Popular Game Design Books

30+ [Hand Picked] Popular Books On Game Design

Discover the list of some best books written on Game Design by popular award winning authors. These book on topic Game Design highly popular among the readers worldwide.

4.9/5

Blood, Sweat, and Pixels: The Triumphant, Turbulent Stories Behind How Video Games Are Made by Jason Schreier

Developing video games—hero's journey or fool's errand? The creative and technical logistics that go into building today's hottest games can be more harrowing and complex than the games themselves, often seeming like an endless maze or a bottomless abyss. In Blood, Sweat, and Pixels, Jason Schreier takes readers on a fascinating odyssey behind the scenes of video game deve Developing video games—hero's journey or fool's errand? The creative and technical logistics that go into building today's hottest games can be more harrowing and complex than the games themselves, often seeming like an endless maze or a bottomless abyss. In Blood, Sweat, and Pixels, Jason Schreier takes readers on a fascinating odyssey behind the scenes of video game development, where the creator may be a team of 600 overworked underdogs or a solitary geek genius. Exploring the artistic challenges, technical impossibilities, marketplace demands, and Donkey Kong-sized monkey wrenches thrown into the works by corporate, Blood, Sweat, and Pixels reveals how bringing any game to completion is more than Sisyphean—it's nothing short of miraculous.Taking some of the most popular, bestselling recent games, Schreier immerses readers in the hellfire of the development process, whether it's RPG studio Bioware's challenge to beat an impossible schedule and overcome countless technical nightmares to build Dragon Age: Inquisition; indie developer Eric Barone's single-handed efforts to grow country-life RPG Stardew Valley from one man's vision into a multi-million-dollar franchise; or Bungie spinning out from their corporate overlords at Microsoft to create Destiny, a brand new universe that they hoped would become as iconic as Star Wars and Lord of the Rings—even as it nearly ripped their studio apart. Documenting the round-the-clock crunches, buggy-eyed burnout, and last-minute saves, Blood, Sweat, and Pixels is a journey through development hell—and ultimately a tribute to the dedicated diehards and unsung heroes who scale mountains of obstacles in their quests to create the best games imaginable.

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5/5

How to Draw Fantasy Art and RPG Maps: Step by Step Cartography for Gamers and Fans by Jared Blando

The power of creation is at your fingertips!Orcs prepare for battle against high Elves, Dwarves retreat to the mountains and men march to the sea to reclaim crumbling fortresses. Fortunes are decided. Kingdoms are lost. Entire worlds are created. This book will teach you to bring your fictional realm to life with simple step-by-step instructions on how to draw authentic fa The power of creation is at your fingertips!Orcs prepare for battle against high Elves, Dwarves retreat to the mountains and men march to the sea to reclaim crumbling fortresses. Fortunes are decided. Kingdoms are lost. Entire worlds are created. This book will teach you to bring your fictional realm to life with simple step-by-step instructions on how to draw authentic fantasy maps. Set the stage for adventure by illustrating domains, castles and battle lines, mountains, forests and sea monsters! Learn to create completely unique and fully functional RPG maps time and time again on which your world can unfold.All the skills necessary to create awe-inspiring maps are covered! Landscapes. Add depth, balance and plausibility with rocky coastlines, towering mountains, dark forests and rolling plains. Iconography. Mark important places--towns and cities, fortresses and bridges--with symbolic iconography for easy-to-understand maps. Typography. Learn how to place readable text and the basics of decorative script. Bonus instruction teaches you to create fonts for Orcs, Elves, Vikings and dragons. Heraldry and shield design. Depict cultural and political boundaries with shields and colors. Advanced cartography. Includes how to draw landmarks, country boundaries and political lines. Build roads to connect merchants and troops, troll cairns and dragon lairs. And complete your maps with creative backgrounds, elaborate compasses and thematic legends. 30+ step-by-step demonstrations illustrate how to construct an entire fantasy world map from start to finish--both digitally and by hand!

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3.7/5

The Proteus Paradox: How Online Games and Virtual Worlds Change Us—And How They Don't by Nick Yee

Proteus, the mythical sea god who could alter his appearance at will, embodies one of the promises of online games: the ability to reinvent oneself. Yet inhabitants of virtual worlds rarely achieve this liberty, game researcher Nick Yee contends. Though online games evoke freedom and escapism, Yee shows that virtual spaces perpetuate social norms and stereotypes from the o Proteus, the mythical sea god who could alter his appearance at will, embodies one of the promises of online games: the ability to reinvent oneself. Yet inhabitants of virtual worlds rarely achieve this liberty, game researcher Nick Yee contends. Though online games evoke freedom and escapism, Yee shows that virtual spaces perpetuate social norms and stereotypes from the offline world, transform play into labor, and inspire racial scapegoating and superstitious thinking. And the change that does occur is often out of our control and effected by unparalleled—but rarely recognized—tools for controlling what players think and how they behave.  Using player surveys, psychological experiments, and in-game data, Yee breaks down misconceptions about who plays fantasy games and the extent to which the online and offline worlds operate separately. With a wealth of entertaining and provocative examples, he explains what virtual worlds are about and why they matter, not only for entertainment but also for business and education. He uses gaming as a lens through which to examine the pressing question of what it means to be human in a digital world. His thought-provoking book is an invitation to think more deeply about virtual worlds and what they reveal to us about ourselves.  

