So as the people watching me know, one project that I've been working on for a long time and frequently bring mention to in my journal updates is Super Dream Party, a crossover fanfiction idea for a platformer where characters from the Super Mario Bros., Sonic the Hedgehog, Mega Man, Adventure Time and My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic series end up on an original world filled with OCs. I have been working on this project for nearly five years now, though when it first started it went under Super Dream Brigade, and went under a big revamp in 2015. While I did work on other things since it started, after the revamp it was pretty much all I worked on, and when it was time for me to work on the story mode proper (gameplay stages included), everything started moving really slowly, almost screeching to a halt; I did not release a single deviation in 2017 apart from the short Street Fighter V x Fighting EX Layer concept, and over half a year later I have still yet to release anything or make sufficient progress with what I was working on. I've finally decided that it would ultimate be better for me to put Super Dream Party on indefinite hiatus, possibly just ditching the idea entirely if I can't motivated to finish it in the future, and of course I will explain in detail.
To put it bluntly, the story mode and I wanted to do for it was essentially what killed this project; simply put, I was far too ambitious with what I wanted to do. For each of the five heroes (technically 6, but Finn and Jake were always together), there was about 31 stages and 10 bosses, and this isn't including the final story part; this alone is pretty long for a platformer. Between each of those stages and bosses were essentially cutscenes filled with dialogue and descriptions of what was happening. Apart from progressing the plot, I also wanted characters to frequently have interactions with each other, particularly between the good guys which ranged from regular exposition about what needed to be done, to lighthearted banter, and to meaningful conversations that contributed to some character development of some sort. Not including the playable characters, this was about 68 other characters (main villains and some NPCs not included) that each had their own character arc; that's a heck of a lot of characters, and because a good chunk of them were OCs there also had to be some dialogue to establish their character. Of course I wanted this because part of what makes a great story is interactions between characters, especially in a crossover game since it's basically half the appeal. Because this was set in an original world that has it's own species, societies, rules (particularly regarding magic), countries etc. there was also a lot of exposition required, both within the story and out of it in separate deviations as supplementary material. The cultures and societies were largely based on real-world nations (similar to Sonic Unleashed), and an unfortunate side-effect of that is the potential to portray stereotypes or real-world issues that are vastly inappropriate. The reality is that I don't have enough creativity to develop completely original worlds and cultures (though I hope to improve on this someday), and quite frankly I didn't have the motivation to do so either. Between the plot that was overly long for how simple it really was, the amount of interaction between way too many characters and the world-building and exposition, there was too much to cram in and write up, and it was all taking far too long.
This was something I was really passionate about and wanted to see through to the end, if for nothing else than for closure; to say that I saw something through to the end. At the end of the day however, I just wasn't enjoying this anymore, and I don't think the end result if I did finish it would be truly worth it. It might seem really weird for anyone reading this that I would become so invested in this, but it's just how I felt. It wasn't a super-easy decision to make, since I spent so much time on it; but spending who knows how much more time on it wouldn't have really helped. Right now I'm also not in a good position to be giving myself any more stress; between being back at university, looking for a new job, and not doing things like exercise or seeing friends to improve my mental health, I already have a lot on my plate, and continuing this would only continue to drag it all out further. What's crazier about all this is that for years I had ambitions to make Super Dream Party into a series that would escalate in the number of characters from more franchises, and how much of Arcobaln (and beyond that) would be explored; considering I can't even get the first part done, all that was definitely a pipe dream.
It's a bit depressing that it all went on for so long when I could have been doing anything else only to just have it all end like this, but I believe this is ultimately a good decision. I have had so many other ideas that I wanted to work on once I was done with Super Dream Party, many of which are not nearly as overly big, and now that I have this off of my chest I feel a sense of freedom. I already know what I want to get started on right now, but it's not gonna come out any time soon. I'm still very much interested in writing a story with multiple parts and having characters regularly interact with each other, but in this case they'll be in much more manageable chunks and it will be a lot simpler. To give a clue on what it's about, it's essentially a concept that made me want to start Super Dream Party in the first place, but taken in a different direction; I've had this idea for years now as well, and it's probably going to seem weird, but since SDP might not be coming back this could be though of as a replacement.
Once I've got all the planning for this new project sorted out, I'll get to working on it as soon as I can. Thank you to everyone who stuck by me despite my inactivity, and I promise I'll start posting more often and show off more ideas. Until then, take care everyone ♥
Listening to: Luna 2018 ft. Odyssey (Dream Mode)
Reading: Romance fanfics
Playing: Sonic Mania