IYN Devlog #10: Preparing the Itch.io Page + DTWM Fanpack

The first devlog on the new site, CG previews, and coding updates



Note: This blog entry is mirrored from the Weebly site with some slight differences, since I wrote it before I knew the site would be delayed.

First new devlog! How are you guys liking the new site? Hopefully it's easy enough for people to read on! This site is one of the things I worked on over the past couple of weeks. I've been keeping a physical development notebook lately and its helped me keep track of all the different things I'll be needing as the game progresses. My own site and info pages for my games were high on the list!

I'll start off with In your Nature's progress first. Primarily I've been focusing on my plans to get a working demo and to set up the Itch.io page. So I didn't get much writing done but it was still enough to hit the 25k mark! Woohoo~! It's a milestone that had been feeling hard to reach lately so I'm very happy about finally making it there. Currently the Common route is done and Day 1 of Oleander's route is about 2/3 done. It's still first draft so things might need reworked a bit later but right now I'm happy with the progress I've been making.

I've also been working on the GUI since I want what I show on the game page to be accurate to what playing the game will be like. I'm the first to admit UI design isn't my forte but I'm a lot happier with the new design I've gone with, themed around dried flowers and scrapbooking for Fawn.

A gif that shows the In Your Nature GUI in use
A gif that shows the In Your Nature GUI in use

The quick menu buttons are designed after cute washi tape strips!

I still need to program the GUI to be adaptive to other types of scenes. I plan to have a variant for prolonged horror sections as well as one for when CGs are showing that covers less of the details behind it. But this is the base one and I think it's looking good! The mobile version will be similar but will contain a drop down menu as previously discussed instead of the always-visible washi buttons.

The other thing the itch.io page will need are some key CGs that give the general vibe of the story as well as being eye catching and showing people what to expect from the final game, since they will be assets used in the final game. I want at least one with each of the route characters and I decided at least one of them should be one of the more casual scenes from the story since there are still slice of life elements between all the tension. Anyone who played Don't Toy With Me knows my horror isn't immediately fast moving, haha.

Currently the only fully completed one is of Lily in the local cafe on the first day of her route. She's living her best goth babe life and is going to make sure nothing happens to Fawn. So don't even worry! She's got your back! 💪🏽😤💕

CG from the In Your Nature visual novel featuring Lily Rivera in a cafe
CG from the In Your Nature visual novel featuring Lily Rivera in a cafe

Lily attaining Maximum Vibes.

The semi-tough thing about choosing what to show on the page is making sure the things you pick to show are appealing, accurate to the game (so for example not something that would give the impression it's a different genre), but also not too spoilery. Obviously some things need spoiled. My main pitch on the game involves spoiling Oleander's relationship to Fawn after all. But that doesn't mean you've gotta put everything out there upfront.

Pickles' game page CG is still a WIP but I'm feelin' good about the emotions on this one. Neither he nor Fawn are feeling the good emotions but, ya know, c'est la vie as a horror visual novel character.

It could be worse, guys! At least it's not a time loop story!

I'm eager to get these things put together since it will mean people will be able to Follow the game and be alerted right when it's released. I'm still planning on putting together a newsletter (which you can sign up for ahead of time with the form below) but I know there are people who only want the game/to know when the demo comes out and not these updates, haha. The Steam page will have to wait a little longer, partially because I'm wary of spending too much at once on things for the game since my funds are limited and partially because...

The Don't Toy With Me Fanpack

I'm sure at least some of you reading this are familiar with Dan Salvato's Doki Doki Literature Club. Personally I have the girls on my desk!

Ah yes, surrounded by nostalgic fluff items.

Doki Doki Literature Club launched as a free game on steam with an option to buy "fan pack" sold for ten dollars that included the soundtrack and some wallpapers. I've honestly thought a while on adding Don't Toy With Me to Steam, especially since it would be a good way to get people on an even larger marketplace interested in my work. But it's hard to justify launching a free game with no paid options when it costs $100 to put a game on Steam.

So why not follow Doki Doki's cue and offer some bonuses?

Now, Don't Toy With Me doesn't have an original soundtrack so I can't offer that. So what sort of things will the fan pack offer? I have some ideas.

The Ideas
  • Four wallpapers (2 desktop, 2 phone background) with new original art.

  • Digital "stickers" for use on Discord and Telegram.

  • Some cute 4koma comics exclusive to the fanpack?

  • Character bio pages with a bit more detail than what's given on the game pages.

A preview of some of the stickers I've sketched!

The pack will be small and likely priced at $5. The majority of people who have paid for Don't Toy With Me (which I'm very grateful for! It's a huge help!) have paid that much and will find the pack is automatically included in their library once it's added as a paid file.

I'm currently waiting on an answer from Itch.io on how I can make sure the fan pack also makes its way to anyone who purchased The Queer Games Bundle from either version as I feel they should have it too. It would feel scummy to include my free game in the bundle then add paid content that isn't included with your purchase of that bundle. So I'll see if there's anything I have to do to ensure everyone gets their copy.

Having a sellable item to include on the Steam page will help to justify the steep (for me) cost of putting Don't Toy With Me on that storefront. Success there would be nice for helping to fund my projects but primarily my hope is to get my games in front of even more people! I know people have their issues with Steam but it's still one of the primary online game stores so it is what it is. It will be a good chance to learn to add achievements and steam integration anyway, haha.

If you have opinions to share on anything here or things you would want to see included in the fan pack, please let me know! You can comment below, let me know on any of my socials, or hit up my CuriousCat!

Thanks for reading and see you next time~

Sign up for when we launch our newsletter!:
Karmic Punishment