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3.5/5

Game Engine Black Book, Wolfenstein 3D by Fabien Sanglard

How was Wolfenstein 3D made and what were the secrets of its speed? How did id Software manage to turn a machine designed to display static images for word processing and spreadsheet applications into the best gaming platform in the world, capable of running games at seventy frames per seconds? If you have ever asked yourself these questions, Game Engine Black Book is for How was Wolfenstein 3D made and what were the secrets of its speed? How did id Software manage to turn a machine designed to display static images for word processing and spreadsheet applications into the best gaming platform in the world, capable of running games at seventy frames per seconds? If you have ever asked yourself these questions, Game Engine Black Book is for you.

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3.1/5

ZZT by Anna Anthropy

In 1991, long before Epic Games was putting out blockbusters like Unreal, Infinity Blade, and Gears of War, Tim Sweeney released a strange little MS-DOS shareware game called ZZT. The simplicity of its text graphics masked the complexity of its World Editor: players could use ZZT to design their own games. This feature was a revelation to thousands of gamers, including Anna In 1991, long before Epic Games was putting out blockbusters like Unreal, Infinity Blade, and Gears of War, Tim Sweeney released a strange little MS-DOS shareware game called ZZT. The simplicity of its text graphics masked the complexity of its World Editor: players could use ZZT to design their own games. This feature was a revelation to thousands of gamers, including Anna Anthropy, author of Rise of the Videogame Zinesters. ZZT is an exploration of a submerged continent, a personal history of the shareware movement, ascii art, messy teen identity struggle, cybersex, transition, outsider art, the thousand deaths of Barney the Dinosaur, and what happens when a ten-year-old gets her hands on a programming language she can understand. It’s been said that the first Velvet Underground album sold only a few thousand copies, but that everyone who heard it formed a band. Well not everyone has played ZZT, but everyone who played it became a game designer.

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3.1/5

The Invisible Game: Mindset of a Winning Team by Zoltan Andrejkovics

Competitive gaming and eSports among youths became a major theme these days. For a professional gamer, having the best strategy or belonging to a team with the best skills are sometimes not enough for success. Real life tournaments are tougher than we can imagine. The Invisible Game covers the necessary mental development of eSport players. The book helps to prepare the pla Competitive gaming and eSports among youths became a major theme these days. For a professional gamer, having the best strategy or belonging to a team with the best skills are sometimes not enough for success. Real life tournaments are tougher than we can imagine. The Invisible Game covers the necessary mental development of eSport players. The book helps to prepare the players' minds for the challenges, both on the map and in real life. We overestimate the power of our daily thoughts, and we forget the potential of our inner wisdom. This book guides you with honest life experiences of an eSport team manager on a journey to find the mental balance for peak performance.

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3.7/5

Boardgames That Tell Stories by Ignacy Trzewiczek

Boardgames That Tell Stories, one of the most popular board game blogs at Boardgamegeek.com goes to paper! Now 35 best of these stories are gathered together, edited and put into one amazng book. Book that tell an extraordinary story about game design. Learn about terryfying presentation of International Gamers Nominee Pret-a-Porter. Learn how much time was needed to design Boardgames That Tell Stories, one of the most popular board game blogs at Boardgamegeek.com goes to paper! Now 35 best of these stories are gathered together, edited and put into one amazng book. Book that tell an extraordinary story about game design. Learn about terryfying presentation of International Gamers Nominee Pret-a-Porter. Learn how much time was needed to design Golden Geek Best Card Game nominee 51st State. Learn how kids helped designind Dice Tower nominee Robinson Crusoe... Read stories behind scenes. Learn about designing one of the most popular boardgames. You find them all in this one book.

