Friday, July 27, 2018

Since when did I lose an ability to fight for myself?

Long time no see isn't it?

In fact I have so many outlet to write things nowadays that I haven't put anything in here for ages.

For silly things it would go to Twitter, for game development related which supposed to go here it instead go to my page which "supports" both Thai and English, both educational post and "story" post about hardship in game devs.

And then some sensitive personal thing would go to my personal blog where I thought no one would come to read. I feel more secure there and I feel better to let it out.

For extra sensitive thing it would go to my diary (physical).

What about this place now? I think it is for when I want to write about somewhat sensitive thing but thinking that it would be better expressed in English. Also I think this place is more "deserted" than my personal Thai blog (just guessing) and so it feels even more secure here.

Anyways let's go to the point.

What's the point of making game? Of course everyone wants to finish the damn thing and put it out finally so that someone can play.

But from the beginning, I am full of extrinsic motivation. Of course I want to make a game because I want to do it once (or more) in a lifetime this would be a reason for myself. However there's more reason which at that time I think, they are just secondary. But no I was wrong all along.

Turns out they are even stronger than the main reason.

I still remembered some of them.

A day after a certain software competition someone I like greatly is playing the game when I arrive at the room.

I don't know how to describe it but it was very impactful to me. I want to make more so maybe she would try it again some day. I am a very persistent kind of person and take all the promises very seriously and can't let them go for a long time (there are moments that I decided to let some of them that would never come true go, but the time taken for that is probably much higher than world average).

Both promises for myself and from others. I already know deeply that person would not care one bit about me but somehow, that scene is still vivid to this day and I keep it in mind everyday when making a game.

Then the next real game which would become Duel Otters actually I think it up just because I want a certain someone's skill to be able to come to life via my programming. This time I succeeded in doing it and it feels great.

One real life band I created is partly (actually very small part) that I want to be in a band where in high school I couldn't, but the big part is because at that time there is a certain someone that I also care a lot is feeling down, and I wanted to help as clearly the person (or anyone else) never chatted me this long unless it is a computer problem, so something must be really wrong.

As a thanks for choosing to chat with me I decided to make something for that person to do. because I know what it feels like to be really empty. To this day we aren't doing the band anymore for very long time, but luckily the band has already served its original purpose. I think only one person in the band know about this because I called him at that day I decided and told him the core reason, but it seems he already forgot about it.

This current game Mel Cadence which I decided to solo dev for once (somewhat my own reason to fight) still also has something to do with other anyways. I imagined I would somehow finish this game using my savings master degree at Japan and then when it is nearing completion (not after) I would like to ... go further together with someone. Not after I became successful but before. That is the kind of story I want for my life. But at the same time not now, how can I assure without any salary or guarantee to someone so blatantly? Even I know this is extremely risky and one would be stupid to risk the time with me and then I don't have much time other than focusing on the dev anyways, so I hold that off.

It would be a lot of fun going from zero to something together, I imagined. I imagined a lot of things, and being with only myself that seems like the only thing that keeps one forward. I planned about countless games in my idea notebook I would like to do next -together- and it could be extra fun with that person. I completely forgot that I am making this game for my self achievement. I completely forgot I am making this game for the players/music gamers that might be waiting to play. That's how strong the "secondary" reason to fight it can be... it supports you from the inside that even everyday you only think about finishing the game, the development is fun because deeply you know... when the game is truly finished you will then this and that... together. As far as your imagination goes. You know, I am too finding happiness and I think that could be the solution.

To go from nothing to something. That sounds a lot like pressing that "new game" button right? I would be really mad if I accidentally press a button that permanently grants me 999999 money and then there is no easy way to reset it. (Most games are actually like this... if you want to destroy money it is through buy and sell lower but it is a pain) Being in a handicap is always fun. I don't think I am asking for trouble by finding someone but I think... as I am now, still having hardship, this is the time I could experience being in even more hardship together.

And this might not be the first love, but is the first person who I genuinely thought can be together with me for long (i.e. can tolerate me and I can also tolerate her at the same time) There are someone I liked much more than this person (actually I don't want to say "more" or "less" that makes it quantitative but I can faintly feel that it can be quantitative...) but honestly the lifestyle would be hard to fit. As a popular Thai phrase goes "Too good to me". That's the different between just purely liking something a lot "right now", and genuinely think that it is possible to like a bit less but forever.

Well just around this month I think finally this is the time to do it. Actually planned to be a bit later but the chance is very rare to come by I decided to do it immediately when it comes ...but unfortunately just like many thing I put a lot of effort on it does not went well. I think I am getting used to it, but still the effect is real. I have never hold onto something this long (4-5 years) and when losing it I can't even walk straight.

