Another year in the books… I guess its time for a review of my 2018 game development work, and planning on what I want to do in 2019.
Looking back, it was a busy year (busier than I thought). Here’s some of the things I accomplished, with links to more detail.
- In January, I released Tappy Easter for iOS and Android.
- I open-sourced my Unity Object Pooler library on Github for anyone to use and contribute.
- I entered two Ludum Dare game jams and finished two games… one that I liked but others were not too big a fan of (Bullet Hell Breakout), and one that rated in the Top 100 in 7 of 8 categories, top 50 in 5 of 8 categories (Johnny’s Flipbook Space Adventure)!
- I converted two of my previous mobile games (Alphabeta Asteroids and Pumpkin Patch Match) to PC and Macintosh, and released them on itch.io.
- The rewrite of my Ludum Dare 42 entry, Johnny’s Flipbook Adventure is well underway, with the goal of a PC and console release.
Stuff Still Up In The Air
Will I ever finish SMS: The Next Mission?
Back in 2014, I wrote and released Space Mission Survival for mobile platforms. Back in 2015, I decided that this would make a great PC/Console game, and I started work on porting (actually, re-writing) Space Mission Survival to PC and I added some extra modes to play the game using graphics and sounds available in the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s.
Over the past 4 years, I stopped and restarted development so many times (seven times, I believe). I get close to completion, but that extra 20% needed to release it always discourages me.
- Do I add a “Shmup” mode? Remove it?
- Would people pay money for a game that plays exactly the same in each mode?
- Based on lack of any feedback, does anyone really care if it is released at all?
In my last post, I said I will finish it to release, and I will at some point. It’s so close to completion at this point. It’s better than sitting on a hard drive.
Same thing for Johnny’s Flip Book Adventures. The Ludum Dare version ended with such a great rating, and it seems to be a favorite of those who played it, but I have serious doubts that it will sell well, let alone be noticed, and that is also discouraging.
2019 Plans… Somewhat Undecided
I am finding that I have some other interests I want to pursue outside of game development. After years of waffling, I decided that I am going to learn to play the piano/keyboard. A wonderful Christmas present from my wife will help move that dream along.
I am also finding that I enjoy woodworking and I have a few projects that I want to start (and finish). I started working on a bench last year, and I also have a couple of things on the “to do” list.
2019 will start my 8th year in game development. As 2018 winded down, I find myself questioning whether I should take some time away from game development to take a breather, and dedicate more time to pursue the other things I mentioned. Right now, I am not sure.
These interests will naturally take away from my development time. Currently, I have these development items on the list:
- I started on an update to Tappy Easter, and I hope to get it out within the next month. I am currently working on some visual improvements, and I am investigating other monetization options.
- The re-write of Johnny’s Flip Book Adventures is well underway, and I would like to finish it in 2019, with the goal of a mobile and Nintendo Switch release, but as I mentioned I am having some internal thoughts on its overall success.
- I am still undecided what to do with Space Mission: Survival. I need to decide once and for all what to do about its release.
- I am toying around with releasing a new space-themed spelling game (I guess an Alphabeta Asteroids: Mission II).
- Maybe some minor updates to my Object Pooler library.
What a busy 2018 flying under the gamedev radar! I guess I will see where 2019 takes me and what I feel like working on. Only time will tell.