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CS 4730 Defining Formal Elements CS 4730 – Computer Game Design.

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Presentation on theme: "CS 4730 Defining Formal Elements CS 4730 – Computer Game Design."— Presentation transcript:

1 CS 4730 Defining Formal Elements CS 4730 – Computer Game Design

2 CS 4730 Ludic Structure of Games Players – voluntary participation Objectives - goals Procedures – actions of play, limited by rules Rules – define game parameters Resources – valuable objects defined by rules Conflict – hindrances to objective Boundaries – setting apart the game world Outcome – uncertainty toward ultimate goal 2

3 CS 4730 Narrative/Engagement in Games Challenge – tension to resolve a problem Play – “free movement within a structure” Premise – context Character – vessel for participation and interest Story – narrative within a context Dramatic Elements – climax of game element 3

4 CS 4730 A New Challenger Arrives! Goals – Objectives, Resources, Outcome Rules – Procedures, Rules, Conflict, Boundaries Feedback – Communicating items above Players – Player Modes and Interactions 4

5 CS 4730 Players Determine what is your player interaction pattern (1 vs. game, pvp, team competition…) Determine what are your player modes –A player mode is a way in which the player interacts with the game –Example: Final Fantasy Overworld, Battle, Status/Inventory Each behaves differently and has a different purpose –Some simpler games might only have 1 mode 5

6 CS 4730 Objectives Anything the player is striving for Could be: –Primary: main objective of game, “dream” –Secondary: achievements, high score, etc. –Player-driven: your own self-created goal Name some objectives in games 6

7 CS 4730 Objective Categories Capture: take or destroy something Race: well… race against something Alignment: perfect positioning Rescue/Escape: get out of dungeon Forbidden Act: get someone else to break rules Construction: build something Exploration: uncover all hidden things And so many more! 7

8 CS 4730 Procedures and Rules Procedures are the actions that players can take to achieve their objectives Rules define the game objects and set limits on the player procedures A lot more to discuss here – we’ll come back to it 8

9 CS 4730 Resources Resources are the elements of the game that hold some value and also by definition have some notion of scarcity Resources can be just about anything: –Lives / Health –Time –Currency –Ammo Resources define the “interesting bits” 9

10 CS 4730 Conflict Conflict is not only defined as PvP It can also be player vs. game and obstacles put up to keep player from the goal The role of the difficulty in the notion of conflict is a tough balancing act Hard enough to promote player interest and play, but easy enough that the goal is eventually reachable (usually) 10

11 CS 4730 Boundaries Boundaries can be defined by rules, but also by the nature in which the game is being played Consider Johann Sebastian Joust bK0 11

12 CS 4730 Outcome There must be a “finish” of some kind –(Yes, some games don’t finish, but consider player- created outcomes) Some games are zero-sum, some are not We will discuss this a lot more later on 12

13 CS 4730 Formal Elements Framework These elements provide a framework in which you can begin to formalize your game They are not an end-all, be-all list, but certainly should make you consider things that are important to the game We would expect to be able to pull these out of your design documents in some fashion 13

14 CS 4730 So… how do we put these together? Players is somewhat straightforward So should (theoretically) your primary objectives –Secondary objectives can be added later (such as achievements or side quests) Outcomes are mostly easy to see early on For the most part, so are boundaries 14

15 CS 4730 Procedures, Rules, and Resources Here’s where the meat of your design comes in What actions are allowed in your world? How with the game world respond to those actions? How will you limit/enhance/modify player actions in the game? What will your player interact with? What “things” in the world are important? Note that not all of these are avatar based! 15

16 CS 4730 Procedures At their most basic, procedures map to the input device you are using You will fall into one of a few categories –Gamepad: a controller input device with a specified set of directional and interactive command buttons –Mouse: a pointer interface that can interact with click, hover, drag, and drop –Keyboard: like a gamepad, but with far more discrete command button options –Combination: such as Mouse/Keyboard 16

17 CS 4730 Input Devices There are, of course, many others! –Kinect –Touch screen –Accelerometer/Gyroscope –Head tracking –Foot pad / pedals –Many, many failed 3 rd party accessories, like the U- Force We will (most likely) be in the other categories 17

18 CS 4730 Procedures, Rules, and Resources For your game in this class: –Try to limit the procedure, rules, and resources at first –Once you get the feel for how your basic procedures, rules, and resources interact, adjust one of these in a later level (“riff on a mechanic”) –Introduce the player to the world; draw them into the “magic circle,” don’t overwhelm them 18

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