Zu Gast im Clockwork Game Design Podcast!

May 28, 2020

Ich hatte die Ehre, im aktuell wohl besten Game-Design-Podcast zu gastieren!

In der neuen Episode von Keith Burguns Clockwork Game Design Podcast sprechen wir ĂĽber Game-Design-Theorie, Crimson Company (sowie die aktuell laufenden Kickstarter-Kampagne), die Unterschiede zwischen Brett- und Videospielen sowie diverse andere Game-Design- und Industrie-Themen.

“On today’s show, we have an interview with designer and theorist Fabian Fischer. Fabian is the designer behind Crimson Company, which is now running its fourth Kickstarter, which is currently doing incredibly well—at the time of this writing, it has over $33,000 pledged (and they were only asking or $11,000)! On the show, we discuss the difference between designing for digital vs physical, what game design theory needs to go forward, some thoughts about pre-game decisions, and a bunch more. Fabian (who folks over at our Discord may know as Nachtfischer) writes articles on game design theory, which you should absolutely check out, like this article on Insta-Tournaments, or this article on pre-game decisions (which we also talk about on the show). He also compiles a bunch of game design theory together into a “game design news” series he does called Ludomedia. He also does really cool smaller digital games which you should definitely check out here on his itch.io page. As you can see, this guy does not mess around! I am glad we got him on the show, and I think the conversation went really well, as expected.

Enjoy! And don’t forget to check out Fabian’s Kickstarter, while it’s still live!”

 


Crimson Company: Ragnarok kommt!

April 16, 2020

Hinweis in eigener Sache: Am 12.05.2020 kehrt Crimson Company erneut zurĂĽck auf Kickstarter (jetzt vormerken). Diesmal nicht nur mit einer neuen Expansion (“Ragnarok”), sondern auch einer Collector’s Box und einem ersten Blick auf die kommende mobile App!


Ludomedia #73

April 15, 2020

Ludomedia

Games media worth reading, watching or listening to.


Derek Yu: Death Loops

  • “Generally, the choice is between more polish, more ambitious game design, or shorter development time, and how much of each you can choose depends on your experience level and your available resources. […] One of the biggest strengths of indie devs is our freedom, which allows us to work in our own way, to make decisions swiftly, and to make bold choices that AAA studios might not be able to. It’s the lone wolf approach versus the large army approach. Unfortunately, it also means that we can be free to spin our wheels with very little accountability.

Jim Sterling: XP Boosters Are Some Sinister Bullshit

  • “I expect boosters to become more this decade and coming console generation. I think it’ll be the new popular way of capitalizing on the concept of monetized grind, especially with the growing popularity of battle passes and the sense of slow teasing progression they ferment.”

Keith Burgun: A discussion about “structure” in strategy game design

  • “Structure exists in the rules of the game when they have high interconnectivity or high ‘coupling’. […] Because these rules are a holistic part of the game […] they have a multiplying effect on the system’s potential depth. Componential rules, or low-structure systemic rules […], have something more like an additive effect, by contrast.”

Mark Brown: Anatomy of a DOOM Eternal Fight

  • “So getting through […] any combat encounter […] means finding answers to four key questions. You might want to think of these as priority, preference, preservation and position – or the four Ps. All four Ps must be considered simultaneously and constantly re-evaluated as new information arises, like running out of ammo or seeing new enemies spawn in.”

Tom Francis: Consider Giving Up

  • “‘Never give up’ is really bad advice, especially for newcomers. We’re very quick to romanticize dedication, and we’re quick to look at folks who already released successful games and say ‘Look at them! They didn’t give up!’ […] There are ideas out there that give you something back when you work on them, but you need to explore to find them. You can’t explore if you never give up on the first path you picked.”

Spacewalk Empire auf itch.io!

April 14, 2020

Ein weiteres Nebenprojekt meinerseits gibt es ab sofort auf itch.io zum Download! Spacewalk Empire verbindet Elemente aus Echtzeit- und Rundenstrategie. Es kommt auf zügiges Entscheiden und gutes Timing an, ohne dass sich das Gameplay in allzu viel Mikromanagement verliert.

Features:

  • Unique mix of turn-based & real-time strategy! Think on your feet and time your moves, but don’t fiddle with unit micro-management.
  • Random generation! Face a new level layout each match. Enemies spawn in random locations. You’ll never face the same challenge twice.
  • Single-player ladder! The level of challenge will adjust to how well you’re doing. What rank can you reach?
  • Exploding barrels! Because every good video game needs them. Also, screen shake.


Ludomedia #72

March 2, 2020

Ludomedia

Games media worth reading, watching or listening to.


Brett Lowey: Action Funnels

  • “An action funnel is any system in a game that takes a wide menu of possible player actions and limits it to a subset of currently possible actions. […] So help your players navigate a complicated and interesting game space without heavy proofreading, action parsing and calculation. Use Action Funnels!”

Brett Lowey: Skill Compensation

  • “Skill Compensation is the degree to which a player’s performance is reflected in the final outcome of a match. […] Varying Skill Compensation can have both positive and negative effects on your game design, depending on what other properties you’re optimizing for (evaluation, learning rate, playfulness, etc).”

