I sadly think that the game will not be release and that is has been dropped. I really enjoyed the demo and was looking forward to buying it :(
A downloadable game for Windows, macOS, and Linux
Zodiac Axis is a mystery visual novel (story-based game with choices) that blends suspense, romance, and Asian-inspired fantasy elements using charming characters and a lush worldlore.
Check out the official site here: http://zodiacaxis.com
Play as Alison Hart, a fresh-out-of-college journalism graduate who is shortly employed at an infamous online tabloid. At first, you're not worried—even when you're assigned to investigate six people who are rumored to carry the Spirits of the Zodiacs. It's just a nonsensical tabloid job. Right?
Make a myriad of entertaining choices and discover four branching routes that unlock one true path.
Uncover what's behind the veil by meeting strange characters, each with a different story to tell.
A LUSH WORLD
Discover a captivating city with history and flavor, rendered with beautiful hand-painted backgrounds, and enhanced with lush, organic music. Hear the characters come to life with partial phrases of English voice acting.
How much will Zodiac Axis cost?
We're currently planning on launching the game at $30.
Is this an otome?
While there's romance, a female protagonist, and branching routes, we steer away from using otome terminology due to Zodiac Axis's unusual structure and narrative focus. Frankly speaking, fans of the otome genre will be disappointed.
|Platforms||Windows, macOS, Linux|
|Made with||Ren'Py, Adobe Photoshop, Clip Studio Paint, Adobe Illustrator|
|Tags||2D, Anime, Fantasy, Manga, Mystery, Romance, supernatural, suspense, Voice Acting|
|Average session||About a half-hour|
|Links||Homepage, Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, Instagram, Community|
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aw, dyou have any evidence?
The developer explained the decision to drop it in this blog post from January 2020. They refunded their backers on Kickstarter back then as well. I just found the blog after waiting forever for updates here. It's pretty disappointing they never released that announcement on itch.
edit: The blog post doesn't say it's dropped , just that it's no longer in active development. So I suppose there is hope for it to one day be picked up again but it's been over a year without updates so I wouldn't hold your breath.
I just finished playing the demo. I have never been this blown away by the writing of this story. It's rich. It has character. It has a compelling plot, pacing and dialogue. Everything in this game is proof why indie games should never be overlooked.
I understand that the current state of this game is on an indefinite hiatus. But I'm just gonna say that if and when this game is ready for release, I definitely going to buy this game. It's a wonderful work and I felt the amount of love and effort you and your team had placed into it.
If anything, this was inspiration. Even if it's just a demo.
God's speed to you and take care of yourself.
When I first played this game a year back or so, I fell face first in love. The demo was amazing, even for its length I could not pause it until the end, I enjoyed every minute of it. (That's why I came back for a second run and to write this comment, even if the project has been put on long-term hiatus.) But in my opinion The Studio/Creators health is way more important. I know that I'll be here when its released fully,
Please take care of yourself!
Drink some water :)
Someone let me know if and when this game releases :/
*sighh* another great game with huge potential dropped......
I think it's still under development, just not actively so-- instead of aiming for a release date and solely working on this project, it's kind of having small work done here and there on the side. That being said I could've misinterpreted the og post when I read it.
Seems the dev forgot to post any announcement here regarding this game, so I’ll just post it here:
We’re sorry. Zodiac Axis is no longer under active development. After careful consideration, I’m regretfully ceasing active development on Zodiac Axis. I’m enacting an open refund policy for our Kickstarter backers and beta access supporters during this time. I will continue to develop the story in the background, but no longer can guarantee a specific release date.
From: The Official site
T^T Really?? I was really looking forward to this game coming this year, but I guess the COVID-19 situation affects everything doesn't it? The art style and story line is a breath of fresh air from all the VNs I've played so far, and this game has a lot of potential to possibly be one of the best VN. I really hope this game gets released some day. It would be a real pity to throw away all the hard work the team has put in so far. Until then, stay safe everyone!
