Mar 11

Designer Weekly March11

Skipped a week last week, lots of new work to get stuck into as new Lead Designer at Nine Tail Studios working on a damned exciting project :)


“When brilliant minds, attitudes, and talents come together to form one goal – expect masterpiece”

- John Ruskin

This quote encapsulates well the attitude I feel towards teams developing games; It’s that combined energy and individual histories and talents that create something.


Never Break Flow – The secret of game UI

Gamasutra to thank, although the article was missing screenshots it did make me want to go check it out. Of course, other than making me want to go play Driver:SF, it does boil down to Good UI and flow from moment to moment is critical, which I guess we all kinda knew.


“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”

- Anne Frank


The 15 Golden rules of free to play

I like free to play as a concept/model. But few titles have caused me to actually pry the the cc out and extend/enhance/evolve play. Those that did I played much more of – there’s a niche for everyone. I liked this piece and in particular the soundbite:

“”We give away virtual worlds, which cost a fortune [to make], to sell $2 hats which cost us an afternoon”

- Nicholas Lovell

As a continuation of biz and design, this tale of development is more of a traditional ship and forget model. And still good to read.


“In order to succeed, you must know what you are doing, like what you are doing, and believe in what you are doing.”

- Will Rogers


30 weeks of development

“Game dev is often an emotional rollercoaster”. Sure is. Here’s a tale of development in 30 weeks and it’s an easy read with a happy ending. The video capture every week is a nice idea…hmm


” ‘I could do that’ – person who didn’t do that”

- @patriciaxh


Why great designs always evolve

I’ve linked this non-vg piece up because a) BBC Future does interesting articles from time to time so look around when you’re there, but b) because the evolution in games is something we see in our industry all the time. With the indie scene, GameJam-mania and kickstarted projects all exploring blue skies whilst standing on the shoulders of known games and mechanics. Some are tweaks, some are leaps.


“Microtransactions are evil! Unlike the WoW subscription model of paying for the privilege of grinding in a game you already bought once.” – @rclarke


Pixar’s 22 rules for storytelling

Everyone and his dog has probably seen this before but one of them rang a bell with what I’m doing on Project Orange so it’s getting reposted.


“It’s INTENSE and AWESOME at the same time – it’s INTENSOME!!!… yeah, I’ll work on it….”


Player death is a Game Design Failure

Now I’m no great fan of trial and error gameplay, so agree on that point, but I spent a good couple of weeks dissecting game death, it’s impact, methods, etc. for game X so whilst I understand this short piece (rant?) it should really be titled ‘some games REALLY should do death better’. – as it would seem most of the comments have done a better job in describing the issue than the author IMHO*. Worth reading for the comments.


Until next time…


image by jurvetson

* IMHO – If you’re a professional and it’s of a topic you’ve expert knowledge on, is IMHO just being sarcastic or ironic?