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Beyond Game Design: Nine Steps Toward Creating Better Videogames

Book Description

As a game designer, you are always looking for new ways to make a game unique and interesting. Beyond Game Design:Nine Steps Toward Creating Better Videogames shows you how to make better video games by challenging you to think outside of conventional game design wisdom.Written as a series of essays by industry experts on different components of game theory and design, the book tackles the full spectrum of issues related to how and why players enjoy certain games. You'll explore player emotions, patterns of play, gender and cultural diversity, accessibility issues, and various types of player skills. Providing practical, hands-on design tips and advice, as well as the theory and psychology behind how and why people play games, Beyond Game Design will help you tap into new player types and new ways to engage players as you discover how to make better, more successful videogames.

Table of Contents

  1. Copyright
  2. Acknowledgments
  3. About the Editors and Authors
    1. About the Editor
    2. About the Chapter Authors
    3. About the Sub-Editors
  4. Preface
  5. I. Understand
    1. Step 1 Understand Emotions
      1. Player Experiences
        1. Player Experiences Must Be Accessible and Fun
        2. The Role of Emotion in Games
        3. Emotions and Engagement
      2. Measuring Emotions
        1. Paul Ekman
        2. Observing Emotions in Games
      3. Creating Engagement
        1. Requirements for Flow
        2. Flow and Player Experiences
        3. Other Research
      4. The Four Fun Keys
        1. XEODesign’s Research
        2. The Four Keys to Emotion in Player Experiences
          1. Fiero from the Hard Fun of Challenge and Mastery
          2. Curiosity from the Easy Fun of Exploration and Roleplay
          3. Relaxation from Serious Fun
          4. Amusement from People Fun
      5. Hard Fun
        1. Fiero and the Emotions from Hard Fun
        2. Hard Fun Mechanics: Mastery
        3. Summary of Hard Fun
          1. Hard Fun PX Profile
      6. Easy Fun
        1. Curiosity and the Emotions of Easy Fun
        2. Easy Fun Mechanics: Imagination
        3. Summary of Easy Fun
          1. Easy Fun PX Profile
      7. Serious Fun
        1. Relaxation, Excitement, and the Emotions of Serious Fun
        2. Serious Fun Mechanics: Stimulation and Value
        3. Summary of Serious Fun
          1. Serious Fun PX Profile
      8. People Fun
        1. Amusement and the Emotions of People Fun
        2. People Fun Mechanics: Building Relationships
        3. Summary of People Fun
          1. People Fun PX Profile
      9. Conclusion
    2. Step 2 Understand Social Play
      1. Why Social Interaction Matters for Game Designers
      2. What’s Happening When People Play Together
        1. Emotional Contagion
        2. Performance
        3. Learning
        4. Relationship Building
      3. Social Mechanisms to Use in Design
        1. Designing for Emotional Contagion
        2. Designing for Performance
        3. Designing for Learning
        4. Designing for Relationship Building
        5. Trying on Social Roles and Identities
          1. Creating a Custom Self
          2. Picking a Race, Joining a Guild
      4. Players Are Different
      5. The Importance of Testing Social Games Socially
      6. Conclusion
    3. Step 3 Understand Patterns of Play
      1. Roger Caillois
        1. The Brain
        2. The Limbic System
      2. Structured and Unstructured Play
        1. Toyplay
        2. Toyplay in Videogames
          1. Simplicity
          2. Attention to Detail
      3. Rules
        1. Dopamine
        2. Reward Structures
        3. Stopping Play
      4. Competition (Agon)
        1. Competitive Videogames
        2. Hard Competition
        3. Easy Competition
        4. Difficulty Settings
        5. Fiero, Puzzles, and the Brain
        6. Beyond Competition
      5. Vertigo (Ilinx)
        1. The Fight-or-Flight Response
        2. Rushgames
        3. Destructive Vertigo
        4. Pressure
        5. The Value of Vertigo
      6. Chance (Alea)
        1. Games of Chance
        2. Sources of Play
        3. Emotions of Chance
      7. Imagination (Mimicry)
        1. Mimicry in Videogames
        2. Intrinsic Fantasy
        3. Curiosity and the Brain
        4. Types of Curiosity
        5. Curiosity and Chance
        6. Types of Mimicry
        7. Kinesthetic Mimicry
        8. The Imagination of Mimicry
      8. Conclusion
    4. Step 4 Understand the Limits of Theory
      1. Introduction
      2. Anecdote
      3. Everyone Thinks They’re a Designer
      4. Player Types
      5. Interpretation
      6. What the Model Actually Says
      7. What This Means for Designers
      8. What Use Is a Theory?
      9. Conclusion
  6. II. Include
    1. Step 5 Include Both Genders
      1. Girls and Games
        1. What Is Inclusivity?
      2. Barriers in Representation
      3. Barriers in Learning
      4. Conclusion
    2. Step 6 Include Cultural Diversity
      1. New Opportunities in Game Design
        1. An Increasingly Diverse Society
      2. Games as Cultural Product
        1. The Politics of Diversity
        2. Mixing It Up
      3. Conclusion
    3. Step 7 Include Players with Accessibility Issues
      1. Introduction
      2. What Is Game Accessibility?
        1. Gamers with Disabilities
      3. Forms of Disability
        1. Improving Accessibility
        2. Visual Disabilities
        3. Auditory Disabilities
        4. Mobility Disabilities
        5. Cognitive Disabilities
      4. Disability Statistics
      5. Designing for Accessibility
        1. Remappable Controls
        2. Closed Captioning
        3. Accessible Documentation
        4. Assist Modes
        5. Easier Difficulty Settings
        6. Scalable Fonts
        7. High-Contrast Colors
        8. Audio Tags
        9. Play-Speed
        10. Announce Accessibility Features
      6. Conclusion
    4. Step 8 Include Players with Different Skills
      1. Introduction
        1. Temperament Theory
        2. Statistical Disclaimer
      2. Strategic Play
        1. Possible Neurological Basis
        2. Talents
        3. Friction
        4. A Brief History of Strategic Play
        5. Summary of Strategic Play
      3. Logistical Play
        1. Possible Neurological Basis
        2. Talents
        3. Friction
        4. A Brief History of Logistical Play
        5. Summary of Logistical Play
      4. Tactical Play
        1. Possible Neurological Basis
        2. Talents
        3. Friction
        4. A Brief History of Tactical Play
        5. Summary of Tactical Play
      5. Other Play Styles
        1. Diplomatic Play
        2. Extroverted Play
        3. Emotional Play Styles
        4. Future Research
    5. Step 9 Include Structures that Adapt to Player Needs
      1. Introduction
        1. Money Matters
        2. Coin-Op and Early Adaptive Design
      2. Men, Women, and the Tool Room
        1. Lara Croft’s Bum
      3. Diversity Issues and Insults, Real and Perceived
      4. Adapting to Player Skills
      5. Multiplayer and Virtual Worlds
        1. Playing in the Sandbox
      6. That’s All Folks
  7. A. Glossary
  8. B. References