Back In Hack

I kicked this blog off with a post about intending to do a better job of self-promotion, before promptly proceeding to not post anything at all for half a year. This is largely because I received an offer of some contract work very soon afterwards which I spent the following few months on. Gotta pay the bills somehow! I’ve been back working on my own project since July though, meaning I’m well overdue for writing a new post.

Right now I’m working on a first-person stealth game set in the near-future, with the working title of Control Shift. Of all games I’ve played, Deus Ex is almost certainly the one which has most strongly influenced my opinions on game design, and one of the goals of this project is to capture some of the elements of it that I was so drawn in by. As a lone developer I can’t hope to cover the same breadth of simulation that Deus Ex did, but my aim is to distill its overall feel into something simpler. David Pittman’s Neon Struct is perhaps a good reference point in terms of mechanical complexity for how I see this ending up.

Of course, no Deus Ex-inspired game can be complete without some sort of hacking mechanic, so recently I’ve been working on implementing a hacking minigame and I’m fairly happy with how it’s looking: Continue reading “Back In Hack”

A time-limited self-promotion

Around the start of this year I was laid off from my studio job, and by the start of February I had decided – possibly in a fit of madness – to become a full-time independent game developer. So far it’s been going well, but recently I’ve begun to think more about self-promotion. It’s no secret that the market for games is incredibly crowded and it’s difficult to get an individual game noticed, so a sensible approach would be to start putting myself and my work out there from an early point and begin building a proper online presence.

Unfortunately, I find this quite difficult.

Although some former colleagues of mine may be surprised to hear it, I’m naturally a very introverted person; the idea of publicly discussing my life and my work fills me with a sense of anxiety which is tough to overcome. I figure that millions of people blog all the time so it shouldn’t be a big deal, but the fear of criticism or ridicule can be overwhelming for me. I often worry that I’m not as knowledgeable as I should be, that I lack original ideas, or that I’m just plain wrong about things, so my instinct is to avoid saying anything that will confirm it to others. As is the case with many fears, the best way for me to deal with these ones is probably to simply confront them directly, so I’d better get on with putting myself out there. Continue reading “A time-limited self-promotion”