State of the Studio 2019

A look back at 2018 and the coming year.

State of the Studio 2019

Note: This post originally appeared on our Patreon.

Measured against previous years, the past year was an exceptionally quiet one for us: no big releases, no festival tour, no project announcement. We even scaled back our social media usage. So what did we do?

  1. Reached two million players! After this year’s Burly Men at Sea Switch release, Humble Bundle, and PS Plus, our player base now numbers in the millions (⍤). Making ends meet between releases is tough, so we’re feeling a huge amount of gratitude that this helps keep bills paid for another year while we finish our new projects.
  2. Worked, worked, worked on those projects. Patrons have been getting glimpses of work-in-progress throughout the past year, but we’ve otherwise continued to work in secret. After a couple of high-level design shifts on our primary project, we’ve been working to finish out a playable slice of the game. Our experimental second project progressed more slowly, as intended, and we’ve just finished roughing out a build of the first chapter.
  3. Experimented with productivity. We tested a few iterations of our work week last year, some of which we wrote about here for patrons. The latest iteration, which we’ll also write about soon, gave us a huge productivity boost toward the end of the year.
  4. Got involved locally. One thing we love about living in a smaller city is that the creativity community isn’t oversaturated, and there’s more crossover between disciplines. Over the past year, we participated in a startup event, taught a kids’ game dev camp, were interviewed for a local magazine feature, and became co-organizers of our local dev meetup.
  5. All the small things:

Outside of Brain&Brain hours, we went backpacking, took up mountain biking, were cast as True Detective extras, traveled to Comic-Con, and ran away to a cabin on a Wyoming farm. David finished one screenplay, started two more, and got fifteen unrelated stitches. Brooke started working on a graphic novel, read 38 books, and learned to weave.

What’s Next

We’re currently talking with a sound designer who we’ll be bringing on as we spend the next couple of months polishing up a playable demo of our main project—which means we’re nearing that stage where it’s not secret anymore. Our second project is nearing a similar point, so expect to hear more about both projects this year!

Another thing we’re already working on is a Patreon overhaul. We’ll follow up with details in another post, but meanwhile you may start to see some changes here.

Finally, this March marks the five-year anniversary of our first release! We may have something special for the Doggins fans out there, so keep an eye out.