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ElectroSheep

Need to find a new vein of motivation for personal projects.

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Linked this topic to a friend who fired back with this article

http://gingearstudio.com/why-i-quit-my-dream-job-at-ubisoft

@Corwin not having the internet stimulates you to find the answer yourself, which is the best way to learn I'd say.
I have that 40-50 min leg as well just, as I said, don't have a project to work... even in that case, would be basically impossible to work on 3D/level design/UI if I couldn't find a seat with table (which is what happens in most cases).

It's a nice article, interesting to learn this kind of stories.
The opposite can also happen, people who made indie games for long and feel the need to come back to a company :

http://www.littlelostpoly.co.uk/leaving-the-comfort-zone/

But yes, i guess it's rarer.

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I remember that article, yes makes sense of course. I remember reading for eg of a guy leaving MS for Google and then going back because didn't like the de-structure they have. Everyone has his needs, and one could want the security and benefits that only a big company could offer (although these days, "security" it's not so much, at least for the small cogs)…

But I would argue that they are actually not that different point of views @leplubodeslapin: the accent on both articles is the teamwork, Briscoe talks about being alone, the ex-Ubi talks about being in too much of a big team which leads him… well almost in the same situation.

Also Briscoe went to Valve, which despite being big, still has an indie attitude (apparently) and you have that authorship by working in smaller teams etc. So on paper, the best of both worlds! ;)

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Wow. I don't feel so alone after reading this thread. I've definitely had this feeling. Especially as a programmer where once the project starts to get nuts we start to feel disassociated from the project due to the sheer amount of foundational and bug fixing work. I want to be more involved in the playtests and process but there's just no capacity for it.

I started firing up unreal4 this year and working on it in my spare time. I try to force myself to spend a few hours each week whether or not I'm working 80 hours at my job or not. 

...It's felt really good. It helps me remember why I got into video game development. The feeling of building something is still amazing. 

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to spark some motivation maybe we could start a small ue4 project anyone could contribute to, of course it would have to be maintained by someone I guess.

maybe a small exploration game or something simple/minimal, puzzle solving whatever.

could be a great learning opportunity for everyone.

Edited by tomm

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This original post is something I have personally battled with a lot, but lately I have completely separated work and hobby, and found all the motivation I have lost again. I have so many friends in the games industry and I talk to people in the VFX industry and I have lost the faith in the "perfect" job in those industries. I am a person that want to create my own stories, and creating a mod/level or using photography/short film projects allows this in a way that can never be done if you work in a big firm on a big project. So full time job is development, hobby is 3D stuff. I'm at a happy place with it now.

I do however have time management issues, and still don't always learn to say no to people wanting me to make something for them. Even if it's paid I don't want it, I want to focus on my hobby projects. But man it's hard, because I like to help people, and I get so easily distracted when my todo list increases.

I am trying to make a clean cut for February, no to everything, this is the year of me. The new selfish man has risen :D

If someone starts collaborating on a VR UE4 project I'd be interested (after I finish my other stuff) :)

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I have a similar issue, I want to make side projects but I always find something to not write my ideas properly or starting modeling... I also feel that if I start something without the insurance of having a friend being able to code and help me, it's just wasted time.

I had a solid game design idea, I started writing stuff, posting job announces, etc... It's so discouraging to find someone that can share your vision of a cooperation project, where each dev drags the other dev in a cool work chain.

I ended up thinking I should start a website / blog, force myself to work on tiny bricks of arts and gamedesigns, and see how far I can go and if I can grab some friends / devs.

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Personal projects are cool, but God damn I won't start a new one in a long time. At least not within a team. For personal projects, Stay small and stay alone, that's my new slogan. 'Cause I just want to hang myself after Ultraflow 1 & 2.

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I gave up with my personal projects years ago, I have zero drive or motivation to do anything game making related outside of work. I put focus on cars and gym now instead. I'd like to start making little single player episodes again, sock's Quake 1 stuff really tempted me again to do something for hl1 with the nightwatch textures, which has been on my mind for a while as it's easy and simple to make stuff for. Unlike modern day stuff that requires you to make loads of shit before you get anywhere.

