Aggressively Patient

hurry-up-and-wait1So now is the time that all we have to do is finish the game. A tall order, but there’s not too much for me to do.

True confessions of a producer in the EAE. I do what I can, and I’m more than willing to do anything, but the engineers have a good grasp on what their doing. The artist are doing well and getting the assets done. I really have to try hard to find something valuable to contribute to the project.

I have taken upon myself to put together some music, which when it comes to rapid prototyping, it doesn’t always end up getting in the game. But hey! I’m learning something new, and trying to add. Audio engineering isn’t easy.

Game 2 – Zaxxon

Zaxxon_flyer

Alright this time around I have decided to “apply in my daily life” the lessons I learned from my last project.

We have been tasked with creating a game, based of and arcade cabinet game from before 1983. All the game is allowed is an input stick and one button.

My new team got together and we immediately started brainstorming to which I thought, brainstorming like this doesn’t work. I proposed we take 10 minutes to ourselves to find and game and then bring it to the group as an idea.

This worked out SOO much better. In the end it came down to two games, Zaxxon and Arabian. Two vastly different games. I also wanted to incorporate the idea of, NO LOW HANGING FRUIT ideas. Zaxxon is a isometric scrolling shooter, and Arabian is a Donkey Kong Jr clone.

I was playing devil’s advocate in the discussion and really making people think about what we’re doing. With Zaxxon, remakes of these shooters are pretty generic. With Arabian I wanted to add a whole new fighting mechanic akin to old school RPG and random monster encounters all based on rhythm button fighting. After all, we only have one button.

But it was apparent that half the team was really really really set on doing Zaxxon. So, I split us up. Half took Zaxxon the other half took Arabian and we came up with internal pitches. Zaxxon won out because we were able to get an isometric engine for HTML 5, and with that we’re off to the races.

zaxxon

Now, mind you, we only have 3 weeks to do this. Not 4 and I only hope that that doesn’t come back to bite us in the end.

Bat Sim…Part 3 – A Producers Thoughts

start-4Behold! Our start screen. 🙂

This was literally finished the night before the final presentation. Thanks to our wonderful artist Robert Zhu.

In this last part I want to give my parting thoughts about the project and the lessons I learned from it.

1. Don’t be afraid to speak your mind. If the game isn’t good. SAY IT

2. If things aren’t getting done. TALK about it.

3. Put your heart into it.

Let me talk to that third point. For the trial run, I knew going in that the game wasn’t in a good state. And when I was preparing for it, I was a little depressed about it and I didn’t go a good job at hiding it. I was wearing my emotions on my sleeve. And in the feedback, that was mentioned. Or, at least that was my take away.

So, if you’re going to do something, do it well and give your all. I learned this lesson and fortunately it wasn’t too late. I was able to really do better for my second and final pitch. The game showed well and I was having a good time up in front of people.

Being a producer is a learning experience. I have had to learn how to really communicate and I’m still having a hard time with it sometimes. That will come in my next series of posts.  Onward and upward.

TO ZAXXON!

(my second prototype)