Saturday, April 15, 2006

Why I'm a bit of an idiot

One thing about trying to develop a very large game is that it's very, very easy to get sidetracked. I could be working away trying to get the interface working when suddenly I find myself thinking about different ways a guy might kick a ball.

This, as you might expect, leads to problems. Leaving one thing to go work on another means nothing gets finished. I had a lovely little target for this Sunday that I was well on course to meet until my little bit of bridge finally met a gaping hole. A gaping hole that I hadn't a clue how to fill.

Normally my musings are carried out anywhere I can be alone. In my bedroom, in the hallway, or in any one of the fifteen trips to the toilet I might take on a regular "working" day to help pass the time a bit quicker. I pace about the room and talk to myself. That's why I'm alone when I do it - it looks fucking stupid but it gets things done. Yet unless I write down everything I say or carry a dictaphone, things get left by the wayside. There's no way of finding out how the hole was supposed to be filled.

About a month ago I decided to take a different approach. I opened up WordPad and started typing, in a style akin to making a presentation but without any unnecessary fluff - explanatory and detailed where necessary. And lots of stupid bold writing, which always comes in useful to make things readable. As it turns out, this was great. No longer did I have to look like Sam Beckett from Quantum Leap when trying to work out the best way to transfer teams between competitions. Nope, I just rattle away. And I can do it at my work desk too. Excellent!

Better still, it meant I could organise my targets a heck of a lot better. Everything I wrote down over those few days has been finished, and works better than any of the other stuff I have. No headaches, no trying to remember what I told myself five days ago - just sitting down and getting on with it. Certainly, I'll be doing this more often as part of my design. I had to learn the hard way, eh?

So that left me today, well short of meeting that target for Sunday (especially given as I can't actually do any work Sunday, meaning I've just got tomorrow to do it) because I've got to fill holes from months ago. Never again. Sweet fuck, never again.

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