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Feedback on Game Blurb

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OK, so I'm at the point where I want to write a blurb for my game's story, but also not give anything away. Obviously it needs to hook people, but the problem is while the game starts off pretty cookie cutter, it soon escalates and I can't talk about any of it without spoiling. This leaves me with the only option being to try and sell the game on the back story... but I don't think the back story sounds all that interesting. I could hint at what will happen, but give the wrong hint and people may start guessing the plot.

This is just a draft. It's rough AF and basically me word scribbling out the basic back story. It covers right up to a moment in the game where you finish the tutorials and the 3 main characters all meet for the first time. Right now, all I need to know is; Does this, on it's own, sound interesting to you? Would you like to hear more on how the story would develop? What are your guesses for what will happen in the game, based on this blurb?

Quote

 

26 years ago the eastern kingdom of Alexandria discovered Ragna. A powerful stone that when struck, generates lightning. This power was soon harnessed which led to a technological boom as the King of Alexandria ushered in an industrial age of prosperity. However, with power came greed, and the King decided to invade the western kingdom of Nijoh. War raged for many years and just as victory seemed almost certain for the Kingdom, it came to a sudden end when the King's beloved wife fell fatally ill.

 

After the death of the Queen, the King became withdrawn. Crime and disorder quickly rose, and on the advice of his council the King remarried to the daughter of the rich Estella family in order to bring some peace back to the Kingdom. However, he never got over the loss of his late wife and refused to show his new Queen any hint of affection until he too, passed. The newly grieving Queen agreed to take over as ruler of Alexandria until it’s rightful heir, Princess Ashanna of Alexandria, came of age. Queen Estella kept her word, and the peace. She restored relations between the two kingdoms and used her years in power to focus on the development of Ragna and the happiness of her subjects.

 

However, not all is well in the Kingdom of Alexandria. As Princess Ashanna’s 18th birthday approaches, many believe Alexandria would be better off in the hands of the Estella family as they have led prosperity while the Alexandria family led them to war. Rumours of a civil war can be heard on the streets between those who support the new Queen, and those fond of Ashanna, and wish to stay true to the Alexandria bloodline.

 

Meanwhile, in a quiet village in south Ninjoh, young Kintano and his friend Rin are doing chores in the woods. When they return, they find their village has been burned to the ground and all the residents killed in cold blood. Convinced it’s Alexandrian’s they set out to warn the Elders (of Nijoh). Along the way, they rescue a girl named Christina. A mysterious monk who is seemingly the last person still able to use magic. Kitano and Rin help Christina fight off some unknown soldiers and, in return, Christina teaches them the power of Runes and magic. They decide to join forces and set out on an adventure to save Nijoh from the mysterious new invaders… 

 

Along the way, they come to learn that both the East and Western continents seem to have drastically different interpretations of the great Ragna War, with no one seemingly able to give an accurate account of what really happened.

I think a very good way of describing shorthand would be 'Final Fantasy + Game of Thrones = Of Gods and Illusions'...

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Personally? I think the summery suffers from what I call Proper Noun Syndrome. By that I mean when something sort of throws a lot of names of people places or things out at the reader without any real context. I don't know about anyone else, but my eyes sort of glaze over when I hear stuff like the Kingdom of Somethingorother. It's kinda hard to avoid sometimes though.

I think it's better to condense the blurb into something that sets up the minimal info over what kinks off the plot. Maybe something like:

"Within two kingdoms torn by a past war over magical stones, two youths arrive home to find their village in ruins. Is this a sign that their nation is once again being invaded? When they journey to warn the elders of the plot, a mysterious monk using a lost art of magic also appears and it quickly becomes apparent things are not what they seem..."

Okay maybe that's no good but you get the point right?

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On 1/21/2022 at 3:50 PM, Kayzee said:

Personally? I think the summery suffers from what I call Proper Noun Syndrome. By that I mean when something sort of throws a lot of names of people places or things out at the reader without any real context. I don't know about anyone else, but my eyes sort of glaze over when I hear stuff like the Kingdom of Somethingorother. It's kinda hard to avoid sometimes though.

I think it's better to condense the blurb into something that sets up the minimal info over what kinks off the plot. Maybe something like:

"Within two kingdoms torn by a past war over magical stones, two youths arrive home to find their village in ruins. Is this a sign that their nation is once again being invaded? When they journey to warn the elders of the plot, a mysterious monk using a lost art of magic also appears and it quickly becomes apparent things are not what they seem..."

Okay maybe that's no good but you get the point right?

Yeah I get your point :) And you're right. Keeping it simple is always better imo. Just don't want to over simplify.

It's not really supposed to be a final anything right now though. I just wrote something out when I needed some flavor text for my website... when I get the time I'll take another stab at it.

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Oh, and one other thing you might want to think of is if there are any gameplay elements you should point out in the blurb.

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I believe that as is, it's great, PNSyndrome aside. (wouldn't be the first PNSyndrome-ridden preface either)

I won't lie though; the preface does sound exactly like the beginning of a Final Fantasy story. Given, how Final Fantasy has an ambiguous hook, a lot of story prefaces will often sound like the beginning of such, so yeah, difficult to avoid.

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At the beginning, find ways of describing and establishing the world and or continental setting more. Tell us a bit about how old it is believed to be, what gods are believed to rule over the people of its lands, the types of cultures and magical forces that govern anything relating to in-game system and features as well as the lore. This may help build it up a bit before whisking us through the clouds to the Kingdom of Alexandria, giving us a much more established sense of where and when this place exists. This should lend some gravity to the immediate setting that I personally feel it may have lacked a bit.

 

Then, just a suggestion. Is there any way to make it so that the village isn't being burned down? Maybe it's being occupied, and someone, an older ally of the youths, warns them to stay away, tasking them with making the trip to warn whoever (wouldn't the elders be in the village; the focal point of it?).

 

Just a suggestion because that old troupe turns the stomach instantly. It's just a bad look within such a small summary package. You know what I mean?

To me this is two-pronged. You sidestep the burnt village troupe, and you create an interesting dynamic with leaving your player to worry and think about Ninjoh constantly until and if you decide to resolve that in the plot.

 

Just a suggestion.

Edited by That One NPC
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On 2/1/2022 at 11:50 PM, PhoenixSoul said:

I believe that as is, it's great, PNSyndrome aside. (wouldn't be the first PNSyndrome-ridden preface either)

I won't lie though; the preface does sound exactly like the beginning of a Final Fantasy story. Given, how Final Fantasy has an ambiguous hook, a lot of story prefaces will often sound like the beginning of such, so yeah, difficult to avoid.

Thanks for the feedback guys. I'm going to take another stab at it when I get the time.

Also, I see 'exactly like the beginning of a Final Fantasy story.' as the highest of compliments. lol

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