This game is so fantastic and unique. I love it so much! Best visual novel in my live. Please.... Please... don't forget your fans. You are so passionate! Your game is a bright light in a ocean of boring games. Please don't give up.
A downloadable game for Windows, macOS, and Linux
(Please note that this visual novel is a work-in-progress, meaning not all assets are final, and content is subject to change as development of the game moves forward.)
UPDATE ON THE STATUS OF LOCKED SOULS'S DEVELOPMENT: http://pastebin.com/YGduRTc8
Locked Souls is the evolution of the original Locked Hearts--a direct upgrade in terms of visuals, music, and more!
A full list of the new changes are as follows:
- New sprite artwork, with updated character designs by Kirsten Moody
- New backgrounds (though most nighttime alternatives are still missing)
- A fully original soundtrack, composed by the super talented Noyemi K (Of which you can purchase HERE to support her)
- Fully voiced lines for all of the important characters (VAs are listed below each character's name in the bios)
- Revamped UI and title screen
Locked Souls tells the story of Luke, a hapless individual wracked with debt who finds himself taking a job as a prison guard at a seemingly innocuous prison. Only, very quickly on his first night does he find himself roped into something far more sinister than he ever could have imagined.
The main character of the game. Timid and somehow always getting the short end of the stick in life, Luke seems like the least likely candidate for a role that demands a lot both physically and mentally of a person. He has no remarkable qualities of which to speak of, and uses humour to lighten up what would otherwise be a dreadfully depressing place to work. While usually very reserved, he finds himself slowly being drawn out of his shell whether he likes it or not when confronted with the inmates.
A sleepy enigma, wrapped in intrigue, and further shrouded by mystery, Emma is one of the prison's more friendly inhabitants. Seemingly always in a perpetual state of being not quite awake, but then not quite asleep either, she totters around and happily lives out her days within the institute. Not much is known about how she ended up where she is, or why she is as drowsy as she is. Emma can only respond with a smile and shrug when questioned about it.
Perfectly combed raven hair and piercing jade eyes, she has an almost regal air about her that makes the rest of the inmates around her look like shabby, stray dogs in comparison; a comparison of which she would more than likely agree with, given how she acts as if she is the most important person within the prison, and most likely actually is. While more often than not, she exudes a calm and collected demeanor, she also has a temper that has a tendency to flare up if things don't go her way. And given the various connections she seems to wield within the establishment, it seems a wise idea not to get on her bad side.
A cheerful, sporty individual who constantly strives to improve herself, perhaps to a fault. While an ace in the basketball court as Luke witnesses firsthand, she struggles to understand the concept of teamwork, and desires to always be in the spotlight, even going as far as to cheat her way to the top if needed. Due to this, and coupled with a violent temper that quickly makes it clear how she ended up in prison, she has alienated herself from most of the other inmates, though fails to understand why.
Never allowed to leave the confines of her cell, Lisa is the most dangerous one of the group, accused of a series of murders that were incredibly bloody in execution. However, despite her crimes, she is the most docile, and quiet of the group. Almost always absorbed in her book, she rarely ever takes the time to talk, or even eat unless necessary. If required to speak, she will respond with clipped, fractured sentences, simply saying the bare minimum to get her point across in a dull, monotone voice that suggests all emotion has left her.
Cheerful and upbeat, May is a blinding beacon of optimism in an otherwise dreary place. Being a fellow security guard, she is the first person that Luke comes into proper contact within the game, and gives him a run down of the facility and his responsibilities—albeit, in a rushed manner. Her mischievous nature, and love of pulling jokes on Luke can sometimes make her harder to cope with than even the inmates, leaving him drained both emotionally and physically almost every time they converse. Professional would be the last word that would come to mind when describing her. Luke often wonders how she even has a job still at all with how very little he actually sees of her working.
The demo is roughly 40,000 words long and spans over three days, following Luke's misadventures with the inmates.
As mentioned, the project is still very much a work in progress and elements are subject to change, based on feedback, or if I personally feel they need changing later on; this includes both the script, art assets, and anything else, too.
If you have any thoughts on the demo, changes you would like to see, or run into any issues, please feel free to get in contact with me.
