First, Steve Jobs created the User Interface by thinking with portals, looked at his desk and realized it would be an excellent metaphor for the art of computing, i.e., the knowledge of what a computer is and knowing how to work with it.
He imagined a day when computers would be used as bicycles, learning it once and never forgetting. And so he built the modern desktop computer.
Second, Shigeru Myamoto created the game by looking at the world and realizing that all we do in life is fool ourselves and each other constantly, attempting to dodge bullets, dodge enemies, dodge friends. That we are always on the defense, hence the turtles.
He imagined a world where one day everyone would be free of this separation anxiety.
Third, Steve Ballmer yelled DEVELOPERS, DEVELOPERS, DEVELOPERS. And he was right.
We who saw these events with our eyes, and kept hoping for the dream to become real, never saw ourselves in the mirror. We are constantly giving excuses for not doing what we really want: code, eat pizza, and play with friends.
We sign contracts, we always tie ourselves in the future, for things we don’t really want. We get girlfriends who don’t understand what we do but tell us our goals.
We tell them we want a Mass Effect t-shirt and they don’t know what we are talking about. We show them Portal 2 but they can’t even play a first person shooter.
Science is beautiful. Not randomness.
If you don’t own a console with an HDMI television and a kick-ass HDMI monitor, you’ll never see the graphics of Red Dead Redemption, Mass Effect 2 or Dragon Age 2 the way they were meant to be seen. You’ll be annoyed at pixels, at aliasing, because you don’t know how it is done. Just because you don’t know how it is done doesn’t mean you can’t learn, in time.
Why is the world enraptured with Mortal Kombat? The game is a great improvement and successfully captures the struggle that the previous games exhibit.
This weekend, PSN was down. And it might still be, I did not check. I imagine millions of players either hating Sony, hating themselves, going out, or coming to a sad realization.
The world sees gamers and game developers as fools fiddling with controls, as if what what we did was magic.
Suddenly, the metaphors of Baldur’s Gate 2 and the Dragon Age series make sense.
The common people will always attempt to detain, control, and arrest those they see as greater than them.
But we know the truth: we are just kids having fun, designing our own rules, learning about the world and transposing that knowledge to the games we build, in order to further inspire people.
I’ll end this with was printed in the boxes of Spectrum games all those years ago:
PS: This post is part of #AltDevBlogADay, a group of game developers that share their experiences and want to write better and more often. You can find this post here.