What I Didn't Accomplish
I'm an obsessive planner. I always make to do lists a mile long, Being goal oriented is generally motivating- except when you're not reaching them. Sometimes, you set the bar a little bit too high and when you miss, you loss all of your drive to push forward.
You have to step back when everything feels like failure and look at all the steps you've actually made. The whole 2 steps forward 1 step back has rang true, but it always feels like people feel that step back far more than their actual progress.
I wanted to accomplish way more projects this year, I wanted to be streaming more, I wanted to be fully comfortable financially.
What I have to realize is I've progressed in each of those areas, even if just in a small way.
I was insanely lucky and a bit overzealous this last year, because I planned out going to so many conventions.
Starting in early December 2015 I got to experience the Playstation Experience.
Then the very next month I headed to Pax South.
Later on I realized that there is not enough time between Pax South and Pax East, but I still went anyway.
Closing out the year strong, I got to meet everyone I love at Twitch Con.
It was the most traveling I've ever done in my life, all within the short span of a year. It was amazing. I have a few conventions to cross off my bucket list and I still have photos sitting in my camera waiting to be uploaded... somewhere.
Something that I really needed this year was to finish a project. I was craving it. It had been so long since I finished a full thing and saw something all the way through. Never had I finished a game project through the polishing stage. I never saw things through all the way, life would just get in the way somehow and I would always find myself focused on another new thing.
I am beyond happy that Me&Mom has been printed and outside of potentially needing to resize things when the copy gets in, is done. I am going to start the next year with a polished piece and it really feels nice.
Personally, I struggle with staying loyal to one project. I've learned a lot about my personal workflow this year and I'm hoping it will help me with future projects.
I will also be done with Jamais-Vu and sending it off to print by the end of the year as well!
I will admit that almost up until Twitch Con I had almost given up on streaming. It was a lot of time being pulled from my schedule and it wasn't helping me along side my projects.
Although lately I've been inconsistent with streaming as an outlet of Game Dev having a few streams progressing through my board game and TouchDesigner project was very motivational. Plus, it's always really fun sharing the work I'm making.
Here's two card games that I may or may not go back to one day. They were both made when I was actively participating in One Game a Month.
The Absurd Gun Game
A game about the ultimate old fashion duel- except replace the ammo with Shakespearean insults and bananas.
Made to help me with my knowledge of classic literature. Get together with friends and prove your literary knowledge.
Hopefully, I'll be able to come back to these after I've hit a nice completion with Things That Make Me Happy and Me&Mom. Till then these little card games will just be from jams long, long ago. If anything I should go back and fix up the rule sheets and check for more clarity. If/when i do this I'll let you know!
Woodworking 101 (if you can call drilling holes woodworking)
Lesson: Drilling straight holes isn't the easiest thing without proper tools, or it just takes practice and experience.
Me&Mom takes places through four main board designs. While sharing the the narrative of the game I began to realize that conceptually each "act" needed to build on top of the previous. Not only would this save storage space, but you'd be able to see the game in it's entirety in one look.
I made the decision to paint the blocks with watercolor since I started planning the physical aspect of the board. Since this game is a very personal experience I needed the materials that I choose to really resonate with me. Watercolor has been a journey that brought me into art and through schooling actually brought me back into games.
But painting on blocks? Impossible? Enter the magical world of watercolor ground, allowing literally anything to become a canvas ready to take on watercolor.
Color blocks alone did not help indicate where you were allowed to move your character. Originally, I was going to use string to connect the pathways you could travel on, but it just wasn't large enough nor was it easy enough to attach without looking thrown together. Since, I was working on a deadline (and a budget), I made the decision to use a watercolor sheet and cut watercolor strips to help visually imply where you could travel.
Seen below is the gallery of the game in all 4 acts and a side profile of the final act.
Me&Mom was on display at Phoenix Comic Con, along with Glitz and Glam and my short jam game These People Confuse Me. It was a great experience and I can't wait to go back next year a billion times better!
This month's IndieBox was my favorite coach co-op space adventure game: Lover's in Dangerous Spacetime. An added bonus of getting this great game was it came with really fun things!
Can you guess which item was my favorite?
Okay to be fair my favorite object in any IndieBox is probably always the instruction manual. I love the little note from the developer and just flipping through it. Surprisingly, I miss this little booklet most from newer console releases even if I never used them to look up the controls. I felt like every time I got to look through the manual as a kid I learned a little tidbit about the game.
The previous month Indiebox decided to spice up how they distribute the game and start creating these amazing,soft flashdrives in the shape of characters, and objects from the game of the month. I love this addition since it gives me yet another thing to display, (plus chances are I'm going to just redeem the steam code for the game). However, since Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime is couch co-op this might actually make this a great portable experience when I head over to friends house or if I'm doing a game night!
Honestly, if you're not subscribed I'm not sure what you're waiting for. March's game has already been announced as Assault Android Cactus and sign up ends soon! Next month will be the first month Indiebox officially introduces me to a game I've never played, but given their track record of amazing titles I'm not worried.
Stay tune til next month's box! :)
The excitement, and the realization that so many marvelous things were jammed into one weekend.
PAX South! Global Game Jam! Street Fighter V beta!
"I want it all, I want it all, I want it all."
I didn't realize when grabbing my ticket for PAX South that it would land on the weekend of the Global Game Jam. This year it was a resolution of mine to get back into game jams, and now I'm going to miss the biggest one of the year. Crap.
Oh, Street Fighter V also decided to be awesome and give us an another free beta weekend before it releases next month.
Needless to stay, I stayed home and played Street Fighter, canceled my hotel and sold my PAX badge to some neighbor kid who plays Clash of Clans all day.
San Antonio is a beautiful city. While it feels pretty touristy, it had some great gems waiting for me within walking distance of my hotel! My favorite is a shop called Belgian Sweets, they made that delicious looking waffle and they serve all that chocolate seen in the images above. If I return to PAX South in future years, I'm always going to remember this shop and stop at least once!
The whole city seems full of great shops like this, and I can say as far as locations go this is the best con I've been to.
I thought the diversity lounge was really awesome! I'm really grateful that I ran across an image Geeks Out had posted otherwise it would have flown off my radar.
I've been on the fence about the subscription service IndieBox, but there is so much love and care pack into this collection that I couldn't help but signing up for next month. It also helped that the February's game is Lover's in a Dangerous Spacetime.
Bricade posts game dev reflection, narrative notes, and travel diaries.