I was responding to the following comment in this blog post when I realized my response was becoming quite long and maybe deserves its own post. And I’m not trying to pick on Howse or feel in anyway provoked. This post just shares some thoughts I’ve been thinking that Howse reminded about that I haven’t really stated before. So here are some thoughts and some information about me and what I’m all about
I’m only gonna mention this once: this has taken you so much longer than your original projected time that it makes me rofl.
Still, you’re doing amazingly. I love the game anyways, no matter how incomplete it is. I’m glad you’re taking your time with it, making sure that there are no flaws in the final release. This game will surely be an internet sensation upon completion. Keep up the good work! =D
Thanks. Yeah, believe me. I never thought I’d be working on one game for so long either. Life has a way of happening in ways you don’t always anticipate, and I can’t really complain — I’m pretty happy with my life. Since I started developing BM2 and WS over 4 years ago, the economy took a dump, I moved twice, changed careers from Software Engineer at Boeing to working as a full time Flash Developer for Honda and just this last year I got married, my wife and I rescued two animals (girl dog named Biscuit and boy cat named Mr. Bitey) and my wife recently started a new job after being unemployed for over a year.
I love making games and wish I could spend more time doing it but the reality is that I only have so much time to allocate to personal Flash game development while maintaining my independence along with doing all the other things I like doing like playing League of Legends with my wife, snowboarding, bodyboarding or playing PC games.
I could maybe get a job working full time as a Flash game developer but then I might not get the freedom to develop the games I want to make with full control over the design. Not that I don’t like being a team player, but commercial games usually involve a team of people (designer/artists/animators/developers) and the goal is to make a good game to make money. The pressure to make it good sometimes restricts creativity as games will go with proven formulas. On the flip side, new games that use existing mechanics that “have been done before” may even be frowned upon for lacking in innovation. To be independent gives so much freedom — freedom to re-make something that already exists but with your own twist (who cares if it already exists… I want mine with zombie bears and green blood but theirs didn’t have that) — freedom to do something super wacky ().
However, I’m sure there are studios out there that do great things and foster creativity through team collaboration and produce super high quality stuff. To them I say, “Are you hiring? If not, stop being so cool, you’re making me jealous.” 😉 But like I said, I can’t complain. I count my blessings and I feel quite blessed. I get to play with Flash all day at work, and while it’s not for making games it keeps me sharp and it doesn’t burn me out. I can come home and fire up Flash again for some game development.
I have so many design ideas and concepts for new games that I just can’t wait to develop that it can be a real challenge to stay focused on the primary objective which is to finish the latest Bowmaster. Despite my focus and my current strategy to publish weekly updates for Bowmaster Winter Storm, I still sometimes spend time prototyping and experimenting and I can definitely feel my personal Flash skills “Leveling Up” — I can’t wait to use the lessons I’ve learned so far to make my next big game.
Just know that however long it takes, I will finish BM WS and BM2, and I plan on making many more games after that for years to come. Stay tuned!
how it’s made (because it’s in the title and maybe you’re curious):
On weekends: I find some block of time to try to accomplish the bulk of next week’s update. Sometimes I have a busy weekend and can’t work on flash stuff and so I try to make this up with doing stuff after work on the weekdays. Without compromise, Saturday starting at 5pm it is date night with my wife.
Weekdays: I come home from work and after doing some chores I work on Flash game development tasks (either finishing up the work I started that weekend or trying to play catch-up if I didn’t have time to work on the weekend). I often let myself get interrupted for some impromptu PC gaming if I get a Steam invite or sometimes I play Volleyball after work. Dinner is at 7pm and the rest of the night is off; the time is spent relaxing with my wife — sometimes it involves killing zombies or destroying nexuses.
Thursday Night: Wrap up weekly update (best case scenario) to be posted next morning.
Friday Morning: Upload new files, or wake up super early to finish last minute updates. Worst case: post later in the day in the evening (haven’t slipped on posting on Fridays in a long while).
Friday Night: TGIF.
Saturday Morning: if possible, start next week’s content development.
So this is how I go about doing what I do as a Flash Game Developer, all the while and in between trying to be a good husband, son, brother, uncle, pet owner, employee, friend, neighbor and human