Skip to Content
 

How cool is game design

23 replies [Last post]
questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011

I've been "playing" "Magic Puzzle Quest" and for some reason - it doesn't have the same appeal that "Board Game Design" has...

Maybe it's because in BGD you can become a millionaire by having your game become so popular that everybody is playing it... Wait a sec - that's Pokemon Go! :P

No but seriously, for some reason I'd rather sit down and try to fight with figuring out HOW I can improve a design over playing a nice game like "Magic Puzzle Quest". The design bug has me...

When I think about all the collaboration between me and an artist - and the cool designs that come before it... Playing games - seems boring, plain and ordinary.

Does anyone else feel like this about "playing" vs. "designing" games???

ElKobold
ElKobold's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/10/2015
Personally, I think that you

Personally, I think that you have to play games to design games.

adversitygames
adversitygames's picture
Offline
Joined: 09/02/2014
I play a *lot* of games for

A lot of comments got deleted. I've moved the rest of mine to save them from the same fate.

I Will Never Gr...
I Will Never Grow Up Gaming's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/23/2015
questccg wrote: When I think

questccg wrote:

When I think about all the collaboration between me and an artist - and the cool designs that come before it... Playing games - seems boring, plain and ordinary.

Does anyone else feel like this about "playing" vs. "designing" games???

Not at all. As much as I absolutely love designing, I love playing games even more. They are a fun, engaging past-time that my friends and family are all able to be involved in.

Adding to that, a good (or great) designer has played a LOT of games, and continues to play a lot of games so they are on top of what's going on in the game world and know exactly what people like (or don't like). Not just old games or the same few games over and over either; you need to be playing all the hot new games that are out there wherever and whenever possible.

There are far too many designers who haven't played anything beyond Monopoly, chess and Uno, and their designs show it.

TwentyPercent
Offline
Joined: 12/25/2012
I like both playing and

I like both playing and designing games, but for different reasons.

I got into board games (leaving video games) because I love the social aspect to it. Half the fun is the social interaction, the other half is the challenge of the game.

I got into board game design first because I had an idea of my favorite board game, and after not being able to find this Holy Grail, I figured why not just design it. Board game design is my creative outlet. Clearly I (or any of us, I'm sure) aren't in it to get rich, although you can probably make an okay to modest living off it, with enough dedication.

Honestly, I'm not particularly good at it. But I do have something to contribute that I'm willing to bet a certain niche of people will enjoy.

There is one reason that contributes both to playing and designing board games. I'm a day dreamer and I enjoy imagining the games I play and design.

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
Not according to Reiner!

ElKobold wrote:
Personally, I think that you have to play games to design games.

If you remember that famously quoted line "I believe Knizia when he says he doesn't play others' designs much." It would seem to be the opposite of what you are suggesting. And from a Millionaire Game Designer too... So while this may be your personal opinion, it takes a real professional to exemplify that the opposite is true.

I'm not saying: "Don't play games."

I'm just saying, for me, I'd rather be designing games than playing them.

And if you "surf" the Internet, you can learn a lot about any game you may want to play. Learn how it's played, the mechanics used by the game, learn the "feel of the game" (artwork). And usually this is from multiple sources because most games get reviewed by several reviewers. Not only video but also written articles, etc.

Often times you don't even need to play it, because you have shows like "Watch it Played" or "TableTop" which actually demonstrate how the game itself is played. So from a sense of design - you can watch videos to see how the mechanics mesh together - as opposed to having to play yourself. Granted you won't have the game experience that you get from playing ... which could be positive also (and reinforce the value of a particular game).

Of course that doesn't cover all games - but perhaps the more remote, unheard of games, don't usually make it to your game night table either... Why all you have to do is do a search on "The Game Crafter" and you will find volumes of games - nobody has ever heard of. At least, most I have not.

And when it comes to money... most designers are not in it for the return. I, personally, would like to re-coup my investment in my two (2) games. That's my goal (not anyone else's goal). What that means is that I would hope not to take a loss for the time spent trying to make a design successful. And luckily it may be possible with "Tradewars - Homeworld" to actually still do that.

Again that's my personal motivation - of what I'd like to achieve.

Cheers.

TwentyPercent
Offline
Joined: 12/25/2012
questccg wrote:ElKobold

questccg wrote:
ElKobold wrote:
Personally, I think that you have to play games to design games.

