Let me share an anecdote:
I made Quake maps for many years. In fact, I made Duke3d maps, then Quake 1 maps, then Quake 2 maps, then Half-life 1 and Quake 3 maps, then Half-life 2 maps. I was quite good at it, if I may be so bold, but I only ever really released one map that ended up in a random Half-life: Opposing Forces deathmatch map pack under some other name. I made that map by joining some fellows server and somehow we went through loading single player map sections and seeing how suitable for deathmatch they were. We found a particularly fun section of Opposing Forces that was an open arena with a mortar shooting down on it -- in Deathmatch the mortar, which shouldn't have been around, would target the first player in the server exclusively forcing them to move around. Still, this map wasn't made for deathmatch, so players would spawn in one place and it was kinda dumb so I offered to re-make the map, send it to him, then he'd run it. So I did and he did, but it didn't quite work. So he went around the map pointing out things by shooting them with a pistol, like "put a tunnel there" and "put the rocket launcher there", and I went and re-iterated the map. We did this five times and came out with a fairly enjoyable map -- the only map I made that ever got out into the public.
I found a couple shots of stuff I made like 7 years ago; It was going to be some single player maps for Half-life 1 revolving around a research station on Xen:
So really it's a bit presumptuous to claim that I was "good at making maps", because I wasn't. I was good at map architecture, lighting, placing things, all the small level skills, but I was not good at overall project management it took to finish a map and release it. People who were simply mediocre at the small skills but good at project management were far more successful than I ever was.
What's my point?
So glad you asked!
I'm feeling a bit down about this project and I haven't been doing enough on it, for sure. If I had a progress chart it'd be going into exponential decay or something (well, not that bad, but you know). And I've been thinking about where I have to go with this project and it's pretty overwhelming. Yes, I'm pretty good at making graphics and implementing little things, but I'm having trouble with project management. The project is too big. I've been making progress through sheer cussedness (as it were) and taking little pieces as they come, but it's getting difficult to manage. I was thinking today about how I have to implement entities, their interaction with each other, and their interaction with the map itself, and it's looking frighteningly complex -- I see now why other games don't implement my "super cool unique" ideas. They demand a -lot- from the map and a lot of interacting logic. And add to this the development of my own GUI and resource handling systems, it's crazy! Damn I love it, but it's crazy.
What do I do?
1: I can recognize that I'm just in the low end of an emotional sine wave, push through and keep working at this as I go along. I mean I was feeling pretty good only a week and a half ago, and really, the current problems are nothing that couldn't be solved with a few days thought and some planning, right?
2: I can "take a break" from this code and do something simpler, something I can accomplish. (Something with Pyglet). I've certainly learned a ton that could be applied to making (and completing) a smaller game. Even an asteroids-type game would be a pile of fun and in my hands would probably *look* pretty sweet. Or I could make a simple Roguelike RPG (as much as I despise Goblin Genocide ideologically, they are fun). Or a simple sim game that involves building things, I love building things. Maybe like SimTower except not a damn elevator scheduling simulator (what a bizzare game that was!).
I just fear that Isostrat would die, and this would be another corpse on the pile of 4 to 12 (depending on how you count) iterations of this game. I should have enough perspective to realize that this is what tends to happen to projects that get "left for a while".
I'm not really sure what to do.
I think I'm leaning toward option #2. I need to start having fun again.
Edit: Seems like I need Windows XP to use Pyglet. It's about time I upgraded.