This Too Shall Pass

I don’t want to write this blog post. I’m dripping sweat on the hottest day of the year thus far, barely sheltered from the heat in a cafe with a broken fan, where my damned iced drink still isn’t here, and I’ve hit a brick wall in my game development.

It’s that last point that’s put me in a mood. I know my writing style. I have the art direction. All of my user interface is nearly complete. It seems like all I have to do is develop the game. And yet…

The gameplay just isn’t there. You, the player, don’t actually feel like a detective. You’re reading a fun story and making a few interesting decisions, but you aren’t Holmes or Poirot or Wolfe. You’re just a passenger, along for some ride.

It’s something I realized just today. And at this point, I have no solution for that problem.

Fuck. Where’s my drink?

The fan is fixed, I’ve downed the latte, my sweat has dried. Some normalcy to my mood has returned.

I know I’ll find something — some way of getting the gameplay back on track. The truth is, I’ve had similar crises with all the aspects I just said I’m happy with. But that doesn’t make today any easier.

I wish I could write this post after finding a solution — and maybe next week I’ll detail what I will have thought of — but I realize a post like this is good, too. You can see the other side of solo-development that I hadn’t shared. Where everything’s confusing. Where I’m not sure if anything will work or if I’ll have to start over. Where I’m just writing stream-of-consciousness and not re-reading or editing anything.

This is raw. This is infuriating. This is lonely.

But this too shall pass.







8 responses to “This Too Shall Pass”

  1. Jessica Pellow Avatar
    Jessica Pellow

    Oh boy do I connect with this feeling! It’s one you see across every job, every role, every team. It’s that feeling of realizing you’re trying to get from A to B but you don’t know how. You’re not following a map; you’re a cartographer. You’re venturing out into new territory (for you) and mapping it and learning it as you go. The hardest part about that is not knowing how far away from Point B you are or if you’re even headed in the right direction. It’s not a lack of skill or writer’s block, it’s trail blazing. And for that, I have to give you a hand because as frustrating that is you still had the guts to take the first step and the fortitude to keep going. Keep up the great work and thanks for sharing the journey!

  2. Jason Avatar

    Keep chuggin’ buddy!

  3. Roxana Avatar

    I have to believe that this is the normal path to creation. The struggle and the pain perhaps they are just an universal condition, a mandatory requirement, in unveiling the art at its highest level.
    Fight the demons, get rid of all the obstacles, and find the spirit to conquer your dream!
    As always, my thoughts are with you, my blessings upon you, and wishing you the best of luck and tremendous inspiration!

  4. Daniel Avatar

    And this is when I know you will NOT give up … I am rooting for you ! GO GO GO !

  5. Tri Avatar

    It will pass and I hope it will leave you stronger :). We’re cheering for you too!

  6. Bogdan Avatar

    The truly valuable achievements only come after many moments like these; and you will be proud of your results, just like we are so proud of you.

  7. Dali Avatar

    Get a good sleep/take a break, and get your batteries recharged. You have a big fan club here (I am getting rich charging them the fee :). The youngest one, 12 years Christian, knows already the hardest he works on something, the happiest he will be with the result. Re-group and keep working hard, man! Success is the only option!

  8. […] I need to escape the tumult sometimes, especially when feeling particularly self-destructive. Enter Penang Hill, the clustered peaks sprouting from the middle of the island. The […]