A short and practical guide for beginners

Defining Game Design or what constitutes a Game Designer is as inexact as its field of study itself. For some authors, such as Schell (2008), says that the process of game design comes from making any decisions on how a game should be. …


A numerical game design approach for progression and fairness

While playing games, players strive for victory through goals and objectives, which are determined by many factors. Skills, motivation, resources, practice, and, more important, power play a crucial role in this process. The comparison between these elements is an important game design activity to achieve a fair gameplay experience.

For…


A game design tool based on in-game morals

There has been an on-going discussion for years on the influence of games on society. One side protests that video games stimulate aggressive behavior and normalize violence (Grossman and DeGaetano, 2014). According to this line of thought, killing (human) beings in a video game should trigger a negative reaction from…


Empowerment, deadlocks, and a small mathematical analysis

A game's economy is an internal system within a game responsible for all the mechanisms related to the game's resources [1]. In the game’s economy, the term resource is very open and comprises concepts from collectible items (such as coins) to the player’s journey itself. In general, a resource is…


How narrative theory can be used to improve game design

Final Fantasy IX is a JRPG released in July of 2000 by Squaresoft. It marks a return to the first Final Fantasy games' medieval style, which had been changed to a more futurist setting in Final Fantasy VII and VIII and then became dominant from Final Fantasy X onwards.

Final…


Do more with less code and greater flexibility

Computer programs and digital games are composed of many algorithms, tasks, and processes that create the expected software experience. You can execute these operations in parallel, meaning at the same time or in a sequence (also known as in serial).

Although most non-technical users would assume that executing operations in…


Breaking the “good/bad” dichotomy for the sake of more diverse games

While games proceed to permeate pop culture, their influence in society inevitably continues to be questioned. Different studies argue on both sides of whether the impact of video games is positive or not, and even on the degree or spectrum in which such influence is manifested.

This discussion is well…


And how to spot and solve them using simple questions

Working as a Game Development & Game Design teacher for over 5 years so far, I have the opportunity to oversee and guide a high number of beginner game designers in their initial efforts.


How to engage players using evolution, discovery, and rewards

Progressing through a game is commonly done by using said game's mechanics and resources. While the player's skill definitely increases as they get more experienced, these very mechanics and resources are also changed during the game session to enhance the player's capacities and expand the possibilities. …


The story of MoonGun, or, how to turn prototypes into complete games

During November of 2020, I participated in the Github Game Off Game Jam (a mouthful, I know) and developed a game by myself in the period.

Yvens Serpa

I'm a Brazilian teacher currently working at Saxion University (Enschede, NL) for CMGT. I write every day for education, programming, and as a hobby. [@yvensre]

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