Usually most of my projects wait many months (if not years) in
limbo queue to be actually released, because the TODO list have countless items on it and I constantly add more, but from time to time something happens and the item from the top is magically launched.
It took me a few months to finally do something with the gamedevjs.com domain after the meetups in Poland moved to gamedevjs.pl (and got an overhaul in the process). It would probably take a lot more if I tried doing everything I wanted to do with the idea.
The important change in approach was from “this project have to be perfect” to “let’s release it any way possible and see what happens“. Instead of rewriting Wizard Quest seven times from scratch, let’s cut away as many features as possible, release what’s left and then schedule granular updates for the future. It worked with Captain Rogers.
Instead of launching GamedevJS.com globally, with news, job board, tutorials, a whole bunch of authors writing original content, Game Jam section with prizes/judges/sponsors, games portal with ad network, everything on its own backend engine, community discussions in Slack, etc, let’s just launch a WordPress site with news and then try to add everyting else.
As a former front-end developer I would have this perfectionist approach of having beautiful HTML markup which everybody could appreciate. Years of game development taught me getting things done, because an ugly project that you release is far more important and beneficial for your skill set than the perfect one nobody will ever see.
So, gamedevjs.com have an “ugly” WordPress theme under the hood with a bunch of plugins, but it works. I’m not proud of the source code, but it’s already online, and next year I’ll be able to validate if I should invest more time in it, or drop it, as many projects before. Some failed, others succeeded (say js13kGames), but without launching them I wouldn’t know if the project belong to the first, or the second group.
I have too many ideas and too little time, so I have to cut corners if I’m going to validate at least some of them. Even js13kGames started with a massive delay, “as is”, with the first version of the website designed, coded and launched within 48 hours. It’s funny the design and the basic HTML structure, which were more or less temporary, are still there since 2012. I can always iterate and improve stuff over time if I have the basics running.
If you’d like to join me in writing content for Gamedev.js, adding functionalities, or supporting it in any other way, then please get in touch, thanks!