RMMV Starheart

artoni

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Your hand in mine
My hand in yours
We'll pull each other through
Though walls may crack
And towers fall
It's us they will look to

See the end as only a new start-
What the world can never tear apart-

Our Starheart.


Starheart is a project I've worked on for nearly six years, off and on; what started out as an experiment to make a JRPG without a Man vs Man storyline has turned in to a story about terminal illness, and the emotions surrounding the desperate quest for a cure.

Follow Ari, a young girl who once dreamed of something more than a simplistic life in her village. Though she now has the opportunity to see and explore the world as she always craved, over her head hangs the shadow cast by a Starheart's light - she has inadvertently absorbed one of those that fell during the Star Shower, and holds within her a dangerous power that many spend their entire lives trying to master. Given a timeframe of a single year, she dares hope of finding a way to survive, but is about to learn that it's far more than just her own life in danger.

Starheart features:
  • Story-driven gameplay that explores the common themes and moralities surrounding illness and disease
  • Unique skill progression. Abilities are learned by practicing existing skills in addition to meeting level criteria
  • 100% optional sidequest system through the 'Explorer's Guild'
  • Illustrated cutscene art/CGs
  • Openly LGBTQ+ characters, because representation matters
Ari Khamai
A young woman hoping to become a Woodguard.
She yearns for more than this simplistic life.


Ari's primary abilities are her Ranger Skills and Starmagic. The former is a wide variety of skills based on her experience training for the Woodguard, the general wardens of her forest village (the leader of which is her father, who may or may not be blocking her entrance). The latter is based on her growing familiarity with the Starheart's energies, but due to the circumstances surrounding her learning, overusage can lead to unexpected effects...
Rochelle Trueheart
A runaway who has become Ari's best friend.
She refuses to take anything too seriously.


Rochelle relies on Throwing her Chakram for a number of offensive attacks. She also can use her Acrobatics as well to utilize different techniques that can either boost her party or inhibit the enemy. Mostly self-taught in terms of abilities as opposed to having any formal training, she draws inspiration from her own experiences to come up with a unique combat style.



Prototype of Ari's Overpower/Exhaust mechanic. The Starheart grants powerful magic, but her body isn't accustomed to it and can become overwhelmed. As the game progresses, she will be able to tolerate more and more usage - but is this for better or worse?


Cutscene demonstation A. Implementation of CGs for dramatic moments.


Cutscene demonstration B. Just when Ari thought she made a clean getaway...


Starheart is scheduled to release a preliminary proof-of-concept demo (~30 minutes to 1 hour) at the end of January. It is planned to be forever free, as well. I am also still working on finding freelancers to work on spriting, CGs, etc, as many assets are still prototypes and exist mostly as placeholders.

See the end as only a new start-
One is just the other's counterpart-

See the end as only a new start-
My love for you won't e'er depart-


Starheart.
-------------------------

itch.io - contains devlog + will be hosting demo
 
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VicWhite

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Nice character portraits. Are they drawn by you?

You may have plans to fix this already, but the color of the character sprites crashes a bit with the map.

All the best with the development :D
 

artoni

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They're commissioned from a friend of mine; the profile images are mine, as is the current title screen.

The sprites are in the process of being reworked, but what did you mean by clash?
 

VicWhite

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They're commissioned from a friend of mine; the profile images are mine, as is the current title screen.

The sprites are in the process of being reworked, but what did you mean by clash?
I mean like graphics look different, there's no harmony.
 

artoni

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They're resized from looseleaf so they may be a bit blurry; maybe it's just a matter of eye (I have no idea how to phrase that). It may also be that because it's what I'm used to working with them (+ FSM) I don't see it like you do, but I sincerely appreciate the feedback!

Like I said, though, they're being reworked. :) I've got a great artist on commission helping me out with them, but for the demos, we'll probably have to stick with them for a bit. Hopefully they don't make the game unplayable for you or anyone else, though I'd love to hear anyone else who's seeing the same.

I do have a mixture of art styles in here - insomuch the message expressions/character art - but I'm blaming that, right now, on preliminary status. My plan is to have the same artist do full-body commissions for the equipment screens, down the line, to sync it - as well as figuring out how I want to adjust the cutscene art. (Which right now is another artist, another style - I LOVE the art, I love how it came out, but it's definitely different).

In fact, you know what? I'm gonna share it.
comission_artoni_by_shiromyhyuuga-dc1qdro.jpg
 

VicWhite

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They're resized from looseleaf so they may be a bit blurry; maybe it's just a matter of eye (I have no idea how to phrase that). It may also be that because it's what I'm used to working with them (+ FSM) I don't see it like you do, but I sincerely appreciate the feedback!

Like I said, though, they're being reworked. :) I've got a great artist on commission helping me out with them, but for the demos, we'll probably have to stick with them for a bit. Hopefully they don't make the game unplayable for you or anyone else, though I'd love to hear anyone else who's seeing the same.

I do have a mixture of art styles in here - insomuch the message expressions/character art - but I'm blaming that, right now, on preliminary status. My plan is to have the same artist do full-body commissions for the equipment screens, down the line, to sync it - as well as figuring out how I want to adjust the cutscene art. (Which right now is another artist, another style - I LOVE the art, I love how it came out, but it's definitely different).

In fact, you know what? I'm gonna share it.
There you go, I think is the re-scale, since when you can't have the right proportion (ie divisible by 2) the program will blur the pixels in order to fake it.

And yeah, it's just feedback in order to help you with the game :rhappy:

Really nice cutscene, if you are gonna use them on a regular basis I am sure it will improve the narrative. The art of your friend is just amazing.

I will keep an eye on the thread, can't wait to take a look when demo is released!
 

Finnuval

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This looks interesting :)
 

artoni

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This isn't a decision made lightly, but due to a few factors - primarily a lengthy migraine and school starting - I am pushing back the demo to 2/11 at the latest. In the interest of not having a post that's JUST bad news, though, here's a look at the revamped logo - courtesy of @Plueschkatze !


 

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