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4.3/5

Play Matters by Miguel Sicart

Why play is a productive, expressive way of being, a form of understanding, and a fundamental part of our well-being. What do we think about when we think about play? A pastime? Games? Childish activities? The opposite of work? Think again: If we are happy and well rested, we may approach even our daily tasks in a playful way, taking the attitude of play without the activit Why play is a productive, expressive way of being, a form of understanding, and a fundamental part of our well-being. What do we think about when we think about play? A pastime? Games? Childish activities? The opposite of work? Think again: If we are happy and well rested, we may approach even our daily tasks in a playful way, taking the attitude of play without the activity of play. So what, then, is play? In Play Matters, Miguel Sicart argues that to play is to be in the world; playing is a form of understanding what surrounds us and a way of engaging with others. Play goes beyond games; it is a mode of being human. We play games, but we also play with toys, on playgrounds, with technologies and design. Sicart proposes a theory of play that doesn't derive from a particular object or activity but is a portable tool for being--not tied to objects but brought by people to the complex interactions that form their daily lives. It is not separated from reality; it is part of it. It is pleasurable, but not necessarily fun. Play can be dangerous, addictive, and destructive. Along the way, Sicart considers playfulness, the capacity to use play outside the context of play; toys, the materialization of play--instruments but also play pals; playgrounds, play spaces that enable all kinds of play; beauty, the aesthetics of play through action; political play--from Maradona's goal against England in the 1986 World Cup to the hactivist activities of Anonymous; the political, aesthetic, and moral activity of game design; and why play and computers get along so well.

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4.5/5

Slay the Dragon: Writing Great Video Games by Robert Denton Bryant , Keith Giglio

Writing for the multibillion-dollar video-game industry is unlike writing for any other medium. "Slay the Dragon" will help you understand the challenges and offer creative solutions to writing for a medium where the audience not only demands a great story, but to be a driving force within it. Aimed at traditional writers who want to learn interactive narrative as well as Writing for the multibillion-dollar video-game industry is unlike writing for any other medium. "Slay the Dragon" will help you understand the challenges and offer creative solutions to writing for a medium where the audience not only demands a great story, but to be a driving force within it. Aimed at traditional writers who want to learn interactive narrative as well as game creators who want to tell better, more emotionally involving stories, the book is written by two creative veterans of both Hollywood and "Nerdyhood." Through lively discussions and self-paced-exercises, Bryant and Giglio step you such topics as: the "no-act" structure of video games; writing great game characters; making gameplay emotionally meaningful; and bringing your game world alive.

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4.7/5

Embed with Games: A Year on the Couch with Game Developers by Cara Ellison

In 2014 games critic Cara Ellison pledged to the internet she'd leave home, become itinerant, and travel around the world to live with and write about some of the most interesting game developers and their cultural outlook. As your 'cyberpunk hair-dyed Attenborough', originally Cara put up the Embed With Games series monthly on a free blog as she travelled from couch to cou In 2014 games critic Cara Ellison pledged to the internet she'd leave home, become itinerant, and travel around the world to live with and write about some of the most interesting game developers and their cultural outlook. As your 'cyberpunk hair-dyed Attenborough', originally Cara put up the Embed With Games series monthly on a free blog as she travelled from couch to couch, writing about the people she met and about the way our game creators express the culture around them. The internet generously helped fund her travel costs through a subscription service, egging her on in the only way it could, the pledges going up each month. This is the collected work, called 'Embed With Games', with an exclusive introduction from Kieron Gillen, a cover from comics artist Irene Koh, and a conclusion exclusive to the ebook. From London to Los Angeles, from the Netherlands to Malaysia to Japan to Australia, the book reveals how people involved in games are taking what they see around them and expressing it in digital playgrounds for other people to experience. An emotional, weird, sometimes intimate experience, this is open ribcage writing about the side of making video games most people don't see or know about.

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5/5

Getting Gamers: The Psychology of Video Games and Their Impact on the People Who Play Them by Jamie Madigan

Video games are big business. They can be addicting. They are available almost anywhere you go and are appealing to people of all ages. They can eat up our time, cost us money, even kill our relationships. But it's not all bad! This book will show that rather than being a waste of time, video games can help us develop skills, make friends, succeed at work, form good habits Video games are big business. They can be addicting. They are available almost anywhere you go and are appealing to people of all ages. They can eat up our time, cost us money, even kill our relationships. But it's not all bad! This book will show that rather than being a waste of time, video games can help us develop skills, make friends, succeed at work, form good habits, and be happy. Taking the time to learn what's happening in our heads as we play and shop allows us to approach games and gaming communities on our own terms and get more out of them. With sales in the tens of billions of dollars each year, just about everybody is playing some kind of video game whether it's on a console, a computer, a web browser, or a phone. Much of the medium's success is built on careful (though sometimes unwitting) adherence to basic principles of psychology. This is something that's becoming even more important as games become more social, interactive, and sophisticated. This book offers something unique to the millions of people who play or design games: how to use an understanding of psychology to be a better part of their gaming communities, to avoid being manipulated when they shop and play, and to get the most enjoyment out of playing games. With examples from the games themselves, Jamie Madigan offers a fuller understanding of the impact of games on our psychology and the influence of psychology on our games.

