Pity the poor designer. In fact, pity anyone in the business of creating things as they will inevitably be lost in the swirling maze of Time.
At the moment I am just finishing a game that will not be released, or even announced, this year. Probably not next year either (though it may squeeze in right at the end). This is not terribly unusual, in fact it’s probably about average. Occasionally things go a bit quicker, such as with Dwarf King’s Hold. Sometimes they’re slower.
It’s the same for anything creative be it art, comics, movies or whatever. The lag between completing it and the end user seeing it promoted or sold can be vast. And this is confusing. Let’s say you see me at a convention and ask me about the newly released Martian Invasion game. It’s a mass combat miniatures saucerfest of a beast with hundreds of units. “Does an X-3 saucer really have a move of 17, or is that a typo? Is a Mk III Bovine Immolator really the best weapon for close up work? Why?” For a moment I look blank. I’m lost in Time.
Since I handed over the final manuscript 18 months ago I’ve been working on a board game about alligators and chocolate mice, a World War I RPG (with 14 supplements), three pitches for Facebook games aimed at small children (and one for an audience of ex-nuns), a Film Noir skirmish game in 71mm scale, a phone app proposal for the Bolivian government, and currently I’m putting the final touches to a board game on the adventures of a famous cartoon lamprey. Among other things.
What this all means is that when you see a designer looking a little glassy eyed and confused at a question, it’s not (always) because they’ve been in the bar all night playing Drang Nach Osten, it’s because they’ve been immersed in a myriad different worlds since the one that’s just been announced and they are searching the memory banks for any hint of where they are.
Like I said: Lost in Time.