Dream no small dreams for they have no power to move the hearts of men.
– Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
When I was younger that was the motto I lived by. Now that I am a bit older I am finding that there is definitely a place for small dreams. I’d say that small dreams are essential to my survival.
I saw the October Challenge 2011 page late last month and immediately start planning something awesome. I was going to use October to finally learn Flixel, put together something awesome, and submit my first app to the Apple app store. After a week I was still learning the ropes in Flixel, making random art assets for a new game that I hadn’t even finish the design on, and had yet to renew my Apple developer account.
It was time to take a step back and evaluate if maybe I had been dreaming just a bit too big for a 1 month project that was being done in between doing my full time job and raising 3 children under the age of 3. I dug down into my unfinished prototypes directory and found a match game that I had started building to get a free PlayBook from RIM. It was a simple match game that I had designed to help my son learn the alphabet (and distract him when he launched into a terrible-twos induced fit). It had fallen by the wayside because I had decided that I wanted to make an app for Empire Avenue using their API instead.
I converted Monster match Alphabet to an Android project so that it could be brought to market as fast as possible. Then I spent some time working with the art assets and made sure that it played fairly well both on small screens and on tablet sizes.
Is it original? Nope.
Is it epic? No.
Will most people taking part in the October Ludum Dare want to play it? No.
Is it done? YES.
Will my son enjoy playing it? YES.
Is it available on the Android market? YES! Yes indeed it is.
Since there is still some time left in the month I think I might actually try to continue making some changes and testing with the Android version. If I can I’ll also submit it to the PlayBook and Apple app markets, too.
Overall I have to say that this October dare taught me a valuable lesson: sometimes it is better to achieve a small dream than to have an unfulfilled big dream.