View Full Version : Motivation

03 March 2003, 07:17 PM
How do you keep people motivated on collaborative projects? I feel like I'm the only one working on my computer game. Given, the programmers won't have much to do until there's art to put in the engine, but I'm the only one doing art, and my art sucks.

I'm really beginning to get excited about this game. We're using the Wintermute engine, and now it's just a matter of getting enough art done to start testing the engine out and actually making the game. Now all of a sudden, my team has disappeared now that we're about to actually MAKE something real.

What do you do?

03 March 2003, 03:06 PM
So, i don't really know what should been done about motivation.
This is something i would be interested in too.

What i learnt is:

productivity = skill * motivation

03 March 2003, 05:41 PM
I suppose that it helps a great deal if your project is fun. The minute that it starts to seem like work, people are going to begin to loose interest. The problem with collab work is that it's usually something people do on their spare time after working their regular 40+ hours a week.

So, who would want to put in another 20 or more hours a week on more work? Collab projects are hobbies. Hobbies are supposed to be fun.

Also, if it's your project or idea and you have other people working with you, it's really up to you to keep others interested. You have to work almost twice as hard on this compared to all the other tasks you are already doing. You have to show your appreciation for other's work. You have to compliment or otherwise reward hard work and dedication. You have to respect other's areas of expertise and admit that you may not know it all. You have to maintain order without becoming a "boss"It's all a very difficult juggling process and if you're not motivated to see the project through to the end, the people working with you are going to notice when you drop a ball. :hmm:

If you can keep it all together, the rewards at the end are worth the time and effort that everyone put into the project.


03 March 2003, 06:07 PM
very well put, kirt :arteest:

03 March 2003, 12:07 AM
Hmmm, good points. I'm naturally a serious person who actually likes working for the satisfaction of doing something I find valuable. So I don't know how to make it "fun" since the work itself is rewarding to me.

Definitely something to think on.

You have to show your appreciation for other's work.

Difficult if there isn't any done to show appreciation for. *Wry grin*

You have to compliment or otherwise reward hard work and dedication.

Compliment, sure... any ideas for other rewards? Maybe seeing your work posted for visitors to see?

You have to respect other's areas of expertise and admit that you may not know it all.

Heh. This I definitely do! I'm no programmer and not much of an artist. (One of those awful "I know what I like" people. *g*)

You have to maintain order without becoming a "boss"

Very, very difficult in the best cases, I think. I don't know how I'm doing on this.

It's all a very difficult juggling process and if you're not motivated to see the project through to the end, the people working with you are going to notice when you drop a ball. :hmm:

I was unable to be online as much as I would have liked over the summer. I was still working, but everyone thought the project was dead because we had web hosting troubles... so the team disappeared. Now I'm trying to reform and they're still stuck on the past, I guess.

Thanks, this was definitely helpful.

03 March 2003, 03:53 AM
one of the most important things needed to keep a project together, any kind of project not just a short film, is communication you have always gotta be telling people you are still there and this is what you want. with some people i am trying to collab with now its like days between communications.

03 March 2003, 04:46 AM
I've come across an interesting website on my travels with a very interesting post. Check it out:

03 March 2003, 12:25 AM
Interesting thread, thanks.

For me, I really do need to have at least three projects on the go, and focus on each of them with short bursts of energy. I find that a change is often as good as a rest, and I get more done in the long run.

It really is a great idea to make an inspirational clip. I've been planning something like that, but need to do the art for it, and that's the difficult part.

Baby steps - Definitely!!! When I first started, I had no clue how huge the project was. Then I realized there was so much work to be done and there were pieces of it done from various different places in the game that didn't add up to anything. So I split the project up into a lot of smaller pieces. Unfortunately, it's now a much more linear story, and I don't know how to change that... but at least it's more likely to be done in the first place.

Part of the problem is that we don't have a good concept artist, as well. I'm really not that good, but I'm definite about what I want the game to look like. Better dust off the pencil, I used to be a bit better than I am now, just because I was drawing more regularly.

