a shared writing stream

i feel like i just want to make a video game

and that maybe this sentiment is shared. but also that we want to make it so that everyone has equal say and opportunity to add to it, this calling the game a container

it feels like we experimented, had nice ideas, and did not land on anything that particularly excites us (me?). the exciting thing right now is working together, and its pretty exciting, i love working together with pond life folks.

now it feels to me that we should just commit to an idea, and trust that it will be awesome, maybe spend some time scavenging/brainstorming it until we hit something that seems exciting enough to bootstrap the process. (in my mind the RaTS process would've been enough for this). I love brainstorming bullshit ideas until something sounds so good that I cant talk anymore.

i will start a design document to know the desires of everyone for making a game. i am particularly interested in just making the dog park into a longer project. it was very fun to work with. harder thing is to avoid the online annoyance pitfalls (or maybe just accept them?). would be nice if it was a game to attempt to fing something that we could have done fast (a month?) and then just make it better.

we need a shared notes repository

lets just make a game!

re: chew, theme(s)

to make good use of the shortness and responsiveness of these, i'll write my thoughts on this to warm up. also what I would personally like to do.

first thought, i dont understand what chew means haha (this was not the first thought, but I realised it should be)

second thought, is that unless the container is as broad as "a webpage", it seems to me that the container is as restrictive as a theme, but in a different direction. for example, if the container is a 3d unity game, it seems harder to incorporate a larp about rats in it. maybe i am mixing the idea of a container with that of a process.

my personal interest with the theme was to explore the playable affordances of a certain thing. what kind of game related stuff would be possible to make that relate to that thing. it mostly came from thinking about candles. i think i was interested in exploring toy making with an object constraint, and didn't feel that rats filled that purpose. i also think that that is not the desire of the rest of the group with choosing a theme. if not for this, i really have no particular desire for having a theme, and thing it might be more limiting than generative to have one. the only other useful aspect of a theme is to guide in absolute lack of direction (which in the end i feel is what unified all of us to accept choosing a theme to just start doing stuff)

maybe a container is just a different type of theme. thinking container first, content second? idk anymore, i feel a bit frustrated on the concept of making many games and putting them together in a space. it seems to me like reinventing, when it simply exist there, even if in a weird spot right now (maybe because of the weird spot it is right now this desire to reinvent it exists). my main interest in many games existing together in a single place is how they interact with each other.


i think i've got one more of these in me right now. feeling better after writing stuff down in slightly longer form. what was the subject of this one?

oh yeah, feedback. the feedback we got today was kinda harsh. not in a necessariy bad way, i think everything shared was fair & true, at least adjacent to things i've felt (though perhaps been unable to conciously identify).

personally, i like getting dunked on. though i don't wish it dunkings on anyone who isn't interested in receiving them. i can recall a number of pretty formative dunkings in my life that have shaped who i am today, or at least shaped how i think about certain subjects.

there was the time a youtube commenter pointed out that a lot of people think ray kurzweil is a hack. i think the saved me from going down a pretty gross path. there was that time in undergrad that one my classmates looked horrified and never spoke to me again after i misinterpreted their attempt to connect as an opportunity to share how i felt completely differently from them about the reading we had done for class that morning. i think about that one a lot (ugh).

there was the time a few months ago when of similar anarchist disposition illustrated in great detail w/ many references the reactionary nature of my views on blockchain / crypto in the mentions of an organization i have a lot of respect for (crypto on average still Very Bad, full of hucksters, its well poisoned, but maybe worth exploring its transformative potential w/ open mind). this one also helped me see for real my personal vulnerability to the mind-warping badness of twitter & similar online communities.

chew, theme(s)

wanna keep these posts short and respondable, so i'm going to try and break them up thematically. this one is about what i would personally like to do, at least as far as i can see right now thisveryminute.

i want to make something chewier than what we have on this first prototype. something that's like 30% stuff the weight of what we have in rats , 40% stuff thats a bit chewier, and 30% something quite chewy. where that cheweist 30% is something we could reuse issue-to-issue.

re. theme, it doesn't seem to me like picking a single theme is a good solution. i am happy to create within the constraints of a theme, but it might be better to work in a container that is permissive of more themes. so that people who are excited about a theme can explore it until they're tired of it. so that we can each fall off at different rates and move on to what we care about, but still contribute to some greater whole. something unified not by theme, but by its aesthetic container: audio/visual/literary/ludic(yuck/sorry/such/a/gross/word)/&c gum that binds everything together. i don't think that means the container needs to be homogenous. it just means that there needs to be some aesthetic thread linking two of its constituent parts together, even if the thread between another two is totally different.

the container that's exciting me most atm is something like mystical ninja starring goemon. a weird and irrevent three dimensional world to walk around in. where characters say things to you: maybe tell a joke, announce the full text essay, present you with a tiny playable. where you can walk around and struggle to not trip over divergent little experiments, minigames, games, &c. maybe less of a zine or issue and more of a demodisc. or less of a demodisc and more a playable prototype(s) that the developers sent to a prospective publisher to try and entice them into business. a bunch of stuff people poured their hearts into but wisely left behind before their hearts went out of it.

and i'd like to figure out how to make money. to sustain. to get real. a bit ago i tweeted that i don't individual passion is durable. that anything sustainable needs to be the socialize passion, interest. a thing will fail, fall apart, be unsustainable otherwise. i still believe it.

an outlet

had a mess of thoughts & feelings swirling around in my head this evening, the sort of stuff i'd usually exorcise in a retro. everyone else is busy or unavailable tho, so i beat metroid dread (ugh) & got an ice cream & got six-pack of beer & decided to write (that these kind of thoughts often get left effectively undocumented on the retro board makes me feel like we should find a way to easily serialize those conversations into a format that can be left on the web instead. that others (or we) can revisit in the future. maybe a lightly edited / auto-transcribed audio recording?).

we received some critical feedback about the our zine today that left me feeling pretty deflated. w/o much motivation to continue working on the zine or any of the games in it. the feedback was principally about layout decisions we'd made in response to other feedback we've received. i think i usually do a pretty good job of leaving feedback on the floor that i don't feel like serves my own creative goals, but i think i kinda failed this time.

as a result, i'd spent a lot of effort this past weekend to try and pull some of the threads together on the presentation-side of the zine, and it felt like work. and it shouldn't feel like work. it should feel fun. that should've been the first sniff that something was off (three "should"s in a row, no good). one nice thing about this particular piece of feedback is that it's made me realize i was doing this work for purely external validation. it wasn't for me, and that's not sustainable. what's the point of that? (a lot of "me"s too, but i don't want to speak for anyone else).