I didn't say it can't be done, but projects people forward on their own should absolutely be something they find rewarding. ...Unless you prefer hating your job. There are a multitude of jobs I can perform (and have) that I will hate just as much as working on a loathsome idea. And most often, those pay out much better than making an RPGMaker game.
If you turn your passion into your job, this happens regardless. Once you start trying to make money or a living doing something you love, this is inevitable. What was once your passion now is an obligation.
Passion shows in a project. ...So does obsession and mental instability. Referencing a couple of works that were received very badly does not invalidate this advice.
There are more than a couple. Go looking for them. The vast majority of works in the creative field are not received well. The vast majority of works in a creative field or industry go unrecognized, become actively disliked, or have so many flaws that people simply don't enjoy them.
This is a fact. It can't be avoided.
Not all ideas are good ones. Most are uh... pretty bad, in fact.
Making something you don't like is how you become out-of-touch with your project. All of the best ideas come from a place of passion.
Incorrect. The best ideas come from a place of refinement and criticism. Passion is only good for morale and tends to fade over time. It is hard to keep passion for something over an extended period of time. So, relying on passion is a pretty big mistake as well. Relying on passion is how you get a large number of unfinished projects from people and how they start new ones. Chasing the Dragon. The passion Dragon.
Likewise, you need to decide what you're passionate about. Are you passionate about making something people will like, or passionate about having your idea out there and trying to get validated for having that idea?
Unfortunately, there isn't a participation trophy for creative works. It lands or it doesn't. Very few people are going to recognize you for any particular idea you had. They're only going to recognize you for the experience you've crafted.
Honestly, a person should be passionate about the act of game design rather than any particular idea within game design. This is how you complete games. If the act of designing the game fires you up, no matter what you're doing in it... you will complete games. If only the act of executing a single specific idea makes you passionate... You're not really a game designer. At that point, you're just engaging in game design to do the one thing about game design you like.
If your story is written badly, you change it. If your story isn't engaging, you change it. If your systems don't work or aren't fun, you refine or remove them. If the themes of your game aren't interesting, you change them.
You need to decide if the integrity of your "vision" is more important than the integrity of your project. If your message reaches no ears, what good is your message? If your art reaches no eyes, what good is that painting?
Along the way, others collaborate with their own thoughts and ideas. All should be considered to find the best expression of the creators intention. But the masses do not control the project. If they do, it becomes boring middle-of-the-road milquetoast that no one really likes. It's just tolerated.
The masses do control your project though. Is your game fun? If not, then it's a bad game. Masses control your project. Whether you like to admit it or not.
Just because you create something doesn't mean it's good. The act of creation doesn't make something automatically good or liked.
You need to compromise your vision for your audience. Do you know what the word compromise means? It means you concede some things and whomever you're conflicting with concedes some things to come to a middle ground.
If you don't compromise on your vision, you will not have a good game. Period. Full stop.
Many games were made to break into a market that wasn't being serviced. The creators understood this because THEY WERE HUNGRY FOR THESE GAMES.
The creators really didn't understand this. In most cases, they got fairly lucky. There are a great many people who do things exactly like this and never break into the market. They never find their niche.
This is tantamount to claiming that all you need to do to get rich is to buy lottery tickets.
The odds are against you.
What you NEED to be doing is playtesting constantly. Getting an audience to playtest your game. To tell you what is and isn't fun about the game you've been designing. Only your audience is going to tell you where you've failed and succeeded. Only your audience is going to tell you where the flaws in your game are so that you can fix them.
This, inevitably, compromises your vision. Which is going to be a good thing. Because it means if you refine your ideas and vision into something workable and enjoyed by your audience, then people get to enjoy your vision.
Well, people beyond yourself.
And a VERY good measure of a failing mechanic is when the creator is not enjoying it.
Creators, very rarely, enjoy the games they are creating. I know many of them say they do. But, after the "honeymoon period" wears off on the game, they can't really "test for fun" anymore. They're biased. They're in a mindset of DESIGNING the game rather than PLAYING the game. Or, if they're having a lot of fun playing their own game, they can't be trusted that it's fun for others as well.
The absolute measure of a failing mechanic is a creator believing it should exist because they find it fun. This is called "The Rule of Cool". It's in the game because the creator likes it and for no other reason.
This is a massive pitfall.
A true creator derives their happiness in game design from the effect it has on an audience. The joy it brings those who consume it. A narcissist only cares about creating their own happiness in the here and now and is unwilling to change anything to make others happy.
Again, design a game you WANT to play.
Please don't. You're free to start a project with this premise... But you should be designing a game others want to play.
This comes across like you are not respecting the position counter to yours. You are implying that people who work on the ideas they like aren't "mature".
You're free to work on any ideas you like. That's not the immature part. The immature part (if you had bothered to read it, rather than skim) is in not accepting that not all ideas are winners. In fact, most ideas aren't. They need refinement, reworking, and proper feedback.
That great idea you have? It's probably not great.
That great idea I have? Yeah, it's probably garbage too.
Operating under the illusion that your ideas are great and will make a great game is the epitome of immaturity.
Not even I operate under that illusion. I expect my own game to fail and fail hard. I expect to need to further refine whatever it is. I expect lots of criticism and people saying "It's not fun" or "it's written poorly" among other things. I expect to learn a lot to further refine my ideas and my content into something palatable to a public looking for fun.