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3.9/5

Beginning C++ Through Game Programming by Michael Dawson

When it comes to game programming, C++ is the name of the game. If you aspire to move from game player to game creator, it all starts with learning the fundamentals of C++ and game-programming basics. With BEGINNING C++ THROUGH GAME PROGRAMMING, FOURTH EDITION, you will find an up-to-date and thorough introduction to everything you need to get started—with no previous prog When it comes to game programming, C++ is the name of the game. If you aspire to move from game player to game creator, it all starts with learning the fundamentals of C++ and game-programming basics. With BEGINNING C++ THROUGH GAME PROGRAMMING, FOURTH EDITION, you will find an up-to-date and thorough introduction to everything you need to get started—with no previous programming experience required. In the new fourth edition of this popular guide to learning C++, you will work with a complete program while learning each new concept and a game program at the end of each chapter. A final game project at the end of the book draws together everything you’ve learned. Written with the beginning programmer in mind, BEGINNING C++ THROUGH GAME PROGRAMMING, FOURTH EDITION is a great way to get started in game programming

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4.5/5

The Game Narrative Toolbox (Focal Press Game Design Workshops) by Tobias Heussner , Toiya Kristen Finley , Jennifer Brandes Hepler , Ann Lemay

Learn how to create compelling game storylines. Four experienced narrative designers from different genres of game development have banded together to create this all-inclusive guide on what it's like to work as a writer and narrative designer in the videogame industry. From concept to final testing, The Game Narrative Toolbox walks readers through what role a narrative des Learn how to create compelling game storylines. Four experienced narrative designers from different genres of game development have banded together to create this all-inclusive guide on what it's like to work as a writer and narrative designer in the videogame industry. From concept to final testing, The Game Narrative Toolbox walks readers through what role a narrative designer plays on a development team and what the requirements are at every stage of development. Drawing on real experiences, authors Tobias Heussner, Toiya Finley, Ann Lemay, and Jennifer Hepler provide invaluable advice for writing compelling player-centered stories and effective dialogue trees in order to help readers make the switch from prose- or screen- writing to interactive. Accompanying every chapter are exercises that allow the reader to develop their own documentation, outlines, and game-dialogue samples for use in applying for industry jobs or developing independent projects. This first installment of Focal Press's Game Design Workshops series is a must-have for individuals looking to create captivating storylines for games.

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3.1/5

How to Talk about Videogames by Ian Bogost

Videogames! Aren’t they the medium of the twenty-first century? The new cinema? The apotheosis of art and entertainment, the realization of Wagnerian gesamtkunstwerk? The final victory of interaction over passivity? No, probably not. Games are part art and part appliance, part tableau and part toaster. In How to Talk about Videogames, leading critic Ian Bogost explores thi Videogames! Aren’t they the medium of the twenty-first century? The new cinema? The apotheosis of art and entertainment, the realization of Wagnerian gesamtkunstwerk? The final victory of interaction over passivity? No, probably not. Games are part art and part appliance, part tableau and part toaster. In How to Talk about Videogames, leading critic Ian Bogost explores this paradox more thoroughly than any other author to date. Delving into popular, familiar games like Flappy Bird, Mirror’s Edge, Mario Kart, Scribblenauts, Ms. Pac-Man, FarmVille, Candy Crush Saga, Bully, Medal of Honor, Madden NFL, and more, Bogost posits that videogames are as much like appliances as they are like art and media. We don’t watch or read games like we do films and novels and paintings, nor do we perform them like we might dance or play football or Frisbee. Rather, we do something in-between with games. Games are devices we operate, so game critique is both serious cultural currency and self-parody. It is about figuring out what it means that a game works the way it does and then treating the way it works as if it were reasonable, when we know it isn’t. Noting that the term games criticism once struck him as preposterous, Bogost observes that the idea, taken too seriously, risks balkanizing games writing from the rest of culture, severing it from the “rivers and fields” that sustain it. As essential as it is, he calls for its pursuit to unfold in this spirit: “God save us from a future of games critics, gnawing on scraps like the zombies that fester in our objects of study.”

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3/5

A Crowdfunder's Strategy Guide: Build a Better Business by Building Community by Jamey Stegmaier