Edited by dux

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I have a lot of drive most of the time, but it all depends on different factors. Some days I have no drive whatsoever, and those days I just can't do personal projects. On the other hand, most days I feel inspired to work and spend a lot of time thinking about side projects etc. I think the most important thing in understanding what motivates you is what removes the motivation you started out with.

For me, that's when I face problems (in e.g. a side project) that are overwhelming at first. Sometimes the problem isn't consciously presenting itself, for me it's often something that just feels "off", as if it was in the uncanny valley. So I stop working on the affected project for a bit - sometimes an hour, sometimes a few days. That doesn't mean I stop what I am doing, it just means I'm putting the actual work aside as I'm attempting to figure out the problem. This works for me because I don't like having unsolved problems in my head, so I almost automatically attempt to look for solutions whenever possible. 

The process I use to figure out is just trying to isolate the problem by looking at it from different angles, see if I can assess it differently. I ask peers about the problem, see what their insight is. If I can't figure it out, I'll look at references to see if I can glean from them. It's pretty basic stuff, but eventually after either seeing a tv series or a let's play or playing a level in a game or some such, my mind will suddenly make the connection to the problem and I'll get inspired/motivated again. Once the first bit of motivation is there it's much easier, since every successful step just makes the motivation greater.

So in summary: If you're motivated - get shit done, do small things first, then move onto greater things once you have enough motivation. If something is overwhelming, back away and think about what you're trying to do or use references to figure out the problem. Pretty basic, works for me, might not work for everyone.

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I have a lot of drive most of the time, but it all depends on different factors. Some days I have no drive whatsoever, and those days I just can't do personal projects. On the other hand, most days I feel inspired to work and spend a lot of time thinking about side projects etc. I think the most important thing in understanding what motivates you is what removes the motivation you started out with.

For me, that's when I face problems (in e.g. a side project) that are overwhelming at first. Sometimes the problem isn't consciously presenting itself, for me it's often something that just feels "off", as if it was in the uncanny valley. So I stop working on the affected project for a bit - sometimes an hour, sometimes a few days. That doesn't mean I stop what I am doing, it just means I'm putting the actual work aside as I'm attempting to figure out the problem. This works for me because I don't like having unsolved problems in my head, so I almost automatically attempt to look for solutions whenever possible. 

The process I use to figure out is just trying to isolate the problem by looking at it from different angles, see if I can assess it differently. I ask peers about the problem, see what their insight is. If I can't figure it out, I'll look at references to see if I can glean from them. It's pretty basic stuff, but eventually after either seeing a tv series or a let's play or playing a level in a game or some such, my mind will suddenly make the connection to the problem and I'll get inspired/motivated again. Once the first bit of motivation is there it's much easier, since every successful step just makes the motivation greater.

So in summary: If you're motivated - get shit done, do small things first, then move onto greater things once you have enough motivation. If something is overwhelming, back away and think about what you're trying to do or use references to figure out the problem. Pretty basic, works for me, might not work for everyone.

Scary how closely it fits how I work too. Solving problems I don't think really take away motivation, just channels it onto something else, and I'm often more actively trying to solve problems or fill in gaps in my thinking than actually building things. But when I know something is too ambitious or too complex or I am stuck with something not quite right but not real way to fix it, then to move forward without knowing the path to the destination or knowing the destination is flawed is what kills my motivation.

And obviously breaking down problems also helps a lot with keeping this feeling that you're achieving something. Like if you have to tackle a super complex system/scene/whatever that you won't be able to test or show before you've spent months on it, it's usually better for motivation to manage somehow to compartmentalize that process in smaller bits you can feel like you're making progress on. E.g. I was coding a 2D terrain system lately and got too deep into trying to build all of the tools and debugging and all that along with the basic things like just assigning a texture and rendering it and testing collisions. By breaking it like that I could have a character run on a simple terrain with texture, and then move on to all of the neat tools and workflow improvements. Feels more like I am going somewhere.

Edited by Corwin

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