It started because of a song. In November 2012, I started writing The Nano Revolution, a 20 minute metal song about good intentions gone wrong. Early it became clear to me that listening to it for twenty minutes while staring at a still picture (I usually upload my songs in this format to YouTube) could be a little bit boring, so I decided to offer the listener something more engaging.
I decided against making a music video, because I highly doubt my ability to shoot a twenty minute science fiction music video. Instead, a playable music video seemed fitting; with twenty minutes of play time, it would allow the player to do something meaningful over the duration of the song while accompanying its story.
It quickly evolved from being an "interactive music video" into a thing of its own. The song itself is still a pretty substantial part of it, since it's giving the player a time frame of about twenty minutes play time. Within this time frame, which represents the few years The Nano Revolution is taking place, the player moves through a European city, supporting or sabotaging either rebels or the upper class. To do that, he can collect money, gather useful devices, hack security cameras and cahs dispensers plant explosives (because there's no game without boom), build shelter for those in need, or invest in different companies. Or don't, because it will be up to the player how he's trying to change the world.
However, there's a catch: the revolution will fail. It's doomed from the beginning, so it's up to the player to decide if he wants to immortalize himself as a believer until the "bitter end", or as one of the people who escaped the sinking ship early.
So far, I am building a prototype within the RPG Maker VX, since I experimented with the 2000-version in my teenage years (yes, while other teens my age went out partying, I spend my evenings in front of my computer screen). It's not pretty, but pretty easy to use for me.
I also use the standard resources and DLC-packages of the RPG Maker VX, modifying them slightly. Most of the graphics are placeholders, since I want to build the game first, then bother with the final look of the game.
At its core, it's a game about resource gathering and distribution. It's about using the tools you have at your disposal in the way that YOU think is the best. It's about accepting that you might not be able to change the bigger picture, but maybe you can change the details that matter for a few people. Sometimes, if you can't address the needs of the many, at least you can work out the needs of the few. Or just your very own needs; the game won't judge you for that, but I will, you selfish coward.
You can also read about The Nano Revolution on notreadytopublish and Xenogramm, if you want to.
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