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MagnusSj

Looking for literature

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Hello everyone out there,

Im interested in two stuff that I have a big difficult with in finding useful literature or other tutorials for:

->The first interest is something about the humor element in games, such as the ones in Theme Hospital. How to use it and learn more about what makes it work and what not.

->The other interest is something about the management genre in games, what to think about when designing a game like that and where to start.


Hope there are any bookworm out there with some few great ideas :)


/ Magnus from Sweden

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Humor is a hard topic, especially for games. I found [url="http://www.gamedev.net/page/resources/_/technical/humor-in-games-r1595"]this[/url] which you may find useful. I know pop culture references tend to work well within games but can also be overused. Humor is so subjective and theirs so many different forms that I cant think of many people who have tacked it (in relation to games) from the top of my head. Maybe looking at topics that focus on other media (tv for instance) could be a good place to look. Anyway if i find anything else (its a topic that interests me as as well) I'll be sure to post them.




By managements genre what do you mean exactly? E.g. Theme hospital/roller-coaster tycoon style games or say Victoria 2 or even Football Manager (enter year here).

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There are some books about how to write humorous fiction and how to be a stand-up comedian. The general theory would apply to games too. You could probably also find some psychological studies about humor. The basic conclusions are that it involves the interaction between surprise and pattern recognition. So I could say, "1, 2, 3, 7" and just that is a little bit funny, because we recognized a pattern then were surprised when it wasn't followed. Or I could sing, "Moo moooo MOO moo..." and you are going WTF? But then I say in an announcer voice, and that concludes "Eine Kleine Kuh Musik" by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's lesser known relative Cowherd Mozart..." You might laugh in surprise that apparent nonsense turned out to have a pattern. This sort of abstract theory is challenging to apply directly to creating a funny theme game though.

I have an interest in designing sim tycoon games myself. Mostly they are about earning money to spend money to earn money, with a side of the game telling you you are achieving fame. It's possible to substitute one or more other resources for money if you want. Typically the end goal is either purchasing all possible upgrades in a non-mission-based game or completing all missions in a mission-based game. Other relevant goals are obtaining or producing a complete set of something. Either way the player's work for a segment of time should be rewarded by unlocking a new aspect of play which then gives variety to the next segment of time, which earns the unlocking of something new, etc. The actual gameplay is a bit different depending whether you want a realtime one or a turnbased one. Turnbased ones tend to be a bit like gambling - you make one or several choices which risk what you've got to sometimes make a profit. Sometimes you have to spend a non-profitable turn to repair something that was decaying over previous turns. Realtime ones on the other hand tend to be about effecient use of time and attentiveness, aka babysitting. Mission-based ones of either type may have a puzzle aspect to keep the player interested by requiring them to change their strategy around for new missions instead of just repeatedly doing the same thing that worked last time.

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[quote name='thewakka' timestamp='1317509498' post='4868106']
Im interested in two stuff that I have a big difficult with in finding useful literature or other tutorials for:

->The first interest is something about the humor element in games, such as the ones in Theme Hospital. How to use it and learn more about what makes it work and what not.
[/quote]
Have you read [url="http://guyhasson.wordpress.com/2011/09/22/comedy-writing-tips-7-articles/"]Guy Hasson blog[/url] series about comedy?

It is quite brief, but I found it very interesting.

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