I’ve read somewhere that the person who smiles the most, and who always tries to make others happy is usually the saddest person of all.
Somehow when we feel sad, our human empathy makes us more aware of this state of sadness in others. So some of us will try their best to make others feel good at the slightest sign of unhappiness, even if it means faking it and trying to look good at all times.
It comes as no surprise that some of the best comedians, musicians and performers of the planet sink so deeply into sadness that they see no other choice but to end their own lives.
Sorry to sound so depressing.
I couldn’t help but link this phenomenon to game development.
We are, after all, in the entertainment business. Our games are judged by how fun the gameplay is, how polished the graphics are, and overall by how happy the game makes players feel.
I will be honest with you, I don’t like to work on small games for mobile.
Let me be more specific: I don’t like the idea of spending endless hours trying to craft something playable, stuffing it with art I made myself or bought online, “polishing” it, slapping some Admob ads on it, testing it and throwing it out there. Just to see it get downloaded 8 times in three months and earn jack from it.
There are millions of apps just like mine or better, and thousands of mobile games are published every day. Why should mine matter? How to make sense of all this?
The past month has been very exciting for me as I’ve been focusing on making a complete game to be released for Android. I’ve done a lot of prototypes this year, but very few resulted in something descent enough to be published.
I feel proud as it is still challenging for me to complete a project. There’s always something new to do (shiny object syndrome). However, I’ve done it at last, my first game on Google’s Play store! YAY!
In this short entry, I’ll try my best to describe my experience.
I just bought Hammerfight on Steam, it’s a game about killing giant bugs by swinging a giant hammer. Read that again. The concept is brilliant and cannot fail, don’t you agree with me? Come on, it’s impossible to get bored if a game can be described using “giant hammer” and “giant bugs”.
The game was fun, I had a blast. Controls are neat and well thought of: the hammer is attached to your ship by a chain and the ship follows your mouse. You swing your hammer using the centripetal force caused by the movement of the ship. In reality however, you use your arm a lot, mine hurts so bad right now !
Despite my fan-boy enthusiasm, and my desire to put a ring on it (because I love it), the game has a flaw that spoils the fun a bit.
How many times did you spend your hard-earned cash on some game everybody talks about, just to find out that it’s complete crap ?
When you buy a big franchise game you expect a great gaming experience in return. However, you often get disappointed because the dev team wanted to target the widest audience possible, diluting any true value in the process.
Not all players are alike. Some people want action, flashy graphics, amazing soundtracks, and quick rewards. They will judge a game by the first 10 seconds of play, often based on presentation and other superficial stuff. They will run away at the slightest sign of difficulty, and will not give the game a chance to show its true potential. Pussies !