Thousander Club Update: November 20th

For this week’s Thousander Club update:

Game Hours: 227.25 / 1000
Game Ideas: 500 / 1000

Target: 903

A little less than 100 hours left for the year!

I spent another week researching Autotools, and I managed to get two text-based applications building with it. One was a basic “Hello, World!” application, and another was a text-based board game simulation that I completed months ago. Now, I am trying to get the Kyra Sprite Engine building into a shared library. Previous versions already had a working autotools build system in place, but it has been broken for the last few iterations. Ideally I could get it back to a working state. At the very least, I would like to be able to use Autotools on my project while integrating Kyra into that build procedure.

Of course, November is almost over, and a month ago I said I wanted to be able to complete a Space Invaders clone. Researching and using Autotools is only tangentially related to that goal. Of course, goals can be changed, and I think that sticking with learning a new skill would work better than taking a break to make a game, which in all likelihood would take longer than I think it would.

So my plans change again, only I don’t feel too bad about it. Sure, it means putting off finishing another game, possibly until the beginning of 2007, but it also means that I am not trying to spread my focus across five different disciplines at once. I am still moving forward, and learning a new skill always feels as though you are not being productive at first.

Realistically, with the holidays approaching, I can see my time getting split up between the day job, game development, and family, which means that Space Invaders might really take me a couple of months to make anyway. But hey, once it is made, I should be able to easily build and distribute it.

Oh, and I also spent a number of days coming up with some really simple ideas. I plan to catch up to 1,000 ideas by the end of the Thousander Club for this year. Last week I was at 445 ideas, and now I am up to 500. If I spend a few more weeks coming up with hundreds of ideas, I should be able to make it. It has been a long time since I posted one of them, and I hope to post one for this week.

8 comments to Thousander Club Update: November 20th

  • Wow…

    y’know, I’ve been reading this blog for quite a while and it never really struck me how MANY 1000 game ideas is. My business partner n’ I have come up with perhaps 30, and that’s over the course of the last two or three years.

    I can only imagine that your game development will benefit from such a rigorous workout! Good luck!

    -Tim

  • When I was keeping up with the game ideas, 3 or 4 a day wasn’t very hard at all. Having to play catchup with just a little over 50? It required thinking. It’s easy to come up with 20 or 50 ideas at once, but to keep doing so until you have 1,000? I think it is a bit more difficult than people realize. In fact, it seems more difficult now that I am nearing the end of the year than when I started it. B-)

    Of course, it doesn’t mean that I’ve come up with 1,000 GOOD game ideas. Just 1,000 ideas. I am throwing out as much as I can so that I have a greater chance of coming across the gems. Sometimes when I am trying to come up with something, I have to remind myself that it is ok if it is a bad idea. I’ll either ditch it or polish it up later.

  • I still want to see your entire list of ideas. I’m sure many of them are duds, but I’m sure at 500 you have tons of completely off the wall stuff. I’d actually be willing to go through all of them and pick out the top 10, I think… I’d actually have to see how detailed they are :).

    At one point I was maintaining a list of game ideas, but it was more like 15-20. Now I have the habit of actually coding prototypes rather than just thinking about ideas for them. So far I’ve semi-sucessfully prototyped a lot of my ideas. There is no way, even with my half-assed approach, I could get close to 1000 prototypes. I want to try to get to 1 prototype a month.

  • I usually have not shortage of ideas. I could probably come up with 1000 ideas. But that doesn’t get games done 🙂

    Of course I don’t get games done either, so there we are. I have several projects i’m working on, mainly because I get bored of one too easily. Of course you could say I have ADD or ADHD or something. When I was a kid I was what they called “hyperactive”. I had been given ritalin for a short time before my Dad realized and took me off of it. So I suppose I still have some ADD left. Probably why I haven’t been able to commit to anything lately. And I probably should commit to one project before working on another, but I don’t because I get tired of working on a single thing too much.

    The other thing is like i’d like to work on a couple of my adventure game ideas (I am abit) but when you look at it, it’s at least a year long project, maybe more depending, and takes resources. I can’t make any money from that, not until way later. I can make more (assuming I make any) from little small games that I complete. Little shareware ones. So i’m working on a small game as well as an adventure game for that reason.

    GB – it’s great you’ve come up with 500 ideas, but you need to work on one of them. Or at least your space invaders clone. You did a pong game so let’s see that space invaders thing. You still worry too much about structure and framework and such. You merely needed to pick a small aspect to improve on, not the whole dang thing, and then write it and then write your game. I don’t know if you have any sort of attention problem, but seems to me that you could probably finish a bunch of games if you set your mind to it. I think you should follow Impossible’s idea of 1 prototype a month. I almost would myself except it won’t make me any money, even though it would teach me heaps.

    Keith

  • Keith: You’re right. As for any kind of attention problem, I don’t think I have anything more or less difficult that the procrastination problem a lot of people experience, but there are days when I go to bed frustrated because I know that the last few hours were spent doing something useless, like watching TV.

    And as for development, I’ve been focusing my energies on learning a new skill that would help with any sort of project, whether it is related to games or not. Of course, it means that I am not working on a game, and unless I can somehow leverage this skill into a consulting gig, I should probably do something else.

    Space Invaders clone by the end of the year? Without worrying about packaging or installation, just the game itself? I think I can do that.

  • “Space Invaders clone by the end of the year? Without worrying about packaging or installation, just the game itself? I think I can do that.”

    There you go. Nothing wrong with trying to improve yourself, but you need to make sure it doesn’t take all of your time. Remember we’re learning all the time, althroughout life, so it’s not like you’re going to be done or finished anytime soon. Better we finish the stuff we can finish, and try to improve ourselves along the way.

  • Or in other words, the saw is sharpened enough, so get to the cutting! B-)

  • I think Kyra\C++ might be holding you back. Kyra seems like overkill for these sorts of games, although it might work nicely if you were working on a RPG or strategy game. I know its been said 100 times by myself and others, but you might want to seriously look into Flash, PyGame, Processing, etc. Even vanilla SDL and C++ might be more productive.