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Point and Click adventure game. Cynical humor, handcrafted HD art in comic book style!
Point and Click adventure game. Cynical humor, handcrafted HD art in comic book style!
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Demetrios is a remake! (continued)

Posted by COWCAT (Creator)
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Here's the next part of our comparison between the old version of Demetrios and the remake!

In 1999, I actually didn't draw (almost) anything! The drawings were made on paper by my brother Alain. While he's no professional artist, he did draw a lot of manga-style comics at the time, and was a huge help by providing pretty much all the drawings!

The very first (ugly) drawing done for Demetrios in 1999! I did it myself... Yes, I'm very ashamed of that.
The very first (ugly) drawing done for Demetrios in 1999! I did it myself... Yes, I'm very ashamed of that.

I scanned them myself with a "hand scanner". This was awful to use and the graphics were often distorted because of that.

I lost all the original paper drawings, unfortunately. All I have are the badly compressed game files. (So if you think paper is more durable than digital files... think again! :p)

For the new version, I re-drew everything myself directly on the computer with a graphical tablet! And added tons of new stuff, too.

The Paris map was a real map... I changed it to something prettier and cartoonish
The Paris map was a real map... I changed it to something prettier and cartoonish

I did the coloring in both versions. Yes, really! That seems unbelievable considering the difference, but I swear I'm the same person who did both!

Back in the time, I did the coloring with a mouse, and I had absolutely no notion of coloring, lightning and shading. So the colors were very muddy and grey. It didn't fit the humor style of the game at all.

For the remake, I've taken some time to study how quality 2D traditional art was done from Disney and Studio Ghibli films, and this helped quite a bit!

Also, the program I used in 1999 to do the coloring was Paint Shop Pro, and this was the very first version to include layers! But despite that, I had no idea what those "layers" were, and I didn't use them. A huge mistake!

Dialogs had a black background like Gabriel Knight 1
Dialogs had a black background like Gabriel Knight 1

From the gameplay side, I've improved the interface to make it more ergonomic and modern.

For example, using an item was a chore in the old version. The inventory was one entire screen, and you couldn't know what item you were holding during gameplay. You couldn't combine items, either!

The old inventory
The old inventory

The interactions were very limited, too. There was only one sentence displayed when clicking on something. It wasn't contextual at all : unless you used the correct item, you wouldn't get another speech or anything.

That's one side of the game that I have totally changed. The new Demetrios is so interactive that it's almost too much!

The old title screen. Yes, I did some CGI too!... And this was WAY out of place.
The old title screen. Yes, I did some CGI too!... And this was WAY out of place.

However, when it comes to the ideas and the events happening, I've kept absolutely everything from the original game. 

Even the minor things that could seem silly, like the extra-terrestrial figure when clicking on the mirror in the living room, the coffin in the bedroom, or the weird books names in the library... I hesitated to remove these because they seemed silly and out of place, but decided against it. 

I figured that despite being childish, they're the kind of things you don't usually see in adventure games. I want to surprise the player and make a game with personality! Actually, from the feedback I've received so far, everyone seems to love that aspect of the game! :)

To summarize, I can fairly say that all those mistakes I've done for the original version allowed me to make a high quality new version now. I've improved what could be improved but kept everything that made Demetrios unique.

If I had to define the new Demetrios, it would be : a combination of professional game making with the ideas of a 15-year-old. And that's something you don't see everyday! 

Thanks for reading, hope you liked it! More articles are coming up. 

Here are more interesting projects to follow!

MAGIC LOST
MAGIC LOST

A colorful Point and Click adventure with a wizard : magic, spells and even bosses!

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1352135360/magic-lost

TOP SECRET
TOP SECRET

A branching non-linear interactive fiction game, played in real time, by email! Am I the only one getting a "In Memoriam" vibe from it?

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1928653683/top-secret-a-game-about-the-snowden-leaks/posts/1372442

That's all for now! Stay tuned and keep spreading the word about Demetrios!

Fabrice (COWCAT)

Daniel Black and Saodhar like this update.

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