From one of the biggest Walkthroughs/Mods creators to game developer. We get a look into the mind of ZoeyRaven and gain some insight into their game: One Day At A Time.
Q: You are well known for your Walkthrough and Mods, and now you have your very own game, One Day At A Time. What inspired you to move from creating walkthroughs and mods to also creating your very own game?
A: This is probably going to sound crazy to some people, but I feel like it was something I had to do. There’s been a story in my head for a long time I felt needed to get out. So, the way I see it, I really didn’t have much of a choice in the matter. It was going to hang out in my head continually asking to get out until I let it.
Q: Your game obviously features the prominent topic of drugs and addictions, what was the main reason behind this?
A: Since I’m anonymous as Zoey, I have no problems sharing the fact I am in recovery, and have thirteen years sober as of last month. I’ve seen other games have drugs in them, but most were NTR games (which mine is not and will never be), and they showed low bottom cases. I’ve really never seen a game explore the recovery side of things, and the fact a lot of junkies, or people who abuse any drugs never make it that far. Not everyone loses their families and lives on the street. This was not my experience or that of a lot of my friends in the program, so I wanted to shed light on the side you don’t see on the news or in movies.
Q: One Day At A Time features characters such as Lydia, Mary, Barb, and Audrey. What inspired these characters? Are they based on people you know, or just figments of your imagination?
A: The characters are very much figments of my imagination. However, I know who each of them are, what their backstory is, and what makes them tick. Having said that, some of their experiences are informed by things I’ve either witnessed, or just know happens to junkies and those who care about them. There are two events, if I recall correctly, that are actually my own experiences with the main character, but I’ll never tell which ones those are.
Q: Your game has 2 prominent paths: Sober and Junkie. Do you have a preferred path that you like, or are you more neutral?
A: I prefer the sober path, because this game is about redemption. In fact, towards the end of chapter three I decided that was going to be what the game focuses on. I have just now started calling the Sober/Junkie variables in the game as of Chapter 6, this will last for the next two chapters, and then the paths will rejoin into one. At that point the decisions will be based on named variables until the end of the game. I wanted the Junkie path to show where people end up and what ultimately happens to them if they don’t choose to get sober. But, the reason I’ve decided to have them join again after an “event” that will occur on the junkie path, is due to the fact getting sober on it’s own, even if you’re trying, has many obstacles and setbacks which I feel I can illustrate clearly in one path. That doesn’t mean there won’t be subpaths and choices that matter once the main paths come back together or the game will lose it’s edge, but I wanted it to end as a story of hope, and the second half of the game to be about recovery and the ups and downs that go along with it, especially in the beginning. As I stated before, one must only watch the news to see what happens if you don’t get sober. Very few people get to experience what happens when someone does, unless they know a junkie who did, or are one themselves.
Q: Where do you see your game in a year’s time? Completed or perhaps still a lot more to come?
A: I see the game close to the halfway point right now maybe, so it’s possible it could be completed within the next year, but it’s just too early for me to say. Every girl will have an ending and I feel at least one full game day (of which there are two in each chapter) will be devoted to that. Then there will be the canon ending of either Lydia Solo, or Lydia and Mary together which I see talking a full chapter. Plus, I’m not close to being done with exploring all the things this complex topic has to offer. So, maybe I’m not halfway through yet. I feel like these people have a lot more left to say and experience. Wish I could be more clear than that, but it’s just not the way I write. Yes, I have a rough outline, but it’s very much subject to the whims of my imagination.
I see the game close to the halfway point right now maybe, so it’s possible it could be completed within the next year, but it’s just too early for me to say.
Q: Do you have any specific goal or achievement you wish to reach for your game?
A: I’ve touched on it already, but it’s to enlighten people about the experience of getting sober and what comes along with that. Also, if I possibly reach someone in the process who plays my game and it makes them examine their own life in relation to drugs and alcohol, I will have done my job. If I’m honest, I’ve already had people contact me privately who are either in recovery or are struggling, so I think it’s already saying what it needs to.
Q: Is there anything that’s already in the game that you would wish to change, if so what would that be?
A: Probably post work on some of the images in the first few chapters and a few animations, when I was very new to Daz 3D and didn’t know the things I know now. You said you didn’t want short answers, but for this question that’s all I have. As far as the story goes, I wouldn’t change anything.
Q: Have you any plans for other games in the future or is One Day At A Time going to be your one and only?
A: I have a few ideas in my head at the moment, but I’m not sure how those will materialize in time. To answer the second part of your question, this will not be my only game. I’ve come to love development, and I can say with certainty I will continue after this game is completed. Again, the theme of the next project is not yet known to me
Q: Are there going to be any more female characters that the MC will have lewd scenes with?
A: Yes, and my apologies, I need to be cryptic here, but yes.
Q: What did you find the most difficult when creating One Day At A Time?
A: Animating, I think it’s the single hardest thing to do in Daz 3D. I feel like I’ve improved a lot, but still have much more to learn. I also feel like developers sometimes get punished for the steep learning curve with it. I don’t think this is a player’s fault per se, because they are used to a lot of the top games that either have their own animators or a team to split the workload. But, if I have to pick one thing, it’s that. However, I at least had the guts to do it, and provide multiple lewd scenes per update.
Q:Do you have any advice that you would like to give to any aspiring developers out there?
A: Know when to say it’s good enough, and this covers everything, writing, rendering, animating, all of it. Also, know you’re not going to be great right away, or at least that’s my experience. It takes some time to learn what you need to do. I would advise them to identify what their strengths and weaknesses are so they know what needs attention. Furthermore, find someone to help you with your weaknesses. Cenc the developer of Dreams of Reality taught me all the basics of Daz when I first started, and we continue to bounce things off of each other, I think that’s vitally important.
Know when to say it’s good enough, and this covers everything, writing, rendering, animating, all of it. Also, know you’re not going to be great right away, or at least that’s my experience. It takes some time to learn what you need to do.
Q: Lastly, are there any people that you want to thank for possibly helping with your game or just for giving you moral support?
A: Cenc, my Daz teacher and friend, TD1300 from Pale Carnations for telling me to just do it, and his feedback about my idea for the story in the beginning. ShaddyModda for proofing and also bouncing code ideas off of, and Qleaf. I have SO much I owe to Qleaf, not just with the occasional help on this project (like the gallery), but for things I’ll get to in the walkthrough questions and mod questions.
Have you played One Day At A Time? What is your opinions of it? Make sure to tell us in the comments or at our discord.
We have also done another interview with Zoey about Walkthroughs and Mods that, so make sure you keep an eye out for that.
Thank you to ZoeyRaven for doing this interview. Please make sure you show them some love and support!