You should be this way too.
Just the same, not every liked idea is a failure. Not every suggestion from the public is a winner.
Unfortunately, the reality is that most ideas are failures. Yep, even those from the public. But, the valuable information you need and want is your audience saying, "I don't like it". You will need to compromise your vision in order to get your audience to like it.
There isn't a way around it.
Wait... What? You quoted me, so I have to assume you read what I wrote. You just seem to be pretending it means something other than what I obviously said. I don't mean to disrespect you, but let me dumb this down to avoid confusion: Make the game you want to play and make it something others want to play, too.
The way you wrote it was the classic excuse used. The typical "Create a game you like, and others will like it too" action. This is not always true. It's actually false fairly often.
While it isn't mutually exclusive to create a game you enjoy as well as others enjoy... You're going to be compromising your initial vision quite a lot. You're going to be refining quite a lot. Because you want to please people other than yourself.
Do you include X feature because you enjoy it, or do you remove it because everyone else on the planet hates it? If you are designing a game you enjoy, then you include it. If you are designing a game others enjoy, you remove it.
Fairly simple concept.
Uh... WHAT? This is actually nonsense. You mention editors and whatnot. You might want to consider editing your post.
If you're creating a game you want to play and aren't considering your audience and what they like to play... Then you don't need to create your game. I'm sorry you lost the context in your rush to reply. That tends to happen when you skim rather than read.
But, I clarified it for you and re-added the context.
The rest of your post is basically a giant false dichotomy. There is no reason to think that a project you like will not be liked by others.
There is likewise no reason to think a project you like will ever be liked by others.
You need to set your objectives and follow them. If you don't, then you're simply engaging in the act of creation for the sake of creation. For yourself. Not for others.
What are your objectives with game design?
Create a game?
Have your game be liked by others?
Enjoy the process of game design?
You need to make your objectives with it clear. Creation for the sake of creation doesn't require anyone liking it except yourself. Creation for the sake of any other objective requires you bend and compromise and alter or discard visions that do not hit the objective you are seeking.
That's just life, man. You don't have to like it, but that's the way it operates.
There is every reason to think that a project you don't like will be something you have a hard time motivating yourself to finish, will fall flat to the audience you are trying to reach because you aren't part of that audience, and will be something that brings you irritation and frustration with little to no reward.
Probably depends on the sort of person you are. I mean, it's possible to do well without being motivated or passionate about a project just because of your skill.
If you can only do a good job because you want to do it and are motivated to do it, then it has less to do with your personal skill and more to do how you're feeling. This means consistency on your project is going to be all over the map. Feeling down when you were doing that one thing? It will suffer because you didn't care. Feeling good about this other thing? It might be done really well!
It creates an inconsistent finished product if you're relying overly heavy on mood and motivation rather than skill and mastery.
That's not to say that motivation and morale aren't important. They are. But, you don't seem to be talking about those things. You seem to be talking about "personal passion" rather than an overall sense of morale and motivation.
After all, you can derive morale and motivation from people just by making their drives into "doing a good job at what they do". Doesn't necessarily have to be because they enjoy the project. They can simply enjoy the work. Or, they can enjoy working with their technical mastery. Etcetera.
But, that's neither here nor there. It has less to do with passion and more to do being a mature adult. We all go to work and do jobs we don't want to do. Some people decide to be lazy while others knuckle down and do the things they don't want to do to the best of their abilities because they want whatever it is they're doing to "be the best". Same is true of housework or other chores. You can be lazy and do the bare minimum because you are waiting for morale and motivation and passion... Or, you can have a little bit of self-respect and pride in the jobs you're doing in order to do them the best you can regardless of how you feel about doing them.
I feel like you fundamentally misunderstand what is meant by "Make the game you want to play."
I'm using it in the same context everyone on the forums does. Namely, only make games you have a passion for making. Ignore the glaring fact that you're designing a game for your audience and not for yourself. You'll need to make a game others enjoy, not yourself.
You start with an idea you like and you use an audience to refine and mold that idea into something usable and workable and entertaining.
If you're only creating a project because you have passion for that project... you aren't going to get anywhere. You will accomplish nothing. You will start a second or third or tenth project while doing nothing except banking on that passion and "creating a game I want to play".
Your concern should be "Does the audience enjoy this?". If they don't, you design it so they do... and you find your passion and fun in making something for others rather than yourself. You can still get your message out. But, you'll need to refine it. You'll need to alter it. You'll need it to adhere to what your audience wants if you want anyone to experience it.
That's the nature of the beast. Like it or not. You're beholden to your audience.
But, if I must simplify this further (and I suspect I need to).
There's a meme that goes around in D&D. It applies to DM's. "Just write a book!". There are DM's out there who only care about their own vision. They railroad players into the story they wrote, using the locations they planned for, and the interactions they want you to have. They aren't interested in if you're having fun or not. They're interested in forcing you to say you're having fun doing their thing. To which, any experienced DM just says, "You're not a DM, just write a book!"
It is your job as a dev to figure out how to make your ideas palatable and enjoyable to an audience. It is also your job as a dev to realize when your ideas are just bad and should be removed for the sake of the audience and their fun.