Oct 12

Designer Weekly Oct12

Bit of a bumper issue here as it covers the last 2 weeks. Cold and flu season is here (yay?) but also a long weekend, so last week’s post didn’t get, er, posted. On with the show then, there’s some good reading to be done.

This week’s completely coincidental theme; Player interaction and information.


How game tutorials can strangle player creativity

This brings to mind the recent PopCap description of PvZ, and I paraphrase; ‘every level is a tutorial, it works so well’. Looking at Borderlands 2 for a moment, there is an interesting evolution of the levels where unprompted exploration is limited at the start but becomes a huge part of the game post Sanctuary find. Down the rabbit hole… Anyone else think Rakkman was far too easy?


How hard should it be to get to the fun?



Molyneux on Curiosity, technology of today and the best fucking salad in the world. And more!


“A good game designer should study human beings continuously, Knowing videogames isn’t enough.”

- Kojima


Jesse Snyder does a Q&A post Halo 4 gold. Obv. lots about Halo in there, but some great words of wisdom on design, IP and process.


“Good things come to those that wait, but only the things left by those that hustle.”

- Chris Gorman


A nice state of the union piece.



“If you don’t build your dream someone will hire you to help build theirs.”

- @CGaspur


With the gripe of comparing weapons in B2 still fresh in my head I bring you part one of a UI piece.


“Don’t learn the tricks of the trade – learn the trade.”



Making your players suffer, and maybe throw up



“It is through cooperation, rather than conflict, that your greatest successes will be derived.”

Ralph Charell



21 top developers on why they make games


“The more minimal the design of a game the more crucial design choices become.”

– Rudolf Kremers


A Theory of Fun, 10 years later

A discussion of what I would change about it today, and all the thoughts it led me to.




And some other stuff:


Icons, images, sounds, music, textures, lots and lots.


“Sing your song. Dance your dance. Tell your tale.” – Frank McCourt


A quick guide to student game production

Nothing revelatory to most in development, but a good read if you’re new to all this.


When Free to Play doesn’t work


“We’re on track to break even in about seven years,” Stewart says. “If sales never slow down.”


Image by Johann Coetzer