Thursday, February 17, 2011

"Do Books HAVE T-Shirts?"

That's what someone recently said to me.


There are so many awesome designs based on artwork from "Level Up! The Guide to Great Video Game Design," I don't know which one I want to wear first. Maybe I'll wear all of them at once and walk around like that kid in "A Christmas Story"!

What are you waiting for? Christmas!??
You can get your official LEVEL UP! T-shirt right here!

Friday, February 4, 2011

The Game Designer's Manifesto

I've been recently interviewing lots of game designers and one of my questions is "what is your game design philosophy?"

I figured if I asked a question like this, I'd better have one for myself ... and it turns out I do. I rediscovered my "Game Designer's Manifesto" in an old notebook and have transcribed it here for you.



1. I will be open to good ideas no matter who and where they come from.

2. I will focus on the "moment to moment" gameplay without losing sight of the whole project.

3. I will work out ideas and concepts on paper, in prototypes and in discussion before committing other people's time, energy and effort to work.

4. I will accept that change happens and is neccessary as long as it is not constant and arbitrary.

5. I will strive to lock down the "Three C's" (Camera, Control, Character) as soon as possible and not change them unless absolutely neccessary.

6. I will communicate ideas and changes in design with team members and work with them on how best to execute those ideas and changes.

7. I will play my own game as often as possible during the course of production.

8. I will play other people's games in order to expand my own knowledge.

9. I will always follow a negative comment with a "because" and be open to civilized debate if disagreements arrise.

10. I will provide feedback as quickly and clearly and in person if possible.

11. I will give a positive comment when providing feedback.

12. I will create gameplay that enables and empowers the player towards success.


I hope all you current and future game designers take these points to heart - or are inspired to cultivate your own "game design philosophy."

Catch the Doodle Bug!

I love sketching out ideas for new games and making paper designs. I also love seeing other people's designs (Ever since I first read "The Art of Star Wars" I got bit by the concept art bug)

Obviously the guys at love these too and are showcasing the "napkin doodles" of game developers.

It's fun and inspiring stuff - always great to see the creative mind at work! Who knows, you might see one or two of my designs up there one day!