(Un)expected behaviour

Recently i’ve stumbled upon the interesting article, called “How to be an indie game developer“. And from there jumped directly to the Derek Yu’s blog, the “Finishing a game” post.

There was a phrase which really rustled my jimmies, it said “ACTUALLY START THE DAMN GAME“. The thing is, i didn’t.

Spent a year making a game engine with various systems, but without the actual game. I know why it is precisely, it was because i’ve been making the whole “X-Com with whistles” thing, and “X-Com” already described what gameplay i could possibly aim for. Now it’s time to reconsider.

It’s kind of obvious that any creation is inspired by something. Inspiration and ripping off are different things: for example, when i was learning how to draw humans, i’ve used references. I knew that contouring over the half-transparent photo will yield a perfect anatomy, a precise copy. I’ve also knew that wouldn’t get me far. Contouring equals ripping off mindlessly. So i’ve tried hard to draw by eye, and pretty quickly get a grasp of it. Redrawing that way is stealing, but stealing smart. You channel it through your head and result is never the same, not a copy. Besides, something’s left inside of your head.

But not so long ago i’ve realised that my color skills suck. Well, they were pretty much nonexistent. Previously it wasn’t so obvious, but as i was making progress palettes and color blends quickly became the weakest link. The reason wasn’t so hard to figure out: i’ve always used a color picker to pick the desired colors from the references. The mindless stealing. Now i try to pick colors manually whenever possible, and results are speaking for themselves.

Regarding the gamedesign, same principles apply. I could steal the X-Com gameplay, but it won’t take me anywhere. I want to learn the actual thing, not the rip and steal. I’m steel very keen of making my own spiritual successor/subjective view attempt on one of my favourite games, but with less copying and more subjective. Rules are going to change.

On a side note, here’s some concept art pieces, which are even somewhat related to the game. gribo Silicant