You are creative
You may think you’re not creative. Other people, yes. But not you.
Maybe you weren’t encouraged or supported enough when you tried before, or you haven’t tried yet.
But think of anything you can do, and I’m sure there are many things you can do. Say, writing. Putting one letter after another, grouping them into words, and then words into sentences. At some point in your life you didn’t know how to write, but then you learned. We can apply the same thinking to creativity in general, and making games in particular.
Everyone can learn. You can learn how to make games and it won’t take a fraction of what it took you to learn how to write, because you know what? You actually have made games before…
You have made a game before
I often hear people saying “I can’t make games because I have not made a game before” and the answer is “well, are you sure?” because that depends on what we mean by “making” and “game”.
Let’s think about your childhood for a moment. I bet that as a kid you have designed games already, in the sense that you have come up with playful ways to interpret the world around you. Everyday objects have become props in your imaginary stories, and you have taken on the roles of heroes or villains. Aren’t those games?
OK, let’s consider something more conventionally “game”, like a board game. I bet you have at least once changed the rules of a board game to make it work in your favour, or to make it easier for younger players (such as your younger siblings or cousins) to play. See, you have been a game designer before, so what you need to do is re-awaken that inner game designer.
You have good ideas
“But I have no good ideas” I hear you saying.
That’s possibly the most dangerous belief to hold, and we’ll tackle that one first.
The thing is, in order to have good ideas, you need to have many of them, and learn how not to write them off immediately. You know that voice inside you that judges your ideas as soon as they appear, saying “oh, that will not work” or “that’s a silly idea”. We need to stop listening to it, while we’re generating ideas.
One trick we’ll practice is coming up with lots of bad ideas, bad on purpose. That trick can help you quieten that judgy voice, and appreciate your ideas are not that bad after all.