These moments fend off another form of development hell for me: where I outright hate the project, so I can be thankful for that.
Recently, the game's development has stalled almost completely as I play catch up after a family vacation to northern Michigan. Submissions to exhibitions, work emails, feedback for students, planning events, scheduling meetings, all taking place throughout my son's 1-2 hour nap time. As I write I sit next to him, quietly sleeping on the living room couch, awaiting his return to consciousness. His awakening will halt this post immediately, initiating snack time and propelling us outside where he can dig for treasure in his sandbox, scoop water out of his water table, and chase after our two Corgis through the yard I desperately need to water.
My live-in cousin is heading for work, accidentally making a loud noise. He stirs as I try to figure out where this is going. The mail man can be heard dropping mail into our mailbox. My oldest Corgi barks, causing him to stir again. My cousin leaves, opening and closing the door to exit as quiet as possible. His head rises, looks to the door, and falls.
His snoring is adorable.
Last Summer when he was but a bean development was just beginning. The second Beta had been public for a couples weeks and the goals I've been working out throughout Fall/Spring were just being formed. Only then did I begin to entertain the idea of developing the project as often as possible. During those seasons my role as a Father is supported by my cousin, my in-laws, daycare and my wife. Pockets of time between morning and evening classes became my window into development, providing most of the larger steps forward. An Illinois trip here, a Jersey trip there. Sitting in airports with my laptop out huddled next to a wall plug trying to make sense of bugs and glitches allowed me to overcome some of the biggest hurdles I've seen so far. All at the expense of others investing their time into handling some of my responsibilities, or the costs of paying someone to do so.
Summer becomes the Dead Zone of development, it seems. The Dad Zone. A small and empty pocket of a realm. Beside it, however, rests a place filled with the joys of Fatherhood. Every so often I can walk between these planes, but both are calling my name at all times.
Last night we watched The Fundamentals of Caring where the character portrayed by Paul Rudd is suffering from the death of his child. It resulted in the decay of his marriage, career, and personal identity. Last night I laid awake pondering awful circumstances. Unwillingly entering my mind, I tried to shoo them away with thoughts of Axis' world. I sought bright colors, lively characters and tasks to tackle before the weekend. As unbearable thoughts creeped in, the project became my stalwart defense, distracting me from the emotionally compelling cinematic experience and forcing me into a productive, positive mindset. I drifted between these two worlds before finding myself quickly rising out of bed, prompted by the whining of a 17 week old puppy.
We all have responsibilities impeding certain tasks. Finding the time will happen. When you don't have anyone but yourself placing limitations and schedules in front of you, it can be easy to dismiss milestones and deadlines. All you can do is simple: believe it will be done and make it happen.
Tonight I'll be finishing the second level of the Beta. After some bug fixing, level tweaks and adjusting crafting/item lists, Beta 3 will be released.
|10 minutes during a break in last week's Summer Camp = dynamic grass.|
|Hip "Phoenix Pinion" hairstyle. Another quick addition during a brief break.|
|Custom bow Charge Attacks based on your Bow Skin.|
|Initial "Paladin" Aegis Armor. In addition to this Brightspark spell, you will be able to lay down a field of light on the ground that heals you and damages enemies.|