You may follow me on Twitter (@liamexe) , too, for sporadic updates on things. Now that the work on the demo is complete, development of the game will be far more rapid than it has been in recent months, and I'll have plenty to show moving forward!
Additionally, you can follow the development thread on lemmasoft too, of which I'll be trying to keep more up to date than I have done in the past.
Thank you for your time and I hope you enjoy the demo~
You may wish to adjust the voice and music level balance to ensure you can hear both comfortably without either one being drowned out too much. This can be done in the options at any time by right clicking, or in the main menu before the game begins.
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The game isn't exactly 'dead', or 'cancelled', though is on an extended hiatus due to other commitments that demand a large majority of my time. I do apologise and really would like to see the game finished myself, and I appreciate the kind words, but it would just be too much to take on alongside other things right now.
Just so's everyone knows, this is what is going on with Locked Souls:
So 2017, huh? Gosh, time sure flies. It'll have been about a year since I released the first demo of Locked Souls soon. Kinda crazy how much has happened since then.
As you can imagine, with how infrequently I've been updating lately, and just the general inactivity of my twitter account, development of Locked Souls has been going slow--glacial, even. So maybe it won't come as much of a surprise to many of you when I say: development of Locked Souls will be put on hold for the foreseeable future.
It does of course pain me to write this, and it's not something I considered lightly, but given how things have been going I've decided it's probably for the best to not drag it out and pretend like everything's fine.
Now, what's the cause of Locked Souls being put on hold? Several contributing factors really, but I know the blame falls mainly on myself for how I've mishandled things. These things are:
- Slow progress with creation of assets (Though I want to stress that I'm NOT blaming the artist in any way)
- Work on other visual novel project required in order to keep a roof over my head and fund Locked Souls development taking far more time away from being able to work on Locked Souls than I previous imagined it would
So, essentially, Locked Souls isn't dead. Far from it. ...It's just, not moving forward from where it currently is, and might not for a little while longer, if that makes sense. Since not a day goes by where I'm not thinking of the game, its characters and the story. It's a very personal, ambitious project of mine and I do intend to see it through to the end--even if by the time I'm finished in however many years everyone has lost interest and I'm the only one that reads it, since it's something I care about deeply and want to see done for my own satisfaction.
I just felt that I owed it to all of you for your immense support over the course of the creation of the game to be upfront with where things are at. I do apologise deeply for releasing a demo only to end up failing to deliver in the end despite how well it was received.
So what am I doing in the meantime, in order to make a living? While Locked Souls is, and always will be free upon its eventual release if ever, I decided in addition to this to also try my hand at making my own commercial visual novel too, with my options of maintaining funds dwindling. This commercial endeavor took off and landed me far more success than I ever could have hoped for, and the small commercial test game I launched spiraling into something far greater as a result, essentially becoming my full-time job.
You may notice I haven't mentioned this game I'm developing by name--or have mentioned it all on my twitter the reason being that in order to guarantee sales with such an endeavor, there was a certain, uh, 'direction' I had to take the game in, which I know advertising openly may not have been to many of my followers' liking, so I opted to go with a fresh twitter account and identity, though those familiar with me will probably be able to spot who I am if they saw it, haha. The game in question is one of an adult nature and follows similar themes and character dynamics in relation to the female characters and male character in terms of the power dynamic, only, they're a little more...monstrous, if you get what I'm saying.
I won't link to this project directly to avoid offending, but if it does interest you and you want to see what I might up to while Locked Souls takes an extended hiatus, simply google 'Frostworks' or 'Quest Failed' and you'll stumble upon it soon enough.
Thank you for your time if you decided to read through all this, and I'm sure that this isn't the end. Kind of just...a long goodbye, I guess? But I'll be back, one day! Even if everyone else has moved on and the audience I have left for Locked Souls is tiny, the prisoner's stories will be finished, and the mystery of the prison will be revealed~
I'd also like to thank everyone for their amazing contributions towards the project in helping it become what it is today, even if in the future it might not be possible to work with them again depending on things, as I see so many of them have grown in such a short amount of time, achieving amazing things~
- Noyemi K for her fantastic soundtrack that sticks with you even long after you've shut down the game. Be sure to support her and her own projects she's got cooking up at the moment! http://delmunsoft.com/
- Snow the Wanderer for her fantastic art that really brought the game to life, creating characters that are bursting with energy and just so adorable~ http://snow-the-wanderer.deviantart.com/
- DaoDao for their super amazing background art. They turned my filtered photo references into something truly amazing that I'm still in awe of to this day. https://lemmasoft.renai.us/forums/memberlist.php?mode=viewprofile&u=34088
And the wonderful VA cast that I couldn't imagine the characters without these days. The online VA community was something new to me when I first approached them with auditions, but I was blown away by the dedication and quality these people put out!
