My design walk

About once every two months, I go out for a walk.  In my mind, I call it a “design walk”.  Basically, I get up from whatever I’m doing and go on a one or two hour long aimless walk.  The idea is to get out of my usual surroundings, get away from the computer, and do some serious thinking about game design (or whatever else is going on).  Sometimes I’ll take an ipod along, although I’ve long since learned not to listen to podcasts or anything with lyrics.  And I’ll usually try to take a notebook and pen along with me, so I can jot down any thoughts that occur to me.  A lot of MMORPG Tycoon 2’s current design was worked out during these walks.

On my walk today, I noticed this sign, and had to take a photo.  It’s so delightfully meta:  a sign instructing the reader to obey other signs.  I’m dearly hoping that on my next design walk (perhaps another two months in the future), that by then someone will have erected another, smaller sign just to the left of this one, which would read:  “Please obey all signs which instruct you to obey all traffic signs.”  And then perhaps another, smaller sign just to the left of that one, and on and on, until you reach the God of Djinns.

In any case, amongst other things which came up on the walk, I realised that a number of the features which I’ve been working on of late, while good and useful things (and I came up with a healthy list of new ones), aren’t actually addressing what I need to do for the overdue Milestone 1.  And so, I’ve put all of those other things on hold, and refocused onto what actually needs to be accomplished for Milestone 1.  There really isn’t all that much to be done, if I can stay focused and actually work on the specific things I need,  instead of what seems most cool at any given moment.

In other news..  I spent too much time yesterday powering through to the end of Dragon Age: Origins;  finally reaching the end at about 2am.  I was playing it because friends were pointing me at Wil Wheaton’s keynote at  PAX East, but noted that it contained spoilers about Dragon Age’s ending.. and I hadn’t finished Dragon Age before (My 360 got a Red Ring of Death the first time I tried to play it, and by the time it was repaired, I had moved on to new games)

Anyhow, as awesome as Dragon Age’s ending was (or at least, the variant that I reached), I think Wil’s keynote trumped it.  Wish I could have been there in person.  If you haven’t watched it yet, go watch.  (Unless you’re avoiding Dragon Age spoilers)

I will have to actually reach PAX one of these years.  It’s just rather far away, and airfares aren’t cheap.