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March 29, 2015


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My friend, I recall fondly that guy I knew ten years ago and the focus even then that you could show. I know how hard you worked, the sacrifices you made and what that did for your career and least from afar.

In a way I'm more proud of this post and the last one though, it shows an understanding of the bigger picture, one that doesn't preclude a focus on building great things, that does however consider the price we all pay to do so. Well done sir.

Miss yah buddy.

I imagine you were in a better position in your career - you had more clout - after your success on Splinter Cell, when heading to Far Cry 2. This would have allowed you to take a different approach to your work.

"Replacing yourself" doesn't sound like such a great strategy for someone just starting out in the industry. But then, as you discovered, "Make yourself irreplaceable" is unsustainable.

It seems the full maxim should be, "Make yourself irreplaceable, then replace yourself."

Is that a such bad thing to be irreplaceable? Is it a too difficult responsability to handle?
I guess noone can know what it is unless he lives it, so as noone can know what it feels to be the cookie cooker unless to be one as you explained us very well in this article (thanks for your correction and explanation by the way).

I have a question for devs like you: is being irreplaceable for the players the same thing as being irreplaceable for a company?
Hideo Kojima, for example, is irreplaceable for the MGS players but is not according to Konami.
So what really makes an irreplaceable person in a videogame company? His skills? His experience? His knowledge? His popularity from fans? All of this?

Well, to be honest I think irreplacability is not a state anyone can reach to a full extend, no matter how hard he or she works. In the end, it all comes down to a balancing act right?

What you'd want to do it you want to be passionate and unique enough to be seen as a reliable and hardly replacable person on the projects you are on. At the same time, sacrificing too much will lead you down a path where - within a few years - you will totally crash, which means you will start making mistakes or you will not be able to handle the constant pressure and high periods of stress anymore.

I agree with some (here and in other discussions) on the fact that a newcomer in the industry has to work harder and longer and put more effort and ideas behind the project IF he (or she) wants to become a valuable asset in the development process and prove that he/she can handle the stress and creative challenges in game development.

As you go on however and your reputation grows, I think it is important to establish - like I said - a balance between effort/time you put into the game and periods of conscious relaxing, meaning you give yourself breathing room to gather more energy and develop a higher stress threshold for the time you spend working on the project.

It's of no use to work 80-hours-a-week or more now just to crash down and have major psychological issues in 5 years and not being able to work on any big (or even small) project anymore.

Good post, thanks for the read.

Your previous post is how I came to find your blog. I think Marcus made a good edit: "Make yourself irreplaceable, then replace yourself." Well I'm gonna go grab me a mojito now thanks for that!

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