Blog posted by Ste Pickford on Mon, 20 Oct 2008
Subject: Pickford Bros.
Both John and I have had a cold for the last couple of weeks (he's had it much worse, and is still coughing today), hence no posts on here for a while. Not a massive amount of progress on the game either, although I've got almost all the art assets completed now.
It feels like we've been telling people it's nearly finished for ages, and it's true! (Both that it's nearly finished, and that we've been telling people this for ages.) That's game development though. As we always say, finishing is the hardest part.
We attended our first ever meet up with other indie developers on Saturday, arranged through the Indie Gamer forums, which was fun and very useful. Cliff 'cliffski' Harris of Positech was kind enough to put us up for the night (he's not nearly as angry and shouty in real life as you'd expect from his online persona), and he, along with Cas of Puppygames, gave us a lot of valuable advice, for which we're grateful.
As well as explaining some of the bewildering jargon and intricacies of affiliates, portals and advertising, they also made me realise how neglectful I've been of our website lately, which is still the source of any potential sales of our game.
I think I've fell into the typical game developer mind-state of focusing on one problem, to the exclusion of all others, until it's solved. Both John and I have spent all our time and effort lately working exclusively on the new game, and pretty much ignored everything else.
There are quite a few little bits and bobs I'd planned for the website, some interesting new content, and some updates and improvements to the Naked War system (to the website side, which I can implement without having to release a new client), but I'd mentally put off doing any of these things in favour of working on with the new game. The new game seemed the most important thing, so everything would have to wait until it was complete. As I say, typical game developer thinking.
Chatting to other indies has made me realise that I've got to do a bit better at dividing up my time. If I'm the publisher, distributor, community liaison officer, support manager, and all the other roles that an indie has to take on, I can't neglect any of these other jobs completely when I'm in game developer mode. I've been embarrassed at how old and out of date some of the pages on this site are (no, don't go and look!), which can't be encouraging to anyone who happens to find Naked War, and is weighing up whether or not to buy it.
I'm going to have a little spring (autumn) clean of the website early this week, and get to work on some of the improvements to the Naked War system, in addition to finishing off the final bits of content for the new game.
(Photo by Jake Birkett of Grey Alien Games)