Visual Novel support group

Is anybody else out there making a visual or kinetic novel using Daz or Poser-produced 3d art? If so, let's talk about art styles and game engines and stuff.

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  • I am currently trying to make a visual novel and i use Vinoma (Unity) to build it.

  • KA1KA1 Posts: 878
    I've thrown a few ideas together for a visual novel which culminated in starting a "prologue" novel to try and set the scene, I use Tyrano Builder but keep getting caught up in storyboarding and back story for different elements - so much so some of the back stories could potentially be novels in their own right! I do have an intro and chapter one for the prologue novel, however I stopped at that point as I was still quite early in my rendering days and have learnt a lot and am now looking at overhauling the art style and redesigning the characters.
  • BeeMKayBeeMKay Posts: 6,098
    edited March 2017

    If visual novel is turning a novel into a (web)comic, then I'm also working on one...

    That said, I'd really like something (a forum perhaps) where Visual Novels/(Web)Comic etc. done with 3D can be properly discussed and such.

    Of course, I know that we could do this in the art section of the forum, but having something dedicated is not a bad thing.

    Post edited by BeeMKay on
  • dreamfarmerdreamfarmer Posts: 1,935

    Yeah, I'd like something dedicated to. And sure-- telling a story with images and text. I've been switching between turning my manuscript into a GN or a VN.  

    I've been converting my manuscript to Ren'py the last few days, on the basis that switching over to Visual Novel Maker or Comic Book Live will be trivial if I decide to go that direction.

    I'm curious about visual novels in Unity; I found Unity really intimidating when I looked at it...

  • Griffin AvidGriffin Avid Posts: 2,419

    What's a visual novel?

    If you don't mind me asking....

  • Griffin AvidGriffin Avid Posts: 2,419

    Wow. I didn't know that was a thing. I've seen (and played) them before. I thought she was making up a term for something she was working on.

    Like comic using the Daz engine, cause that what I....

    well yeah..

  • dreamfarmerdreamfarmer Posts: 1,935

    Hah, no, not making something up. :-) My first go-round is of the 'kinetic novel' variety-- that is, the kind that doesn't have choices. Just sound and art and presentation. Probably. I LOVE writing branching interactive fiction but I'm trying to learn software and process before tumbling into more complicated things. So I have a 20k word novella (written with a VN in mind) that I'm transforming into a script. I've been designing character sprites for ages, fiddling with looks and styles. But I keep making this mistake: everytime I feel in need of some conversation or information or opinions about something, I go to the Lemmasoft forums, which are the forums associated with Ren'py (the biggest English-language VN editor). And there I'm reminded again and again that 'traditional' VNs are anime-styled and people there have gameplay expectations (like romance) mine just won't have. And then I keep second-guessing myself. So I thought it might be useful and fun to find a group of people who are also using Daz to make inroads into an art form that seems to cling to rather hidebound expectations.

  • Griffin AvidGriffin Avid Posts: 2,419

    I think you should do it. Venture forth and care not- what happens after.

    When you look ahead and see no one, look to your left and right and see no one, it might not mean you're alone.

    It just might mean you are leading and simply walking in front.

    Not sure, put it out in chapters and adjust accordingly based off feedback.

  • ArtiniArtini Posts: 3,071
    edited March 2017

    I like Unity very much, but have no story for the Visual Novel, right at the moment.

    Post edited by Artini on
  • You know, every time I look in the steam forums about visual novels I see two very distinct groups. The "romance" group and the group that just wants good story and art. I wouldnt worry too much about the romance group. Artwise, anime seems to be the ticket, but I think with an interesting art style, that can be overlooked. What I would be concerned with is the "kinetic" aspect of your novel. But then again, I guess it depends on who your marketing to. If your trying to sell something on steam, it might not go far. But elsewhere, amazon or something, it just might have legs.

