“And So On”

Guess what’s the worst way to assign a task? I have experience on this, so I’ll share this with you.

The discussion goes something along this way:
Juuso: “The 3d character model needs to be bulky. Bit like Hulk would be.”
Artist: “Oh, like that big”
Juuso: “Well, not that huge guy, but you know… muscular shoulders. Head low.”
Artist: “…”
Juuso: “You know. Like a pro Wrestler type of character. But like Hulk. And needs to look cool. But not too cool. And he also needs to wear a dagger and rusty armor and so on…
Artist: “I’ll do what you want master! I’ll get right into it”

Well, I’m not that bad at giving tasks actually (I’m pretty good at explaining things I believe), but same way, I never hear artist saying that last line either…

Anyway.

Ending a task assignment into a “and so on” is like expecting the other person to be a mind reader – I know that won’t work.

How Much Time You’ve Spent Playing Games? In Your Whole Lifetime

I started pondering that it must be like thousands and thousands of hours that I’ve put into different games. I’ve played tons of games. I’ve enjoyed tons of games. I’ve explored the ruins of Diablo… conquered the worlds of Civilization and shot tons of zombie heads. And possibly couple of other things between.

Was it all worth it?

What about you? How many hours of fun has your gaming hobby brought you (or at least how many hours you’ve spent in your whole life playing games). We are grown ups. Well, I’m am. Sort of.

Adult men playing video, board and other games. Is this bit silly?

You betcha.

I’ll do the same in the next life. You?

We’ve Seen FPS/RTS/RPG… What Could Be Totally New Genre?

We all hear about those fancy FPS/RPG/RTS/whatnot games that are published using a certain pattern (I’m making a small exaggeration here): they look darn good, they have invented one new trick and have cool physics.

Now as we’ve seen those happen… what could be a totally new genre?

Is it so that everything there is has been invented?

What about game based on sound control… like where visuals would not play a big role? Or could there be a simulation that would go much deeper than the current things… like a simulation that could help examine how human cloning (or whatever scientific stuff) happens. This is really tough, and I feel like this is too much to even think. I feel like everything has been already invented… and that new things are “just” combination of old. Or old things applied to new things. (Nothing wrong with this approach, as long as the end result equals Fun)

What could be a totally new genre?

Who Needs Ownership? (I Tested My Spotify Invite…)

I’ve been testing spotify music service lately. The basic idea is that (1) once you have an account, you can (2) listen to pretty much any music you can think of via that service. If you buy the membership, then you can also (3) download as much music as you want.

There’s one really interesting thing about this service: ownership.

After testing the service… I see absolutely no reason to purchase any music ever. Why would I? I can just go to spotify and play it. There’s no point to purchase music (I don’t know why they even bother selling music in the store, since anybody can listen it anyway) if you have this service.

I don’t “own” the music and don’t store it on my computer… but don’t really need, since the content is available anyway when I’m online.

I wonder how this would work in the gaming industry.

P.S. If you wanna test it, google for “spotify invite”… but you didn’t hear that from me, m’kay?

I Just Saw A Flying Fish

In game dev (and I suppose in life) it’s probably pretty easy to get stuck on doing things as they’ve always done. If I have certain rituals, or certain ways to do game dev… I probably keep doing them. I consider myself pretty experimental and I think I’m often open for new ideas and even might test them for a week or two to see if they come handy.

Nevertheless, I most likely have some beliefs and thoughts that are so rooted in me that I might not be aware of them. These beliefs are just something I carry myself and “know to be true”.

Today I saw a fish flying. Well… it perhaps was “gliding” on top of water (without actually touching water) so in my books that’s flying. If a fish can go above water without touching the water for 200 meters – that’s enough flying for me.

It was even flapping some “wings” – or wingslike things.

And I haven’t eaten mushrooms or anything like that.

In fact, there’s a youtube video about a flying fish (if you pause that vid at 00:15 you can see it pretty well how it goes). I saw this flying fish first in television where one guy was explaining how it requires much energy to leap above the water, but then the fish can continue “gliding” for quite long.

Anyway. I had always thought that (1) (most) birds can fly, and that (2) fish (usually) don’t.

Instantly, my biology based belief was gone and now I know that also fish can fly.

I started pondering: how many similar beliefs I carry with me regarding game dev? Perhaps I should start taking a look at things in game dev that I know to be true. And then take a closer look at those topics.

Perhaps I’m missing something crucial.

Board Games + iPhone = Something We’ll Definitely See More In The Future?

Reiner Knizia (famous German board game designer) said in one of his interviews that he believes that board games could very well work in various platforms – instead of need for a physical board. Now I’ve seen some board games like Ingenious (designed by Reiner Knizia) coming to iPhone.

Is it just my imagination, or is it so that more board games will be seen on iPhone?

Any thoughts? Anyone seen this happening too?

How Much Contract Work You Do? (Poll)

Many (most) indie developers I know do some form of contract work (or part-time/full-time work outside gaming). Currently own game dev time ranges from 0-100% (averaging maybe to 50-75% of non-gaming work in the recent months).

Let’s see some votes:

[poll id=21]

Everybody knows that “doing game dev” is not real work, so… I think you get what I mean by this poll. Simply “how much time you spend working on something else than your game (and get paid) compared to how much time you spend developing your games”.