7.0 worked out pretty good, fewest bugs ever! Because I fixed those bugs, and added practically no new content, this one ought to be even fewer, or hopefully none. The primary focus of the 7.1 release is to set up the sequel, but since the sequel has at least a good year before release, there should be no rush to get this out. Primarily, I have made some of the pictures, especially the strip club, convenience store, and amusement park, a bit prettier, and decided not to wait a long time to release them.
So the making of the sequel seems to follow exactly like the production of a movie. I’m still in pre-production (script, set design, storyboards, etc.) and started the chore of casting the sequel. There are approximately 7 new female roles and 3 new male roles, plus a bunch of bit parts. There were originally a bunch more, but I consolidated some of the smaller roles so I would not have to cast as many models.
One of the consolidated roles is the strip club manager/ pretty blonde at the bar/ acquaintance of Rebecca. In order to make the consolidation work, the strip club manager in the first date must play the role in the second. The problem is that Stephanie 1, the model who plays the strip club manager in the Dating Simulator, can’t act. She is good in the bit part I have her play in the first date, but in the expanded role of the second date she just can’t hack it. Even gave her a screen test as seen on the left, but it takes too much post-production work to make her look good. I need someone who can give me what I want right up front. (Do I sound like an evil director or what?)
So I recast the role with newcomer Bijou. I told her that if I gave her the role, she would have to go blonde, and she agreed. So after a bleaching session, I had her pose for the same magazine cover, and she looked awesome, and she got the role.
I then did a re-shoot of some of the strip club scenes thus editing out the old actress.
Meanwhile, another casting concern came up. The sequel calls for a “famous supermodel” and it was decided that since we were doing some reshoots for the first date anyways, that maybe we could establish a supermodel in some background print media. That means we have to cast the role early then. Considering her popularity we figured Lana would be best, but she does not come cheap, so we had to adjust the budget to give her what she wanted. She came in for a morning, did some bikini and lingerie modeling for us, then left by lunch time. We are excited to work with her again when principle photography starts on the sequel.
So, Which Date Are You Doing A Sequel Of?
Since beginning to put together a sequel, there has been this nagging question: There are literally thousands of possible dates you can have in the Dating Simulator, which one is the official “date” on which the sequel will be based? This is a problem, not only because of the sheer number of dates, but also because of the Sequel Rule: “All sequel’s must be written in a way so that anyone who has not seen the prior one will still be able to enjoy the new one.” In other words, I have to create the sequel as if the player does not know about the first game. This is especially true because the sequel has a different format to the game that is likely to appeal to many who did not like the format of the first.
Therefore, the official “first date” must be a generic boring date. I should only need to introduce Ariane as a “girl you have dated before” and just go with it. If some of the crazy insane things that might have happened on the first date were introduced in the sequel to new players, it would probably scare many away. And yet this is a very unfair scenario to fans of the first Dating Simulator, and that is why I will be introducing a way to port first date scenarios to the sequel. The code is in version 7.1, but is presently disabled until the sequel actually gets close to completion.
Basically, at the end of every complete date, you are given up to five hexadecimal digits which define your first date experience. You will then have the opportunity to type that number at the beginning of the sequel and the sequel will be catered to that first date. Five hexadecimal digits, means 20 binary states. For you non-math geeks, there are 20 yes or no questions about the date you just had, and based on the answers to those questions, an approximate tale of the date emerges. To see this in action run the 7.1 date sim in “debug mode” (start the game by clicking on default2.htm) As you play the date, you will see an item called experience change in value. If you click on this value, it will display a summary of your date so far. Warning: clicking on the experience value will immediately end the date.
Notice as you play out a date with Ariane that you can do quite a lot on the date without even changing the experience value. If you stay at Ariane’s place, and Ariane never gets drunk or naked, and you end the date without screwing up, then that will be a date experience score of 0, and defines a generic default date in the sequel. Almost as common, or maybe more so, is a date experience score of 1, which is the same as a 0 date, except it ended badly.
Now to make a really accurate summary of a date I would need at least 40 yes or no questions, and that would mean a 10 digit date experience to type in, and a really complicated sequel. By limiting it to 20, I’m making it easy for everybody. The 20 items I picked are either memorable events, like the photo shoot, the strip club, or sleeping on the boat. Or, they are events likely to occur again in the sequel, like going to the restaurant, going to the night club, or meeting Rebecca. Events in the first category will trigger detours in the sequel, like if you did the photoshoot with a disposable camera, Ariane will have had the pictures developed handing you the stack to look at. Events in the second category will change how the game introduces things, like Ariane invites you to meet her at the restaurant. If you went previously, she will say “meet me at the restaurant we went to last time”, if not, she will give you directions how to get there. Similarly, if you see Rebecca in the sequel and you met her before, she will be called by name, if not she will be called “that skinny blonde retail clerk” until she finally introduces herself.
The plan is to not only have side paths for imported good dates with Ariane, but also imported bad dates. There will be at least one path in the sequel that can only be reached if Ariane already hates you. And don’t think that a really good first date will automatically result in a really good second date. I solved that scenario by setting the second date more than a week after the first date. That way Ariane will be pissed that you slept with her and then never called her again.
Well hope that gets everyone excited for the sequel. Now time to start really working on it, and hopefully finish it within a year.