• The Lazy Designer

    Rejection in the Games Industry

    Yesterday I wrote about handling rejection while writing and today I wanted to touch upon handling rejection in the gaming industry. What kinds of rejection might a developer experience? The first rejections you will experience in the videogame industry will be getting hired! If you are like me you’ll probably get a few ‘nos’ before you find your first position. I’ve talked a lot in other articles about how to prepare yourself for the industry so I’ll assume that you’ve read those, mastered the skills you need, and are now working. The kinds of rejection you might experience while working vary on your position. As a programmer you might have…

  • Writing Resources


    A while back I did an interview for Diabolical Plots. One of the questions was: If you could give just one piece of advice to aspiring authors, what would it be? And I replied with: Learn to handle rejection. Unless you are some kind of a genetic abnormality with an absurd talent for writing (in which case I hate you) you will have more disappointments than successes. DonÔÇÖt let the disappointments sour you. Savor the successes. Now, I wholeheartedly agree with the advice I gave. Following through with it, is a different story. It can be difficult, especially now with email submissions where you might get a few rejections on…

  • Brent's Toys,  My Life

    I Built a Robot

    Well, okay, I didn’t really build this so much as snap together the prebuilt pieces. Was delighted to find the final piece in the mail after returning from vacation. Bonus points to those of you who might guess why I’m excited to add this figure to my Star Wars Collection. (p.s. Bonus Points may not be combined with any other offer or redeemed for anything of value.)

  • Website,  Writing Resources

    I Have a Confession to Make

    I have actually been on vacation the last two weeks. Probably some of you have noticed that my activity online was lowered. Perhaps you did not. The trip was basically to introduce the kids to some great grandmothers they had not met yet as well as some other family and friends. We abandoned Edmonton (and the mosquito horde that had claimed it) a couple weeks ago. Our first stay was in the Okanagan where we had a great time swimming and playing in the sand. And visiting. After that we drove to the coast where we stayed for several days. This was our youngest’s first glimpse of the ocean as…

  • The Lazy Designer

    Do Gamers want Dungeons?

    A few months ago I was asked if gamers — mainstream gamers — are skittish of dungeons, perhaps finding them too geeky or unappealing or whatever. This was a part of a series of emails I received from several of you shortly after Dragon Age 2 was released… most with the intent of trying to determine how an RPG might appeal to mainstream players while not sacrificing core qualities of what defines a fantasy setting inspired RPG. Firstly, any answer I give would be merely my opinion of what I think. A true answer, if one were actually going to throw money at a game, would be to try to…

  • The Lazy Designer

    Game Development Jobs – Design

    I realize that I often toss out game development terminology that is probably not familiar to everybody reading the blog. If you ever stumble across something you don’t understand toss me an e-mail or leave a comment. This post will (hopefully) shed some light on various game development job categories. There is little standardization across companies, in regards to positions so take these descriptions with a grain of salt. If there’s anybody reading this with experience at other development studios using different terminology please throw a comment on the blog with the labels you use for the various positions.┬á I’ll start with design, which, of course, I am most familiar…

  • The Lazy Designer

    The Product

    This post, “The Product” is somewhat tied into my earlier post about passion from a few days ago. And I’ve touched on the concept last year as well. I just wanted to dig into it a bit more here. I have always created content for others. It is what I do. I remember the second or third grade and producing a radio show with the ‘advanced’ kids (I was not actually one of the advanced kids but for some reason I got to do projects with them).┬á A few years later I was writing comic books and then building Dungeons and Dragons adventures. And then I started fiddling with programming…

  • The Lazy Designer

    Nobody can hear you scream

    …on a Monday. While working a day job I learned to avoid certain dead zones in regards to sending out email. Basically there are certain periods of time where people were too busy to respond to email. Monday mornings seemed the worst… People were back from a weekend and many seemed to purge their outstanding emails as quickly as they could without reading them (presumably to start the week with a clean slate.) By Monday afternoon most were caught up and important email had a chance of receiving a response. Another dead period was Friday afternoons. Everybody was ramping up for the weekend and nobody wanted to be handed a…

  • The Lazy Designer

    Building a Team? The First Ingredient

    As a design manager with BioWare I was involved in the interviewing and hiring and reviewing of many designers. There were certain qualities I was always looking for. Designers didn’t need to fulfill all the requirements but there was one aspect, the first ingredient, if you will, that for me was mandatory. It was not talent or genius. It was enthusiasm. Passion, if you will. An eagerness to build, to create and to share those creations with an audience. Passionate game developers build great games. Genius is needed… especially in specializations like graphic rendering or gamebot intelligence but passion sustains the developer during the long crunch hours and the many…