A question I’ve gotten a few times about this whole process is on how it all feels to be working on my first video game. I first thought the question a bit ridiculous, until I realized I didn’t even know how it would feel until I actually started doing it. Then, it occurred to me that I couldn’t really articulate that beyond a very vague “exciting!” But as it turned out, there was a reason for all that.
For one, the act of creation is exhilarating for me. It doesn’t matter whether I’m cooking, writing, playing a game well, or making a game, it’s just a giant rush for me to create. Even the more difficult moments (like the writer’s block I mentioned in Production Diary 5) give me an energy that doesn’t quite come from anything else. Not everyone gets it; I can just mention the rush of creation, and I can generally tell from someone’s reaction whether or not they know it and thus get it. Maybe the closest I can describe it is like the adrenalin rush some people get when in a dangerous activity like white-water rafting.
That said, part of it is also nervousness. Creating is one thing, but creating something to be taken in by others is another thing entirely. I can only really be sure that I like the way something I’ve produced is done (and admittedly, not always even then), so putting out something for someone else to sample is a bit nerve-wracking. I admit, I’m always looking for validation in what I produce, and I mentally run in circles over it.
That said, there’s also a bit of shock involved. Each step of this process has been a wake-up call in terms of pulling everything together. It’s one thing to have a two-hour bull session with John and come to the realization that we could, if we put our minds to it, make a video game. It’s another thing entirely to register Beyond Madness & Genius as a company. It’s another thing to hire people to make creative assets for your game. It’s another thing to prepare for events as presenters and as industry, not just attendees.
And as overwhelming as this can all be at times, I know that I can’t simply sit there slack-jawed as it all happens. So I do take time when I can to be amazed (either by myself or with either John or Chris), and then I get down to business. There are contracts to sign, submissions to review, hands to shake, and people to intrigue. And there’s times where I have to be everything at once, but that’s the consequences of working on a project like this.
Everyone has seen times when I let it slip just how much this is all effecting me, admittedly. But outside of those moments I give myself, I get down to brass tacks, so to speak. This project team depends on me for my contributions, and they’re not going to get done if I’m giggling with glee, overwhelmed by events, or zoned out in joy. So yes, I’m a bundle of energetic emotions. But until I’m finished, those have to wait; I have a game to finish development on.