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Chris Crawford on Game Design by Chris Crawford

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The First Proposal

It was time to assemble my thoughts; I set to work writing a proposal. It led off with a tiny story about being marooned with a little creature called a Siboot (“Bootsie” with the syllables reversed). The player, a business traveler, was on board a spacecraft that lost an engine on takeoff and crashed several hundred miles from the spaceport, leaving only the player and a Siboot surviving. (Oddly enough, the day after my publisher received the proposal, the Space Shuttle Challenger was destroyed by an engine failure on takeoff.) The core concept of this first proposal was the Interspecies Iconic Language card, which was a table of icons that could be used for simple communications by simply pointing at icons in sequence. This ...

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