As a veteran of six successful Kickstarter campaigns (and counting) and the proprietor of the Kickstarter Lessons blog, Jamey Stegmaier knows something about crowdfunding. In this book he goes beyond the nuts and bolts of how it works to a deeper level—crowdfunding not just as a cool way to raise money but as a better way to build and run a business. This book features over As a veteran of six successful Kickstarter campaigns (and counting) and the proprietor of the Kickstarter Lessons blog, Jamey Stegmaier knows something about crowdfunding. In this book he goes beyond the nuts and bolts of how it works to a deeper level—crowdfunding not just as a cool way to raise money but as a better way to build and run a business. This book features over forty illustrative examples of crowdfunding campaigns. Some succeeded wildly—like the high-tech cooler designer whose first attempt faltered but whose second raised $13 million. Some were sobering disasters, like the board game maker (not the author!) whose mistakes caused his project to collapse in two months, forcing him to return over $100,000. Stegmaier uses these stories to make points about topics such as preparation, timing, what kind of offers to make and what kind to avoid, what to spend money on and when, and more. But he insists it’s not just about the money—if you follow Stegmaier’s advice, crowdfunding can enable you to build a loyal following before you even have a product. He shows that if you treat your backers as people, not pocketbooks—communicate regularly with them, ask their opinions, attend to their needs—they’ll become advocates as well as funders, exponentially increasing your and your projects’ chances of succeeding.

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3.3/5

The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses by Jesse Schell

Anyone can master the fundamentals of game design—no technological expertise is necessary. The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses shows that the same basic principles of psychology that work for board games, card games and athletic games also are the keys to making top-quality video games. Good game design happens when you view your game from many different perspectives, Anyone can master the fundamentals of game design—no technological expertise is necessary. The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses shows that the same basic principles of psychology that work for board games, card games and athletic games also are the keys to making top-quality video games. Good game design happens when you view your game from many different perspectives, or lenses. While touring through the unusual territory that is game design, this book gives the reader one hundred of these lenses—one hundred sets of insightful questions to ask yourself that will help make your game better. These lenses are gathered from fields as diverse as psychology, architecture, music, visual design, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, writing, puzzle design, and anthropology. Anyone who reads this book will be inspired to become a better game designer—and will understand how to do it.

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3.9/5

A Theory of Fun for Game Design by Raph Koster , Will Wright (Foreword by)

A Theory of Fun for Game Design is not your typical how-to book. It features a novel way of teaching interactive designers how to create and improve their designs to incorporate the highest degree of fun. As the book shows, designing for fun is all about making interactive products like games highly entertaining, engaging, and addictive. The book's unique approach of provi A Theory of Fun for Game Design is not your typical how-to book. It features a novel way of teaching interactive designers how to create and improve their designs to incorporate the highest degree of fun. As the book shows, designing for fun is all about making interactive products like games highly entertaining, engaging, and addictive. The book's unique approach of providing a highly visual storyboard approach combined with a narrative on the art and practice of designing for fun is sure to be a hit with game and interactive designers. At first glance A Theory of Fun for Game Design is a book that will truly inspire and challenge game designers to think in new ways; however, its universal message will influence designers from all walks of life. This book captures the real essence of what drives us to seek out products and experiences that are truly fun and entertaining. The author masterfully presents his engaging theory by showing readers how many designs are lacking because they are predictable and not engaging enough. He then explains how great designers use different types of elements in new ways to make designs more fun and compelling. Anyone who is interested in design will enjoy how the book works on two levels--as a quick inspiration guide to game design, or as an informative discussion that details the insightful thinking from a great mind in the game industry.

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3.8/5

Rules of Play: Game Design Fundamentals by Katie Salen , Eric Zimmerman

An impassioned look at games and game design that offers the most ambitious framework for understanding them to date. As pop culture, games are as important as film or television--but game design has yet to develop a theoretical framework or critical vocabulary. In Rules of Play Katie Salen and Eric Zimmerman present a much-needed primer for this emerging field. They offer An impassioned look at games and game design that offers the most ambitious framework for understanding them to date. As pop culture, games are as important as film or television--but game design has yet to develop a theoretical framework or critical vocabulary. In Rules of Play Katie Salen and Eric Zimmerman present a much-needed primer for this emerging field. They offer a unified model for looking at all kinds of games, from board games and sports to computer and video games. As active participants in game culture, the authors have written Rules of Play as a catalyst for innovation, filled with new concepts, strategies, and methodologies for creating and understanding games. Building an aesthetics of interactive systems, Salen and Zimmerman define core concepts like "play," "design," and "interactivity." They look at games through a series of eighteen "game design schemas," or conceptual frameworks, including games as systems of emergence and information, as contexts for social play, as a storytelling medium, and as sites of cultural resistance. Written for game scholars, game developers, and interactive designers, Rules of Play is a textbook, reference book, and theoretical guide. It is the first comprehensive attempt to establish a solid theoretical framework for the emerging discipline of game design.

