Video game development is hard, and can be especially tough on smaller studios whose work competes in the minds of players with the expectations created by games developed by much larger teams.
Big deals with major publishers bring exposure, but that too creates pressure which can have a negative impact on a game's development. Tequila Works came to know this all too well during the development of Rime.
For four years the Spanish studio has worked on the delightful adventure out tomorrow (26 May), and we can tell you it has been worth the wait, but there were times when the team doubted it would ever be released.
"All projects have [their] highs and lows. It's part of the equation when dealing with art, creativity and business," Rime's director Raúl Rubio told IBTimes UK. "You are aware of this before starting."
Rubio went on to describe the game's development as "intense", adding that at the team's lowest point they were "100% sure the game would not see the light [of day]".
"You question yourself, lose objectivity. You wonder why you started this project or decided to make games at all... but fortunately we chose this road.
"Being indie means that you have creative independence. You can't blame anyone for your undoing, so you better be creative and think out of the box and act as a team to do your best or it's the end for the project, the studio, the people you are responsible of, their families.
The pressure, as Rubio admits, does get to the team. "You cannot sleep at night, dealing with potential worst case scenarios, how you are going to pay [people's] salaries, how you can keep the machine running.
"If you think this is stressful, it is. But it's our duty so the team can focus on creating. I mean, one project can be perfect one day and the next your head of technology is poached by a bigger company and suddenly you have no replacement and all hell gets loose. That's our day-to-day life."
Our full interview with Rubio will be published tomorrow, when Rime is set to be released on PS4, Xbox One and PC. A Nintendo Switch version will be released later this year.