In lieu of a postmortem, I’m going to try an experiment.
You’ve played and rated a bunch of other games by this point. You’re probably curious how you’re going to do in the final tallies, even if your game didn’t turn out to be what you wanted. You like making and playing games, and you like competition — you’re here, after all. Well, here’s a bonus competition. Rate your own game, post your scores, and see how close you get to the final ratings you receive.
Try to forget everything you know about your game. It’s completely impossible (given you’re the only one who knows all of it), but do it anyway. Now, go back and play it. If you’ve done any work on it since, play the original. Give it the same chance you gave any other game you played. Ignore any insider information you might have, put aside your biases, and write down your scores in that comment field down there. You know the one.
Be honest. I’m usually very sparing with 5’s, to save them for really spectacular entries… and I’m judging myself on the same scale I used for everyone else. Keep the same criteria you’ve used in the past in mind when you’re rating your own game. Remember, this isn’t your game anymore, you’ve never seen it before today. If you cheat and write all 5’s, you’re only cheating yourself.
Just as important as all the other skills needed to create a game is the ability to judge your own work with a critical eye, and be able to picture how others are going to see it. Playtesting, as often as possible, is awesome for this (we did one last weekend), but you can’t playtest all the time, and getting stuck on a bad idea can kill you. It’s too easy to come up with an idea that doesn’t work but convince yourself that it’s fun, and ignore what others have to say. If you always try to put aside your own preconceptions when looking at your own work, it’s easier to stay focused on creating a good game. This experiment will help us all see how capable we are of doing this.
If enough people are interested and post their scores, I’ll throw them all in a spreadsheet with the actual scores once they’re out, and figure out how close everyone came to their real scores. If this idea sounds interesting to you, rate your game, and like this post so more people see it.
I’ll go first, but I’ll save it for a comment.