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umen242

Looking for beginner tutorials/books on tycoon game design

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Hello all after several months of playing tycoon games in the style of
Game dev tycoon ( like 4 variations of the game )
kairosoft games
and few other small simple games
i want to try to develop my own small tycoon game .
but the problem is that i still can figure out how to design well balanced game , there are to many factors that involved .
i tryed to find some books or tutorials on the subjects with no much luck .
can you point me to some or any method beside playing the games to analyzed it ?

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can you point me to some or any method beside playing the games to analyzed it ?


Don't you think analysis is the best way to begin?

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If you are a beginner, playing is the best way. Otherwise, you can look at the code for transport tycoon which is now available

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Here is the paragraph about this genre from my tutorial article (it assumes the game will have a pet theme so that's why it's talking about breeding and stuff)

 

Sims and Tycoons – Some Pet Competition games and RPGs overlap with sims, in that they can all include breeding, collecting, and training pets, and amassing wealth, levels, and/or stats and special abilities tied to level. Sims and RPGs may also both include crafting and building up an infrastructure by climbing a tech tree. Where RPGs have an overall goal of becoming the best fighter in the world, sims and tycoons usually replace this with a goal of becoming the best farmer or breeder or collector or crafter in the world. As the player gains experience they usually unlock new resources and special abilities related to this profession. Tycoons are a subgenre of sims; there's no real difference between the two except that tycoons have more of an emphasis on making money via selling the results of your sim-labor, while non-tycoon sims sometimes don't even have a currency system. Sim games usually have tech trees. A tech tree is a structure where the player puts effort into unlocking or mastering low level abilities, which are prerequisites to unlocking or mastering higher level abilities. For more details see the crafting section below.

 

 

As far as balancing, part of that must be done in playtesting, it's not always possible to anticipate what kind of design will be balanced.  But I also recommend playing and analyzing various tycoon games.  Plant Tycoon is one that I recommend - it's fun but not all that well balanced; it has difficulty modes that don't really adjust the difficulty very well, and a shortage of seed storage that gets painful in the mid-game.  So it could be a good lesson in balancing problems.

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So here's the deal.

You're not likely to come across a book about designing a specific type of game because most games have a lot in common and it is actually simpler to learn how to become a designer, and then apply your tools to a specific context.

 

Personally, I think that one of the first books anyone should read is A Theory of Fun

It might not look like it, but it is actually a book you see a lot around and having had a chance to read it (albeit too late!) I can concur that it sets some of the foundation straight for "everything else".

 

As far as learning more specific skillsets (balancing), I'm with Tom: pick games, break them apart, try to reverse-engineer what they do, and then try to guess why.

You'll notice that a lot of progressions are not strictly linear, that there are dominant strategies but that they're not apparent from the get-go, etc.

Basically, break the game down and try to figure out how each of its component contributes to the overall fun.

 

Do this a few times, with a few games that are not built the same, and you're likely to come across ideas/questions of your own "what if?".

That's when you're ready to start laying down ideas on a paper (which is still miles away from a GDD, but every good idea starts with someone fiddling with their pen to try and put something into shape!).

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