- Caitlyn Bairstow as May, the enthusiastic prison guard brimming with energy...perhaps a little too much for Luke? Either way, she did an amazing job at bringing May to life and the moment I heard her audition I knew she was the perfect one for the job! https://twitter.com/CaityBair
- Kristyn Mass as Emma, the sleepy prisoner~ It's no surprise that Emma ended up as one of the most popular inmates in polls thanks to Kristyn's adorably dozy interpretation of the character, only adding to the charm. http://ohnobones.wixsite.com/kristynmassva
- Jill Harris as Lisa, the stoic murderer. It's not an easy job to voice someone who's outwardly emotionless without sounding too overly dull yourself, but she did amazingly with Lisa, giving her a quiet, yet also vulnerable voice, but being able to add a deadly edge to it when needed, all while keeping the same level of blunt, emotionless feeling to it all. https://twitter.com/jillybeannomnom/
- Heidi Tabing as Rachel, the brash, energetic inmate. Rachel is one of the most animated characters who swaps through a range of emotions at rapidfire, and Heidi did a perfect job of capturing them all, making Rachel someone who's scarily violent, but also has a soft, lovable side to them as well. https://twitter.com/AderuMoro
- Rachael Messer as Katherine, the head honcho of their little group. Sultry, teasing, and a powerful, commanding voice when needed, Rachael was the perfect fit for Katherine and I'm glad to see she enjoyed the role so much since I was truly honoured to have someone as prolific as her on board. https://twitter.com/rachaelmesser
Thank you all for lending your voices to the project! I'm just sorry we didn't get to do more. Since honestly, hearing the characters come to life after spending so long writing the script was one of my favourite parts of the process.
Goodbye for now, I suppose~
I've been following your project since I found it 135days ago. You might remember my comment. I was amazed by your game and was suprised that you planned to publish it for free. Ich checked at least once a week for a new update and followed your twitter for new information as well. I'm sad to hear that the progress on the game will slow down. But I'm even more glad that you still won't give it up, cause I will be waiting for it!
Also I'm glad that you got a new opportunity that seems to go very well for you. I will be sure to follow and suport your other project too.
Keep up the work and also a big thanks for letting us know about the current state of the game!
a small fan of your work,
I definitely remember you and the kind words you had for my project~
Thank you for all of the support you've shown and I'm sorry I wasn't able to deliver the finished version of Locked Souls in a timely manner. As I say, I do want to finish it in the future sometime but right now I have to focus my efforts elsewhere to be able to continue doing what I do. ; P
There should be lots to see and play of the new project though, with its first big commercial release already out and plenty more in development so I hope you look forward to that!
I was just making sure you were still working on the game. It has been forever since the last update, and I don't want this great start to go to waste... Any news on another demo, or possible full release?
Hiya, sorry to make you worry.
Development is a bit slow right now as the main artist I'm working with had some catastrophic computer issues that prevented them from progressing with things. Though I believe we might be on track now.
To keep a home over my head I am admittedly having to work on other projects right now while inching ahead with progress on Locked Souls, as I still intend to release it for free. It just might be finished a lot later than I anticipated now because of this.
hi there i must say that im colored impressed this is a game that has incredible potential it has such wonderful characters and is fully voiced for the characters that are show cased in the demo is such a great change of pace from most and with the self voicing button or V button gives you the feeling of having a completely fully voiced game, i am looking forward to this games next up date with great anticipation currently 10/10 star rating and by the by good job on the story, art, character design.sorry but the generic prison guards do not have voice except for self-voicing enabled feature
I really sad that this game still a demo version. However, the characters is soo cute! hopefully, there's will be more "18+" action. Why? because this romance game took me soo deeply into the GREAT romance! I hope I can help you about this game like donating for this game. Oh, I wanna ask you, when the new version of this demo game release? Or the full version will be release? I'm full with the rage to wait it!. Thank you very much making this awesome romance game!
