Failure often receives a very negative connotation, especially in the game development realm. A failed game or the fear of failure often holds people back, preventing more amazing games from being made. It is a psychological war that every game developer has fought. Having my own share of failures from buggy releases to just sheer lack of plays, I understand. However, I am here to emphasize this. Don’t be afraid that your game will fail.
The best part about failure is that it is the biggest opportunity to learn. If you win and make a successful game, then you probably won’t learn much since it worked great. That’s probably the least of your concern anyway, hopefully being compensated well financially. A lot of times in game development it is easy to find out where you failed. Not many plays? Probably bad marketing. Bad reviews? Maybe the core loop isn’t fun. Player complaints? Not enough bug-testing.
Realizing these faults will help you improve and not make that same mistake again. I find myself that even though I consume a lot of game development knowledge, a lot goes in one ear and out the other. Experience is what has taught me the most. Although none of my games so far are largely successful, each is better than the last. I learn at least something each time. Failure is the catalyst to growth.
Now maybe you’re not so worried about the money, but the time lost spent making the game. I mean what’s the point of logging hundreds of hours into something that no one may play? Two things. One. What if people play? What if hundreds, thousands, or potentially millions play? Games can spread like wildfire if the right people find them. Two. If your game completely flops, you still have a game. Having a game under your belt is a great portfolio piece especially if you want to get into the games industry. Even if it’s another job, making a full game shows dedication. A failed game is not a complete failure by any means.
So I want you to walk away with this. Failure is common in life and in games. It is natural. Even with great talent comes episodes of failure. But when you fail, you also learn and you also grow. Though even if you fail again next time, you will be one step closer to success.