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Chris Crawford on Game Design by Chris Crawford

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Blinded by Your Own Equipment

I was once asked to help save a floundering project. This game was in serious trouble: It was behind schedule, over budget, and not fun. I played the early alpha version and was appalled; it was an agony to play, and the reason was obvious: It was too damned slow. This was in the early days of single-speed CD-ROM drives, and the designers were eager to take advantage of the vast opportunities made available by this new technology, so they stuffed the game chock full of glorious graphics at every opportunity. Since RAM in those days was rather paltry, they didn't buffer anything; all the graphics had to be loaded off the CD every time they were displayed. The result was a triumph of tedium; every time you clicked ...

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