*sorry for my bad english, because I'm from indonesian : )
Hiya there, R1ch4rd, thank you for your kind words. It really means a lot to me! I'm glad you enjoyed the demo~
Unfortunately due for a bunch of reasons at the moment, development of the new demo is slower than I would like, as is progress towards the full game. I do still aim to complete the game, but I'm not sure at this present moment in time when I might be done. I'll keep you updated though and let you know as soon as I know myself when a new release might be coming out. Thank you~
man this game is nice *thumb up* and im worry luke safety :3
i normally don't play BxG since most of the time they don't betray women accurately (let's face it guys shouldn't write female characters) but I am really loving this game so far keep up the good work :) ~random guy on the internet
Thank you~ That means a lot to me!
Hopefully I'll have more to share of the game very shortly. Since I know it's been a while since the first demo.
I am interested in donating some money in order to help this masterpiece along. How would I go about that?
I appreciate your interest in the project and am really happy to see such enthusiasm in wanting to contribute to Locked Soul's development!
Unfortunately, I'm not sure I would feel comfortable taking money from people to put towards a project that still has a long development time ahead of it, as well as something I was wanting to release for free. Given how I work on it as a passion project in my spare time, I feel if I start taking money for it that might come with an immense pressure and obligation to finish things as fast as I could so people didn't feel their money was perhaps being wasted--which ultimately might result in the quality of it suffering as a whole.
I really do appreciate the gesture though, and understand I've perhaps been taking longer than I meant to finish it or at least release bigger progress milestones--since I've been tied down with other commitments recently--but I can assure you things are going ahead smoothly! Some really nice CG scenes have been drawn out and I can wait to release an extended demo featuring them, along with some other fun stuff.
Well, if you say so. i greatly enjoyed the quality work you put into this, and wanted to reward you thusly, but i appreciate your honesty about whether or not you think your quality will suffer. i am slightly saddened that I cannot help this way, but if there is another beneficial way for me to help, please. Let me know.
Don't worry, I don't ask for much, haha~ So long as you continue to support the project and await the full release I'll be happy knowing there's people out there excited for it! Feel free to spread the word on the demo, too, if you think you might know other people that'd love it as well.
Beyond that, I suppose I'll be looking to make some great strides in the game's development once I'm done with other projects. I really want to get a new demo out when I can since I have a bunch of great new additions for it!
...You can't....You just can't end like this! I'm all red from anger righ now! You monster! I mean that cliffhanger is something not a humanity at all!!! D:
Deep breaths! It's all gonna be okay, I promise! : P Development of the extended demo has slowed a little while I work on other commitments to keep myself alive and have a roof over my head, but the majority of the content for it is written and there~ And the first half of the demo will benefit from some extra polish too, and fancy CG scenes in place of scenes that were just static sprites before. I'm really excited at how it's all turning out!
So, I just created an account just to tell you how amazed I am by this visual novel. I already gave feedback after I finished the first chapter over twitter a while ago. But 140 characters is not enough for this. Now I finished the 3 days from the demo and I'm still amazed by it! I love the characters, I love the dialogues and I love the story! I found this game when I was searching for exactly a game like that. But after some rather "bad" ones I already thought that I wouldn't find what I'm searching for. Until I found your game.Please! Please keep this good work up! You and everyone who is working on this did an fantastic job!
There is only one thing I have to complain about. The demo is too short and with a really rude cliffhanger! QwQ Because of the demo I can't wait to play the full game! And even though I know that it will take time I want to play it right now!
Anyway, I will wait for the full game to be released (or a new demo)! Thanks for creating this nice visual novel!
Thank you very much for playing the demo, I really appreciate it~ And I'm glad you enjoyed your time with it!
I'm working hard on producing an extended demo right now, while balancing between other commitments in life--so things are perhaps going a little more slowly than I would like--but I can guarantee it'll be worth it, since there'll be fancier graphics in place for older scenes as you've seen on twitter with WIP sketches, and some extra character interactions.
