2014 Review

“I have a sensation that 2014 is going to be full of creative energy and positive relationships, and I am excited and curious and wiggling with anticipation for whatever surprises it may have in store for me.”

That’s how I ended my 2013 review, and I could not have been more spot-on. This year has been an incredible time of growth for me, and so many things have occurred!



This was the year I started drawing for other people again. Many of you may recall my doodle blog from last year, to show the world that I was still drawing, just in private (I eventually stopped because I ran out of scans. I have plenty more doodles, just no time to scan them). This year, though, I grew inspired once again to draw for others. I don’t think my drawings will ever get a finished quality to them. I get too excited to get them out there, to make people smile with them. They will always be scrawly and hastily churned, but I’ve made a lot of people smile with them this year, and that brings me great joy. And so, this post will be peppered with some of my favorite out-of-context drawings from this year. Enjoy!




Slow Down, Bull

Last year I alluded to an exciting and unusual project, and this year I was able to announce it! Slow Down, Bull has been incredible. I learned SO much working on it – leading a team, pitching the game, and winning the trust of my company to do crazy and experimental things for us (like dev-streaming). The regulars in our stream all summer were fantastic folks, and I am ever grateful for their support. As for the game, it’s all wrapped up and just waiting on launch details. It will be so surreal, but we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it. As I’ve reiterated many times this past year, I am SO grateful to Insomniac for letting me do this crazy thing.

Airplanes LisaAndAdriel2 forRichard



Game Jams

I resolved to do more game jams last year, and oh how I jammed! It’s no game a week, or even game a month, but it was a lot for me and I’m grateful for each one I did. Releasing 5 games in one year is nothing to sneeze at! Well, I guess 6 games if you count Sunset Overdrive ^_^ Prop Hell gave me my first chance to experiment with procedural generation, and right in the midst of the Information Theory class I was taking with Mike Acton. Such timeliness! Rosa Neurosa was a fantastic opportunity to work once again with my friend, Will, and do something silly and weird and fun with an improv-style game (that actually made decent use of html5). Afterlife Dance Party gave me a chance to animate again, after all these years. Verticorpse let me learn a new tool, revisit my FPS roots, get a game out of my head that had been there for years, get involved in a new community, and create a gift for a much-beloved friend and colleague. And One Does Not Simply Walk into More Doors gave me the opportunity to jam with one of my closest friends who has also been a big design inspiration to me this year.

gunshow2 AdrielAndRami2 TeddyAndRami

Dem Indies…they’re a Bad Influence

At the beginning of 2014 I resolved to meet and interact with more indies. At the end of 2014 I find myself entrenched in the scene, a little bewildered, like a stray out-of-place AAA beast that’s been taken in and cared for by kindly hearts. Making twitter friends was the start of it, then Glitch City basically adopted me. E3 let me turn twitter friends into real friends. PAX, Indiecade, GDC Next…little storms of love and kindness and me getting dragged around to event after event and being kept up way past my AAA bedtime. Visits abroad and blossoming friendships. I love you people! I want to be around you always! The internet can be a shitty place, but it can also be an amazing tool to allow relationships to grow that never would have been possible otherwise.

AdrielAndRami teddy rawr mew


2014 has been incredible. So many positive things have happened, so many friendships created and solidified, and so many things that I’ve learned about myself and so much growth. Things have happened so quickly, I feel like I’m snowballing down a hill. Or perhaps on a centrifuge, gaining speed, about to fly off into orbit.

Unfortunately, this has left me feeling a little bit down as 2014 winds to a close. It is growing pains, is all. Things are changing, and they will be amazing changes, I know it. But change hurts always. Do butterflies hurt when they push out of the chrysalis?  Is it painful for the cicada to shed its shell? Maybe so, I guess there’s no way of knowing. But I’m leaving a little shell of myself behind as I push into 2015, and that comes with some pain and some sadness.

I was worried that I would remember 2014 as being a sad year because of how I felt at the end, but writing this post has given me perspective, and has made me smile. Things will be okay. I will bounce once and take flight from the rebound!

lisabadger2 RamiAndLisa2 RamiLisaFight

Thank you to everyone who made this year wonderful. Every mentor who taught me, every friend who played with me, everyone who reassured me, who comforted me, who thanked me for helping them, and who shaped me a little along the way by being part of my life.

2015…I have no idea what’s going to go down, but it’s going to be an adventure, I’m sure of it!