Thank you for posting this because I had been sitting and waiting to hear about whether this game was going to be coming out at all or not. It's a shame too because this game is so beautiful. :(
I don't normally pay for games, just because I don't really have much to spend, but I am honestly thinking about buying this game just because of the good quality. I love it, and I look forward to its full release.
rarely am I this floored by the quality and obvious effort put into the vn's I play. Wow this game is next level, playing the demo just left me wanting more! Keep up the good work, I look forward to buying this game when it comes out!!
I'm obsessed with everything of this game! the story, the art, the music, it's so good! you're very talented! keep it going girl!
I loved this demo so much! I'll definitely be buying the game when it launches. Good luck to the team as you work towards the finishline!
This was amazing, I just finished the demo and wow!
I would pay whatever you wanted for this game because so far it seems absolutely amazing :)
I just finished the demo, and for the last few minutes I was murmuring "holy shit, holy shit..." to myself. This is one of the most amazing games I've played so far, it's AMAZING, from the characters, to the story, to the design and the narrative- it's absolutely flawless. Just-- take my money already, I'll pay you whatever you want. OMG.
I'm wondering, will this game also be on Steam? I absolutely loved the demo and eagerly wait for the game's full release! This is one of the best visual novels I've played in a long time and loved all the elements put into it <3
what percentage is this game's focus on romance between the heroine and other characters? like 50%? less, more? I love the mystery aspect of it and the colours are so vibrant and pretty :))
It fluctuates depending on the route, but all in all I'd say around 15%. One of the routes has around 5%, another around 60%, another has around 25%... The romance level changes strongly depending on the character's personality. Thank you so much for the support!
will the full game be free? cause i love this game so goddamn much but i'm broke as hecc. i rlly want to continue all the routes qwq.
It'll cost 30$
oofie..thanks for the info dude
Are u sure ? I checked and it costs 60 dollars --' I'm quite confused about the price :/
I can affort 30 dollars for a novel game but 60 ?!
This was so good. I loved every minute of the demo! Eagerly looking forward to where the story goes from here. :D
So I loved this. I play a lot, and I mean a LOT, of visual novels. The art style is delightful and the feeling of how it looks and works is charming yet polished. I only played through the demo but I'm pumped about the full thing. Great job!!!
Replayed the game again, it still holds up. I would pay full price for this due to quality alone. If you look how much full well done visual novels cost, it is not an unfair price, as they are hard to make even more so when done by a small team.
Thank you so much! Lots of love is being poured into this game, and I hope you enjoy it when it's out!
This game is quite big; the Common Route alone took me over two hours to play, and one of the routes (Beckett's) took another hour or so to play. If the other routes are anything like Beckett's, this results in eight or nine hours of gameplay at minimum. That being said, I do understand the iffiness about price, as I paid 60 dollars to beta test; but you are paying for several hours of content, music, and art, hence the large price.
I would like to point out that this game, made by a team of small people, cost over 13,000 dollars to make and has taken at least a few years. They do have to make a profit somehow. Not to mention, many other visual novels-- professional ones made in large teams, mind you-- cost just as much. I do understand that you don't want to pay for something that doesn't have a continuous adventure, as you put, but this game has plenty of replay value and several routes and 'bad endings'-- 30 dollars considering all of the factors above is really not that expensive. However, I don't know how much it costs in your country; so not buying it if you don't believe you can afford it is a valid choice. I'm not certain I got your point from your reply, though, so I apologize if I'm harping on.
Finished the demo a couple of nights ago and it is hands down one of the best visual novels I've played. I'd give it a 10 but I'd rather give it a 7 because it means perfection. I'm an avid fan of the zodiacs, the Orient, of fantasy, mystery, graphic design / artistry, and an actual immersive storyline. I had to save every time a choice was to be made because I really had to pursue the most ideal route possible. When the MC was flustered over what to say or do, it made me flustered as well, hahahaha. Again, the graphics, man. I especially adore the UI and that gives so much impression on the user. I hope to play more of your games. Looking forward to playing the full version in 2020. ♡
HA thanks! That's very high praise indeed! I also love all those same things, so it's great to find a kindred spirit :D
I just finished the demo and... OH MY GOD that was good.. The storyline, the art, the music, the voices... Everything was well made, and had me hooked. The game playing experience was amazing and smooth. I absolutely love it!! I'm looking forward to the full game!!
