The Unbearable Lightness of Being at the End of Projects

Open field

I don’t know about you, but there’s a kind of horror involved in the sunny, wide-open fields one is confronted with after you’re done with your latest quite-involved project. Which is pretty much where I am now. Both v r 2 and Game Studies are more or less good to go bar some tweaks and the actual release process. Which means I’m sitting here on Saturday morning wondering what on earth I’m supposed to do now. After all, I essentially cease to exist unless I have a game in the making. And yes you can tell me off for tying my identity too closely to a specific activity, but, frankly, I do, so tough luck to you.

So it’s daunting, because of course there’s a part of me (perhaps 90% of me?) that’s pretty sure I’m not going to have a decent idea for a game ever again (and therefore will bow out of reality). Or perhaps more specifically, that I won’t be able to find an idea that’s both worthwhile and that I actually want to work on, that I won’t be able to find that joy one needs to do the work.

I peruse my list of game ideas (231 ideas strong at present), and find that they’re almost all wrong for one reason or another. For some of them I’m just not so into the idea, for some there are technical requirements I don’t have the strength to learn right now, and for a surprising number of them I don’t actually understand what I’ve written down well enough to make the game (“Art Thief”? “Be a Man”?? “Fighting the Visible Signs of Aging”???). Ideas are cheap, it’s true, but ideas you want to work on seem remarkably expensive sometimes.

Right now I’m playing with the idea of making another sequel/edition of Let’s Play: Ancient Greek Punishment. It has the makings of something quite entertaining (to me), so I think it may work out. Because unless I get that feeling of this is it! then there’s almost no point in even embarking on a project, I find. Even to sustain interest through a relative minuscule development process of, say, 4 weeks or less, I find I really need to be very, very certain about the concept. And most importantly, to laugh.

So wish me luck. I’m trying to laugh over here.

4 June 2016
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