Unpleasant Things

If the last few days hadn’t been so full of headaches, work, a clogged nose, and a dislodged rib, the damn game might be finished now. I was even planning on submitting the game to the IGF. But I’ve had some revelations:

  1. I care more about critical recognition than I am probably willing to admit. I want my work to be recognized.
  2. But I don’t care about it that much.
  3. And there’s a tone of pretension (mixed with greed) about much of the indie gaming scene that I just find so fucking unpleasant that I really don’t want to be associated with it. Taking games seriously is great and important, taking yourself seriously is not.
  4. If someone offered me a contract as a game designer right now, I would probably turn it down.
  5. If I let my art destroy my health, my art suffers in return.

I want Phenomenon 32 to be done more than I can possibly say. Especially right now, when I’m so close to it, it’s tempting to just throw something together and release it. But I won’t, for the same reason that I abandoned the first version of Phenomenon 32 and built the current one from scratch: I want to do the game justice. I don’t care if everyone loves the result – they probably won’t, anyway. But I do care whether I’ve been true to the idea that appeared to me.

It looks like I’m starting to get a reputation for not being able to hit deadlines. It’s kind of ironic, given how hard I work, but sometimes the universe really seems to be working against me: announcing deadlines seems to provoke it. I guess that proves my theory that this universe is run by a trickster. (Some might suggest Coyote, but I think it’s actually Cat. Maybe that’s why Dog is the opposite of God. Hmmm.)

Anyway, the game is getting closer to being finished all the time, and in a very tangible way, but I’ll stop talking about that for now and go back to making levels. I know it’s frustrating, but not much longer and you’ll be exploring the strange world that I’ve spent so much time in lately.

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