2019 is going to be a good year, I can feel it in my bones. I can’t explain why exactly, but it’s a combination of coming off a successfully completed project with a creative high, seeing a lot of opportunities appear and knowing that really putting my energy into it can have tremendous results.
So, here’s a list of things I’m hoping to accomplish in 2019.
Build off the success of Minimal Raider to create a similar game which is longer and has my own style and narrative.
Collaborate with other indie game devs to create better games, and perhaps build it out into a nice side business.
Build up a local community of creatives.
Get back into doing frame-by-frame animation and post short animations based on songs I like to Instagram.
I’ve always been a fan of the Tomb Raider franchise, so I had to seize this opportunity to play with the formula. And I learned a lot doing so, as this is my first fully 3D third-person game. (It doesn’t even use Adventure Creator!)
The first thing I watched on Netflix in 2019 was Taylor Swift’s Reputation tour. I loved 1989, but I hadn’t really checked out her newest album yet (or any other album), so: great excuse. And it reminded me why I like Taylor; the phenomenon around her has gotten immense, but in the center is still this genuine likeable person – who still genuinely loves what she does.
2018 has been a funny one. Even though it’s technically been a quiet year for Hedgefield lots has happened still.
For starters, I had my first intern! Kim Leunen from the HKU asked if she could intern with me for a few months, so every week we sat down and spent the day making games.
It was really refreshing to work with someone from the game world again. And like me, Kim started from illustration and now wanted to tell interactive stories, so our design vision was very similar.
We wrote a new concept from the ashes of Black Feather Forest, and built a prototype for her girlscout forest adventure game (a recurring theme in my career by now). I look forward to seeing what she creates.
I don’t usually get around to doing inktober, but this year I was doing a lot with my iPad Pro, so it was easier to roll into it. What helped me especially was not to try and do the prompts list, but just draw whatever was on my mind that day. If there is an emotion behind it, I find it’s easier to start drawing.
This week is Remake Jam on itch.io, which brought me back to my first (finished) game project, Coyote. I’ve been wanting to make a sequel to that for ages, but I’ve got enough games I need to finish first. But in the context of this jam, I thought it might be fun to rebuild the original in Unity, using everything I’ve learned since 2011. I’m not sure I can pull it off in one week, but it’s already been fun to rebuild the town in 3D (using this great asset store package) and recreating the intro. I’m excited to work on this further.
I was looking at these excellent Steven Universe backgrounds when I remembered a project I was working on a few years ago that I did some background sketches for. They show a school campus with Bauhaus and Fin De Ciecle influences in its architecture.
There’s something really cool about designing a location for games or animation. It’s different from static shots, you have to think about camera movement and making sure all the interactive things are visible at a good angle. My favorite thing is to account for the camera perspective changing when it pans around, so it seems a little more 3D than it is.
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