I turned 30 today. Good time for a progress update.
Since January 1st, I’ve had 18 days on which I completed at least one Bulwark task. That may seem grim (~27% of the total days in the year so far), but it’s already better than last semester. Some highlights of what I’ve gotten done:
This past week was my spring break, and I basically dropped everything else to make progress on this project. Most of my work was on audio production. I prioritized this because it’s the biggest single task left, and it’s difficult to divide into smaller chunks. Whereas it’s feasible that I’ll look at a script at 9pm after a long day to debug something, it’s less feasible that I'll muster the energy to spool up FMOD, Unity, and my enormous Reaper project, run my mic into the other room, and start fidgeting with audio clips. So, I tried to get the fidgeting out of the way while I had the time.
There was some programming, too. One problem I recently had to solve was that I needed an animation system (a rudimentary one: positions and rotations only) with the following features:
I finished making it yesterday. It was a bit of a puzzle, but it works now. Many of Bulwark’s scenes are long, so being able to scrub is essential if I don’t want to lose my mind while testing and polishing. (I played HEARtREAD so many times while debugging that I swear I could eventually play it subconsciously, with one hand on the keyboard and my eyes on a different task.)
On a different note, although I poured almost all my time into Bulwark over the past week, I also tried to recover some mental energy. Running and hitting the gym helped. I also finally finished Hyper Light Drifter, and I started a game I’ve long known would be right in my wheelhouse: Darkest Dungeon.
I was on board with the stress-management mechanic from the get-go, but it hit me hardest the first time this happened:
The experience of
was pretty powerful.
Hyper Light Drifter gets an A, too. That’s a gorgeous game, and those boss battles don’t mess around.
I was going to spend the rest of this post thinking aloud about what I want to do after Bulwark, but it’s probably better that I don’t start to mentally box myself in before I’m free. I expect that the first item on my agenda will be to chant “why did I do that? why did I do that?” and then collapse in a fit of laughter, but it’s blue sky afterward.