Saturday, January 5, 2013

Headcase in 2013

Tap tap tap  - is this thing on? Gads, I hate it when people write that crap in their blog, to signify that they are unsure if anyone out there is listening 'cause their mic is broke. I suppose it is not entirely inappropriate however.

It's week 1 of January 2013 (sorry, Manuary) and as it's been some months since I've updated, I figured I was due. And so, a brief look back, and forward as well - what the heck is going on over here?

2012 was an interesting year for me (aren't they all?) Very nearly made it an entire year without a release, although we did manage to squeeze a port of iFist out on Android at very nearly the last second. Yes, that game is ancient, but a release is a release so I will e thankful for what I've got! Going into 2012, both Trapdoor and GunHead were coming along quite nicely. A ton of work has gone on during the course of the year (particularly in the case of the latter) and that game's focus shifted dramatically from mobile to PC-centric (although I'd still very much like to release on mobile as well, but at this point I am noncommital).  The game got to a healthy point in development before being shelved, temporarily, for good reasons which I am not unhappy about. Although it's coming to a phase where it may well be too late to release it on ay platform, I still believe we can get it out in time before all the heavy-hitting competition launches this coming year (there's a lot of retro-themed run-n-guns coming soon!)

Trapdoor, sadly, doesn't have as heroic of a story, it's been "nearly done"since it's inception but for lots of reasons it's kind of limped along in development, to put it kindly. It's a shame - the game still feels quite fun to play, and I do see some potential for a very solid and unique release of this game.  My biggest issue has been lack of time to devote to it, to give it the TLC it deserves. I really don't wanna release another "difficult to market" product, especially one which is so friendly to pick up and play and appropriate for the mobile format, and have it just go thud.  I have been thinking a fair bit about what I need to do to put a bow on this thing. I have some good ideas.. ultimately, what matters is that the game is fun and the people attached to it are good folks, so I am not worried about wrapping it up. Release this quarter is not unimaginable.

Hop Cop was another game in development, something I'd still love to pick up but it's going to be a lot of work. 2012 saw a very unusual/unorthodox path for development of this game. Still a good idea, but if you ever hear me mention it again it should be surprising at this point.

Blast Rover started development late in 2012, and it's the closest we are to releasing anything at this point. The game is simply very fun to play (again, well-suited for the touchscreen) and I am working hard to make it look the part as well. My usual excuse "I'm too busy to devote the time to it" so it's late-phase development is dragging as well, but it's getting there. I know this game will be a tough sell on Android in some ways, but really I am excited to see it ported, potentially, to iOS, I think we could get some healthy downloads for a title like this.

That's all that is going on, title-wise, really. As usual I have some other things brewing in the background, but as my plate is more than full I just try to keep focus (such as it is) on what's already at the fore and chalk everything else up for "down the road." 2012 was a huge shift in my own focus and path, and I really (necessarily) had to re-aim from indie development back toward just paying bills and scrapping for work to keep the lights on. It's been really difficult, and it's cost me a lot in all of the ways you'd expect. At this point, I am honestly working toward getting myself properly fixated back in the larger industry as a production grunt of whatever caliber, I cannot afford to continue on hand-to-mouth "at my advanced age" for reasons economical, mental, and physical (my tooth huuuuurts!)  I'd like to think that if that happens, I won't have to deep-six my plans to continue operating as an indie - I'll do whatever I have to.

Hopefully this is not too somber of a tone, as always I am optimistic and happy with how things have gone. I've worked on some great projects with some really good people, and I am proud of what we accomplished. There's plenty of things in motion which can only keep me excited - and that drives me to continue on, happily.

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