Jun 10, 2018

More about the Tone Wheel

So, we've been telling you there would be a way to adjust the way you interact with girls in Blanche Biche. Today I'm going to explain a bit more about that aspect of the game.

First, the idea behind is to provide the player with ways to take the initiative. In a classic dating sim, when you're presented with a choice, you always end up reacting to what's happening in the game. There's no way to do something like stop the game at any point and boom! do something—no matter how insignificant—that will have any effects whatsoever. In Blanche Biche, topics are a way to achieve that (like, you get to choose whether to stay in line with what your partner was saying, or you can break from it completely)—tones are the other.

In concrete terms, you will have a Tone Wheel at your disposal, which lets you adjust your tone at any point in the conversation—even mid-topic, although we're still discussing the relevance of allowing that. That means, if the girl is teasing you, you can go for a teasing tone as well, then if she has a bad reaction, switch to a friendly tone, then realizing the conversation isn't serious enough to your taste, and so on. The tone you choose to assume affects both the girl's immediate response, and her feelings toward you in the long run. That means, if you're constantly teasing a girl, she might not get angry at first, but at some point it will upset her. Conversely, if you're generally being friendly and choose to be teasing for once, she might be offended at that moment, but stay in good terms with you nevertheless.

The Tone Wheel works as a two-dimensional representation of mood, as shown below:

  • From left to right: how unpleasant vs. pleasant the mood is.
  • From bottom to top: how casual vs. serious the mood is.
  • Hence, the Friendly and Hostile tones are extremes on the plesantness axis, but neutral on the seriousness axis.
  • Just the same, the Casual and Serious tones are extremes on the seriousness axis, but neutral on the pleasantness axis.
  • All others tones are a combination of the two scales: the Intimate tone is somewhat pleasant and somewhat serious, the Teasing tone is somewhat unpleasant and somewhat casual, and so on.
At first, each girl will be Neutral toward you. Then as you start playing around with tones, you're going to affect how she sees you, dragging her mood around the two-dimensional space pictured above. Your ultimate goal is to push toward the Intimate quadrant, which is what you want to be for romantic involvement. So being Friendly won't be enough, you'll have to get your relationship more Serious (and conversely).

Sounds easy enough? Did I forget to mention that each girl has a distorted, subjective vision of that mood space? Simply put, a girl might think of the Provoking/Outgoing axis as her own pleasantness scale—which in turn makes the Teasing/Intimate axis as her seriousness axis. So if you're trying to be Intimate, in her eyes you will actually be Serious, which isn't bad, but not exactly what you wanted. And then, you might end up lacking pleasantness in your relationship to become romantically involved with each other.

SO, it won't be just as easy as spamming the Intimate tone to get in a girl's good graces. For some of them, you may even have to resort to unpleasant tones to earn their respect! What you WILL have to do is to watch closely for each girl's reactions, then try and guess what tones work for her. A whole world of experimentation lies ahead! :)

That's it for the most important aspects of Blanche Biche's mood management. There are still a few hidden mechanics to it I'm keeping secret for now, but this should give you a good enough preview of how things are going to work. :) Don't hesitate to share your thoughts or ask questions in the comments!

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