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I should just help others make games

Posted on 2021-06-07

Lack of inspiration

It's probably been years now. At least five. I haven't felt super passionate about any of my game ideas in a long time. Really, my inspiration was murdered when I began working professionally as a programmer back in 2010 - I very distinctly remember working at my work machine, feeling so anxious and frustrated that I just didn't have time or energy to work on what I really wanted to. If I listened to video game music or had a blast of inspiration while at my day job, it would lead to my mind going everywhere else and not being able to get my work done. So I had to kill those feelings of inspiration and ideas because it was stressing me out at work. I'd have my notebook and I'd write ideas and think about "If I just had time to do this, I could make money doing this cool project instead of writing Enterprise Document Management System software." -- And I really don't think that inspiration came back.

I can't really focus long-term

I have worked on things here and there throughout the years, though usually the projects I actually end up getting done aren't games at all. They're things I can complete within the span of a day - zines, YouTube videos, drawings, etc. I have a fear that I cannot focus on anything past a day anymore, at least not consistently. It is another symptom of having to surpress my inspiration and that frustration of never getting to work on it... I somehow got into this mindset that I can only work on a project that takes a day to complete. I find it intensely difficult to come back to something afterwards, especially with the way my memory is. I forget complete projects when I have to go focus on life stuff or work stuff; my brain flushes out everything. I consistently forget everything unless I keep it written down in my day planner, and even then, some week I might forget to copy something over to the next, and *poof*.

"I should just help someone else!"

A thought I've had several times (and yet always forget) is that I could possibly just help someone else make their game - whatever they're inspired to make and passionate about. Why waste my effort of stuff I'm "meh" about at best? Why not become excited for something that someone else is driven to make?

But I'm also acutely afraid of signing up to help with something and then not following through - which I have done. I get fixated on work, I tend to put a TON of energy into teaching, and when I do so much code-switching between my work duties and other projects, I get burnt out really fast. I hate it.

So what I'm trying to say is...

I should just help others make games

Well, if any acquaintances or friends are working on games and want to delegate some short-term tasks to me, I really want to help out how I can. I just don't think I'd be a very good partner for working on a whole game together, but I would love to drop in here and there and help out how I can.

Some things I can do...

  • Porting or building projects for Linux - I can do this with C++ and Python, possibly able to figure out for other things?
  • Fixing bugs - I will fix bugs... that actually sounds like a good low-commitment thing I'd be up for.
  • Character concept art - Let me know what you have in mind for your characters and I'll try to make some concept sketches and we can refine them together.
  • Game art - I can do pixel art styles or hand-drawn styles...
    • UI elements
    • Terrain/tilesets
    • Characters? (I really don't like animating sprites, though.)
  • Translation into Esperanto - If you wanted your game in Esperanto??
  • I can play the piano but I don't know how to write songs, so if you need me to press piano keys I guess that's something??
  • I can make... zines? (Comics, booklets, mini-magazines)
  • I can create transcriptions for your trailers or videos (I've done ~hour long videos before, so it's fine as long as it isn't regular).

"What if I don't make games?"

If somehow these skills can help you with your creative projects in some way, please also let me know.

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