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Game development can be tough but maybe it's because we expect it to be.
We have over 30'000 thoughts a day and it is said that 87% of those are negative; are we conditioned to think the worst?
"No, it won't work...it has never been done before...I can't do that...I doubt it...I don't know how...it is not going to happen."
Just spend a day listening and you will hear how we often talk to ourselves and to others. This negativity can be observed in people's reactions to new ideas. My point is illustrated in the response to the original iPhone (excerpt taken from an archived Engadget thread);
“Touch screen buttons? BAD idea. This thing will never work.”
“No freaking way, Apple! It’s over!”
“Apparently none of you guys realize how bad of an idea a touch-screen is on a phone."
History proved that it would work, but why are we are naturally skeptical about most things?
It is also prevalent within our medium...
The 'indiepocalypse' is coming!
Recent Steam Spy research states that; 38% of ALL Steam games were released in 2016; 4207 games, as apposed to 565 in 2013 which made up 5%. We fear that game markets are becoming too saturated and we will all be washed away in a ocean of bloody competition.
The thing is this thinking does not have to become your reality; it is a choice.
You can view yourself as a victim or be responsible for choosing a different scenario; one of possibilities.
I believe that you become what you think about, that your thoughts create your opportunities in life.
All of the successful indie devs were not lucky, they were focused and not suppressed by their circumstances. They worked like it was more important than breathing, refusing to give up.
Obstacles will be thrown at us, but we still choose how to react to them. The simplest way of reacting positively is by changing our words; because words determine how we think and speak.
Here are 5 to keep you focused:
This is a question that requires action, unlike; won't, can't and never which shut the brain off.
How; fires the imagination, won't; kills it.
How; is based in possibilities, can't; reveals your insecurities.
How; unlocks tenacity, never; is an excuse to give up.
When you ask; how can I do this or how is it possible?
You move towards your goal and discover capabilities you never knew you had.
A lot of game development requires perfection (obviously to make things work properly). But it is important to note;
Penicillin, Velcro, the Microwave, X-rays, Gunpowder and many other discoveries were made by accident.
In the quest to refine your skills; break some stuff (but have back ups and record how you do it). Treat Unity and Unreal etc as a bottomless toy box and successfully find ways of how to not do something; there might be unexplored opportunities there. When your ideas do not work the way you want, can you turn those discoveries to your advantage?
Are you giving your audience something they haven't experienced before or is it more of the same? If it is the same, if it already exists, does it really need to be made again? Where is the value in what you are doing?
The biggest value you can give to others is yourself.
No-one will see your vision, your ideas and your games if they are they are not created. Be bold and dare to show people what they might not see if it wasn't for you.
If there was ever a word that has evoked so much fear this is it.
Failure makes us ask "what if..?" but usually in a negative context; "what if my game fails, or I fail? What will happen to me? It freezes people because of self-imagined worst case scenarios that may never happen.
So why should failure be in your vocabulary?
Because when used in a positive context you can spell it differently;
Failure is simply learning.
Make 'what if...' resonate with your imagination and you can find opportunities in failure. If the fear still stops you, use snowflakes to help you embrace it.
This is integral to game development as discussed in my previous post.
Game developers essentially; imagine spaces for people to imagine in.
The problem is that many people drag their pasts with them into the future, so their future becomes a reflection of their past. We place so much emphasis on our history that we become bound to it.
Imagine your future the way you want it, not how you do not.