• Announcements

    • khawk

      Download the Game Design and Indie Game Marketing Freebook   07/19/17

      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Daltrey Waters

Mario Gameplay Analysis Video

17 posts in this topic

Doesn't have to be in video form. I just posted something similar about analyzing beat em up games. We need more of that kind of stuff here in general, and less programming talk.

So many people here think game design is just about rendering something and making it respond to input. The art and design gets completely ignored most of the time. This place needs a culture shift.

Edited by jbadams
Added link to the post about beat 'em up games.
1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We need more of that kind of stuff here in general, and less programming talk.

No, we more "programming talk", not less, on the design board; i.e. it's important to keep the implementation step(s) in mind and to get a working prototype asap (both of which require programming). (This very discussion already took place elsewhere, so I don't mean to revisit it here; just to remind about it. :) )

 

The real value behind analyses like those cited is that they show us all things to look for in games and thus fresh ideas on what to include in our own games. Extra Credits has a good pair of videos that talk about playing a game like a designer, i.e. what to look for and why. Parts 1 and 2. Watching/reading other people's analyses serve a similar role in helping you see things (both in the game in question and general types of things) you may have missed on your own.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
thade, the entire forum is already programmer talk, and mostly from people who only know how to program and nothing else. When all you have is a hammer, you think every problem is a nail.

Programming is just a tool to implement those ideas.

And it's no different than any other medium. All the tools in the world won't help you if you are creatively bankrupt.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I believe that "thade" is talking in context about aiming the programming talk at the prototype objective instead of beating around the bush.  That is how I interpreted it.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

thade, the entire forum is already programmer talk, and mostly from people who only know how to program and nothing else. When all you have is a hammer, you think every problem is a nail.

Programming is just a tool to implement those ideas.

And it's no different than any other medium. All the tools in the world won't help you if you are creatively bankrupt.

 

Do you know what the game designers for Fez, Super Meat Boy, and Braid all have in common? They're all accomplished programmers.

 

The way I see it, a good game designer can very easily get his or her hands dirty; indeed, they're excited to. Painters imagine and picture the thing they want to make, and then they make it. Musicians can hear the sounds they want in their heads, and then they make them. Code is our paint, my friend. Code is our paint.

 

I'm not saying we want more programming instead of  creativity; I'd just as soon have more of both. Perhaps the real issue is that anybody here ever started seeing design and implementation as if they are somehow in opposition. :(

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And unfortunately, every creative discipline is overflowing with people who think some minor technicality is their paint, and not their creativity. They flood the market with lifeless crap, never understanding the fundamentals of what they are trying to do.

For people who get it, code isn't the paint, it's the brush. The second they realize that, their potential becomes endless.

Some people never break out of the 'code is the paint' bubble, and never realize their potential. They look at other people's stuff, and see it only as a few technicalities. They think, oh, it's just a sprite or a model that does bla bla bla. So they open up their IDE and that is what they design. And it ends up being crap. At best they have a clunky tech demo. And then they mistakenly think that they can get someone creative to come in at the end and turn it into gold. And that always works about as well as digging up a corpse and giving it CPR. You can't polish a turd.

Technical minded people look at a product like Grand Theft Auto and they think it's just a game where you move an avatar and a world streams in around you and you can shoot things. So they set out to get in on the market share, and they produce exactly that. And we get creatively bankrupt games like Wheelman.

A creatively minded designer looks at Grand Theft Auto and he doesn't see a world streaming engine with an avatar that runs and shoots. Those are irrelevant implementation details. What he sees are the important things that elevate it. GTA is political commentary. GTA is cast of very well designed, memorable characters. GTA is emotion. GTA is a parody of pop culture. GTA missions are a greatest hits list of action scenes from the all time greatest action movies.

So the people who don't get it produce a corpse clone of it. They weren't even creative enough to have a hero with a motivation for being there. He was just a faceless avatar to move around a creatively bankrupt world. And then they tried to give it CPR at the end by throwing Vin Diesel in there, who himself wasn't even creative enough to be anything but Vin Diesel (named Milo).

That's what happens when you confuse the paint with the brush. Fill your bucket with substance first, and then reach for your brush! Otherwise, you are painting with nothing, and fooling no one but yourself.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think you're taking the semantics a bit too far there; while you have a point about regurgitating ideas, you're missing mine, I fear.

 

A more thorough understanding of programming is only going to benefit one's skill at game design, much like a more thorough understanding of the color wheel, of types of paint, of mediums, etc. is going to benefit one's skill at painting. Inspiration and creativity are huge parts of it, but of the painting teachers I had - all of which were accomplished professional artists - every single one of them held solid mastery over the tools of their craft. I see game making fitting that same paradigm. You really want to have both technical and non-technical expertise in any art.

 

Anyway, this is now grossly off-topic, for which I apologize.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Excuse me while I get back to the topic, guys :)

 

Daltrey - very nice! Good analysis with the spacial axis. There's lots of things I agree with. Some (constructive I hope) criticism:

- the axe throwers aren't the only enemies that attack from more than one side at once, yet only they are the "bad guys" of mario's design you mention - since the same element exists in case of flying turtles and axe throwers and only axe throwers are challenging for you, then maybe this element isn't the reason behind it?

- Extra Credits has been mentioned a few times before and I too think it's a good reference. One thing you can see there is the length of the video. No matter how interesting it is, 16 minutes is a commitment not everyone might want to make. Especially since you get back to the same elements and repeat similar conclusions (like growing and yoshi) that could have been placed together and described in a faster, more efficient way.

- saying things in the end of a video that "there are hundreds of elements that build this game's depth, but we don't have time for that" makes the viewer wanna say "name ten more." And it's not a challenge - sentences like this just never sound good. They sound either ignorant or indicate that the author pretends to know more than he actually does, so why risk leaving this kind of impression?

 

All in all, I repeat - nice work and nice example how the game design can be analyzed.

 

Good luck in future videos!

2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0