September Life Update – Game Time

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Hello, I thought I’d end up writing about the uncertainty of my job as my contract ended yesterday, but now I have good news. For those who haven’t kept up with my work situation, or forgot, I’d advise reading July & August before reading the next part.

My boss has presented his case about the future & value of my team (& my own role) to his own boss &, from what I can tell, he has no problem with me going part-time. Now we’re just waiting for those above him to approve. This could take a while since apparently there’s a backlog of matters they must see to first.

In the meantime, he has given me a 3 month extension on a part-time basis. I haven’t received any actual paperwork for this yet, but it’s agreed between us that my standard days for the rest of this year starting next week are Tuesday, Wednesday, & Thursday; with days changing to suit the needs of the team as they arise.

So yep, it’s kinda official now – I’m no longer working full-time. Yeays!!


I’m thankful that things turned out this way. I’ve been wanting to have less work days for quite a while now, & at the end of yesterday I just felt really relieved; but also mentally drained from being stuck on this single line of code I couldn’t get to work… eugh.

I know how fortunate I am to even be in a position where I can live the way I want to live. Now is the prime time to make my dream of being an indie creative/game developer a reality. I feel driven now, in fact I’m almost impatient. This week it’s like my mind has gone into overdrive as ideas about what to do keep pouring out. Ideas about:

  • Game concepts I’d like to go for. Not so much the grand “large game world” ideas I’ve had in the past but rather smaller doable projects. This is in part because I’m wanting to revisit some Polytech assignments using Unity & put my own flare on them. For example, there’s a fast paced Space Invaders-like game where you play the role of a guardian defending a tomb vault.
  • Game mechanics, systems, & design choices I want to explore. In particular I’ve been wanting to delve into (& play) what Mark Brown calls “immersive sims” characterized by open levels & world systems the player can utilize in creative ways.
  • The D&D campaign I keep bringing up (& still am planning for, much to my players’ annoyance). Mainly ideas about factions, how they link together, & world locations. I’m in the middle of making a basic hex-tile map for this by the way.
  • I’ve even been coming up with some actual topics I want to blog about. This week I’ve suddenly come up with three; including the nature of difference & happiness.

So excited, but a part of me is also a bit scared, exactly because now is the prime time. I’ve tried in the past to make games & most of the time I’ve given up on a project for a variety of reasons. I even took a break from it entirely. I have learned & grown as a person since then, & I have a more realistic perspective on how to go about this now, but I can see these issues rising again. I guess it’s just another thing I must learn to overcome.

Now that I’m smarter, more personally driven, & have the most free time I’ll likely ever have to actually do this, the next few months are going to be crucial. If I can’t do it under these circumstances then there is very little hope I can do it at all – so I must make this work. If I can’t, then I truly don’t know what I’d do with my life.

I’m also aware of how unsecure & ‘foolish’ this path may be, & that it’s highly unlikely I’ll reach a position where I can make a living from being creative. Then again certainty’s a lie right? I know I’ll be earning less, but the typical path of working full-time for some company for most of my life just makes me feel sad about what’s expected of people in our modern society. So, I gladly choose this foolish alternative path because it is how I want to live. If it ends in nothing but a ‘poorer’ life I can at least look back & say I tried.


Some other things that have been going on:

  • To prepare for the change I’ve been thinking about a routine for my days off.
    • I’ve been getting myself to have morning walks after having breakfast & checking emails. The idea is to prepare myself daily like I’m going to work whilst getting a bit of exercise.
    • Since I now have four days off per week to play with, I’m thinking I’ll dedicate three of them to projects with the fourth as a free day. Why this free day? – well, I feel it’s healthy to have a free day every so often to let yourself relax. Besides, I miss letting myself get deeply involved in a game (I feel I haven’t allowed myself that in a long time).
  • I think I’m a socialist now. Granted, I’m iffy to call myself a true socialist since all I know about socialism is from what my flatmates have told me, but so far socialism makes a lot of sense to me. Given my disgust of neoliberalism I guess it’s not a major surprise. I may post about my understanding of socialism some day. One thing I can say for certain now – I have no love for capitalism.
  • I’m going to finally visit my parents in Te Anau next weekend. It’ll be nice to see them & the dogs again.

Otherwise, I’m currently thinking about what projects I should actually do. I have a lot of ideas but I need time to sort them out, figure out what my plan of action is, & get used to a part-time schedule. I still have a D&D campaign handout & map I need to finish off so I’ll do that first. Hopefully spending time in quiet Te Anau will help with that.

I imagine I’ll post about these next time, with more frequent posts in the future now that I have some actual topics. I’m fired up!

Farewell.

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