Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Jesse Lindsley

Name: Jesse Lindsley
Twitter: @jesselindsley
Gender: Male
Nationality: White
Birth date: 28/02/1974
Title: CEO
Company: Thrust
Some games that you have worked on: 

Cash Darts
Words & Cards
Dungeon Crawlers
Zombie Smokeout
Button Men

1-What did motivate you to become a game developer? 

I wanted to make a living doing what I love to do.

2-What does inspire you creatively? 

As a game agency, I am inspired to solve problems/challenges by thinking differently, which for us is about using game science (games, game mechanics, game environments, game tools etc.) to creatively accomplish our goals.

3-If you had unlimited resources to make any game you wanted, what kind of game would that be? 

I would spend my time and money to continue to develop "Boomblastica", which was a passion side/summer project that we haven't touched in about four years, due to being busy with client projects.

4-What was the biggest challenge of your career? In which game? How did you overcome it? 

For a massive multiplayer mobile game, we selected a back-end-as-a-service as part of the architecture for a project with a fairly tight timeline. About a month before launch, during load testing, the BaaS solution was acquired and subsequently sunset. Our game never launched as it didn't  scale and it was slated for a large tv audience. We were devastated. After dusting ourselves off, we overcame this setback by using the framework/engine that we had created to successfully launch another game in a similar genre. 

5-What do you usually do for raising the possibility of success in your projects? 

We find partners to bolster areas where we require support, including distribution, brand awareness, content, contacts, budget, etc.

6-What is the most helpful piece of constructive criticism you ever received? 

You have to love what you are doing. i.e. if you weren't getting paid to do game development, you would be doing it on the side.

7-What are the advantages/downsides to working in games?

The downside is that it's a hit business and there are very few winners in the space...i.e. 10% are making 90% of the money. 

On the other hand, the barrier to entry (of launching a game) has come down, which is very exciting and empowering. However it's still quite hard for an indie to make it and the percentages that do are embarrassingly low.

8-What is your best advice to a beginning game developer?

Do it on the side...i.e. not your day job. That is, until you have a stable, unconstrained and properly capitalized environment to give your all to this extremely competitive, hit business. Game development, like most creative outlets, is a subjective venture, so take advice with a grain of salt, meaning you should attempt to get as much advice as you can and then triangulate that shit ;)

9-Which skills are the most important for a game developer in your field/position?

It takes top notch talent in your discipline, combined with intangibles like being able to problem solve and communicate and you have to have drive and dedication.

10-If I want to become a great dev in your field, what games should I play, what books should I read, and whose work should I follow?

If I knew that I would probably be farther along on this journey...It's easy to say that you should be spending 10% of your time reading and playing the latest and greatest, as the space is moving so fast. I just know for me, finding the time to do this is quite difficult and my reading and playing to-do-list is growing every day. I do however read all of the headlines...

11-What changes do you want to see in the game industry?

Surely, the mobile platform for game developers is broken and not sustainable. I would think that giving up 30% to platform providers, who have driven down the accepted price for games to $.99 or free-to-play, leaves lots of room for improvement. 

Bonus: Tell us a funny story from your adventures in game development.

Nine years ago, which was two years into starting our game dev studio, I was at my first GDC and planning to attend a session on Starting a Game Development Studio. Unfortunately, right before the session started I got an invite to a meeting that I needed to take. So, after my meeting I rushed over to meet up with one of our team members, who had attended the session, and I asked them to tell me what they learned. And they preceded to tell me that the moral of the story was "to NOT do it". Well, looking back, I'm glad that I have lots of funny stories, because if I didn't, I would probably cry! ;)

No comments :

Post a Comment