Player Comments on Little mage's potion shop (and the curious adventures surrounding it)
I was interested in reading this when I sat down. I soon lost interest, but decided to read it through. Let's start on a positive note. Cute idea, fun character, charming art. Your editing is pretty solid. It's clear to me that you put a decent amount of thought into your work. I like to give stories a fair Shake before I rate them, this story did deserve that.
My problem is that the events of the story just seem to happen, and often most of the page space is spent slowly fledging out a magic system that remains vague on impactful details. You do the right thing at times, letting the reader work out the little details of how magic works in the world by observation, but more and more the world is dictated to us. Worse, it is rarely pertinent information for decision making.
This CYOA plays out episodically. I don't think that works in this case. Maybe I missed some story beats wandering around the shop. The odds and ends of each day always seem to add to nothing in the final sum. It feels like characters and story details blink in and out inconsequentially. Perhaps I'm wrong, perhaps I missed something, but that was my experience.
There are some charming details and it's clear to me when you were enjoying what you were writing. At least, I think it is. The art you added was definitely a great touch.
on 6/16/2022 11:19:00 AM with a score of 0
As someone who isn't much a fan of "game-y" storygames, especially hub-centric ones, I find myself pleasantly surprised with the way it's handled here. It took a bit to understand at first, the long text intro transitioning into map exploration, but once I familiarized myself with the setting I found that it was handled with a measured approach.
Nothing feels out of place or added just for the sake of another link. And there's plenty of them, links, all with some sort of purpose behind them. As each day passed leading to the branching portions of the story, the environment itself became recognizable, like it was my own house I was searching through.
I will say that second person past tense, while not distracting from the story at all, is by far the minority around this site. Also, as far as this critique section goes, I was a bit turned off by the long title and lack of capitalization. The description is capitalized though, which seems to draw attention to it even more.
But the writing is well done. It's easy to tell Darius knows his way around narrative and character voice. I certainly would be interested in reading another story in the future. Like starting any new novel or tv show or video game, it takes some getting used to in the beginning. For all you readers out there, take your time, sit back and enjoy the wonderful creation of Darius_Conwright.
on 9/10/2021 11:17:21 PM with a score of 0
Wow, that was good.
Almost so that I'm left a bit envious. Not only are able to weave together interesting stories, but your art isn't shabby as well? One should pick only one talent, and then leave the rest for the rest of us, hmmm?
Joking aside, I really enjoyed how there's an episodic nature to this story-game. It leaves itself open for the writer if they want to add even more interactions and branchings for any future 'expansions' to say the least. For something that the writer (at least at the time of this writing) deems as rough and unpolished, it certainly doesn't feel that way. I've enjoyed.
I suppose because this is a bit anime-esque? At least in terms of the art. Being an anime fan, I've grown a tolerance for "she's really one-thousand years old!" lolita characters. For this story's part, it tackles serious themes on loyalty, xenophobia, and even a bit of witch-hunting. All beneath the surface of a mage girl running her shop.
For me, there were times in which I clicked around a bit aimlessly to hopefully advance something, but it wasn't an ordeal like other stories, taking plenty of minutes. No, it wasn't a chore because there would be an interaction sprinkled in there, or a page that gave more insight on the protagonist character as a person. Sometimes even lore that's pretty important. My suggestion would be to make things like that something that the player/reader couldn’t miss? I say this, because I didn't receive that particular branch that let known the character's origin in a subsequent playthrough.
At the time of this writing, I've received three of the side endings, and I would say, only one of the main endings? So while with some stories, the endings are choices that are tacked on at the end, there's some perhaps hidden steps and choices for one to take to reach a personal achievement of seeing all that there is to offer? Well, the story is good enough to engage in that endeavor.
This is possibly my favorite entry of the contest at this moment. It's really hard to say, but I liked the overall tone and mood of Little mage's potion shop.
It is really Majo no Tabitabi-ish. But without the protagonist saying how beautiful she is at the start of the story, and at times saying 'nooooope". and leaving a situation before it gets too ugly and gives her a headache if she decides to invest anything in it. However, unlike Elaina, the wandering witch, the witch in this story seems to me to be a bit more proactive of the things that are occurring around her.
Although the character is a powerful witch, she isn't some all powerful omniscient god, and her choices can have consequences if she makes the wrong one. Was that something that you wanted to shine through here, Darius?
In any case, great story! I wouldn’t mind seeing this become a series of games all set in the same world. I feel that the world told in this is one that can easily be expanded upon. Lise doesn't even have to be the main character, especially since her arcs I feel are concluded satisfyingly enough. Although, given that she's part of a long-aged race.
She could also be like Frieren in Sousou no Frieren. Going through many years, traveling through the land, visiting many villages, and then returning to those villages to see those that were in their teens, are now seniors. As well as those that were children, now being middle-aged.
So there can be even more story that can be taken with our protagonist. Unless her life span is much shorter than I think, and I'm a bit mistaken to be on this train of thought.
Well, this is becoming a anime/manga recommendation at this rate. But I hope that shows how much this story-game reminded me of some rather great series of things I've experienced.
On that note, once again, this was a good story-game, Darius.
on 9/6/2021 1:39:14 PM with a score of 0