As a kid, I loved actualizing my ideas into art, projects and inventions, always creating something from my imagination. My desire to evolve video games led me to art school. In 1999 I was recruited by Electronic Arts’ EA Academy program as an artist while studying computer animation and digital design spending two summers interning at the Redwood Shores HQ studio and subsequently (upon graduation) accepted an offer for a regular position. EA was my reluctant launchpad into a career in games but within a few years I worked to migrate from game art to game design. After a decade-long career in games and a series of promotions and defections, I left the mainstream because, well, I was no longer making games, I was managing development teams that were making games. My goal with Fresh Aces is to craft games myself; ones that evolve the artform beyond the tried and true mechanics, themes and conventions, focusing on unique gameplay and interfaces.
As Steve Jobs says in this video, passion is fundamental to fuel the perseverance necessary to succeed in a worthwhile endeavor. The daily drudgery of life, pitfalls and self-hating dream killers willing to come at you are certainly aplenty.
Real passion has a wonderful side affect. It can make an unexpected success out of even a minor work, sometimes resulting in a near-masterpiece.
Edmund McMillen made Binding of Isaac as a side project, because he LOVES to make games and needed a minor 3 month project to fill in a gap between major ones.
Well BOI is a really good game. It has received a metacritic rating of 84.8 and sold around half a million copies in just 4 months despite being available exclusively on Steam. Also, not bad for an indie side project filled with what some consider to be questionable religious content.
I bought it on release day and introduced it to my wife. After a few weeks of vigilant play she declared it to be her favorite game of all time! She's not your typical gamer but she’s played enough to know the good from the bad and through me has been exposed to many other indie games. She loves the roguelike qualities, the theme and especially the expansion content of BOI. Is it a masterpiece? To fans like my wife, it is!
Just goes to show that even something intended to be a minor work can be great if the passion is there.