Joost van Dongen: Five important realisations about game balance

  • “1. Overpowered is much worse than underpowered […] 2. Variety always adds imbalance” […] 3. Competitive players often dislike randomness and luck […] 4. Balance automatically becomes worse over time […] 5. ‘Perfect’ balance is impossible”

Mark Brown: How Level Design Can Tell a Story

  • “Environmental storytelling requires a certain level of deductive reasoning as we connect up details to create an overall story. We use investigative and archeological skills to determine relationships, cause and effect, and history. This makes us an active participant in the storytelling process and not just a passive viewer.”

Keith Burgun: Achieving playfulness in strategy game design

  • “A playful strategy game is deep: there is a huge range of possible tactics and strategies. […] A playful strategy game is expressive: each player plays the game a little bit differently […] A playful strategy game feels low-stress. You don’t have a feeling that if you make one mistake, you’re screwed. […] A playful strategy game has a balanced difficulty. […] You have to play seriously, but not so hard that you don’t have room for experimentation or so hard that the experience becomes stressful.”

BelohnungsmĂĽdigkeit und korrumpierte Motivation

February 18, 2020

Ich halte Minion Masters für ein fantastisches Spiel. Aber nach ein paar Monaten oder teils auch nur Wochen wieder ins Spiel zurückzukehren, stellt für mich eine beträchtliche Herausforderung dar. Nicht etwa, weil ich vergessen hätte, wie das Spiel funktioniert, sondern weil es mich vom Spielen abhält.

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Ludomedia #71

January 28, 2020

Ludomedia

Games media worth reading, watching or listening to.


Brett Lowey: The “Playfulness” Property of Strategy Games

  • “So I’m not talking about simplicity/complexity, and I’m not talking about depth. […] Instead playfulness refers to a property of games that encourages players to play with their gut/creatively, and minimizes the incentives to calculate/count/solve.”

Elliot George: Complexity and Noise in Games

  • “I noted that [players] are in principle unpredictable, but they are not the same thing as noise. In some contexts it is possible to improve ones ability to predict other players. […] Players are, at the very least, weighted noise generators, and in some contexts they are noisy pattern generators.”

Iggy Zuk: Modularity

  • “Modularity in game design can be used to improve the depth of a game by introducing complexity. This is done primarily by breaking up an object into many components and having them all do something. […] Systems become more fundamental to the overall structure of the object the deeper they are.”

Mark Brown: The Two Types of Random

  • “Randomness can be an incredibly important part of games. It’s used for variety, balance, rewards, the information horizon, and probably more things I’ve forgotten about. […] Understanding the difference between input and output randomness is perhaps the most important thing to learn.”

Randy Farmer et al.: Prosocial economics for game design

  • “Multiplayer games can help build a player’s social support network. What would game design look like if our goals included reducing loneliness, decreasing toxicity and boosting a player’s positive connections with others?”

“Insta-Tournaments”: Multiplayer-Solitaire?

January 18, 2020

In der Community seinerzeit gefeiert, doch von Spieleentwicklern allem Anschein nach weitgehend unbemerkt, erfand Zach Gage fĂĽr Pocket-Run Pool im Jahre 2018 einen ganz besonderen Spielmodus.

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Podcast: Indie Board Game Designers

December 24, 2019

Im Rahmen unserer Kickstarter-Kampagne zur ersten Erweiterung für Crimson Company war ich vor einer Weile zu Gast im famosen Indie-Brettspiel-Podcast von Patrick Rauland. Unser Gespräch gibt es nun hier nachzuhören. Viel Spaß dabei!


Ludomedia #70

December 16, 2019

Ludomedia

Lesens-, hörens- und sehenswerte Fundstücke aus der Welt der Spiele.


Christian Huberts: Die Spieler scheißen auf den größten Haufen

  • “Death Stranding belohnt somit Influencer. Jeder möchte viel Laufpublikum fĂĽr seine Leitern und am Ende fĂĽhren gleich fĂĽnf ĂĽber denselben Fluss. Der Teufel, in dem Fall der Spieler, scheiĂźt auf den größten Haufen. Alle anderen können der Elite zumindest den erhobenen Daumen zeigen.”

Jonathan Blow: Making Games in 2019 and Beyond

  • “It’s hard for people to understand what your game will be. […] Look, feedback is good. […] Seeing other people interact with your game can shatter any illusions that you may have. […] On the other hand […] if you release something in early access and it’s far from what it’s going to be, I think most of the feedback will be incorrect.

Mark Brown: The Most Innovative Game of 2019

  • “While making an open-ended puzzle game sounds great, it’s open to easy answers […] so the designer’s job is to actually lock you in and force restrictions on you.”

Rym DeCoster & Scott Rubin: Take Your #@*$ Turn!

  • “If a game is fun, but it takes a long time, it’s not that good. Or at least it has a low fun economy. […] If you can find a game that is a certain amount of fun, but takes like 10 or 20 or 30 minutes to play, that game is probably objectively better as a game, and you should seek those games out. You should reward the games […] that respect you enough to not waste your time.”

Stephen Blessing: The Incan Gold Experiment (GameTek 213.5)

  • “We had an abstract condition, which is devoid of any content or theme. […] The abstracts, regardless if they were playing more risky or more cautious […] scored higher than the other two conditions, and they also took significantly less time playing.”