  • KA1KA1 Posts: 878

    Hah, no, not making something up. :-) My first go-round is of the 'kinetic novel' variety-- that is, the kind that doesn't have choices. Just sound and art and presentation. Probably. I LOVE writing branching interactive fiction but I'm trying to learn software and process before tumbling into more complicated things. So I have a 20k word novella (written with a VN in mind) that I'm transforming into a script. I've been designing character sprites for ages, fiddling with looks and styles. But I keep making this mistake: everytime I feel in need of some conversation or information or opinions about something, I go to the Lemmasoft forums, which are the forums associated with Ren'py (the biggest English-language VN editor). And there I'm reminded again and again that 'traditional' VNs are anime-styled and people there have gameplay expectations (like romance) mine just won't have. And then I keep second-guessing myself. So I thought it might be useful and fun to find a group of people who are also using Daz to make inroads into an art form that seems to cling to rather hidebound expectations.

    I had a look at Ren'py way back but the learning curve looked a little steep right off the bat, thats when TyranoBuilder popped up as a new release on my Steam feed - it was nice having a UI and interface enabling me to quickly put prototype parts together but also has the scripting for going more in depth and more elaborate - bizarrely enough, that was just before I gave Daz3d a second go (my first was like 2012 or 13 for 2 days) with my account still existing i decided to look at Daz again March 2015 with a view to making assets for the visual novel storyboards I had been working on!

  • dreamfarmerdreamfarmer Posts: 1,935

    I have no idea re: selling my visual novel. I know I'll be able to sell at least some, because I have an existing readerbase enthusiastic about my work. But I guess on Amazon would be as an app?

    I started getting into Daz Studio when Visual Novel Maker was announced (from the same guys who make RPG Maker) and I was (and am) pretty excited about that. It's been coming out 'real soon now' for months though.

    Anime WOULD make everything easier for me... but Star isn't cutting it and I don't want to try and hack Hatsune Miku into Daz (although I know it can be done) and otherwise, well... yeah. It's hard.

    I think Ren'py has gotten a bit easier, but I'm only scratching the surface, I know-- Text and art changes are pretty trivial.

    Coming up with a story to attach to an engine is indeed a lot of work. Everytime I try to make a game my vision outdistances my capacity pretty quickly. I'm happy this time I set out to write something in the format I'm most successful in before trying to use the editing engine to produce it.

    So those of you who are producing story-with-pictures, what are you doing for your art styles? I'd love to see some art in this thread.
     

  • wizard1200wizard1200 Posts: 71
    edited March 2017

    Yeah, I'd like something dedicated to. And sure-- telling a story with images and text. I've been switching between turning my manuscript into a GN or a VN.  

    I've been converting my manuscript to Ren'py the last few days, on the basis that switching over to Visual Novel Maker or Comic Book Live will be trivial if I decide to go that direction.

    I'm curious about visual novels in Unity; I found Unity really intimidating when I looked at it...

     

    Unity is really intimidating :) But Vinoma has a very good user interface and the developer has released a lot of tutorial videos.

    Post edited by wizard1200 on
  • algovincianalgovincian Posts: 1,503
    edited March 2017

    Would love to see some artwork, too! I've got a couple of projects in the works using my NPR, but a few remaining technical hurdles and, as always, a lack of time have been conspiring against me . . .

    As far as style goes, many are in the works (horses for courses). In the back of my mind, I believe that animation will play a role no matter what the subject matter, style, and delivery format may be. All of these were produced with no human input once the 3D scene was finished being composed (leaving the door open for animation):

    - Greg

    Post edited by algovincian on
  • Would love to see some artwork, too! I've got a couple of projects in the works using my NPR, but a few remaining technical hurdles and, as always, a lack of time have been conspiring against me . . .

    As far as style goes, many are in the works (horses for courses). In the back of my mind, I believe that animation will play a role no matter what the subject matter, style, and delivery format may be. All of these were produced with no human input once the 3D scene was finished being composed (leaving the door open for animation):

    Excellent work!

  • posecastposecast Posts: 372

    There are a couple of options that I am exploring regarding choice based fiction:

    1. Smith micro motion artist

    2. Tumult hype

    3. Comic life 3.5 exported to ePub then physically manipulating the html in the ePub.

  • sura_tcsura_tc Posts: 167

    I've been working on one with Unity 3D.

    http://twoclusters.com/tc-kain-plus

    At first, I used Daz3D but realized I should try modelling as much as things I can for the sake of consistency. Additionally, Daz3D models look "too good".