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3.9/5

Challenges for Game Designers by Brenda Brathwaite

Welcome to a book written to challenge you, improve your brainstorming abilities, and sharpen your game design skills! Challenges for Game Designers: Non-Digital Exercises for Video Game Designers is filled with enjoyable, interesting, and challenging exercises to help you become a better video game designer, whether you are a professional or aspire to be. Each chapter cov Welcome to a book written to challenge you, improve your brainstorming abilities, and sharpen your game design skills! Challenges for Game Designers: Non-Digital Exercises for Video Game Designers is filled with enjoyable, interesting, and challenging exercises to help you become a better video game designer, whether you are a professional or aspire to be. Each chapter covers a different topic important to game designers, and was taken from actual industry experience. After a brief overview of the topic, there are five challenges that each take less than two hours and allow you to apply the material, explore the topic, and expand your knowledge in that area. Each chapter also includes 10 -non-digital shorts- to further hone your skills. None of the challenges in the book require any programming or a computer, but many of the topics feature challenges that can be made into fully functioning games. The book is useful for professional designers, aspiring designers, and instructors who teach game design courses, and the challenges are great for both practice and homework assignments. The book can be worked through chapter by chapter, or you can skip around and do only the challenges that interest you. As with anything else, making great games takes practice and Challenges for Game Designers provides you with a collection of fun, thoughtprovoking, and of course, challenging activities that will help you hone vital skills and become the best game designer you can be.

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3.6/5

Level Up!: The Guide to Great Video Game Design by Scott Rogers

Design and build cutting-edge video games with help from video game expert Scott Rogers! If you want to design and build cutting-edge video games but aren't sure where to start, then this is the book for you. Written by leading video game expert Scott Rogers, who has designed the hits Pac Man World, Maxim vs. Army of Zin, and SpongeBob Squarepants, this book is full of Rog Design and build cutting-edge video games with help from video game expert Scott Rogers! If you want to design and build cutting-edge video games but aren't sure where to start, then this is the book for you. Written by leading video game expert Scott Rogers, who has designed the hits Pac Man World, Maxim vs. Army of Zin, and SpongeBob Squarepants, this book is full of Rogers's wit and imaginative style that demonstrates everything you need to know about designing great video games. Features an approachable writing style that considers game designers from all levels of expertise and experience Covers the entire video game creation process, including developing marketable ideas, understanding what gamers want, working with player actions, and more Offers techniques for creating non-human characters and using the camera as a character Shares helpful insight on the business of design and how to create design documents So, put your game face on and start creating memorable, creative, and unique video games with this book!

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4.8/5

Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World by Jane McGonigal

More than 31 million people in the UK are gamers. The average young person in the UK will spend 10,000 hours gaming by the age of twenty-one. What's causing this mass exodus? According to world-renowned game designer Jane McGonigal the answer is simple: videogames are fulfilling genuine human needs. Drawing on positive psychology, cognitive science and sociology, Reality i More than 31 million people in the UK are gamers. The average young person in the UK will spend 10,000 hours gaming by the age of twenty-one. What's causing this mass exodus? According to world-renowned game designer Jane McGonigal the answer is simple: videogames are fulfilling genuine human needs. Drawing on positive psychology, cognitive science and sociology, Reality is Broken shows how game designers have hit on core truths about what makes us happy, and utilized these discoveries to astonishing effect in virtual environments. But why, McGonigal asks, should we use the power of games for escapist entertainment alone? In this groundbreaking exploration of the power and future of gaming, she reveals how gamers have become expert problem solvers and collaborators, and shows how we can use the lessons of game design to socially positive ends, be it in our own lives, our communities or our businesses. Written for gamers and non-gamers alike, Reality is Broken sends a clear and provocative message: the future will belong to those who can understand, design and play games.

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3.6/5

Game Design Workshop: A Playcentric Approach to Creating Innovative Games by Tracy Fullerton

Master the craft of game design so you can create that elusive combination of challenge, competition, and interaction that players seek. This design workshop begins with an examination of the fundamental elements of game design; then puts you to work in prototyping, playtesting and redesigning your own games with exercises that teach essential design skills. Workshop exerc Master the craft of game design so you can create that elusive combination of challenge, competition, and interaction that players seek. This design workshop begins with an examination of the fundamental elements of game design; then puts you to work in prototyping, playtesting and redesigning your own games with exercises that teach essential design skills. Workshop exercises require no background in programming or artwork, releasing you from the intricacies of electronic game production, so you can develop a working understanding of the essentials of game design.Features: * A design methodology used in the USC Interactive Media program, a cutting edge program funded in part of Electronic Arts. * Hands-on exercises demonstrate key concepts, and the design methodology * Insights from top industry game designers, including Noah Falstein, American McGee, Peter Molyneux