This Demo is amazing.Like many of the other comments, I was very pleased. I Demo a lot of these just to see if I want to see what happens next in the story (to buy) like everyone else, but this one wow. I had a hard time comparing it to any of the VN's I've recently read. The interface and presentation are so fresh and different! Even the color scheme was nice change of pace. The writing has a welcome realistically human perspective without having the "marysue"ness or the I am a complete pushover MC that are very prevalent in the genre. I immediately went to see if this was Ren'Py just because I wasn't sure. Bravo team!
Thank you and I will be purchasing.
Thank you for playing! I'm glad you appreciated the main character. She's kind of like the sassy side character, except... it happens to be her POV. Hope you enjoy the future release! — Luna Chai
Just finished 2 hours of the demo, and I must say, it was fantastic. The first thing that caught my eye was the UI! It is unique and styalisticaly brilliant. The art, writing, and the general atmosphere /asthetic kept me hooked the whole time.
I really liked the world building aspect and the article mini game. I wonder if Mr Pathfinder himself will get a route or if he has one allready? Haha so many questions; I can't wait until this comes out.
Thank you for the hard work!
Hi there, just finished playing the demo and I truly loved the game! I can't wait for it to be released because everything from the intriguing storyline to the stunning visuals and the beautiful music + sound effects make for a compelling and beautifully executed visual novel. Looking forward to buying it when it releases in 2020 :)
Hey, thank you so much for playing and for your kind words! Hope that it won't disappoint! — Luna Chai
Hello! A friend recommended this visual novel, so I played it and fell in love with the art and thematic design!! The music matches wonderfully with each scene, and I really enjoyed the journalistic choices in writing the articles. The use of vibrant and muted colors really makes each scene convey the kind of atmosphere that fits with the writing and draws me further into the story. I'm so excited to find out the mysteries behind each person/Zodiac spirit!
One area of slight confusion was the scene with Dexter and the fire. I might have read too fast, but I was confused about the MC's geographic proximity to the fire, because I thought she was a safe distance away, but still became endangered by the effects of the house burning further down her block?
I'm so looking forward to the full game whenever it's released. Best wishes with the production!
Thank you so much! I'm glad to hear that you enjoyed it! And thanks for mentioning the fire scene; I'll have a look at that :] — Luna Chai
Heyyyyy I went on a VN spree and oh my god. Wow! VN's are usually pretty hit or miss with me, but this one? wow. wow.
anyway, so what caught my attention at first was the UI. it's so....funky...like the style matches the aesthetic of the actual backgrounds and even the credits.
also, the backgrounds???? yes god??? i know a lot of people like to put photos through a filter, which is pretty reasonable, but these backgrounds were so well done. the colors really popped.
now i just want to talk about the atmosphere, because wow again...it's very aesthetically pleasing, and the effects (such as the cyclic blurring when you see the Cat) were such nice touches, and they didn't feel overbearing at all. the aesthetic doesn't just function as something pretty (although i can appreciate that, haha), but it really helps set the tone as well. the art and and the storybook thing for the play and the sound effects + definitions (and words in red...) come to mind. also the dramatic character portraits with chromatic aberration (so cool). anyway, i like that the aesthetic functions as a tool and not an accessory.
the writing was pretty nice too. i can't think of many other examples off the top of my head, but i do remember one: when Alison was stuttering, she didn't s-stutter...like i-in my s-seventh grade f-fanfics..... but she repeated herself, which is another fresh, funky touch that i loved.
the one issue i had was with the save/load system and some of the buttons getting cut off (i think another comment mentioned that, though). anyway about the save/load thing, it always defaults to page 1, and the arrow buttons are kind of small. i'd have preferred it to default to the most recently accessed page, but it's nbd since i got used to it pretty quickly.
anyways, super excited for this game! see yall in 2020!
