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Game Design The Art and Science Flint Dille Ground Zero Productions flintdille@earthlink.net E. Daniel Arey VisionArey Entertainment daniel_arey@hotmail.com

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Rules of the game… Treat us as “interactive objects.” We will talk about the process of game design and development, but feel free to interrupt and ask or tell us what you want to know.

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Systems all around us … GAMES ARE SYSTEMS

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How Design Works Game Design is an iterative process… Game Design is an iterative process… It is often not linear… It is often not linear… It matters… It matters…

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Iterative Process

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The Creative Path is Never a Straight One A B Source: Arcadia Kim

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Games are systems built in layers… Formal Elements Dramatic Elements Dynamic Elements

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The First Layer Formal Elements

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The Seven Formal Elements Players Players Objectives Objectives Rules Rules Procedures Procedures Resources Resources Boundaries Boundaries Outcome Outcome

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The Structure of Games Games are systems Games are systems –Formal Elements Players

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The Structure of Games Games are systems Games are systems –Formal Elements Players Objectives

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Hardest Question in any game: What does the player do?

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The Structure of Games Games are systems Games are systems –Formal Elements Players Objectives Rules

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What limits the player’s actions?

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The Structure of Games Games are systems Games are systems –Formal Elements Players Objectives Rules Procedures

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How does the play proceed?

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The Structure of Games Games are systems Games are systems –Formal Elements Players Objectives Rules Procedures Resources

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What resources are available to players to accomplish their goals?

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The Structure of Games Games are systems Games are systems –Formal Elements Players Objectives Rules Procedures Resources Boundaries Outcome

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How will it end?

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Dramatic Elements of Games Premise Premise Characters Characters Story/Plot/Dialogue Story/Plot/Dialogue The Universe The Universe The Franchise The Franchise

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Dynamic Systems Setting the rules in motion produces dynamic effects Setting the rules in motion produces dynamic effects “Emergence” “Emergence” Unintended consequences and value Unintended consequences and value The “play” between the rules The “play” between the rules Strategies, nuances, “fun”, exploits Strategies, nuances, “fun”, exploits The system SPRINGS to life as it is put in motion! The system SPRINGS to life as it is put in motion!

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Definition of a Game Formal Elements Formal Elements Dramatic Elements Dramatic Elements Dynamic Elements Dynamic Elements Inside the “magic circle,” the rules of games apply. Inside the “magic circle,” the rules of games apply. –Games are “closed” systems Games engage players Games engage players –Structured conflict –Uncertain, unequal outcomes

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A game is … A closed, formal system… …that engages players in a structured conflict… …which resolves in an unequal outcome

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Of course, not all games require a winner or loser…

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So what can games do?

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Training Training What can games do?

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Embedded Learning Embedded Learning What can games do?

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Enhanced Cognition Enhanced Cognition What can games do?

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World Sim System Creation and Testing World Sim System Creation and Testing What can games do?

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Public Education and Relations Public Education and Relations What can games do?

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First Person Shooters First Person Shooters Let’s talk about a few game genres…

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First Person Shooters First Person Shooters Real Time Strategy Real Time Strategy Let’s talk about a few game genres…

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First Person Shooters First Person Shooters Real Time Strategy Real Time Strategy Action Adventure Action Adventure (3 P Removed) (3 P Removed) Let’s talk about a few game genres…

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First Person Shooters First Person Shooters Real Time Strategy Real Time Strategy Action Adventure Action Adventure God Games God Games Let’s talk about a few game genres…

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First Person Shooters First Person Shooters Real Time Strategy Real Time Strategy Action Adventure Action Adventure God Games God Games Puzzle Games Puzzle Games Let’s talk about a few game genres…

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Let’s treat this meeting as an open Game Development Session… What is the market? What is the market?

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Let’s treat this meeting as an open Game Development Session… What is the market? What is the market? What’s the objective? What’s the objective?

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Let’s treat this meeting as an open Game Development Session… What is the market? What is the market? What’s the objective? What’s the objective? What is the problem you are trying to solve? What is the problem you are trying to solve?

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Let’s treat this meeting as an open Game Development Session… What is the market? What is the market? What’s the objective? What’s the objective? What is the problem you are trying to solve? What is the problem you are trying to solve? What is the budget? What is the budget?

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Let’s treat this meeting as an open Game Development Session… What is the market? What is the market? What’s the objective? What’s the objective? What is the problem you are trying to solve? What is the problem you are trying to solve? What is the budget? What is the budget? What is the time frame? What is the time frame?

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Let’s treat this meeting as an open Game Development Session… What is the market? What is the market? What’s the objective? What’s the objective? What is the problem you are trying to solve? What is the problem you are trying to solve? What is the budget? What is the budget? What is the time frame? What is the time frame? What is the target platform/technology? What is the target platform/technology?

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Let’s treat this meeting as an open Game Development Session… What is the market? What is the market? What’s the objective? What’s the objective? What is the problem you are trying to solve? What is the problem you are trying to solve? What is the budget? What is the budget? What is the time frame? What is the time frame? What is the target platform/technology? What is the target platform/technology? Who are the players? How many? Who are the players? How many?

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Let’s treat this meeting as an open Game Development Session… What is the market? What is the market? What’s the objective? What’s the objective? What is the problem you are trying to solve? What is the problem you are trying to solve? What is the budget? What is the budget? What is the time frame? What is the time frame? What is the target platform/technology? What is the target platform/technology? Who are the players? How many? Who are the players? How many? Duration of gameplay? Scope? Duration of gameplay? Scope?

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Let’s treat this meeting as an open Game Development Session… What is the market? What is the market? What’s the objective? What’s the objective? What is the problem you are trying to solve? What is the problem you are trying to solve? What is the budget? What is the budget? What is the time frame? What is the time frame? What is the target platform/technology? What is the target platform/technology? Who are the players? How many? Who are the players? How many? Duration of gameplay? Scope? Duration of gameplay? Scope? Story, world, characters? Story, world, characters?

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Let’s treat this meeting as an open Game Development Session… What is the market? What is the market? What’s the objective? What’s the objective? What is the problem you are trying to solve? What is the problem you are trying to solve? What is the budget? What is the budget? What is the time frame? What is the time frame? What is the target platform/technology? What is the target platform/technology? Who are the players? How many? Who are the players? How many? Duration of gameplay? Scope? Duration of gameplay? Scope? Story, world, characters? Story, world, characters? MOST importantly, why will people want to play this game?! MOST importantly, why will people want to play this game?!

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Let’s Brainstorm

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