So just over a year ago (Holy crap I’ve been doing this blog/game over a year??!!??) I made a post about the importance of working with others and not isolating yourself. I then promptly proceeded to not follow my own advice and continue to work all by my lonesome. Oops. Not all is lost though. While I have not brought anyone else on to the Project Zeds team, I have started isolating myself less.
That’s right, gone are the days of creating Project Zeds in game development wasteland bereft of other living game loving souls. For the longest time I figured because no one I knew was working in game development, that there must not be anyone near me who is. Flawed logic I grant you, but it made sense to me until my local paper ran this story and made me feel a little bit stupid. Turns out there were amazing game developers making real accomplishments in the city that I lived in.
So despite my natural desire to stay home, I decided to try to meet up with this group. Turns out they host a bi-monthly game-dev meet up. I must admit I was pretty nervous. I’ve wanted to write games forever and I was about to meet a bunch of people who seem to have way more experience in the area than I do myself. I was extremely worried they would be elitist and cold to the idea of outsiders trying to pry their way into the group.
Between a mix of my own nervousness and a schedule mix-up by one of the leaders of the group, I accidentally showed up to my first meetup 24 hours early… Not a great start. On my second attempt though things went much smoother. To begin there were people there this time which was pretty great, but even better than that, all of my original fears that the devs who did show up would be elitist or cold were immediately extinguished. Turns out they were all just a bunch of developers like myself, who were meeting in order to share their skills and ideas with each other. They seem warm to outsiders and while they definitely have the skills and accomplishments to warrant elitism are humble enough to waste their time with the likes of me.
I originally planned to try to make it to every other meetup or maybe every third meetup just because my life is already pretty full and I don’t really have the time to commit a night every other week right now. After having gone to the last three meetups though I think I’ll have to change that plan and try to make them all. I find the meetups helpful, entertaining and inspiring. So far the group has touched on topics such as workflow improvements, game design and how games were written for the original Nintendo system.
While I’m still working alone I’m no longer working alone. I now have a place where I can talk to other people trying to press down the same path as myself. I now have a support group where if I want to talk through an idea I’ve been rolling around with in my head I can. I now know people who actually written games, and seeing the games they have written inspires me to believe that maybe one day I’ll actually finish this crazy thing.
Don’t isolate yourself the way I did. A quick google search probably would have told me this group exists long ago but I didn’t even bother. Do the search. Find a group near you. It’ll be worth it.