03 March 2003, 12:49 AM
Hey, brassfire, I wouldn't mind helping with your project, if you are really desperate...

03 March 2003, 01:06 AM
Not desperate so much as impatient. *Grin*

03 March 2003, 01:44 AM
I worked on a project once. It was game though. I assembled over twenty people to help. Eventually I ran out of free time and I should have written more (I hate having to write Design Docs) and the project failed. However one good thing came out of it. I realize I had more of a passion for art than games.

03 March 2003, 05:19 AM
I agree with Kirt.

This is my third project I've directed for a company now and I can say that keeping people motivated is by far the hardest part. The first and foremost thing to remember is that, No one, And I mean no one, will ever be as interested in your project as much as you. Think of it like visiting one of your friends that just had a new baby. Although the baby is cute and beautiful. It's just different when it's your own. You might like the baby, but it's just different when it smiles at you for the first time. (Please excuse the refference, my wife and I recently had our first child.) and that's the feeling you get when you finish your first project. The people working on it will be proud, but you'll feel like you've just given birth.(Minus the goo.)

so the only advice I can give other than the great advice already given, is lead by example. You have to work all the time. Every spare minute you have needs to go into your project. And when people see how much your putting into it, it gets them excited, if you seem like your slacking off, then why should anyone be willing to give up there free time.

Hope this helps.


03 March 2003, 08:22 AM
well from my experience there's a problem inherent with working with artists. It sounds wierd because I'm an artist, but they're the hardest people I've ever worked with. The fact is that whether it's a hobby or not, completing it is going to take hard work. And if artists arent' having a fun a lot of times they shut down because they don't want to do something. (eg they dont' like drawing vehicles, they only like drawing characters.) IT's the reason in my opinion that artist fueled businesses like video games, and comic books especially have such problems with deadlines.

Personally I think it's an unacceptable attitude. To be honest you should find fun in your work, but that shouldn't be your motivation for finishing. People every day do stuff they don't want to because they've commited to it, and it should be the same for them. Find people that are self-starters or you'll regret it.



03 March 2003, 05:08 PM
You should only hire people that draw what you need. It's a hastle making people draw (or do) what they don't do well or don't like doing. I can't tell a programmer to draw a skyscraper. If I did they'd probably bust a gut.

03 March 2003, 02:29 AM
Wait a second are you trying to say that artists are lazy. cause I dont agree with that. some people are and some people are not. it doesnt have anything to do with being an artist.

03 March 2003, 07:36 AM
Yes, I am. And again, only from my experience, artists are less willing to do things they don't want to than most professionals. In my book that makes them lazy.

03 March 2003, 02:55 PM
lazy, or particular?

REmember, why would someone do something what they didn't want to do, since no one is getting paid to work on projects down here...

03 March 2003, 07:02 PM
One thing I learned about getting volunteers on a project is to not put out the call until you are really ready for them, and only ask for what you need. People get bored and drop out if they have to wait to get involved. I haven't done a game, but I did try a short animation. The next time I'm not going to ask for help until the script, storyboards, and animatic are done. I found that most of the volunteers I got were modellers and animators, and they droppped out before there was anything for them to do.

Just my $.02 worth.

Cheers, Graham

03 March 2003, 07:59 PM
Sounds like, good, sound advice there, Mr. Clark...

03 March 2003, 05:49 AM
Originally posted by unLevel
lazy, or particular?

REmember, why would someone do something what they didn't want to do, since no one is getting paid to work on projects down here...

I understand your point, but mine is.. why would any reasonable adult enter into a project that is , whether paying or not, going to be hard work - and expect every step of it to be fun or cater to their wishes?

03 March 2003, 01:12 AM
Yeah, there's a lot of ick work to do even in a free project. They aren't getting paid, but they have agreed to work.

I think the trick there is to try to find people who enjoy satisfaction more than fun.

Like, I make music, but the tweaking phase is really annoying. It's good, but not really good, and you have to hear the same thing over and over for hours... ugh. But the feeling when it's DONE is just an amazing high, and you feel good about it even years later.

It's probably the same with art, right?

03 March 2003, 01:23 AM
I'll let you know in a few years...

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