Sunday Sidebar: Get into Game Design

Assembly is brutal.

Due to the wake of madness trailing behind E3, this week we’re taking a brief pause from meeting developers. I’m flipping it over to you, dear reader. You are the developer of the future. This week I read independent game developer Anna Anthropy’s Rise of the Videogame Zinesters, a call to arms for would-be developers […]

VGW University: Jumbled genres

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Nintendo’s The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword has proven to be a divisive game in the industry. On one hand it garnered a number of perfect reviews on several sites while a few others, such as Zero Punctuation, were less enthusiastic. The negative reviews are of particular note, however, in that they focus either on […]

VGW University: Co-op, single player and other Holiday memories

Games have always been an important part of my family. My Grandfather taught himself advanced math, so a fascination with rule-based systems like games came naturally. Games found their way into Christmas celebrations when my mother was young, with the family playing their new or favorite board games throughout the day. As even more active […]

VGW University: Let’s have a design jam!

Hello again students, I hope you’ve enjoyed your vacation while I was on sabbatical. VGW University is now back in session. The first thing many students in game design and development need to learn is that video games are difficult to make. Games take a lot of time, energy and work to produce. Developers often spend […]

Working With Intertextuality in Game Design | Part 3: Literature and Writing

VGW University’s 3-part series on Intertextuality in game design explores the shaping of media’s meanings through references or inspirations of other work. It concludes with a look at the richest form of intertextual influences, literature. Before digesting this, catch yourself up on Chris Totten’s entire series:  PART 1: NON-DIGITAL GAMES PART 2: FILM AND LIVE PERFORMANCES Literature […]

VGW Scribble: Battle of the -ologists

Game design programs at universities are becoming more and more popular, but there was a dark time when the academic study of games was a fractured, contentious endeavor. This week’s Scribble chronicles the struggle between the Narratologists and the Ludologists, and how the shift in focus toward Narrative Design seeks to end to this destructive […]

Working With Intertextuality in Game Design | Part 2: Film and live performances

In Part 1, we learned that Intertextuality in game design is the shaping of media’s meanings through references or inspirations of other work. We also touched on the wide spectrum of knowledge successful game developers need in order to produce video game gold. Now, VGW University’s examination of Intertextuality continues with a look at film and […]

Working With Intertextuality in Game Design | Part 1: Non-Digital Games

Game design as a discipline and field of study is at a crossroads. On one hand, you have people studying and creating games from a variety of backgrounds: English, architecture, economics, computer science, psychology, film studies, etc. On the other there are the bevy of schools that are adopting game design, art and production programs […]

VGW University: Fun with Core Game Mechanics!

Oh man, talking to students about their “game ideas” is interesting. As you learned during your new student orientation, game design is not an easy process, and many students come to game design school thinking that their wide-eyed AAA ideas are going to be their final projects. Not so much. I hear stories about galactic […]

VGW University Homework #1: Develop your play journal

Welcome back to VGW University! If this is your first time in class, please read the New Student Orientation first. We believe that better outlooks on games start with better play habits. Now, I could lecture for days and days on balancing your time playing your favorite games with being a productive member of society, […]

VGW University: New Student Orientation

Stay up to date with VGW University by bookmarking this link Hello and welcome to your first day of VGW University, our series of academically-focused articles that will educate readers on aspects of game design theory and practice. Game education is a relatively new field of study with a quickly growing library of seminal works. […]

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Prattle #4: Theory in Practice

Our intrepid Prattlers stubbornly continue head-long into the world of game design academia! Professor Chris Totten brings us his vision of balancing theory and tech in the classroom, and shares his passion for approaching game design with an architect’s eye. SPECIAL THANKS: to Built By Snow (listen | buy) for the use of their song […]

Prattle #3: Game School Confidential

Prattle continues the investigation into game design academia, this time from a professor’s perspective. Jeff  Howard of Dakota State University weighs in with the values he seeks to impart to his students, and a look at his program’s efforts to prepare the next generation of designers through an intense focus on teamwork and communication skills. […]

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