I felt it was time to record a video to share my thoughts on the Godot Forums. How I got here and my vision for building a great community.
I start with some personal background to give some context on how I ended up taking over the forum.
Bellow is the transcript from the video.
So this video is long overdue. So for you that don’t know me, I started my career in games for over 20 years ago. I always had a dream of working in the games industry as a young kid, the games industry or the visual effects industry. And eventually I got to do that at a pretty young age. At some point in my career, my dreams evolved into creating my own company and getting my own creativity out there. So I think this was like over 10 years ago, I formed my own company, which is MADE by Lundahl today, with a completely different vision that I had back then. But I spent a few more years dealing with visual effects and doing designs and graphics for games. At some point I felt that it was time for me to move on to something else. I had at that point been in the industry for a very long time. So I actually left the games industry and pretty much told myself if I’m going to go back to the games industry then I’ll do it but on my own terms with my own projects.
So I just backtracked a little bit more. Over time I also picked up engineering skills and when I made a switch to jump off the games industry I actually moved it over to IT and started working more with engineering since my interest and my vision for where I wanted to take my innovation next headed more towards technologies and digital services and products. Which is a beautiful thing. I could combine everything into one more complete package in terms of a product. Or instead of putting myself into a corner. But don’t get me wrong, I still love the artistic side and the visual design aspects of the things that I do. It’s part of who I am. It’s still in my DNA to love that stuff.
Time passes and I’ve done a few products, created a few services, helped other companies with their needs when it comes to engineering, graphics, whatever it might be. And I thought it was time for me to start my own games project. So I started doing just that, just designing my stuff. And I eventually teamed up with a really close friend of mine. And we’re still working on the game. But the point I was trying to make is that in that process I was doing a lot of research into what game engine to pick up. And I landed on an open source game engine called the Godot engine. It’s a fantastic little engine. It’s an open source engine. And it’s not as bloated as you would see in an engine like Unreal or Unity. You can, like heading over to their website, you download like a zip file or like a binary [*Executable] and then you just boot it up and you’re in, you start developing, it’s fantastic. And I fell in love with that engine right away. And it has been a joy to work with so far. I mean, it’s not perfect, but it’s perfect for what I’m trying to do.
And I recognize that in a lot of other people as well using the engine. They had kind of like the same feel that I have picking up the engine, which is fantastic. That engine has created a fantastic community around it. And this is basically the reason why I’m making this video and why I’m saying it’s long overdue.
Two months ago I acquired one of the biggest, if not the biggest, community for the Godot game engine. It’s the forum named GodotForums. You can go and check it out at GodotForums.org. So it’s been a ride so far. It’s a lot of work for sure, loving it so far. So I took it over because there was an opportunity to take it over. Former owner, I won’t get into too much of the details. There you can just, you know, Google it and you’ll find the details for sure. So I went into the acquisition of the forum with a pretty solid plan. I wasn’t planning on taking over the forum per se. It was kind of like an opportunity that I saw like, okay, either this forum is going to go away or someone can pick it up. And I thought about it for a few days and thought like, okay, there’s a lot of potential here.
Like a lot of potential in making this something fantastic. I mean, the forum was already like really good. I mean, the people there are really warm and welcoming and really helpful to each other. It’s really humbling to see. But I thought that the forum was kind of like a little bit static. It was like, it’s, you know, it’s been around for a long time. It’s been around for I think over seven years now. I mean, I could be wrong about it, but it’s been around for quite a bit. And it hasn’t, I mean, it has changed the platform a few times. But the forum, like in itself, haven’t really evolved that much. It haven’t really kept up with times. So it’s still like, like, like a regular forum. You sign up and then you just go there and communicate with people. But I saw an opportunity to expand on that. So I thought a lot about it. And then I reached out and we had a talk and yeah, I ended up getting the forum and that’s really great.
It’s challenging, but it’s really, really great. So I’m spending a lot of time now just building on the forum, a lot of like back end stuff, like for example, one of the features that we just released was the features section on top of the page where you can see like three feature projects. And it was, it’s not only those feature projects, right? We had to also build like the entire like voting system or how would the projects actually end up there? So but there’s a lot of those kind of things that I’m working on now and it’s really fun. And I really hope that the community will appreciate it. So it’s a lot of cool stuff that’s like currently being actively worked on and I can’t wait to show people it. It’s going to be great. It’s going to be fantastic.
So putting the forum aside for a little bit, let’s talk about like why I’m doing it. Like what’s the idea behind it? So I went in with a very clear vision of what I want to accomplish with the forum. And one of the things is to expand on the community, to expand on the forum, get more users in, right? But the most important aspect of it all is that I want to grow the Godot community as a whole. And I’m not, I’m not talking only about the forum, I’m talking about like the entire user base for Godot, right? I want to, I want, I want to create a platform where I can show the potential for people considering using the engine. And not only considering using the engine, but also for people having a platform. If you’re new to the engine, for example, you can find a community where you can find help. If you are really, are already deep into development, you have a platform where you can show off your project. And once you release the project, that platform will also help you be more successful with selling your game.
So the vision is to expand on the community. That’s like the grand vision. But then the mission of the forum itself is to help people thrive in the engine and with their projects, whatever that might mean. So getting help is one thing, but also getting exposure is another thing. And also maybe getting some more expert help in some areas where you might be struggling. Because the most obvious areas are the development side of things, maybe some graphics are things. But then we have like the other side of, of becoming successful, which is like the business side of things. How do you market a game, especially in an, in an environment where there’s a lot of games getting released. So there’s that.
And running the forum so far has been fantastic in that sense, because I can really feel people really appreciating having a platform where they can get the help that they need. But not only that, it’s, it’s so humbling to see the, the range of people that we have on the forum, like we have like complete beginners, right, that never touch game development before coming in. And we have students as well, that might be a little bit familiar with development, but you know, want to make a project. And then, and then we have like the, the, the more senior people as well, hanging around. I mean, it’s such a fantastic blend of people. It’s really humbling. It’s really, it’s really, it’s really nice to see. And yeah.
So why is this long overdue? Well, me acquiring the forum already happened a couple of months ago. So it was down for a bit and then I got it. And then we had like a migration period to bring it up again. And we got it up and then I got swamped digging into working on it. And as you might know, I also have a couple of other roles outside of the forum, running my own company as well as being a CTO for, for a third one. So it’s a lot, but it’s a lot of fun. I’m growing a lot. I’m learning a lot and not only running the forum, but also from the people in the forum. It’s so, it’s, it’s magic. It’s fantastic to see.
So yeah, I just wanted to make a quick video, just share some personal thoughts on it. And I thought it, that it was time to get something out there on a more personal level. So yeah, hope you enjoyed it and I’ll see you on the forums. All right. Bye.