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Players Making Decisions: Game Design Essentials and the Art of Understanding Your Players by Zack Hiwiller

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Preface

“If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe.”

—CARL SAGAN

This Carl Sagan quote from Cosmos intends to cheekily point out that even a simple object like an apple pie contains a multitude of layers, depending on your level of analysis. Although the baker feels that the apples, sugar, and flour are the fundamental building blocks of an apple pie, the physicist sees down to the atoms and fundamental particles that make up the pie itself. It is a profound and long-lasting quotation because of the disconnect that the listener experiences. Making an apple pie is prosaic. Inventing the universe is deity-level stuff.

Teaching game design offers a similar conundrum. Making games is fairly easy, as is apparent ...

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