurs in the image, they're not relevant to this project. Sprites From The Prototype Although the prototype uses many placeholder assets, I added many of my own sprites (owl, deer, snake, humans and most monsters). Spoiler: Original Placeholder Sprites in Prototype SCREENSHOTS FROM PROTOTYPE Spoiler Concept Art Spoiler This next pic is no longer "canon" to this game's story but does demonstrate the general direction I would go with humanoid monsters. GAMEPLAY MECHANICS AND CONCEPTS (This is rather wordy, see above for basic synopsis) Spoiler A dynamic ecosystem where the player is neither special nor important. Each creature tries to hunt or avoid being hunted. For example, at 6:20 in Part 4 of the playthrough, an owl catches a mouse that mama kat was stalking. Although in the prototype, rats and snakes will also hunt mice while dogs and wolves hunt rabbits. There are also occasions where player can find dogs and wolves chasing animals such as deer and foxes (although these are preset events, I want in the future for it to be more procedural). There are also cutscenes, and preset events, of animals fighting for food and territory but again I plan for that to be be more procedural with actual combat between npcs. Many of the animals are individuals with personalities. Among mama's kittens: the white is often the first to greet her, the black loves to play chase. Both black and white kittens sleep on a cat bed. The tabby kitten is a lazy bum who sleeps wherever it's standing. Among the dogs: the brown is the slowest yet most powerful, the white is fastest, the husky sees farthest and the black/grey dogs can track mama's scent even if they haven't seen her. Each prey animal has a means of escape other than just fleeing and none (except bugs and certain abominations) are helpless to predators. Rodents can run into holes, birds fly off, squirrels can climb trees and buildings, bullfrogs swim away and etc. Rats will bite when cornered and rabbits can deliver powerful kicks if caught. Most games have ambient noises that are not made by ai, but rather are simply background noise. But Cat Story has birds and frogs that let out calls both for atmosphere and to notify player that prey is in the area. Strange objects and edible non-animal creatures that can do things for player that ordinary wildlife cannot (e.g regenerate health, increase stats and etc.) Various habitats and regions that require different playstyles having different dangers and prey sources. Players will have to decide which areas are safer and offer the best food. Prey and dangers vary upon time of day as well. The animals, especially the player, can use foliage and their environment to their advantage. In the game mother cat and other animals can use tall grass and bushes to hide from prey and predators. She (and owls) can hide in trees as well. To escape many predators, mother cat can climb trees while squirrels can also climb buildings. However, I'm not very happy with how tree climbing came out in Cat Story. But I'm not sure how else to set that mechanic in a 2d overhead setting. A combination of artsyles. For example the prototype, aside from traditional pixel art it also contains photomanipulation. When I was younger I played a lot of flash horror, many of which utilized photo-manipulation (especially Exmortis). But I also really loved Omega Flowey from Undertale. So I decided to try photomanipulation for a game myself. The image I used was of uncooked mutton being sold at a market. While I like how it came out, I'm not sure I'll do it again in the future. I'm not sure how to utilize photo-manipulation in a 2d overhead game without getting repetitive. Plus, even if I do photo-manip again, I don't think I'll use meat again for a source image for various reasons. Playthrough and Videos Spoiler I made a playthrough video series (as well as videos of cutscenes and bonus content). Since the playthrough was kind of long, the spoiler below only has parts 4 and 5 (and the extras). They were shorter while showing off more atmosphere and gameplay. The rest of the playthrough series is on my youtube channel and demonstrates other mechanics and atmosphere. Credits for resources used to make the prototype are in part 7. Part 5 Part 4 All Cutscenes (plus hidden extras) The Zoo --- All resources were either made by me, RTP from VX Ace and XP (I own both), purchased DLC or resources free for non-commercial usage (mainly scripts, music and animal sound effects). No animals were hurt in the making of this prototype. The sound effects came from various sources online, none of which stated animals being harmed (for example, the dog death howl was actually just a slowed down puppy tantrum). If you know otherwise, please let me know so I can remove it. The photo-manipulation was made using an image from FLICKR of mutton being sold at a market from human consumption.