    So, I am using Blender for everything.

  • sura_tc said:

    I've been working on one with Unity 3D.

    http://twoclusters.com/tc-kain-plus

    At first, I used Daz3D but realized I should try modelling as much as things I can for the sake of consistency. Additionally, Daz3D models look "too good".

    So, I am using Blender for everything.

    What do you mean by the daz models looking "too good"? Where they not right for your particular story? Do they display differently when using them with your engine? Could you expand on that a little bit?

    Ive thought about using daz models for a realistic themed visual novel. Id like to know more. laugh

  • posecastposecast Posts: 372

    I think the style of art is not really relevant in this discussion. And I don't say that to demean anyone's art. I say that to stress the fact that the technology should work with any art style. Strong points about Motion Artist and Tumult Hype are the html 5 export. This theoretically makes the content generated usable by a host of technologies. That said, I was not familiar with Tyrano and Vinoma until this thread, but now I will be all over those.

    Seriously, I would recommend anyone interested in this to take a look at Motion Artist. It is chiefly used for motion comics, but it does have the ability to add interactive buttons which are great for branching choices, but really, are most important because they let you break your projects into more manageable sized chunks and link from one to another.

    Also, don't forget powerpoint...it can do a lot of these things very very quickly, like simple motion paths, transitions, fades, spins, etc, as well as act as a wrapper for audio, video, images, and text all with interactive buttons. And since it can link to another presentation or webpage, you really can use a lot of these tools together. I think we have to capitalize on using the right tool for the job. With html 5 export you can mix all of these things we make together. Bryce renders, carrara movies, daz animations, crazy talk dialogue renders, etc...

  • sura_tcsura_tc Posts: 167
    edited March 2017

    Consistency is the key word. Daz3D models look too good unless you really put efforts into modelling background that fit the quality of models.

    Additionally, different rendering engine produce different images. You can try adjusting settings, but at the end of day, to make the whole thing look consistent, it's best that you render the whole scene from one program and render your characters from the same engine as well.

    Finally, Daz3D is only stock assets. You just don't have the selection to make everything the way you want it to be to cover all situations. For long term, it's best to design/model everything on your own from ground up.

    Post edited by sura_tc on
  • algovincianalgovincian Posts: 1,503

    Is anybody else out there making a visual or kinetic novel using Daz or Poser-produced 3d art? If so, let's talk about art styles and game engines and stuff.

    So those of you who are producing story-with-pictures, what are you doing for your art styles? I'd love to see some art in this thread.
     
    posecast said:

    I think the style of art is not really relevant in this discussion.

    My bad posecast - was just responding directly to both the OP's initial post, and subsequent specific request. Silly me thought that made it relevant to the discussion. lol

    - Greg

  • sura_tcsura_tc Posts: 167

    There is anotehr aspect you simply cannot ignore.

    Like or not, a lot of Daz models are being used in crude adult games. I first released my VN with Daz3D models and people thought it was an adult game because they were unconsciously recognizing characters. That's when I realized first-hand that Daz3D models were used in a lot of adult games.

  • posecastposecast Posts: 372

    Is anybody else out there making a visual or kinetic novel using Daz or Poser-produced 3d art? If so, let's talk about art styles and game engines and stuff.

    So those of you who are producing story-with-pictures, what are you doing for your art styles? I'd love to see some art in this thread.
     
    posecast said:

    I think the style of art is not really relevant in this discussion.

    My bad posecast - was just responding directly to both the OP's initial post, and subsequent specific request. Silly me thought that made it relevant to the discussion. lol

    - Greg

    Well you are right of course, upon re-reading it! But, I really didn't mean not to discuss the art styles. My bad for not being clear...what I meant was that it is great when tools are useable for all types of art. I apologize for my very bad choice of words! While the examples in Tyrano all seem to be anime style, it looks to me like it would accept any artwork you pull into it. Actually that drag and drop of .png files onto backgrounds makes it a no-brianer instant buy for me!

