As previously mentioned, I’m planning to release a demo of Aurora’s Nightmare before the full game is completed. At this point, the script for the portion of the game that will be in the demo is done (the first draft, at least) but there’s some sound and artwork that still needs to be finished before I can compile and release it.
When creating a demo, one very important question that needs to be answered is what part of the game you want to showcase. Do you want to just start at the beginning or maybe pick a later section that’s more intense? How long should the demo be? 15 minutes? An hour? Several hours? What about spoilers? Do you want to avoid giving away too much of the plot, or is it ok to include a big development or two?
In my case, I’ve long had a portion of the game in my head that I thought would make for a good demo. It’s on the longer end for a demo (probably 2 hours or more, depending on reading speed), and includes a few big (though early) plot developments. But, since Aurora’s Nightmare is a story focused game, I want to give people a feel for the world and characters. Not to mention the ability to make choices that affect the way things play out. The trick is to give players enough to get them hooked, but not so much that they don’t feed the need to buy the full game.
All that said, once the demo is complete I’ll probably do an early release for friends and family and get their feedback on the length and content before I put it up for the general public.