I met a an old friend the other day. We never been close friends or so, but we’re of the same age and we shared the same friends, so we hanged around in the same gang when we were younger. Anyway, I haven’t met him for a couple of years so we started talking a little, updating each other on our lives today. After a while he asks:
– Do you still work with that football game Hattrick?
– Yep, you bet.
– So, when will you grow up?
Grow up? I’m married since some years, I’m a father of two, have a dog and I drive a station wagon (the ultimate evidence!). He just got his first child and as far as I know he doesn’t drive a station wagon. Just so you have the facts straight. But as I work with games, I’m the one who hasn’t grown up.
It was of course supposed to be a joke. It’s just that I’ve heard that joke a couple of times too many at this point, it’s like an old scratched record. And even though it’s always said in a witty tone, you know it’s not just a joke. Some people really thinks working with Hattrick, or rather with games or communities in general, isn’t really a “real job”. As these people can’t relate at all to this business, they just go for “it’s not a real job”. And games are mostly done for children or at least young people, so those who create games haven’t grown up either. In short, if you work with games you’re mentally a child, or a teenager at the very best. Ever heard the same thing being said about a children book writer?
It’s not that I don’t understand where these reactions comes from (envy, not enough knowledg/interest about Hattrick or the gaming industry in general, relatively young form of culture, yadayada), it’s just that I find the “joke” so utterly boring. And old. But wait, perhaps that’s why I don’t get it, because I’m too young to understand the brilliance of this joke?
What these people never will understand is that this is more than just job. It’s been a dream for me since I started playing football manager games on my C-64 back in the days. It’s engaging, but also demanding at the same time. Something you can’t really turn off, it’s always on (for good and for bad). You know the whole game community of 800k users is counting and depending on you and your actions, and that it is very encouraging.
I think you Hattrick players reading this understand what I mean, but these people will just never ever be able to relate how much this game and community means to you – our customers. They will never understand that our users get really disappointed (and frustrated and angry) if Hattrick happens to be down, when something is delayed or when someone lose a match or whatever. These people will just claim that it’s just a game, it’s not for real. Pfft.
Sure, some reactions are over the top – I think so as well. But it also shows how much people care for the game – that it’s actually more than just a game. The same thing goes for me working with Hattrick, it’s more than just my job. It’s my hobby, my favorite game, a place where I have many friends – a place I love. And also my job. That’s how grown-up this job is.
So, what did I reply to him then?
Short and to the point. Because even though to joke is a bore and this is a real job and everything, I hope I will always keep a bit of youth in me.
I completeley agree with you! You are doing a very good job.
Since 2004 Hattrick is a part of my life. And I love it! If I will have children, I hope I can introduce them to the game. So keep up the good work! 🙂
best line EVER!
“Grow up? I’m married since some years, I’m a father of two, have a dog…”
It’s also a weird point of view considering that it’s generally deemed a good thing to be young at heart (swedish: ha barnasinnet kvar).
I say never grow up, your children will probably love you even more as a result.
well everyone works for Hattrick in his / here way to keep hattrick flow Forever:P
I think the users find the community more important than the game itself. But I might be wrong.. 🙂
Great post, really 🙂
Just a question. From today we’re less than 800.000: are you worried?
Thanks. No, I’m not worried in that sense. Of course I would be happier if numbers increased, but then again we have a better stay rate among senior users now than what we’ve ever had. It’s the quality of the signups which is the problem currently, and that’s also what new intro project is for. Secondly, that numbers fall now are also related to us being successful, we’ve always been aware of that there will be a drop eventually. There is no eternal increase…
And there will be no eternal decrease either, of that I’m sure! 😀
I’ve got a similar question being asked all the time: are you still playing that game? What division are you in?
I can also show my wedding ring, two kids, turtle and an SUV instead of the station wagon but it doesn’t work, so I am not calling it a game anymore, it is a society game just like Poker, Chess, Backgammon, Colonists of Catan, Risk and Monopoly.
I absolutely play, allthough not aiming as high as once did. I’m currently in third div in Sweden, missed promotion by one (1!!!) goal last season.
Bravo! I am a developer too. I don’t think the average person understands that developing games is often more demanding than your average business application. The average person buys into the idea that game developers are simply real-world drop outs. Nothing could be further from the truth. The game industry has most of the best talent the industry has to offer. And they work very, very hard. Keep up the good work! 🙂
It’s THE most grown up thing to do. Grown up in the meaning of “being aware of what one’s needs are” to be happy.
All the poor people working in Jobs they hate just to survive instead of living a dream whilst woking one’s ass off…
What makes more sense for your life?
Isn’t it that?
Thanks for living your dream!