We have been pretty much working on projects for the last five years without any significant gap. This process has taken us on journeys of exhilaration right through to utter despair and burnout on a regular basis. I want to try and talk openly about this process and what it does to people.
Me are Shaun are alike in that, we truly find joy in this passion. However, unlike many indie devs who are so determined that they take the plunge and go full time working on a project, we have always attempted to work around day jobs. Our release output is high and other indie devs are surprised when we tell them we have jobs. I can’t speak for Shaun’s reasons but for me, the idea of full time indie dev is tempting, but the fear of not having income is too great. Perhaps I just don’t quite have the undoubted belief in what we are doing - or perhaps it’s the knowledge that living in London without steady income is near impossible. However, I also think that for me, it’s also a fear that going full time might kill the passion. I’m quite social, I enjoy talking to people and I know that isolation would not do me much good in the long run. That being said, it is painful being drained by a day job and then knowing your remaining precious hours must be devoted to the passion and that’s the focus of this post.
As our game Sumatra: Fate of Yandi (the 4th game in a row that we have worked on) nears its final stages I have really started to unravel. At this stage the project causes me mental pain to work on. Don’t get me wrong, this project has been one of the most fun to do- it has been an exercise in tranquillity compared to Legend of Hand. However, a breaking point was reached, a moment where I had to step back and take stock of my life. I’m going through this process now. Luckily, I just about pushed through the bulk of Sumatra: Fate of Yandi before this hit me. It’s not that I have stopped working completely, I still spend several hours a week on it. But that infectious intensity that I had for so long has currently deserted me. I look forward to the passion returning in the near future.