Monday Meeting: A Reflection

For the last Monday Meeting of this year, we've been looking back at the year that has gone past and talked about what we've done, what should have been done, and what could have been done better. While we've never been truly satisfied with the amount of output for the game, 2019 has been especially poor. To be completely honest, none of us can believe we haven't managed to release the ghost ship yet, and we're far from happy with the time it's taken.

A lot of things have happened during this year, both around work and for us personally, but it's hard to make any excuses. At some points it kind of felt like we had started all over again, losing the ability to plan and design properly the way we did before, making the Ghost Ship a trial and error mess where we had to remake and redesign a lot of stuff before it got to the point where it is now.

While we're incredibly happy with the dungeon now (I think we all agree it features two of our favourite bosses), we're absolutely nowhere close to happy with the amount of time it's taken us to get to this point. Our mistake with the way we initially designed the dungeon (randomly making rooms instead of making a complete whitebox version to run through featuring all of the elements), is partly to blame, partly indecision and poor boss ideas that didn't turn out as well as we'd thought. In the end, we should have had a clearer vision of the dungeon from start to finish before we started making all of the assets for it.

I know a lot of you are getting impatient with us, and trust us, we understand and we see your comments; we know. We feel you. But, as much as I'm disappointed with the time it has taken for the dungeon to reach this point, I'm also happy we've taken the time to do it the right way instead of releasing something that isn't up to our standards. Yes, the game could have been completed by now; it could probably have been completed years ago. But it wouldn't have been the same game, and it wouldn't have been something I could have stood behind a 100%. To quote Shigeru Miyamoto, one of the people who inspired me to become a dev in the first place: "A delayed game is eventually good, a rushed game is forever bad." While this isn't completely true in these days where a lot of games are digital releases that do a lot of post release patches (in no doubt we will do those too; if nothing else to add bonus content), it wouldn't feel right to release something bad when we all feel it's so far from the vision we had.

However, thanks to all of you who have supported us (thank you so much), we still have the funds to keep on working, and to keep making it better. We're determined to make Grindea the best game it can be: we love this game and we don't want to release it before it's something we can honestly say we're proud of. Obviously there will always be things that could be done better, and by saying this I don't mean we'll continue working indefinitely on improving things in a never ending cycle; I'm just saying that we want each part of the game to reach a certain treshold before we'll call it done. The Ghost Ship has taken an unfortunate amount of time to reach that point, and for next year, we're gonna do our very best to make sure not to fall into the same traps we did with this. Every mistake is a learning experience, and while the process of making this dungeon hasn't been the best, we've thankfully learned a lot from it.

So, as the year is starting to draw to an end, I want to take this opportunity to thank all of you who still support us, whether it's financially through buying the game or mentally by your encouraging and lovely comments. Thank you for being with us on this journey, and know that no matter what, even if it may take a while, we're not gonna let you down. I'm sorry it's been taking this long.

One more dungeon to go after this. Let's do it!
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  1. You guys seems to be thinking a lot about it. Please don't feel bad about the pacing in 2019, it's gone, you can't do anything. The most important thing right now is the present, and you seems to be excited to move on and do the last dungeon. There is no good about thinking too much about the past and the future c:

    Also, you certainly know that, but a lot of people who complain about the pacing doesn't have a idea about what is develop an indie game.

    Wish you guys the best.

  2. To me, I was honestly surprised that the game kept being updated years after years. When I first bought the game, I was aware of it being early access, and somewhere expected that maybe it will never be finished. I really enjoyed the game so far, and look forward to the updates till the full release. Wish you the best, and happy holidays.

  3. I think one of the most impressive things is you guys' own patience and consistency that you've been at it for years.

    Purely judging by the devblog archives, you've kept a very steady rhythm.

    Having bought the game years ago, in between now and then, I've had multiple projects of my own start and eventually die out of lack of motivation. From that perspective it is mind boggling to think of the achievement that this project is.

    I have huge respect for you, not least for the talent and polished result, but also for the patience.

    Keep it up to the end. I hope all the best for you and hope you'll have all the motivation for next year too!

  4. I'm just so happy that the game is still in development. I hadn't heard anything in a long long time. but I will continue to support the game. Take as long as necessary. Thank you so much for not abandoning the project.

  5. This game scratches the itch for a Secret of Mana so well. It manages to encapsulate that amazing feeling the original gave me so many years ago while being its own amazing experience. I hope you continue to keep up the great work making this game the best it can be. Happy holidays!

  6. I bought this game years ago and have played it so much. Each time a new patch comes out I'm always playing because I find what you've created to be so incredibly enjoyable. Please don't worry about the time this is taking, the game drips with love and your dedication shows through in every moment.