Basically I put my game up on Steam Greenlight on Friday just to get some feedback (not that I ever thought I'd actually get my game greenlit or anything. It was purely to see what strangers would think. Steam is totally not the audience for this game...but I still wanted to see some first impressions.)
They came rolling right in. Mind you, these are people who haven't played the game. They just saw some promotional stuff I haphazardly threw up there.
It was apparent after about five seconds that Steam users hated the idea, hated my art, and hated me. I was largely amused (I guess I have way too much experience with nasty message boards to be upset, since I was a member of Usenet way back when...)
So yes, there were tons of harsh comments, but I'm pretty chill with criticism, and often grateful for it, even if it's nasty. My philosophy is that shitty comments are still feedback, and if people don't like the game because of the art, that's still feedback, even if they say it in a particularly douchey manner. So that was that.
Anyways, so I spent all of today (I'm losing track of time) trying to get suggestions on my art. I will not have my game rejected by people solely because of the art work. It's already going to be rejected because it's A) a visual novel and B) a gay romance thingy and C) non-anime. There are already 3 strikes...I think that's some kind of limit, right?
Thankfully, the folks at Lemmasoft (a community of visual novel makers) gave me a huge long list of things I was doing wrong. So I decided to try all their suggestions in redrawing the characters for the longer game (Jed and Brad.)
The amazing artist Deji (who's done quite a few commercial VNs) was kind enough to give me loads of specific advice. I'm not sure if my drawings are any good yet, but I think they're probably a lot better than what I had. (I hope?)
So here's my first big push to fix my art work. This is Brad (whose hair is unfortunately a wreck.) He's gonna be the closeted quarterback Mormon from the full game. (I drew Jed too but he was much too orange and he had an insectoid abdomen.) If this looks any better than my past art, it's because of Deji and the Lemmasoft community. (The flaws in this drawing are all me, though. :0))
Edit: so yeah, I'm thinking of redoing ALL the art in the demo, to make it as spiffy as possible. That's gonna be a month long project!!! At least!!!