And if you "surf" the Internet, you can learn a lot about any game you may want to play. Learn how it's played, the mechanics used by the game, learn the "feel of the game" (artwork). And usually this is from multiple sources because most games get reviewed by several reviewers. Not only video but also written articles, etc.

Often times you don't even need to play it, because you have shows like "Watch it Played" or "TableTop" which actually demonstrate how the game itself is played. So from a sense of design - you can watch videos to see how the mechanics mesh together - as opposed to having to play yourself. Granted you won't have the game experience that you get from playing ... which could be positive also (and reinforce the value of a particular game).

You can also watch every episode of The Iron Chef over 9000 times, but that won't make you a good cook; only experience can.

You can't fully comprehend a game until you play it. Sure, you may know the premise, you may know the game's strengths and weaknesses... and heck, you may know the game so well that you could teach someone else how to play it... but that doesn't mean you know the game, you just know about the game. Big difference.

The reason why designers should play games is so you can experience how various game mechanics function and interact with one another. You may hear other people explain those interactions, but you don't comprehend them.

To give another analogy, thinking of shooting a gun at a bulls eye. Know matter how many videos you've watched, articles you've read, guns you've analyzed, you're not going to shoot the bulls eye the first time. It takes experience to know how the gun feels in your hands, how it recoils, how your body responds to the recoil, etc etc etc.

Articles and review videos are great for previewing a game you may consider buying, and they are good for gaining some perspective on a game and trying to deconstruct it. However, it's not a substitute for understanding a game.

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
I live in Canada where guns are banned - no NRA.

TwentyPercent wrote:
To give another analogy, thinking of shooting a gun at a bulls eye. Know matter how many videos you've watched, articles you've read, guns you've analyzed, you're not going to shoot the bulls eye the first time. It takes experience to know how the gun feels in your hands, how it recoils, how your body responds to the recoil, etc etc etc.

Shooting a gun - requires reflexes and a steady hand. Not to mention keen eye-sight. All that is physical hand-eye coordination...

It has nothing to do with "Playing" or "Designing" games.

Both of those a "mental" exercises. They're is no "dexterity" involved... So no I disagree it's not like "shooting a gun"...

Like I said, the only thing you gain from playing the game is a sense of "involvement" with the game. You gain a personal "attachment" based on the experience you had (provided it was positive in some way).

But again, you can see that in videos such as "TableTop" because in those videos, you see both people playing and how they approach the game - even if it may be a first time.

"Watch It Played" is different because it's more informational (learn how to play). So that corresponds to other reviewer videos like "Dice Tower" or "Bower's Corner", etc. There are plenty of those... which show how a game should be played (from the rules).

And like you say, from those videos you can demonstrate how other players may play the game (effectively teaching how a game should be played).

ElKobold
ElKobold's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/10/2015
questccg wrote:"I believe

questccg wrote:
"I believe Knizia when he says he doesn't play others' designs much." It would seem to be the opposite of what you are suggesting. And from a Millionaire Game Designer too... So while this may be your personal opinion, it takes a real professional to exemplify that the opposite is true.

It might be true for Knizia, who have designed how many games?

For most mortal designers, not playing games will simply limit your perception.

adversitygames
adversitygames's picture
Offline
Joined: 09/02/2014
questccg wrote:TwentyPercent

A lot of comments got deleted. I've moved the rest of mine to save them from the same fate.

let-off studios
let-off studios's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/07/2011
questccg wrote:[...]the only

questccg wrote:
[...]the only thing you gain from playing the game is a sense of "involvement" with the game. You gain a personal "attachment" based on the experience you had (provided it was positive in some way).
I disagree with this. For even a moderately-complex game, the series of decisions that are made, and the weighing of the options when in the process of making those decisions, is generally difficult to emulate. Doing it yourself seems much easier - and effective - than watching attempts at someone who has composed a "play-by-play" video where they attempt to describe their thought process.

Not gonna touch that shooting-a-gun scenario, although I think the principles described are a decent analogy. I'd rather go with the concept of hitting the target consistently, which I first read about years ago in "Zen and the Art of Archery." But I'm straying off the point here.

