Interactive Gameplay – Week 2

Games Design Theory and Preparation and Production 2

This lecture was about the thoughts behind creating games and the importants points that must always be considered.


We have to be enthusiastic about creating a game or otherwise it will not work

This is what the lecturer said and I realised he was right. We were given the assignment for game design in week 1 and since then my brain has gone into overdrive and is very fuzzy now trying to come up with ideas. My ideas go round and round. I have a few but have to fine tune my final idea so it can become a working game, at least in theory anyway!

Basic Game Design Principles

Player empathy-A successful game is one that keeps the player in mind at all times.

                            -You have to try and anticipate the players every move and the game to                                              respond intelligently.

                            -Observe the player whilst they are playing your game so you can resolve                                         any problems or issues that might arise.

Feedback– This is what makes a good game and happens during gameplay.

                   -Interaction between a game and the player is different from any other type of                                 entertainment.

                   -Feedback can come whilst the game is in play but be careful as a designer not to                            underestimate the player and have too many “messages.”

Grounding the Player– What, Why and Where? Players should know the answers to this.

                                        Immediate Goal-Find out who and where you are.

                                        Medium Goal-To get away, hide, find a weapon, find other objects.

                                        Long Term Goal-Create an army for survival, to overcome the bad                                                       guy.

                                        “Dayz” a game with a goal that is hard to define.

                                        Goals should finally lead to success.

The moment to moment experience-Don’t let the player get bored.

                                                                 -The player should be entertained moment to moment.

                                                                 -Give the player choices with outcomes so they have                                                                               something to think about and do each moment.

                                                                  “Dragon Guard” a boring game with too much                                                                                           repetition.

Emerging Systems  -Games are worlds of their own.

                                 -The player and game interact with each other creating different game                                               experiences-Perception.

Immersion-  When the player is lost in the game and forgets the real world.

                    -“Half Life 2” an example of a game where the world within the game has all the                               answers. You never want to leave the game world.

Writing– How the whole game is written.

Structure and Progression

Designing with Limitations– Understanding what platform the game is being designed for                                                              and what software is available on it.

Brilliant games are ones that players find new ways to solve problems that the designer did not anticipate to be there. Some examples are:

  • Dishonored
  • Deus Ex
  • Skyrim
  • System Shock 2
  • Borderlands 1 and 2

So many things to think about to make a game. Still not sure how my ideas will work or how intensive the game is meant to be. Still thinking and still confused……


During the lecture some of the students played ‘Bio Shock.’ The rest of us observed.

  • Choice is very central to the theme of Bioshock
  • The loading screens are very clear
  • Atlas gives the player a ‘goal,’ he is going to help him get to higher ground- this is an aim.
  • The game slowly introduces you to the rule and tools.
  • “Find a weapon” “Look near the broken door” -hint.
  • The game has its own language-slang.
  • Electra bolt-tool.
  • Thuggish slicer-tool
  • “Follow the compass arrow to your goal”
  • Revolver-bullets
  • Vita chamber
  • RIP
  • Tools selected
  • Killed again

This game is about making the right choices but how do you know as a first time player which choice is the best. Once we know the right choice then as human beings it is hard to make a wrong choice. We could think what choices other people would make and react with the game.

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