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HOW STRAWBERRIES AND JET FUEL MADE ME INTO AN INDIE GAME DEVELOPER
Published 2 years ago
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The Sisyphus Punishment turning into my greatest achievement (Yet).
A warning first. The story contains horror elements - for me at least. I still shiver. Read with caution.
The first thing you should know about this story is that I am a veterinary graduate but somehow my business life was always about computers. Last time I was working on a salary, I was working for a company which acted as a business jet rental corporation and jet fuel broker. (Don't even ask how a Vet finds himself in such a position.) I was supposed to be the tech-guy and I was, but before I knew I also was managing flights and selling jet fuel to planes on other side of the planet.
As you may have guessed, the company managers had given me the opportunity to move forward and I chewed through the challenges thrown at me. It was a hectic, but a well paying job and I was doing everything very well (except sleeping). At the office at 8.am, back at home at 10 pm... And every other night we had a flight, which meant I had to wake up once in every two hours every night - once for every leg of the flight. I didn't complain; it was a high-prestige, high-paying, high octane job - literally.
The second thing you should know is that I used to love strawberries. I was fond of them; I could eat them all day, all week, all year, and still ask for more. In my eyes they were the holiest of all fruits, and they were the greatest blessing this world has ever received. When I took one in my mouth it was a very deep and complicated and intimate relationship. I didn't eat them. I DEVOURED them, with hopes that one day I will have devoured enough strawberry essence to become one myself. My love for strawberries could only be compared to my love for old games like Thief 1 and XCOM Terror From the Deep.
About three years into this business, while we were watching a movie with my girlfriend in a lovely night, a phone came in from boss. Bad news: he told the plane we rented for a very important businesman broke down just before the flight and I had to find an alternate within a couple hours...
About an hour into it, management of this "crisis" was taking every bit of life energy I had: I was fighting, begging, threatening various people over the phone. My girlfriend was feeding me coffee, along with some other stuff I didn't even bother to look at what they were. (She was also trying to dodge the anger and profanity I let out between phone calls.)
Finally, after some hours, I hanged up the last of the phone calls, not even feeling the pride of having handled an impossible mission all by myself. I was barely consciouss. I looked at my side to see my gf asleep on the couch. But my right hand was inside a plastic food bag. It seemed like I was eating something during all these stressfull long-distance corporate swordplay. I tried to focus my tired mind, and noticed that there were little green leafy leftovers in the bag... with small red fruit pieces attached to them. My fingers were all holy red.
 
 
Oh my god... I WAS eating strawberries, and I didn't even notice! My girlfriend must have brought them for me sometime during the phone fights and... and.. I didn't even perceive that I was eating them!
I screamed. Oh the horror, I screamed and my gf jumped out of her sleep...
That night I decided to quit my job. Next four months I prepared for the coming storm and gathered money, and then quit. Together with some old friends we gave game development a shot but that band disbanded. Recently, however, some of us gathered back and delivered another game, this time an action title called Taptap Kidnap, made with Unity3D, which is why I am here.
I am here at the cost of the bodies of tens of strawberries I slaughtered that night, though. The worst thing is... Strawberries never felt the same for me. I lost the love forever that night. It was taken from me, permenantly. I still enjoy them, but "enjoy" is such a bleak, weak word compared to my earlier affection... In compensation, though, I noticed how distant I was with my girlfriend when I was working at that company. Now, when I'm coding and fighting the good fight, I geniunly feel a refreshment in our relationship. When you find your place in the world, your heart seems to find it's rythm as well. And my affection for strawberries... were really a small sacrifice to learn this truth.
May you forever enjoy your strawberries;
FractalVoidGames/Windwalker.
 
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