Hi! Thanks so much for your kind words! I'm very glad you appreciated the aesthetics of the game. (Also, I definitely used to spam all that s-seventh g-g-grade s-stuttering... ahh, memories.)
Regarding the issues you reported, the save/load page refreshing every time was a bug that was fixed in later releases, so hopefully it shouldn't be a problem in the future! I'll also take a look at the cutoff buttons and the smallness of the arrows.
— Luna Chai
Hello! I've been following this game's development for a while, and I finally got to play the demo today. Overall, you guys did an amazing job with such a small team and it really is a quality visual novel!
I do have some feedback, which you're by no means obligated to respond to. I would love to see this game improve and grow so these are just my personal feelings based on when I played through the demo:
1. As many have said, the UI and backgrounds are brilliant! I really loved the vibrant colors in the game; it really fleshed out the world. The art was already pretty nice, but I'll be even more excited when the character portraits get redrawn. One thing about the UI, the home screen icons on the top did confuse me at first because they were cut off (until you hover over them) and I had thought there was a bug with my screen resolution.
2. I also very much liked the article writing minigame! It's a good way for players to read a large amount of text that can summarize important events of the day so that they don't get lost in the plot later on.
3. Personally, I think the biggest weak point to the game is currently the writing. Visual novels rely heavily on well-written text to make up for the lack of gameplay. While Zodiac Axis has an interesting premise and colorful cast of characters, I feel like the writing was incredibly... fluffy. There was a lot of repetition and redundant sentences (if you need examples, I can happily provide).
I couldn't get a strong grasp of Alison's character other than she's "normal" but also judges a lot of other characters based on their "normality". I'm not sure if it was on purpose or not, but the fixation on "normal/ordinary" feels odd to me, especially because being "normal" is not a choice. People can choose to be complacent to their situation or apathetic to change, but normality is a state. The demo dialogue (through Alison) constantly rates characters on some sort of normal scale, which ends up rubbing me a bit in the wrong way kind of as like "how much of a special snowflake are you?" Yes, the characters that belong to the Zodiac have special powers, but most people who go into playing this game would expect that. Stating the obvious might make the writing feel condescending. There are other ways to create tension in writing rather than rewording the same type of foreshadowing after every character introduction in an edgy tone.
It might also help to write in more subtext. Having characters say lines without needing to explain what they (or what Alison thought) meant would make the dialogue feel a lot more natural. It also gives the players more room to make their own deductions and engage with the text.
I'm by no means an expert on video games or visual novels, so you can take my comment with a grain of salt. I really only wrote this because I wanted to support this game with feedback! Anyways, the demo was ultimately still a fun play, and I look forward to the full release!
Hey! Thanks for the feedback! I understand that my writing style didn't appeal to you. It's heavily inspired by spoken word and poetic prose, prioritizing the sense of rhythm, rhyme, and color. While this can come across as condescending or repetitive—since it's not as straightforward as direct prose—it's an artsy sort of style that calls back to indie films and Japanese cinematography, which the atmosphere of the visual novel is built on (hence the use of cinematic cuts, dictionary definitions, and other subtextual imagery). The writing can definitely be polarizing, but keeping its style is something that I feel strongly about, since it's the foundation of the game's vision. I understand if it wasn't your cup of tea, and I certainly don't expect it to be everyone's!
As for Alison's fixation on normality, there's actually a specific reason that ties into the themes of the visual novel—though it won't surface until much later.
Regarding subtext, while the visuals are meant to be artistic and subtextual, the actual dialogue is meant to be clear and easy to understand. There's copious amounts of foreshadowing and lampshading, but in the end, Alison is a straightforward protagonist who doesn't engage in subtext. Even when the Zodiacs ask her questions with hidden meanings, she tends to miss it and answers it literally. This does carry the risk of overexplaining, so we made the choice made after thinking of our target market. A lot of subtext is lost in the lack of body language / vocal tone in a visual novel, so as a result, the dialogue needs to be more literal.
Thanks again for your honest thoughts and for playing the demo!
