GDC 12: Pursuit Of Indie Happiness

This talk explored indie working habits and tips on reducing stress while increasing efficiency.  Aaron Isacksen from Indie Fund shared his personal strategies for reducing his working hours which actually resulted in more income.  He contributed this philosophy to 3 primary things:


  • Competency – getting better at what you do
  • Autonomy – choosing your own path
  • Relatedness – connection with others/fans


Personally, Aaron struggled with overworking and urged indies to avoid overworking to the detriment of their health.  Being a successful indie developer is about sustainability.  Reducing your hours can increase your efficiency and happiness.  Here are some of Aaron’s tips:


  • Limit hours – most indies worked 40 hours or more in Aaron’s survey
  • Outsource tasks – especially the things you hate to do
  • Cut features – if it doesn’t work or is a hassle to implement – cut it!
  • Realistic schedules with obtainable goals
  • Don’t check email at night – it can ruin your sleep

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