As we have worked on our game, there has a been a vague feeling that we were not making progress. We weren’t doing anything new. JD had done a lot of work restructuring the game code. I’ve written pages of design doc and made decisions about necessary features for the game. While King Kong has created beautiful concept art. But everything still vaguely seemed like retread.
And that’s when we realized, despite everything about the game being new and different, the one thing that was still the same was the game’s current art. Everything may have been different, but it all felt the same.
See, since we had developed a prototype of the game first, it was only natural to reuse the art assets while we developed, which we would later sub in with completed art. But somehow, subconsciously this was binding us into feeling like we weren’t making progress.
Quickly we drew some programmer-art style rocks and cacti and toss them into the game. The game was now much better! It was clearly new work, and our previous weeks of work hadn’t been for naught. Instead of retreading ground we were clearly in new territory.
Progress is truly in the eye of the beholder.