It's a big project, but I really want to see it through to the end as I have so much planned for all of the characters. After the extended demo has been released, I'll probably release each separate character's route one at a time so people aren't left waiting too long. Though even each character's route in itself will be a fairly long, extensive piece of content that really delves into each inmate and their story~
Thanks again for all the kind words, and I apologise for the cruel cliffhanger on the demo, haha. You'll find out soon enough what all the 'fun' is about, I promise!
Well, I was searching for a game that I could play and replay for hours, and guess what? I found it.
Your game is really amazing, even if it's just a demo, you did a great job with it and I can't wait for more.
The art is just stunning and I really like the characters, especially Rachel, May and Emma! I really like when they tease Luke, it made me laugh so much I almost fell off my chair. :'D
And Emma... She's just too cute. (>//3//<)
Anyway, it was just to tell you that your game is amazing, your characters are amazing, the story look amazing and you are amazing.
I can't wait for more! :D
(And sorry for my English, I'm French ^^')
Aww, thank you so much! I'm glad you enjoyed your time with the demo, and your kind words mean a lot to me, since I really worked hard (along with everyone else that contributed, of course!) to deliver a demo that I was proud of to share with the world.
Emma is certainly a popular one, haha~ Which is why her route is going to be completed first ahead of everyone else's once the common route is done! I really can't wait to share her story with everyone!
Hopefully it won't be much longer before I release a bigger and better expanded demo. But it'll definitely be worth the wait, since I'll be adding in a bunch of new CG graphics for it, including ones for events that have already happened--but will definitely add a whole lot more life to them!
You're welcome! :)
And while playing I certainly see all the work you put into this game and it's amazing!
And I'm really intrigued by the 'fun' they keep talking about and the cliffhanger at the end of the demo is just... Well, I was literally at the edge of my seat when Lisa told me to follow her and then 'BAM!' End of the demo.
I was like : "Wha-...Seriously? Oh come on! You can't do this!" >:C
But seriously, like I said before your game is amazing! You and your team did a really good job and I look forward to see more! :D
Haha, admittedly the ending of the demo is a bit cruel like that. I actually did want to extend things a bit further but it would have taken more time and resources, which is why I'll be putting out an extended demo later.
Without spoiling too much, I guess I can say the 'fun' is probably the last thing people will be expecting--whether that'll be a good thing or not is left to be seen.
Again, thank you for all the kind words so far and I really hope subsequent versions of the game will meet your expectations~
Like others here, I made an account purely to comment on this little gem. I genuinely enjoyed my time with the demo, which was played almost half a year ago, and I'm periodically checking here, eagerly awaiting more releases.
The VA's are amazing, and I have to commend the writing; everything in this VN meshes so well together. All in all, I had a great experience.
Two quick questions: how do I find out when updates are released? As I'm not sure when to re-download to play more xD
Edit: Wait, derp, I just saw that you had a twitter.
Also, it seems as if the game is sort of merging into its overriding themes within the demo, and I'm just genuinely curious as to what kind of themes we can expect to see later. I'm assuming romance, but who knows? :)
Thank you! That really means a lot to me~ I'm glad you enjoyed your time with the game and I'll be sure to pass on your kind words to the VAs. I'm sure they'll be glad to hear it!
And yeah, my twitter account will be the best way to find out about any approaching updates. But when I do release an update I'll be sure to make a big song and dance about it and update this page to reflect that fact. I do plan to release an extended demo relatively soon, but I'm waiting for some assets to be completed--such as some fancy CG scenes--and to get more voicework done (getting the extras voiced and such)
And I'm not sure if the game will go in the direction people are expecting given the end of the demo, but I hope they'll enjoy what awaits them, haha. It will certainly be 'fun'~
I'd imagine the 'fun' would be where the protagonist will have to execute the pranks that the inmates have prepared for him, which will get him in trouble from the other guard or inmates. It'll be definitely fun for the girls to play around with him. Not much for the protagonist.
I played the demo a while ago and I think this VN is surprisingly better than my expectation. I also want to give extra props to the voice actresses since they are doing a good job. I like, for example, Caitlyn's voice acting as a very optimistic security guard, because it sounded not like the 'typical' English voice actress I usually hear. It's a nice change of pace.
