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Game On: Energize Your Business with Social Media Games by Jon Radoff

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Chapter 11

Designing Game Interfaces

In this Chapter, you’ll learn:

  • How different user interfaces address different challenges in game design
  • How interfaces give you a way to tell your story
  • Ways to take your player narrative and user stories and turn them into an interaction map

Every game is a world. The purpose of an interface is to enable the player to step through a magical doorway that they can enter for a time. An adequate interface is one that enables a player to move around in this world in an efficient manner—but a great interface considers the whole experience.

This chapter explains how to take some of your previous thinking—the development of user stories and the creation of prototype game mechanics—and take them into the realm of tangible interfaces that players can use to experience your game. As you explore the creation of these interfaces, you’ll discover new things about your game: areas of unforeseen complexity, areas in which the interface alters the way you think about the game mechanics, or ways that the interface might change the way you think about the story of your game.

Doorways to a World

One of the major ways in which game development is so different from other types of software and websites is the way in which the interface might change the entire definition of the game. Consider a few examples:

  • Touch-screen: If it weren’t for the touch-screen interface, games such as Godfinger and Angry Birds wouldn’t exist. Similar rules could be created, but the ...

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