And many more…
Hello game devs! John Davenport here welcome to the GameDEV journey – the weekly podcast where I explore game development with you by sharing some of my experiences and thoughts on versions topics.
On this weeks show I’m talking about inspiration, motivation and what to do if they lead you the wrong way.
Let’s dive in.
Inspiration for Game Development
Where do I go about finding inspiration for my game development? Honestly – my inspiration comes from all over the place.
The games I play.
The games I want to play.
Books I read.
Life in general.
Being inspired to create something is often not that difficult. It’s filtering that inspiration into something more specific and organized that can become a problem. At least that’s how it is for me.
In order to try and bring order to this web of different ideas I try my best to write them down when they come to me. I use an app called Bear which is a simple not take app to track these ideas as they come to me.
When inspiration strikes me I’ll usually create a new note in my “gameDev – Ideas” folder with a simple title of the concept. I’ll try and expand upon this topic a bit to flesh it out as I’m thinking about it.
Sometimes the idea gets a lot of depth to it right away, other times though, I’m just recording the idea so that it doesn’t end up slipping away into the ether so to speak.
With me, as you may have noticed based on what I’ve been talking about, inspiration is not exactly the problem. Motivation – that’s where I struggle the most.
Motivation to keep Developing
I’m an ideas person which in some ways keeps me from staying focused for a long period of time on one topic. How do I find the motivation to keep going, to ignore the ideas that come to me and move forward with the one’s I’m currently work on?
There are a few ways that I think I do this, the biggest one is by trying to set public accountability. By this I mean I try to make sure that I’m not just accountable to myself, but that other people are aware that I’m doing something and as a result I am more motivated to deliver on this concept.
I also motivate myself in some ways financially. I’ll either be looking towards ways of increasing the bottom line or I’ll “invest” in my own success with a tool, course, or resource that enables me to complete my tasks faster or better than in the past.
However, as I’ve eluded to, inspiration can lead the wrong way. When and how do I identify these wrong routes and what do I do to get back on course?
When Inspiration and Motivation Lead you the Wrong Way
I think the most important thing about getting side tracked is that you don’t let it derail the entire project. I’ll use a gaming example…
You could look at taking a side track or a detour like picking up a side quest in a game like the Witcher. You know there’s probably something rewarding at the end of the path, it’s going to be fun and interesting, but it’s going to take you some amount of time out of the main objective.
For me there are times for exploration and times for buckling down and finishing a project. These times are clearly defined in my own workflow and I honestly find that I need both of them to be successful.
The one piece of advice I can provide is that if you’ve found yourself going down a side track ask yourself one question… “Am I seeking this distraction because I am curious about the answer or because I want a distraction from a problem or task that needs to be completed?”
Basically – what I mean by this is that I will often find myself most distracted when I’m faced with a task or problem that needs my immediate attention, but I either don’t know how to fix that problem or find the problem too tedious or boring to accomplish.
When this is the case I mentally try to reset myself and refocus my priorities. I tell myself that finishing this important task can enable me to not only push further on the main quest, but I can also free up time for me to experiment and explore more freely in the future. Usually – this works.
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Also – as a side note – I have recently also started a YouTube channel which covers a lot of these same topics in a less scripted and more visual way. You can find the link to the channel in the show notes.
I hope that you are feeling inspired and motivated after listening to this weeks show. I want to thank you so much for coming to join me today and I hope that you’ll come back next week where I will be discussing the subject of fear of rejection.