Hi Newgrounds. How ya doin?
I've been alright. I've almost finished college. All that's left are a couple mandatory elective classes which I'm taking online this summer. I got a job working at a pizza place so I can keep living in my apartment instead of going back home like I did the last three summers. It's not a job I'd want to have for the rest of my life, but it's okay. Enough to pay for rent and food and hopefully student loans a little later on. And it's way better than going to school, because it actually ends when you punch out in the afternoon. You don't have to do any pizza homework or worry about the big pizza test tomorrow. And for the first time since I was, I don't know, four? My life isn't divided into school years and summer breaks. I don't have anywhere I need to be in the fall.
This freedom, the fact that there's no "next grade" for me to graduate to... it's great, but it does mean that now I'm totally responsible for figuring out what that next step is. It's not like I have no clue what I want to do, I have a ton of ideas for different projects- a lot it being of stuff that I told myself I'd work on when I wasn't so busy with school- but I need to choose things will actually contribute to my personal growth and not just be a waste of my time and energy. I've worked on some bad projects for YEARS before completely abandoning them. And it doesn't bother me that these projects were failures so much as they took way too long to fail.
I can be a real perfectionist sometimes. I get wrapped up in plans for huge projects that get progressively huger. I spend countless hours agonizing over tiny details that nobody but me cares about instead of actually getting substantial things done. The only reason I even like to make pixel art is because it lets me keep fussing with the smallest possible elements of an image. I just hate putting out anything that’s anything less than perfect, and of course everything is.
Now that my life doesn’t have these arbitrary semesters to it anymore, I’m at even greater risk of anything I work on slipping into eternal development hell. Endless summer means endless feature-creep potential.
As a way of fighting back against this, I’ve decided to work on just one major project per month. Whatever state the project is in at the end of the month is its final form, regardless of how I feel about it. By doing this, I can get faster feedback, build a thicker portfolio that reflects how much work I’m actually doing, and be less hesitant to take a chance on a weird, quick little idea. Some months the final product might be total disaster, but at least it was just a waste of my month, and not a waste of my life.
I’m still figuring out how I’m going to force myself to stick to these deadlines, but I thought a good place to start would be by publicly announcing a hard release date for this month’s project. July 1st. It’s a top-down shooter but with a unique risk-reward mechanic that I’m really excited about. This will be my first game on here where I’ve done all the art, design and code by myself. I could get into what that’s been like but I don’t want to give away too many details so maybe after the release I’ll write one of those “post-mortem” things and make sure I’ve really taken the time to reflect/learn from whatever okay that’s all folks see ya later