Planning for a Demo

My plan is to release a demo for Aurora’s Nightmare later this year.  While it’s still a ways off (I’m hoping for some time this summer), I do have some planning beforehand.  A low quality demo can really hurt a game’s reputation.  So naturally, I don’t want to release the demo before the necessary art, music and sound, and writing are done.  As for how all those things are progressing, I’ll do another status report post sometime soon.

What I need to decide though, is what portion of the story the demo is going to cover.  If the demo is too short, players’ won’t be able to get a good feel for the story, which is very important for a visual novel, where the story is the main draw.  However, you also want to grab player’s attention quickly.  Of course, you want to do that in the game as well, but after people pay for something they’re usually willing to give it a bit more play time than a demo before deciding whether or not to keep going.  And then there’s the fact that, if you include too much in the demo, you’ll be giving away a more of the story than you should.

Right now, I’ve got an idea of what section of the game I’m going to use for the demo, though I’ll likely have some of my friends give it a test run to get some early opinions before releasing it to the public.  As I said back at the beginning though, the demo is still a ways off.  In fact, by the time the demo is finished, it’ll likely mean that the game as a whole isn’t much further behind (unless I do that crowd funding campaign and pick up enough money to add some extra content).