  • posecastposecast Posts: 372

    ***Covers face in shame for becoming one of "those people"***

  • dreamfarmerdreamfarmer Posts: 1,935

    Yes, art style discussion and consistency and software and how they combine is exactly what I want to discuss! I think there's a lot there to dig into.

    that said: how much work do you put into your modeling? I think having custom-modeled assets would be fantastic but that's not in my wheelhouse at the moment and I suspect even if it was, the time spent would be impractical for my goals. 

    I do feel like one of the strengths of VN over GN/webcomics is that you don't have to illustrate every darn thing. You can leave quite a bit to the imagination and the prose.

    I hadn't considered the adult-games angle but I have a suspicion those look very different than what I'm going for. I don't have the algovincian's toolsets (I wish I did!) but I've learned a lot of Photoshop for this project and it figures heavily into my planned workflow.  My vague sense of the adult entertainment made from Daz is that the aesthetics aren't nearly as important as the, hmm... posing. 

    Other stuff I'd love to possibly discuss when I'm not on my phone:

    --subtle vs exaggerated expressions in visual storytelling

    --toony/anime facial structures vs realistic ones in presenting those expressions

    --how to present art to get past an 'ew, CG' reaction

    --comparison of presentation options in the editors

    --let's discuss this consistency thing, because existing products can have a sharp disparity between backgrounds, character sprites and cutscene-graphics. 

    --lighting for consistency or for the best VN style presentation. I have a collection of PS tabs open right now on the actual computer with a bunch of filtered versions of the same character in different Painters' Lights setups. Decisions decisions. Lighting is such a pain and so very key (ahahaha). 

    I'll post some art later!

     

  • sura_tcsura_tc Posts: 167

    Here is an example of what I've done with Blender.

    I still use Daz3D assets but just for hair and occasional clothes. It takes time to learn how to model clothes and then rig it but once you get used to it, it doesn't become a big deal.

    Blender itself has human generator plug in. I use it and then randomize it to look different.

     

     

    crewshot.jpg
    956 x 1080 - 106K
  • posecastposecast Posts: 372

    Now that I have had my daily luncheon of size 11 I will chime in.

    one way I have created consistency with backgrounds is to open them on my iPad and use filters on them. I like his method because of the sheer number of options available. Also the sketch apps often give me better results than npr renderers and the various sketch plugins I use in Photoshop.

  • algovincianalgovincian Posts: 1,503

    that said: how much work do you put into your modeling? I think having custom-modeled assets would be fantastic but that's not in my wheelhouse at the moment and I suspect even if it was, the time spent would be impractical for my goals. 

    --how to present art to get past an 'ew, CG' reaction

    You've mentioned, and clearly articulated, many interesting topics in your post, dreamfarmer. In particular, the 2 quoted above are ones I've been wrestling with. Multiple people I've talked to in the industry have echoed the negative reaction to CG in general for use in comics. This negative reaction is even greater specifically for DAZ (Poser) content. Getting over this hurdle is one of the main goals of my NPR work (by "disguising" both the CG aspect, as well as the DAZ/Poser recognition). 

    Also mentioned were the very real time/money constraints. For me, automation provides the answer. Spending time creating a unique 3D character is more than worth it when you are are able to re-use it (changing the pose, expression, clothing, environement, lighting, camera angle, etc.) hundreds of times in a project. Likewise, spending the time developing the automated NPR algorithms further leverages this legwork.

    - Greg

    PS - No worries, posecast - I was smiling as I read your post. I understand what you were trying to say about how the different tools all use assets, and how these assets can be created in any number of ways. Let's continue the conversation. 

  • posecastposecast Posts: 372

    I do think that what you say is right regarding the "ew" factor. But more and more anime in particular is being created using 3D they just disguise it well.

    That said, I think that if the story is compelling and delivered on time and regularly that people get over the fact that it is cg.

    I am not very familiar with the visual novel that are generated in tyrano...they sort of remind me of old ds games. So that brings me to a point about the graphic styles...there are a number of console emulator apps for iOS. These are incredibly detailed and can generate everything from monochrome to 8 bit to modern consoles. I have always thought you could create some killer 80s style throwback games using this technique.

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