Thursday, March 3, 2016

Motivation and the Artist's Ego

Hi all. I've made one or two games before, none of which were publishable, but all of which taught me a valuable lesson:

You always hit a wall.

Okay, maybe I shouldn't generalize that. I always hit a wall. Success in game dev, or anything really, is based on my ability to either surmount the wall, or else incorporate it into my schemes.

I'm tracking my work as a Devgame intern on my blog. Today, I documented some ways I surmounted the wall:

...on regaining momentum. I have found that there are three things that lead to increasing and maintaining my momentum.

The first is to brainstorm up the smallest possible task I can do and do that. Small motion begets larger motion.

The second is to show my work. I’m an artist. I’m egotistical. I welcome the incoming adulation.
 After following my own excellent advice, I proceeded to write my own sprite packer.  Um.  It's terrible.  Nobody but me should use it.

I’m not attending Devgame because I want to do art for games. I’m attending Devgame because I want to design games. If I can’t hack it, then I’d love to make a living making games in some other role anyway, but I learned the art side of things for the same reason I learned how to code: the artist’s catch 22. 
It works like this: if you are a writer, cartoonist, or whatever, nobody will publish you until you’re a known quantity. And you aren’t a known quantity until you’ve been published. 
When I first booted up Super Mario World on the SNES and realized that this was what I wanted to do, I assumed that game design was like all the other arts. Nobody will produce one of your designs until you’ve designed something that has been produced. And since I’m poor as a churchmouse, and can’t outright hire people to produce stuff for me, I assumed I would have to do everything myself. 
Thus, I am a third-rate artist and a fourth-rate code-monkey. And please, don’t mistake that statement for humility. Third and fourth rate are still a hell of a lot better than average.
 Anyhow, I'm going to be tracking my progress here as well as there. Cheers.

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