Game Design

How to Create Video and Tabletop Games, Start to Finish


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SKU: 9780786469529 Categories: , , , Tag:

About the Book

Many aspiring game designers have crippling misconceptions about the process involved in creating a game from scratch, believing a “big idea” is all that is needed to get started. But game design requires action as well as thought, and proper training and practice to do so skillfully. In this indispensible guide, a published commercial game designer and longtime teacher offers practical instruction in the art of video and tabletop game design. The topics explored include the varying types of games, vital preliminaries of making a game, the nuts and bolts of devising a game, creating a prototype, testing, designing levels, technical aspects, and assessing nature of the audience. With practice challenges, a list of resources for further exploration, and a glossary of industry terms, this manual is essential for the nascent game designer and offers food for thought for even the most experienced professional.

About the Author(s)

Lewis Pulsipher is the designer of six commercially published boardgames, and is a frequent contributor to Gamasutra and GameCareerGuide. He is author of more than a hundred published articles about games and has contributed to several books.

Bibliographic Details

Lewis Pulsipher

Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 276
Bibliographic Info: 6 diagrams, 4 tables, glossary, index
Copyright Date: 2012
pISBN: 978-0-7864-6952-9
eISBN: 978-0-7864-9105-6
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vi
List of Initialisms viii
Preface 1
Introduction 3
1—The Process of Game Design 5
2—How Someone Learns to Design Games 47
3—What Is a Game and What Makes It a Good Game? 74
4—You Must Know Your Audience/Target Market 101
5—Making a Playable Prototype 131
6—How to Work With and Improve the Prototype 149
7—Designing Levels (Stages, Scenarios) for Video (and Tabletop) Games 178
8—Some Specific Video Game Issues and Genres 196
9—Designing Specific Types of Games 211
10—Reference Lists and Resources 221
Glossary for Game Designers 243
Index 261

Book Reviews & Awards

  • “recommended”—Choice
  • “excellent job…recommend”—The Opinionated Gamers
  • “this book provides useful tips and resources for game designers and those interested in entering the field”—ARBA
  • “an excellent collection of material…this is a book that all aspiring game designers should have in their game design library”—Game Nite
  • “most useful…the [author] knows his stuff…sugar-coats absolutely nothing…detailed and helpful”—Little Metal Dog Show
  • “offers an overview of the process of game design and explains what makes a good game”—Reference & Research Book News
  • “focused solely on a topic that isn’t well-covered elsewhere. If you want to design games, as opposed to just produce them, this is a great book”—