Week 52 Update

by 🦊 The Fox on 2020-07-14

This is going to be quite a hard blog to write, so please bear with me.

Over the past few months the world has been gripped by a global pandemic. Whilst I don’t want to specifically blame it for our lack of progress and general apathy towards this project, it’s been a major contributing factor. I’ll try and break things down a bit. This is probably going to be quite a personal piece.

The Old Routine

Shockk and I have a routine, quite a strict one all things considered, but it dates back to when we were still in school and it’s become somewhat of a tradition. You can practically set your clock by it.
Originally it was alternating Saturdays, I’d go to Shockk’s, Shockk would come to mine, but as we got older and what kind of things we did changed I ended up going to his every Saturday for logistics reasons. He just has more desk space than I do.
So every Saturday, around lunch time, I’d drive down to his place, set up my stuff and we’d work on things. Or play games, or just surf the net and chat. Sometimes all you need is the presence of someone else to keep you sane, we’re quite solitary people otherwise.
The day this happens on has changed from time to time, but the general routine has been the same. Once a week, every week.

The New “Routine”

Then COVID-19 happened.
Travel restrictions were put in place, offices closed, everything was turned upside down. That included our routine.
Visiting friends wasn’t considered “essential” and was cut. Myself? I’ve been out the house only 4 times in as many months. Shockk is now working from home full time as well.
Critically, we’ve not seen each other, in person, for those 4 months.
We quickly came up with a solution, voice chat through Discord and screen sharing with Parsec. We have the resources and stable enough internet to pull that off. Nothing will change, right?
Not right. Virtual visiting is no adequate replacement for meeting in person, and whilst some restrictions have been lifted physical meeting for us is still not fully possible the way we used to do it.
But we stuck with it, meeting every weekend, loading up Discord and Parsec, chatting away, working on Corporeality or the currently unnamed Breakout game… until our sleep patterns fell out of sync, and our mental health deteriorated, and the routine fell apart.

The Problem

I won’t lie, our collective focus has never been the best. We have a trail of failed, cancelled and abandoned projects behind us. Bright ambitious ideas that just fell over when we hit a hurdle.
Corporeality has had a lot of hurdles, and I’m really pleased to say that we’ve kept picking ourselves back up this time and breaking through. This project has lasted longer, and made more progress than any other we’ve worked on before. I think that even includes Minecraft save files!
But, this is a big hurdle, a bigger one than we’ve ever really faced, and when we can’t even keep a proper weekly meeting schedule just to hang out as friends… Well, I don’t think we’re going to be making much progress.

What have we been doing?

Honestly, not much.
Progress has been the slowest it’s ever been, if you’ve read our recent blogs you’ll see just how erratic development has become. We’ve tried to take a few weeks off here and there, work on different things, refresh our minds… It’s not been working. Mini projects, infrastructure work, even sitting down to just play Minecraft has had this constant spectre of “You should be doing game development, not this!” floating over it.
It’s unpleasant, uncomfortable and harming our already fragile mental states.

What are we going to do about it?

I’ve been mulling over writing this blog for a while, apparently so has Shockk.
It came to a head today when I got a text from him pretty much saying, “We need to put the game on hold.”

So that’s exactly what we’re going to do. A development freeze. Stepping back completely and just not thinking about it for a while. Maybe a month, maybe more.
We don’t have a publisher, we don’t have shareholders, this project was always “for us, by us”.
Right now “us” needs a break. “Us” is going to go play some games. “Us” is going to go back to what it was in our High School days. Two friends, hanging out, and decompressing.

Thank you so much for continuing to follow us, we will be back.
Until then, everyone, stay safe and look after yourselves.

-🦊 The Fox, Project Manager