Tuesday, 18 January 2011

A bit of a ramble

Very few people make their greatest masterpiece on their first try. It's not impossible, but it's not likely. Many creative people loathe their past work, or even their current work that they're stuck in the middle of, because they're well aware that they're so much better now than they were when they started, and the next thing they make is really going to be something.

(... Not like I've recently hidden the existence of a bunch of older games from my site or anything ...)

What's sometimes overlooked in the endless grumbling about quality is that trying tends to lead to getting better, and not trying tends to accomplish nothing. That's always been one of the stated reasons for certain friendly communities to encourage people to finish a game, any game, even if it's crap. Because solely by going through that process, you learn things. Not enough! But you learn.

Trying to discourage people might lower the number of terrible games in existence, but it won't do anything to raise the number of non-terrible games.

And if a game comes out and it's crap, and it causes someone to look at it and think "I can do better than that!" Then it might help stimulate some competitive growth. How many indie game developers have started down this path by seeing a mainstream video game and thinking they had a better idea?


Tony said...

May I ask what sparked this?

Grumbling about the quality of first (or early-in-career) games is... odd.

I can easily find comments on my (flash) games which are succinct statments on quality ("utter rubbish" I think was my favorite), but I can't recall when anyone whose opinion had any weight said, 'Don't even try'.


Whiner said...

Discussions elsewhere from fans of Japanese visual novels being cranky about the quality levels of English-produced visual novels, the vast majority of which are made by fans who've never made any sort of game before and have no idea what they're doing.

Really not worth looking up, it's all just wank, and wank that anyone involved in the movement has heard before.

Calli said...


If I've read the same wank you're referring to, the undercurrent starting a few posts in of "girls came along and ruined everything" is new to me. And unsettling, but I guess I shouldn't be surprised.