The Path of Vidya

As with all my hyper self-indulgent posts, most of my thoughts are going below the fold.

One of my deepest desires is to make a game. A game that is hand drawn. A game that looks something like this doodle:

I have, on my great big list of projects, a handful of games. An amusing element of them is there is a pattern of “Here’s this big game I want to make, and here’s this smaller game that can be a part of the big game.” 8 Lives Left is the combat system for Breath of the Gameboy. Hell, Alpha Test/Remake, a comic, is the graphics to Untitled Metroidvania.

Drone-Fu may well be something along those lines as a concept, too.

But the most awesome potential for me as a developer, as a person, as a business, is my concept of a line of micro JRPGs. It’s freaking amazing. It can absorb all of my other projects. It is the future of storytelling. It converts to PC, console, and mobile. It is a game engine and a game concept that I want to exist almost more than anything.

And I keep trying to break it down and create a ladder of games that leads up to my JRPG engine of awesomeness.

Thing is, I got a solid amount of the way there making a pixel art version of my conceptual JRPG engine.

But I did so using pixel art under the assumption I could just sub in HD art at any time and it would Just Work. Pixel Art was meant as a quick prototype choice.

My assumption was incorrect.

The engine was always meant to transform into a hand-drawn HD engine. After all, I want to produce not only my own stories, and while I am no artistic genius, I fancy my hand-drawn art as much as I like my pixel art, but I also want to be able to sell my services to indie authors I respect.

I want, one day, to be able to produce e.g. a Combat Frame X Seed JRPG. And it will need an art style appropriate to the subject matter. So, at this point, I basically need to rebuild the engine in HD.

Anyway, that’s all context.

My actual point

I have been considering both my disfunction and my need to resume gainful employment. How should I move forward? Should I just resign myself to making the occasional indie kids’ book that is fun, but serves no other purpose, while I wait tables? If I can get treatment for my ADHD, should I try and get a Real Job™ like full stack web design? But if I’m able to focus enough to hold down a Real Job™, why can’t I pull off one of my schemes, where I build a simple game, then use it to make a more complex game, then use it to make a more complex game, and thereby construct an indie game company piece by piece? Surely that is a better plan!

I think it is. I think, much as I hate the idea of making another stupid shooter, I should come up with a list of game designs that range from “I can make this in less than a month,” to “muahahah! It’s my RPG engine!” and produce them.

Why has God given me the ability to write computer programs and animate characters if I am to crank out kids’ books until the empire falls, at which point He only knows what I’ll be able to do?

Anyway, I’ve been mulling this over, but at some point I have to externalize my thoughts in order to know clearly what I’m thinking. And that is part of what this blog is for. Now I’m gonna go for a walk and mull it over some more.

Update

I think my best bet is to take my existing pixel art engine, try to hack it into an HD engine, and make a short, fun adventure game where Candy the Witch has to collect X number of candies. This picture is a mockup at size to determine roughly the scale at which I intend to work.

And I think I’m going to dive in tomorrow. Tonight, I’m gonna read a book about Sierra, and have some fish.

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