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3.9/5

Game Feel: A Game Designer's Guide to Virtual Sensation by Steve Swink

Game Feel exposes feel as a hidden language in game design that no one has fully articulated yet. The language could be compared to the building blocks of music (time signatures, chord progressions, verse)—no matter the instruments, style or time period—these building blocks come into play. Feel and sensation are similar building blocks where game design is concerned. They Game Feel exposes feel as a hidden language in game design that no one has fully articulated yet. The language could be compared to the building blocks of music (time signatures, chord progressions, verse)—no matter the instruments, style or time period—these building blocks come into play. Feel and sensation are similar building blocks where game design is concerned. They create the meta-sensation of involvement with a game. The understanding of how game designers create feel, and affect feel are only partially understood by most in the field and tends to be overlooked as a method or course of study, yet a game's feel is central to a game's success. This book brings the subject of feel to light by consolidating existing theories into a cohesive book. The book covers topics like the role of sound, ancillary indicators, the importance of metaphor, how people perceive things, and a brief history of feel in games. The associated web site contains a playset with ready-made tools to design feel in games, six key components to creating virtual sensation. There's a play palette too, so the designer can first experience the importance of that component by altering variables and feeling the results. The playset allows the reader to experience each of the sensations described in the book, and then allows them to apply them to their own projects. Creating game feel without having to program, essentially. The final version of the playset will have enough flexibility that the reader will be able to use it as a companion to the exercises in the book, working through each one to create the feel described.

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3/5

The Design of Everyday Things by Donald A. Norman

Anyone who designs anything to be used by humans -- from physical objects to computer programs to conceptual tools -- must read this book, and it is an equally tremendous read for anyone who has to use anything created by another human. It could forever change how you experience and interact with your physical surroundings, open your eyes to the perversity of bad design an Anyone who designs anything to be used by humans -- from physical objects to computer programs to conceptual tools -- must read this book, and it is an equally tremendous read for anyone who has to use anything created by another human. It could forever change how you experience and interact with your physical surroundings, open your eyes to the perversity of bad design and the desirability of good design, and raise your expectations about how things should be designed. B & W photographs and illustrations throughout.

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3.7/5

Homo Ludens: A Study of the Play-Element in Culture by Johan Huizinga

In Homo Ludens, the classic evaluation of play that has become a "must-read" for those in game design, Dutch philosopher Johan Huizinga defines play as the central activity in flourishing societies. Like civilization, play requires structure and participants willing to create within limits. Starting with Plato, Huizinga traces the contribution of Homo Ludens, or "Man the p In Homo Ludens, the classic evaluation of play that has become a "must-read" for those in game design, Dutch philosopher Johan Huizinga defines play as the central activity in flourishing societies. Like civilization, play requires structure and participants willing to create within limits. Starting with Plato, Huizinga traces the contribution of Homo Ludens, or "Man the player" through Medieval Times, the Renaissance, and into our modern civilization. Huizinga defines play against a rich theoretical background, using cross-cultural examples from the humanities, business, and politics. Homo Ludens defines play for generations to come. "A happier age than ours once made bold to call our species by the name of Homo Sapiens. In the course of time we have come to realize that we are not so reasonable after all as the Eighteenth Century with its worship of reason and naive optimism, though us; "hence moder fashion inclines to designate our species asHomo Faber Man the Maker. But though faber may not be quite so dubious as sapiens it is, as a name specific of the human being, even less appropriate, seeing that many animals too are makers. There is a third function, howver, applicable to both human and animal life, and just as important as reasoning and making--namely, playing. it seems to me that next to Homo Faber, and perhaps on the same level as Homo Sapiens, Homo Ludens, Man the Player, deserves a place in our nomenclature. "--from the Foreward, by Johan Huizinga

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5/5

Game Mechanics: Advanced Game Design by Ernest Adams , Joris Dormans

This in-depth resource teaches you to craft mechanics that generate challenging, enjoyable, and well-balanced gameplay. You'll discover at what stages to prototype, test, and implement mechanics in games and learn how to visualize and simulate game mechanics in order to design better games. Along the way, you'll practice what you've learned with hands-on lessons. A free do This in-depth resource teaches you to craft mechanics that generate challenging, enjoyable, and well-balanced gameplay. You'll discover at what stages to prototype, test, and implement mechanics in games and learn how to visualize and simulate game mechanics in order to design better games. Along the way, you'll practice what you've learned with hands-on lessons. A free downloadable simulation tool developed by Joris Dormans is also available in order to follow along with exercises in the book in an easy-to-use graphical environment. In Game Mechanics: Advanced Game Design, you'll learn how to: * Design and balance game mechanics to create emergent gameplay before you write a single line of code. * Visualize the internal economy so that you can immediately see what goes on in a complex game. * Use novel prototyping techniques that let you simulate games and collect vast quantities of gameplay data on the first day of development. * Apply design patterns for game mechanics--from a library in this book--to improve your game designs. * Explore the delicate balance between game mechanics and level design to create compelling, long-lasting game experiences. * Replace fixed, scripted events in your game with dynamic progression systems to give your players a new experience every time they play. "I've been waiting for a book like this for ten years: packed with game design goodness that tackles the science without undermining the art." --Richard Bartle, University of Essex, co-author of the first MMORPG "Game Mechanics: Advanced Game Design by Joris Dormans & Ernest Adams formalizes game grammar quite well. Not sure I need to write a next book now!" -- Raph Koster, author of A Theory of Fun for Game Design.

