Sunday, January 27, 2013

One shaky step at a time...

     First let me share my appreciation for the condolences offered by family and friends. It's been a challenging time, and frankly there are still days I just don't want to get up. But I do and I will continue to do so because not only is that who I am, but I too often run out of pillows and blankets for my blanket forts and must go to work (day job) to provide more. (lol)

     On the development front I don't have much to report, sadly. These last couple months knocked me on my butt and I have had some challenges gaining any true traction. On a positive note, I did repair my development computer (for now) and once again have access to all those original files. That being what it is, and the feedback received through the demo, I am somewhat hesitant to pursue that route and maintain the original files. I believe that the story itself is valid, perhaps not as much fun as some of the other stories that have surfaced in recent months/weeks as I've tried to re-kindle the passion I had for this work.

     On that note, I feel that I/we (Game Crossing Studios), am/are at a cross-roads and must make a decision that will either be the retooling of our current story, or moving beyond this portion of the grand scheme and launch us into a new/fresh project with the option of telling the back story in a future game much the way Star Wars had been done, or many of the video game stories (Lara Croft: Tomb Raider) have been done of late. I openly admit that this line of thinking has not been passed through other development team members, so I apologize if this catches any of them at a loss for words. By all means, please share your thoughts here on the blog comments either in favor or against. As it stands, I've considered my options and looked at other career paths that I could walk down. I've debated joining the National Guard, becoming a teacher at a local private school, and a host of other options. None of them what I always thought I wanted, but each of them appeared to be a part of who I am. I could easily see myself in any of the roles that I considered. But while they are solid and admirable positions and professions I don't know that I would ever have the passion that would help me be great at any of them.

     I love games. It's been hard to want to play anything, or do anything. But in the last day or so I picked up a game just to pass the time and it helped. I heard there is going to be an exhaustive study into the correlation between violent games and violent gun crimes committed after playing such games. For every study that says video games cause harm to societies youth and populous, I used to rely on other studies that said they help in some cases. Now I have my own words to say that I feel games have helped me. Luckily I have a good support system and all of that as well, but in dealing with the grief it wasn't until I stepped into a fictional world and played for a couple hours that I started to feel a little like the me I was before the funeral. A different me, obviously. A version of me that has a heavier view of mortality than before, but with games I am a version of me that smiles more and is more apt to play a card or board game with my kids than I was a week or so ago.

     So while it's been a challenge to develop the desire to look at a keyboard and think about coding, scripting, or creating any sort of game assets, I'm a gamer. Making games is what I do, it's part of who I choose to be. I guess the hurdle to get over now is deciding which game to make right now. Be patient and stick around, we may be small and have a history of striking out, but one of these times we're gonna knock it outta the park, and you're all going to want to see that one.

LIVE life.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

One Breath at a Time

    My Father passed away yesterday afternoon. He had been ill for a while, and his health decreased rather rapidly. The last few days he had been comatose, he was at peace and as comfortable as we could make him. The wonderful people from Hospice came and helped comfort family and checked his vitals each day. I remember one of the days his pulse was challenging to find, but he gave indication that he was still with us with shallow rhythmic breathing. While his breathing did not appear painful to him, it was as though it took great effort for each and every breath.

     I've reflected on a lot in the past few days. Not only recalling memories of growing up and learning from him, but the life lessons that he was still teaching me with his frail and failing body. I used to hold a perspective when dealing with tasks that I felt were undesirable with a sense of I just need to get through the day/week/whatever duration was required to "get through". Days at my day job that were frustrating, I would tell myself -just "x" number of hours to go. I gained a perspective shift when I thought about my Dad hanging to his mortality one deliberate breath at a time. Each breath to him was a gift of time, short as it was. I realized how selfish or ungrateful I must be to feel burdened by enduring things that may be uncomfortable or inconvenient to me at that time. Do I believe that I can pull an 180 degree turn in a moment? Maybe. But more likely it will be a gradual and effort filled challenge to adjust my views and thoughts to look at the time granted to me as a gift. Perhaps more time beyond that to treat it as such.

     I've considered how I might really apply this observation in my life so that it becomes more of who I am instead of one of those things we see, admire, and set aside with the intention of doing something with it at some later time. I don't know that I have a solid answer yet, but I am making planning a more key element in the things I do. Living life one breath at a time, to me, suggests that we not become so set in our objectives that we miss the opportunities that come, or the lives that pass through our own journey. Not to say we toss goals out the window and live as though we are leaves in the wind. Rather, I would say we build our plans and our goals, but keep our eyes, ears & hearts open. Perhaps we will have the chance to learn from someone else's experience, or share with someone that needs our help. Live life a little more full by opening ourselves up a bit more.

     In regard to our development path, I can say that I have a goal and a plan, but I am learning to recognize the benefit of other directions. I have some ideas that I hope will excite you all to playing it when it is complete. I will make changes and adjustments and post progress here as they are available. I have been in contact with the other members of our development team, and we are excited for the direction that we are taking. And for all you that love to read Meg's posts, don't worry, she'll be back to posting on here in the coming weeks. Thank goodness for that. ;)