Emma is such a cute character, nothing bad can happen if I just stick close to her, right??? :P
Thank you very much for taking the time to go through it, it's much appreciated!
I'll be sure to pass on your kind words to the voice actresses when I next get the chance, as I'm sure they'll be happy to hear that. I, too, personally feel they add greatly to the experience of the game and couldn't imagine a version without them now.
And of course, haha. Stick with sleepy ol' Emma and everything will be fine~
NEED. MORE. NOW!!!!! (*_*)
More is coming soon, I promise! I'm actually working on getting lines edited and up to scratch before sending them to all of the wonderful voice actors on the project, so a new release isn't too far away.
I registered an account just to drop a comment. I played the Demo all the way through and was highly amused, i enjoyed the game a great deal and i honestly cant wait for it to be completed . I have found myself so drawn in that i check on it daily hoping for a change .though as i have previously read please do not rush the creation take as much time as you need perfecting it . Lastly i hope all goes well and the game is released soon i cant wait to play the completed version!
Thank you very much for playing through it~ It means a lot to me to hear you say that!
Rest assured progress is steadily being made, and I hope to have a lot more to share with people soon. Just lots of writing going on behind the scenes while more visual stuff is in the works.
I'll hope to have a bigger, expanded demo to share with people soon featuring more characters and story elements! I don't have an estimate for when the full game might be finished however, since it's going to be an incredibly large game if you count how many routes will be included, and each route's length. But more than likely I'll release each route as it's finished, so people have something to play while the rest is being finished.
Thanks again for all the kind words and support. I always appreciate comments like these, and they definitely motivate me to do my best and meet everyone's expectations, haha~
Im glad to hear it! like i said i really enjoyed the game. i haven't found a game i enjoyed even nearly as much as i did when i played everlasting summer but even then i never stared at its forums daily waiting for even the smallest sign of release so im pretty happy to announce this is my favorite visual novel so far! i cant wait to play more of it. Best of luck with its creation and furthering its progess you can count on me playing it!
I recently came across this demo and was surprised at how much was already developed. I hope you do finish some time soon but don't worry about taking as much time as you need to make it as good as it can be. Here are my pros and cons for this game:
Good Character Development
Great Fitting Voice Acting
Interesting events in each day
While I know its a lot to add each character I feel instead of having (Female Guard) as a filler you can make another guard character along with May to add more interaction possibilities.
Overall good stuff and I look foward to playing a great game when its released :)
Thanks for taking the time to go through it, I really appreciate it! I'm glad you enjoyed your time with it and I'm always happy to get feedback on things!
In terms of adding new characters in, while I do need to keep things at a small number in order to not go over my budget, there is in fact another named character that works at the prison who you'll be able to interact with. Her sprite wasn't ready in time for the demo, but I've been contemplating releasing an extended demo featuring her scenes, along with an extra day or two that continues on from the original demo. She isn't a guard (though up until a certain point I did plan for her to be one, until I realised it would be better to have everyone in different roles), but I still think she's a pretty cool character and her personality is in stark contrast to the rest of the cast, haha~
There's also gonna be side characters that directly relate to an inmate in some way, who you'll meet in their specific routes.
Awesome keep up the good work. I know from experience its not easy especially if you are the only one really making the game work, can't wait to see the new developments when it comes out or if in an extended demo. That's the only thing that stuck out to me so knowing you already have a plan in place to increase immersion makes the game a lot better good luck and good choice on the voice actresses.
Great game can't wait for more
Thank yas! Much appreciated. :D
Since the main story will be quite long and might take a while longer to release, I'll probably release a gradually expanding demo over the months, so there's some more content to see as I move forward.
When will the full game come out?
It's hard to say at the moment. Ideally I'd like to have it out and finished before the end of the year, but there's no telling how things might end up, since life throws all kinds of crazy curveballs our way when we least expect them.
At the very least, I hope to have something substantial done soon and have plenty to show as the months go on, especially once all the CGs begin to get made.
Thanks again for your interest and I can't wait to show more soon!
This game has a really interesting plot, and I really love the voice acting. Can't wait for the full game!