December and onwards

With December coming to a close, it’s a good time to ask “what did I do in December?”. Before that though, it might make more sense to ask “what did I want to do in December?”. I mentioned my current project vaguely in my last post about my Ludum Dare entry: an”open world puzzle game like The Witness… with Metroidvania-style elements. ” The plan was to make not a finished game but a “proof of concept” kind of demo during the summer, where the timeline was something like:

  • December: Brainstorm on game concept, decide on design and scope
  • January: Develop game, design specific puzzles
  • February: Playtest, polish, release

And so with this in mind, I’ve spent December thinking, playing puzzle games for inspiration, and thinking some more. But… it’s hard! I had to scrap the concept I tried in my LD prototype as I realized I couldn’t extend the idea as much as I wanted. I returned back to square one, and even though there’s a week left in December, I’m still struggling with the basic ideas… Haven’t even touched the open world/Metroidvania parts either… I mean, regardless of anything, I’ve enjoyed all this thinking and designing! And I still think the game idea is great… but my goal is make and finish something, and I feel like I won’t achieve it if I stick with this project.

So I still want to make and finish something, but is there any other idea in my head I’d currently like to work on? And the answer is no, nothing in particular… so instead I’m going to the other extreme and making many games! I wanna try out something I’ve never done before: the week long jam. I’m used to weekend long jams, so will this mean I’ll get to make more ambitious games? Or will the extra time let me polish and focus on detail more? I don’t know, and that’s what makes it an exciting idea. For fun, I’ll also try to release the projects into the public domain, in case anyone wants to mod them or see how they were done.

What’s the plan then? I want to spend this week inspiring myself and brainstorming game ideas (gotta decide if these games will have a common theme), and trying to get around to things I want to do (like read a 1000pg novel!) so I have time in January and February. I don’t think I’ll manage to jam every week, but I hope to do as much as possible. Please look forward to it!

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