Time for Change
indie game studio developer zombies undead castle startup student
Well, it's time for some change in the way we're doing things at BLM. Unfortunately, some of our members have departed and others are not functioning at their best, if at all. This isn't the kind of thing followers want to hear, but I think it's fair to give an update and my personal assessment as to what is happening here. There are probably other indie teams out there that are going through the same things as we are, so this information might be useful to them as well. Many gamers interested in indie games are well aware of the fine wire indie devs walk upon. Sometimes, it's only a matter of time before the studio completely halts a project and eventually breaks off, never to finish the project. But this is Broken Limits Media LLC and I'm Allen Lambert, a dedicated, growing game developer with strong intention to change the way games are made. I'm not going to let anything stop us.
Broken Limits Media has been operating for two years and we have one game out called Cubicle Chimera But, we've struggled. We've had a lot of members come and go, but when we went through hard times I got busy and searched for answers. I would either find new members to join our efforts or learn how to do the work on my own and do it. The function of Broken Limits Media is to help students of the industry (like myself) gain experience on a real, working team and potentially earn a profit in royalties when we sell the games. That's my goal and expectation of any member of the team. I'm passionate about what we do and I look for other passionate individuals.
It's a hard blow to the moral when something goes wrong in development. We had a bad deal a while back and we've struggled ever since. I'm trying to take a new spin on things though. For the first portion of development of our game, the Undead Castle, I'm going to have the team focus on just one portion of development. The programming and audio departments of the team are going into a stasis while the art team develops concepts for characters and the overall game world, 3D models/assets, basic animations, GUI art, and anything else art related. I'd like to see the team finish a very big portion of the art, up to the point where we could do some demo videos of potential gameplay and teaser trailers. Only then will we bring in the programmers again. The coders will be able to flesh everything out with momentum rather than wait for each piece of art to be completed. As for myself, I will continue to develop what I call "reference art" (as I'm not as good at drawing from memory as I am with still-life) and I'll continue working on the Game Design Document, which is great at the moment, but needs about another 50 pages, doubling its size!
One more thing. Traditionally, we've had students from around the world join the team. That's still going to happen, but I'm seeking talent in the Columbia, Maryland area or within range. I've already found a few local students interested in helping out and I see good potential in each of them. To the other indie studios out there, you might be able to do something similar. Look for students at nearby schools. There's talent out there, it's just a matter of finding it. I plan to make a stronger effort finding game dev students in the area. We will be able to meet 3-4 times per month in person, or more frequently, to hold discussions, work on our current tasks, and punch through development with precision and swiftness. Along side of this plan, we hope to reach potential investors in Maryland. I had the opportunity to pitch the company through a group called http://www.startupmaryland.org/. My pitch will be introduced to investors looking for a good startup. We don't have fund at the moment, but the money we could get from backers would go towards licensing fees, testing equipment, and (if we hit the jackpot) office space (have to be ambitious...).
We're going to get things done. I refuse to allow the team to slack behind and die off like so many other promising indie developers out there. If I have to learn everything myself and build the game on my own, so be it. Phil Fish of Fez did it. Notch did it. I might not be that talented now, but anything can be learned. And I'm not saying that's what it's coming down to, I'm just saying there will never be an end to Broken Limits Media. I'll see us through, and if you're a struggling developer, I hope you see it through as well! I hope this update is encouraging and uplifting to your team and morale. As for our followers, you're going to see a high quality zombie game developed by BLM. Probably not within this year, and maybe not within the next. But, you'll get a taste of indie innovation from our team. I promise.