We are nearly there
Here we are at the end of the semester. It's been a busy time working on Gloria and I've enjoyed the journey even if it has been difficult. This is the largest project that I've worked on and certainly the largest team I've managed, I've learnt a lot about how I handle larger teams and situations , I made a lot of mistakes over the duration of the project and I definitly spread myself too thin over the project. I was concerned with scope of project for some time and I felt that once again it probably got the better of me, it's easy to under estimate all the work that goes into a game and just the time spend on social elements such as the website and documentary tooks weeks alone to match the quality and scale of the game. Inter-team issues crippled us and tasks took longer that I anticipated. I made hard decisions that upset people and I spent far too much time worrying about the little things. I was far from perfect in this project and I learnt a lot about my limits.
However in the process, we managed to build a close close to our vision, I understood things don't go to plan regardless of how well things are planned, some things just aren't in your control, deadlines get missed and things pop up you could never have accounted for. I understand I can't blame myself for these things and I know I did what I felt was right. I made rough decisions that I thought were best for the project, changing mechanics designers in the early stages caused a lot of upset, people believed I didn't regard their input as important but it was an objective decision to get the ball rolling and start prototyping impactfully, I stand by this decision and I believe it was crucial to progressing, I believe without it, we wouldn't have a game at the moment. I moved people off tasks that they were working on and cut tasks that people were working on because I believed that was what was best for the project and I realised that hair physics probably aren't an essential part of the game. My role was to create a game that was true to vision and my choices reflect that. I believe the choice to outsource music was a good decision and took a lot of pressure off the core team. I took on tasks that no one else was doing because they needed to be done even if I didn't want to do it I felt it would further the project. Retrospectively I should have assigned more tasks that I did to the team rather than taking these on myself such as the website but I wanted to create a smoother working environment for my team without loading on additional pressure.
Although we had our hardships, we worked effectively and managed to build a game, a game that work and looks how we wanted, a game with mechanincs that work and are somewhat fun, our music worked perfectly from our outsources and with all of our elements combined the puzzle actually fitted together. The biggest fear I had during the project was everyone working on different parts of the game and when we come to fit them all together, the game just doesn't work, but it did work and this was one of our greatest achievements as a team and I'm glad that our clear and consistant communication helped create a funtioning experience, this was one of my core roles as team leader. I would have liked to test the game more than we did to gain some other insight but also as a big team we have a lot of internal testing and we generally internally verify changes/game decisions to make sure we build a rounded experience or don't make a bad call from testing. The issue we had with testing was because we had such a big game, we needed so much working before we can a full working experience, and often testing invidual parts or systems didn't work as we wanted it to.
The last week of the project has primarily been spent working on documentation and finishing game elements for the game, Triangle town and character animations are implented and fully working with some small visual adjustments needing to be added and I finished the documentary over the weekend, now is just finishing NPC chracter variations and documenting the last several months. Other than that, it's over now, bring on the shows.