Making games is very hard and srs work; many things can break, features can change, and decisions have to be made, but having a reliable and strong team behind you can make everything feel a lot less hard and srs.
At Nix Hydra, we have two different development teams. I currently work on team Handworld, working as a producer on a really exciting project everyone will know about soon. Working as a producer means that I handle logistical things like meetings, notes, our super valuable task board, and anything else the team really needs in that moment. BUT another equally important part of being a producer is making sure the team feels like… well, a team!
Having a group of strangers with very distinct personalities feel like a cohesive team is no easy feat; everyone on the team at the very least has to feel comfortable and safe sharing their opinions out loud with everyone else on the team. At the very base of everything, there absolutely has to be a foundation of trust and safety within the team.
At the end of every sprint, Team Handworld has a retrospective meeting where we can reflect together on how we think the sprint went and leave with action items to help us improve in the next sprint. This space is meant for our team and our team only, where we can all share our frustrations as well as our accomplishments, and what is said in the space is left in the space (unless we have all agreed that it is okay for what was said to leave the room). This seemingly basic rule for our retrospectives is very vital for everyone to feel like they don’t have to hold back their feelings and can share what’s on their mind.
Once trust is built over time and the team feels a little more comfortable with each other, laughter and fun is incredibly important. We laugh a lot in team Handworld when we’re working and it’s resulted in so many memes, jokes, songs, and just an overall pleasant working environment. <3
When I plan our retrospectives, I really try to make sure there’s time for laughter and decompression, especially after completing a sprint. It gives everyone a minute to relax, catch their breath, and be a little bit silly with each other. One of my favorite activities we did together was create a motivational poster for our team. It now hangs on our wall where we slap the hand in the middle whenever we feel like we need a little extra motivation. 💪
There’s so much that goes into creating a working game and some days we feel it a little more than others. Having a cohesive team that can laugh together and be open makes for better communication with each other, a more delightful work environment where everyone feels their work is valued, and an overall better game that has a little flair from every team member. <3
- Jasmine (✿◠‿◠)