It feels really awkward now that I have to still make game to its completion by the end of this year, but at the same time there is no strong reason to do it anymore. I keep telling myself don't forget the players! or how about yourself? Ok I responded to myself, but it does not feel natural anymore.

It even goes further naturally when one lose self value to think of suicide. I personally think that by being aware of suicidal is a good thing that I will not do it so easily but damn I feel so worthless. I even googled for medical cost which turns out to be 500-1500 baht per consult and I changed my mind immediately. lol I currently get 5000 baht per month from my mom, which she said she would stop giving me in the next year so... this is the last year I can do "pure" game dev without worrying about income.

I talked with mom for a bit about all of this and it certainly helps. But one of my mom's remarks is that the dreaded "what if" I don't wait this long would the result be better? This is "hindsight is 20/20" in play for sure... of course everything I decided not to do would be right when the current one is already a mess. Just like when I decided not to sell Ripple when it was 2.5$ and my mom keeps bugging me why wouldn't you sell them sooner... haha

At least I can now without worry, sit on the second floor or choose other seat that is not nearing the window after doing it for almost 2 years. Nostalgic, for sure. One coffee shop even closed down and I still remembered I always face outwards to the window. (But windows are good for productivity anyways, you should sit facing them)

Is this turning into a completely different kind of blog? No! Doing pure game dev reveal me that it is very very difficult without "that rail". What rail? It is invisible to those who take normal day job / routine job which everyone take for granted. I once was too, because I have worked "normally" for a year and at that time I too could not appreciate it.

You see, even if you do not want to go to work you automatically go because there is a promise of salary. When it's time you go to lunch with others because everyone is going. When to call it a day is set and you go home because you see everyone is going. Everything just... flows.

And it is great, since many times you just being picky and don't want to work but actually when you do arrive at the workplace it is not so bad as you might think. Your friends are there waiting. Many exciting conversation you never know would occur might surprise you. If you stay at home do not want to work you would miss them, but luckily "the rail" is there to take to back on track of your life. You are automatically prevented from being a total failure by doing nothing.

Also money seems to magically falling from sky when you just do something as told and surely, you are promised to get it from someone even more powerful than you. (Government? Bank owner? etc.) You don't have to think how to please and win a money from someone, just do your mission like some "quest board" mechanics in games where you accept and do it then you get the reward. If what you did turns out to be meaningless then it is not your fault. Salary is great and it works so well with other aspects in life, keeping you forward and happy, and that's surely a good life. No need to hate it at all. I walked back and forth to and from work for years... automatically.

But without routine job like this, when the reason to fight disappear the effect is like x10, it's only me fighting without that rail. When it feels empty it is so very empty that it is truly empty of empty. The finger halts despite the clear objective that I need to solve to get the code working. It just stop. So much impact, I learned. And I am glad I got to experience it by the way. If I am not doing this I would not get to feel all of this. I am definitely stronger and more honest with myself without the help of "the rail".

But surely it is difficult when talk to others. Why don't you go to the trip? You are never "busy" right? Yeah... theoretically. I can't say "The other me told me this important work must be done right now and I can't go...  it really can't be helped I really want to go with you guys!"

Replace "the other me" with "my boss" and suddenly it sounds plausible and understandable right? That's how important you must make yourself to be to be able to work like this. (By the way I went to the trip in the end because someone else's invitation make me hesitate lol but I am glad the trip was fine)

It has been how long many years I fought with that reason that I completely forgot the day without it. Certainly from now on it would feel strange and for how long from now I don't know. But let's feel it as long as it lasts.

And I can forever remember that this game Mel Cadence is involving with so many part of my life. Which part I programmed with passion and reason, which part so lifeless I programmed without any reason to fight, and hopefully which part when I gained a new reason to go on again.

It has truly becoming more than just a game and like a diary of my life. Looking at various screen I can see the code, and with code I can precisely think back what I was feeling at that time. Making a game alone is not so bad right? But I do want to go back to day job again because there are many more things I still want to experience.

Currently I still not feeling great as I don't know how to make games for myself anymore. But I have this promise with myself to finish it before new year I can't ignore either. Yeah let's go by that for the time being...  Feeling 5% better now that I have let it all out with a slight chance of someone reading all this shit (maybe no one until the next year who knows?) let's get back to making the game. I believe there should be a new, next happiness I am currently not aware of waiting for me at the end of all this. And that's why I believe it worth to try and go for it.

Today or this week or this month I might not be able to achieve the same performance like before but I believe the time will help me. (See? it is still a blog about game devs in the end!)

No comments:

Post a Comment