SpaceCraft: Learning not to wait..

Posted By BOwen on April 6, 2012

There are often times in our lives when certain things are out of our control and we need to learn to wait patiently for situations to change before we charge blindly ahead. On the other hand, the lesson I need learn is to fill those times with the things I can still do. This isn’t always to see. We can’t always think of something until we see the immediate need to do so but that shouldn’t mean we can’t be productive.

So now I get to kick myself a bit here. For several months I had to wait for personal matters to settle down, wait for new software, wait for money to become available in order to make sure this or that happened. Now don’t get wrong. Filling up that time with Skyrim or an old game from my collection isn’t necessarily a bad thing. However, I could have spent some of that time working on concept art or researching things I would want to know before I set about a task like designing my random star generation routines.

I suppose this is a bad habit of mine. If a certain aspect of a project is forced to be on hold I tend to want to wait until it’s resolved. So I need to learn not to do that. It’s not just research. Concept art would have been helpful to have done before I gained the ability to work on models and animations without worry of having the process interrupted (as was the case until recently).

Looks aren’t everything but when it comes to game design they have a huge impact on development. Millions are spent on a game so teams can focus on just one aspect of game development over the course of years to get one game done. Now I don’t want to copy that blocky look of Minecraft but I can’t afford to spend dozens of hours on just one model or texture either. That means I need to keep it simple-stupid or else I won’t ever get anything done. So that remains another significant challenge for me, deciding on the overall look of the game. Something that is simple and not very time consuming but also something that players can change easily with mods.

Another difficulty for me is simply to think small. I do believe it’s better to think big and then scale down as needed but my ideas simply keep coming and getting more and more complicated as I go. It’s an urge I need to resist up to a point or I’ll spend more time trying to figure out the best way to put it into the game and not enough time actually making the game. It may be a good quality for a designer but I have to code, model, animate and everything else as well so I need to find a good balance between the idea and implimentation.

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