Build 0.2.8, progress update, SFW mode and original music

Hey everyone,

hope you're alright during these interesting times.

It's been a while since the last update, so I guess it's about time for a bit of a status report. I originally planned to have the current update finished a while back already, so first of all I'd like to answer the unasked question: Why the delay? Though not the only reason, there's of course the ongoing Covid crisis to be named, which made things chaotic with my dayjob and at times brought a higher workload than usual, thus affecting working on the game as well. Amidst all this I had to undergo a complicated jaw surgery (damn those pesky wisdom teeth) that took some time to recover from and completely put development to a halt for a while. But despite those temporary setbacks the main reason for the slow progress is a simple one:

I starting out with zero knowledge about programming or scripting, and though bit by bit I managed to make the game work how I wanted it to (mostly), this also means, the more I learn the more I have to go back and rework the code. Naturally this takes a lot of time, pushing back creation of actual content. It probably also wasn't a good idea to try and keep two separate working files for the desktop and mobile version of the game, which is why I spent the last weeks on unifying the UI for both so I can keep working on a single file without having to track back every change I make. (Guess I had to learn this the hard way.) All in all progress is going to continue taking its time simply because me being only one person working on the game beside my dayjob, even though I try to allocate as much time to the development of the game as possible. This is also the reason why for the time being I still can't give any specific release dates for build updates.

On the more positive side I managed to implement some long overdue features like volume control settings and the dialogue log, as well as a couple of quality of life improvements like more keyboard shortcuts for the desktop version and a overall more responsive UI. Next step will be the often asked for skip functionality, which will require some more reworking the game structure to turn this into a more automated process instead of implementing for every dialogue by hand, as would be necessary by now. This is probably going to be the last addition I'm going to make for the demo before finally moving to proceed working on the actual game.

Which brings me to another often asked question: Why is the demo so short? The answer would be mainly because it's supposed to be short. The demo was originally created as a live demo to be presented at conventions and the like, possible to play through in a single short session while showing as many features as possible and get a feel for the characters and the setting. I decided to stick to the demo as is for now and rather include more features to make it look like what had envisioned for the complete game instead of adding more content and having to work out each feature for a much larger game scene afterwards. That being said I continued working on future content and fleshing out characters and story events in between, along with putting together a working but barebone prototype with a playtime of roughly an hour and a half, which now needs to be adapted to the quality as shown in the current demo.

In other news, the game now features original music composed by Civ Valian, known for his work on Password and Tennis Ace, which is eventually going to replace the currently used royalty free music. For now there are two tracks in the game, you can listen to more of his work here, it's great.

On a final note, even though the full game will feature (optional) adult scenes, since the demo doesn't contain any adult content, I'm going to change the game to SFW to make it easier accessible to more people as long as it's still in development. I will change it back to NSFW once explicit content is actually implemented in the game.

Also, for all those of you that have shown interest in supporting the game, I've got a Patreon in the works which will be going live soon and will offer a couple of additional benefits. I'll keep you informed once it's ready.
That's all for now, thanks for sticking around and stay safe!

CHANGELOG ver.0.2.8 05/2020
- unified desktop and android build (font size, UI, objects, etc.)
- added orginal music
- added audio controls
- added conversation log function
- added hint system
- various small bugfixes
- reworked dialogues, corrected typos
- some minor graphic updates
- changed studio name and logo


When the Stars (Demo) 0.2.8 - Windows 74 MB
Jun 06, 2020
When the Stars (Demo) 0.2.8 - Windows 32bit 72 MB
Jun 06, 2020
When the Stars (Demo) - macOS 74 MB
Jun 06, 2020
When the Stars (Demo) 0.2.8. - Android 124 MB
Jun 06, 2020

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Wow, first comment. This is by far the best visual novel i have ever played, regardless of the playtime. I loved every single bit of this game and i wish it will become the best visual novel in the fandom,or at least one of the most popular.

A player 

Hey, thanks a lot for your praise. ^^ You can't really plan popularity, but I'll keep working on it and see where it goes from there. Thanks again! :3