— Luna Chai
I just enjoy playing this game so much! I loved writing the article and I think that is a very good gameplay mechanic! I can't wait to play more! Good job!
That was absolutely amazing! The story was compelling, the art was beautiful the music was magical, I was terrified and thrilled and addicted the whole way! I soooo excited to buy the full game!
I finally met all of the main characters, I think. I love how you managed to make all of them completely different. You really put a lot of time and effort into this game! Good job!
This. Demo. Was. Amazing. The music, the plot, the characters, the art, the voice acting - everything was phenominal. I will 100% be saving up money to buy the full version!! I can't wait to learn more about the characters and be invested deeper into the plot.
Thank you! I'm happy that you enjoyed your playthrough, and hope that you also enjoy the future releases! — Luna Chai
... four simple words: The. Demo. Was. Brilliant. I honestly did not expect such high quality results from this novel, I guess I should not make assumptions next time. But with every fiber of my being I am glad to say I enjoyed it very much and will be slowly dying until we have access to the full version. Also, if you do not mind me asking, when will the full version be released?
Very glad to hear this! We're currently aiming to release the full version is Q2 2020, but the detailed development roadmap can be found on the website zodiacaxis.com. — Luna Chai
I love playing the beta - which I wasn't really expecting. The game's just got one of those unnameable things that hooks me from the beginning :3. Will definitely buy when the full version is released!
I played the demo. I can't download its full version for free. So can't you make it a free game as in full version? Please do that. then the number of players you are having now you will get tons more. And I want to join your team for writing the story line. Can I? Overall it was like super duper awesome. But if it was free like the demo then a lot of people would be interested to play it. So in the end I'll say that please make the game in full version free. And if you want you can send an E-mail to my account. Inform me if you need it.
The dev is under no obligation to give their work away for free, especially when it is as good as this is. Just save up some cash and buy it when it comes out.
Since the team is comprised of mortal humans, we need money to pay for our grocery bills, student loans, mortgage, healthcare, and other living expenses we need to not starve to death in cardboard boxes. Thanks for your understanding! — Luna Chai
I have finished the route of Becquett (I bought the Beta version), and I can absolutely affirm, that it was worth the money that I have spent for it, this game will become a masterpiece, and the only thing I can say is:
1) Thanks for creating such a wonderful game!
2) I liked the Becquett route so much, that I beg for a sequel, or a section of extras, to see more interactions of the characters after the events of the route, like their first time at the amusement park...
3) The next route will be Leaf, and it will start in January, right?
I hope it comes out soon, but take your time to raise the quality of the game.
4) In the future, will you make a guide for the game and all its possible fiancs?
And that's it, I'll wait patiently for the following news on the Leaf route.
Wow, thank you for the feedback! Yep, the next story will be Leaf's, and we're aiming to release it in the last week of January. That being said, as mentioned, my parents' move to Chicago might influence the timeline, but we'll do our best to get his story out on time! I'm not planning on making a guide since walkthroughs are usually fan-created, but if there's a lack of clarity on the gameplay or achievements that feel unattainable, I'll definitely consider it. — Luna Chai
I think I've met all the love interests so far and I like each and every one of them! The writing for this game is amazing and it is so believable! Good job!
Sooo i played the demo and
omg this is so beautiful i can't even express myself-
btw i think that i'll buy the "beta access" and i'm so exited, can't wait for the full version of this game!
(sorry for my english, i'm italian and i'm still learning)
I literally made an account so I could comment on how much I loved the demo of this game! It was amazing and there wasn't anything I could possibly think of hating about it. I can't wait for the full version of this game to be released!
Very beautiful art and GUI!! Interesting story with a quite unusual theme! Really love the mystery stuffs and want to know more about the plot, characters, and the Zodiacs ofc!! Can't wait to play the full version!!
Thank you for your support, and I'm glad you enjoyed it! — Luna Chai
can yall put this on mobile?
Would love to! Our currently priority is finishing development of the game and releasing on Steam. Console and mobile ports are something we would love to investigate in the future, but is not currently on the roadmap. — Luna Chai