In this blog post I look back and reflect on the recent the incubator week and share with you how it went, what I learned and the overall experience.
Work through as many features as possible and look ahead, set some goals and have some ‘alone time’.
- Harvesting resources
- Power Resource
- Blogged about harvesting feature (writing blogs take time!)
- Produced demo video (harvesting feature)
- Produced in-depth demo video for Patrons only (harvesting feature, in-depth code, etc)
- Set (sub)goals for 12 month term, in broader terms than only game development
- Created plans to achieve the goals
I greatly underestimated preparing for this week. Packing my stuff (clothes, but also equipment for working, etc) took way more time than anticipated. My ‘excuse’ is that I just came back from a holiday, but even still, I could have planned that better. Another way would be to reverse the order: first do the incubator week and then go on a holiday
How the week progressed
I booked a small appartment for a mid-week since I can’t work for a long term at home. (I don’t have space, all the rooms are taken by the kids.) The location booked was good enough for me. Free wifi, enough power. The beds where pretty bad, I never had a good night sleep. Another downside was that I could access this location at 15:00 on the first day. This meant I had to work from home (which was suboptimal at best) at first. Combined with my poor preparation it meant I effectively started at 11:30-ish, which is valuable time I have wasted.
The first two days where focussed on building features. That was the period when Arjen joined me. Working with Arjen kept me focussed on building features for the game. We enjoyed working on the game, and we had to make sure we took our breaks. I liked working with someone else on the game. Compared to doing it alone is that you can have sparring sessions, and get valuable feedback.It was very nice. Thanks Arjen!
When Arjen left (at the end of day 2), the next day was sort of ‘new’ to me. It has been years since I had so much time to reflect. First I recorded a demo (the Harvesting resources demo) and create the extensive video about implementation for Patrons only.
In between I had time to think, and I reflected on the years back and the goal I had set to write my own game and make a living out of it. One of the things I did not like in the previous years is the lack of my own location to develop my own games. At that moment I thought about how I would like my ideal ‘company’ to look like. In fact how my ideal life would look like if I could have it my way. In the end I decided to set another long-term goal (12 months) to get myself my own office (at/in the house preferably). Today I am in the process of looking for another place to make this goal a reality.
In the end, the incubator week effectively was 4 days (not 7). I booked something mid-week. Next time I would definitely book for 7 days.
The incubator week was fun. You get a lot of energy when working with other people and you can really achieve a lot in a short period of focussed time. I would repeat this process for sure. I have yet to decide how I will combine this with the other goal of finding a new office, as it takes time (and thus money) as well. When the new incubator is planned, you’re surely read about it here.
Finally: If you want to build your own games, allocating time and doing it is an awesome way to get stuff done.