The Gap

So I’ve been looking at what I’ve managed to put out, and I take note of every little negative thing. When I look at Bit Sorter, I know what it could be, if I put in another hundred to two hundred hours or so – but a large part of me doesn’t want to, because it’s just a pointless tap game.

I have half finished projects all over the shop. Bit Circuit, the start of Bit Tender, Rock Fighter (which still has a basic HTML5 implementation still available but not working quite right). Gridlocked. Arches. Overworld. I’ve got bloody game ideas for days over here. But every time I look at them I find them wanting. Gridlocked could be very cool mechanically, but I haven’t struck up the right story to back it up. The old DOS game turned free HTML5 classic HEXXAGON is an interesting 1v1 puzzle game that gives creates a range of interactions. But really? Gems vs Pearls? I doubt it’ll ever really take off in any form like that. And frankly it’s too simple to scale into anything worth someone’s money. That’s how I feel about Bit Sorter. I doubt, even if I put in those hundreds of hours creating fresh assets and really making the Bit Currency useful and fun to earn and spend… I just don’t think it’s got enough depth and fun. I enjoyed playing it on a tablet for a while. It does have a competitive spirit to its High Score system that I worked hard on making granular with the speed bonus.

Oh, and I forgot about my Zen Garden I was working on. It could be a pretty neat Idle App eventually, but working in Unity was so frustrating to get things to work.

Lastly, I was working somewhere I didn’t like. I wanted to make games to eventually break free of that situation. Now I work somewhere I love. I don’t need to break free of this. I actually quite enjoy it. So I can focus on doing stuff that I like to do. Which seems to be mostly playing games.

Now, I do like making things work. That is probably my favourite thing. When I am making a game, designing an idea is middling. If I’ve got someone to bounce ideas off of, then it’s great! But now, not so much. Getting an idea up and running though, oh man. I love proving a concept. I love having a problem, and then solving it. Lastly, I hate finishing a game with polish, which is a very important thing to do and detrimental not to. I don’t have Game Developer friends, and I haven’t collaborated seriously since OMFG Shapes!. Now with HCT Games dissolving, well, I suppose my next things will be back to Guy Bits. Which is good! But it’s very difficult to create an idea that hasn’t been done to death in ways that I can’t match or beat.

I am a novice developer. I can program pretty well, but ultimately my art skills leave a bit to be desired. I might be able to make a pretty slick Nintendo64 level graphics game in about a year. When I think about what I want to make, I grasp at ideas that are within my ability. I don’t think I can make a Zelda: Ocarina of Time. There’s just so much content to create there. I could probably make a Zelda: A link to the Past, but I don’t have a single player story to tell. There are a number of things I’d like to do, but I don’t know how to do them. I’ve finally picked up how to do the node server thing – whether that will translate back to Unity in a meaningful way (allowing me to potentially host an online real-time server without paying $100+ a month) is yet to be seen.

I know what I can do, and I know what I can’t. And what I want to do I know I can’t yet. This is The Gap. Which means what I am doing is basically practicing – or exercising my ability. No one wants to exercise. But we all want to be fit.

I want to be a sexy, fit game developer. I guess I need to start exercising.