Should those who teach game design actually design games? If so, why? Answers on a postcard to…
I am seriously wondering about this – I don’t teach design per se (despite having been shunted out of the Film School into the Design department) but project management, game histories, game studies, and the basics of academic, intellectual and professional practice. So that’s OK. I am not a game designer, and would not want to swap my academic job (for all its faults) for that of a designer. Mortgage to pay, kids to feed etc.. And then there is the little matter of not having the prerequisite talent.
And yet I am still wondering. After the Arden project went the way of so many other academic projects, including one or two I was linked to at ICDC, it reminded me that academic departments are not in the main – and probably shouldn’t be – developers. At least unless they have the same funding and drivers (and the drivers are evil) so that it makes no difference.
So why do I feel the need to make scratchy little game prototypes? Does it help me professionally, or is it just a hobby that I should separate from the job, probably by using an untraceable pseudonym and not signing my posts with my real name?
I liked Shush. I really like Snowman. But it isn’t the job. Maybe practice should be left to those who really know what they are doing and I shouldn’t dabble, even on a hobby basis. I can’t even remember when I took my game links out of the sidebar, but there must have been a reason. Do I feel some strange need to disassociate myself from game-making to keep my credentials as cultural critic/academic?
Long term, long year.