Thursday, October 4, 2012

Agon and Alea

Agon and Alea is already turning out to be one of the hardest things I've ever done. Of my six weeks of production, two have already slipped by! I know if I don't start recording what I've done, I'll forget that I've accomplished anything at all, and begin to panic!

Ha! But there is no reason to worry, as the project is going smoothly and well.

I've engaged in many very difficult projects before. I built a 3D Real-Time-Strategy-Game engine for Honors Computer Science II, alone, and then carried out a similar feat later on in Flash/Actionscript 3.0 (Although I had help in terms of art assets and interface programming). Hard development work isn't new to me. When I started out Agon and Alea, I had no doubts that it was within my power to finish a game alone and publish it.

Only I suddenly realized that I didn't want to.

It was too simple.


Well I mean sure the Augmented Reality and Fuzzy Logic were scary. They still scare the crap out of me! I'm working with new technology, new paradigms, new target audiences- new everything! And I still have no idea how I'm going to get the Fuzzy Logic engine up and running in the game.

But all of that is just work. There's nothing particularly scary about work. Work is doable, or its not. It takes time and energy. It ends in a product. Work is simple. Work is something I already know I can do. I'm a hard worker. I'm good at working. Work might be high-stress, high-uncertainly, high-fear, but it's not something I've never done before.

What I haven't established yet, is whether or not I am a good leader. Everyone around me seems to feel I'm up to the leaderly task, but the simple fact is that I've always been a loner- not a leader- and that once upon a time I even assumed the two were irreconcilable.

Now I know that I am- and always have been- driving towards a post of Leadership. So the question no longer is: Can I build a game? I already know I can. The question becomes: Can I inspire other people to follow me? My current project is to teach myself to answer that second question with a firm "Yes."

It is the most terrifying and difficult question I have ever asked myself.  I fear the answer, and yet I know I must not fear it- that I must be fearless and keep moving forward. The answer must become yes.  That is not to say I will crumble if this project fails- I know I'm a newb at inspiration and management and that everyone has to start somewhere and fail frequently. But I stake my existence on my ability to transform that answer, one day, on one project, into 'yes'.

Wait, what? But why? Not because I'd die or anything, that's for sure! Not because I'm emotionally dependent on my own success. But because I choose to do this.  I am a woman built on a foundation of strength and free will, and I am building my future. I have chosen to be a leader. And 'her' future existence, and my progressive transformation into her, depend on my ability to be or become fearless.

Why is it important for me to build a game? It isn't. Because I already can. Why is it important for me to build an unusual game? It isn't. Because I already can. Why is it important for me to publish a game? To get my name out? Why do I want my name out? So that someone will trust me to lead.

And so right now the most important thing in the world is not programming, or art, or sound, or job offerings, its not money or publishing or game engines or time. Right now the most important thing in the world is people, my friends, my allies, the people I care about, the people I want to see reach their goals, the people I want to inspire, the people who inspire me. The most important thing in the world is people. Other people. Myself, even!

Agon and Alea is the hardest thing I've ever done, but by no means the hardest thing I'll ever do. For me, it's not exactly a question of building a game. It's a lesson in bravery. The bravery to use new technology, to target new markets, to surrender perfectionism, to surrender control, to ignore fear, to ignore risk, to trust others, to befriend others, to inspire others, to lead others, to express my creativity, to understand my driving motivations, to harness my own energy, to strengthen my passions and convictions, and abandon my fears, and to make one hell of a good game.

I'm scared, now.

But I've already chosen: One day soon, I won't be.

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