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4.6/5

Chris Crawford on Game Design by Chris Crawford

"Chris Crawford on Game Design" is all about the foundational skills behind the design and architecture of a game. Without these skills, designers and developers lack the understanding to work with the tools and techniques used in the industry today. Chris Crawford, the most highly sought after expert in this area, brings an intense opinion piece full of personality and fl "Chris Crawford on Game Design" is all about the foundational skills behind the design and architecture of a game. Without these skills, designers and developers lack the understanding to work with the tools and techniques used in the industry today. Chris Crawford, the most highly sought after expert in this area, brings an intense opinion piece full of personality and flare like no other person in this industry can. He explains the foundational and fundamental concepts needed to get the most out of game development today. An exceptional precursor to the two books soon to be published by New Riders with author Andrew Rollings, this book teaches key lessons; including, what you can learn from the history of game play and historical games, necessity of challenge in game play, applying dimensions of conflict, understanding low and high interactivity designs, watching for the inclusion of creativity, and understanding the importance of storytelling. In addition, Chris brings you the wish list of games he'd like to build and tells you how to do it. Game developers and designers will kill for this information!

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4.6/5

Characteristics of Games by George Skaff Elias , Richard Garfield , K. Robert Gutschera , Peter Whitley , Eric Zimmerman

"Characteristics of Games" offers a new way to understand games: by focusing on certain traits--including number of players, rules, degrees of luck and skill needed, and reward/effort ratio--and using these characteristics as basic points of comparison and analysis. These issues are often discussed by game players and designers but seldom written about in any formal way. T "Characteristics of Games" offers a new way to understand games: by focusing on certain traits--including number of players, rules, degrees of luck and skill needed, and reward/effort ratio--and using these characteristics as basic points of comparison and analysis. These issues are often discussed by game players and designers but seldom written about in any formal way. This book fills that gap. By emphasizing these player-centric basic concepts, the book provides a framework for game analysis from the viewpoint of a game designer. The book shows what all genres of games--board games, card games, computer games, and sports--have to teach each other. Today's game designers may find solutions to design problems when they look at classic games that have evolved over years of playing. "Characteristics of Games"--written by three of the most prominent game designers working today--will serve as an essential reference for game designers and game players curious about the inner workings of games. It includes exercises (which can also serve as the basis for discussions) and examples chosen from a wide variety of games. There are occasional mathematical digressions, but these can be skipped with no loss of continuity. Appendixes offer supplementary material, including a brief survey of the two main branches of mathematical game theory and a descriptive listing of each game referred to in the text.

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4.8/5

Designing Virtual Worlds by Richard Bartle

Designing Virtual Worlds is the most comprehensive treatment of virtual world design to-date from one of the true pioneers and most sought-after design consultants. It's a tour de force of VW design, stunning in intellectual scope, spanning the literary, economic, sociological, psychological, physical, technological, and ethical underpinnings of design, while providing the Designing Virtual Worlds is the most comprehensive treatment of virtual world design to-date from one of the true pioneers and most sought-after design consultants. It's a tour de force of VW design, stunning in intellectual scope, spanning the literary, economic, sociological, psychological, physical, technological, and ethical underpinnings of design, while providing the reader with a deep, well-grounded understanding of VW design principles. It covers everything from MUDs to MOOs to MMORPGs, from text-based to graphical VWs. Designing Virtual Worlds brings a rich, well-developed approach to the design concepts behind virtual worlds. It is grounded in the earliest approaches to such designs, but the examples discussed in the book run the gamut from the earliest MUDs to the present-day MMORPG games mentioned above. It teaches the reader the actual, underlying design principles that many designers do not understand when they borrow or build from previous games. There is no other design book on the market in the area of online games and virtual worlds that provides the rich detail, historical context, and conceptual depth of Designing Virtual Worlds.

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4.1/5

Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

Psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi's famous investigations of "optimal experience" have revealed that what makes an experience genuinely satisfying is a state of consciousness called flow. During flow, people typically experience deep enjoyment, creativity, and a total involvement with life. In this new edition of his groundbreaking classic work, Csikszentmihalyi demonst Psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi's famous investigations of "optimal experience" have revealed that what makes an experience genuinely satisfying is a state of consciousness called flow. During flow, people typically experience deep enjoyment, creativity, and a total involvement with life. In this new edition of his groundbreaking classic work, Csikszentmihalyi demonstrates the ways this positive state can be controlled, not just left to chance. Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience teaches how, by ordering the information that enters our consciousness, we can discover true happiness and greatly improve the quality of our lives.

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