If you want to argue that it's not worth your time to play games instead of constantly designing them, that's fine by me. Not that it matters, but I don't find the argument very convincing.

polyobsessive
polyobsessive's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/11/2015
Dr Knizia

ElKobold wrote:
questccg wrote:
"I believe Knizia when he says he doesn't play others' designs much." It would seem to be the opposite of what you are suggesting. And from a Millionaire Game Designer too... So while this may be your personal opinion, it takes a real professional to exemplify that the opposite is true.

It might be true for Knizia, who have designed how many games?

For most mortal designers, not playing games will simply limit your perception.

Also worth noting that Knizia has several teams of playtesters who he works closely with, and he says that they bring games to show him if they feel the games have something new and interesting. So, if you have people who can do your playing on your behalf, you can probably go without playing other people's games, but if not...

McTeddy
Offline
Joined: 11/19/2012
It's different for everyone's

It's different for everyone's style of design. Many professionals don't play much. Sometimes it's about keeping their ideas their own but mostly its because just they don't have time.

When you only have 24 hours in a day, you need to pick how you spend it. Are you going to make the project that puts food on your table... or are you going to play a game?

Game design and game playing are two different skill-sets. I mean... eating lots of food doesn't make you a better chef either does it?

Playing games is important, but it's also easy to waste a lot of time doing it. Not all playtime is "Research".

All-in-all it comes down to finding the balance that's right for you. Everyone has different pools of knowledge and strengths to draw on.

Being informed about the game industry is important to succeed there. Playing lots of games is only one path.

let-off studios
let-off studios's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/07/2011
Shooting, Chefs...What's Next?

McTeddy wrote:
I mean... eating lots of food doesn't make you a better chef either does it?
...Yeah, it does. You ever eat food from a chef who doesn't eat their own cooking? I don't recommend it.

;)

stevebarkeruk
stevebarkeruk's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/26/2008
The chef metaphor is a good one

Developing a broad palate, understanding which flavours and textures work together and which don't is, in fact, vital to being a chef.

You don't have to eat big meals, but it's important to understand the ingredients; being told what an ingredient tastes like is no substitute for tasting it yourself.

n1x012
n1x012's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/11/2015
This conversation is weird. I

This conversation is weird. I guess if Questccg thinks he doesn't need to play games to design good ones, let him design them. Then we'll ( and the public will) be the judge.

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
Flexibility of design

n1x012 wrote:
This conversation is weird. I guess if Questccg thinks he doesn't need to play games to design good ones, let him design them. Then we'll ( and the public will) be the judge.

Strange how people take a simple post and transform it into a debate about "if game designers must play games".

In my OP, all I said is that I find "playing" games to be boring, plain and ordinary.

I like the task of trying to weave together a design which is not too complex that children cannot play - but something that forces them to dig deeper into the game. While I hope that parents and "hard core" gamers find it "interesting" to play.

Personally, I'd much rather be working with an artist in trying to define the artwork for my game or having a box cover designed to give me more inspiration, etc.

Or working with a 3D Modeler to help define the models that I need, etc. I used to be quite experienced with 3D Studio (before Max) and have also dabbled a bit in AutoCad...

I could probably spend more time playing games - but I've got limited time to invest in playing - as opposed to spending time thinking about designs.

Ideas come and go - I don't have to be sitting in front of a desk with a board for me to get ideas about the projects I am advancing. I can do it anytime and anywhere...

Anyhow I did not want this to be a debate over who is "right" or "wrong".

I just wanted to state - that I find designing the more appealing hobby.

X3M
X3M's picture
Online
Joined: 10/28/2013
Perhaps you "don't like" to

Perhaps you "don't like" to play games. Because they are not interesting enough for you. Or not your style.

Therefore, you are designing games. In the hope you design something you like yourself? At least, that counts for me as reason to design the game(s).

Designing games can be a game/puzzle on itself.

Squinshee
Squinshee's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/17/2012
I'll admit that the design

I'll admit that the design bug is more addictive than most games I've played, both board or video. I'll also admit that I don't love playing my game, but I do love making it.

It's weird.

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
Validation!

X3M wrote:
Perhaps you "don't like" to play games. Because they are not interesting enough for you. Or not your style.

Take "Magic Puzzle Quest"... What I like about it, is that you can get FREE cards every 8 hours and each day you earn a NEW reward. But IF you want to collect more "Rare" or "Mythic" cards, you need to spend Crystals. It costs 60 Crystals for ONE PACK!

In my phone's game - I have no "Mythic" cards. So it kinda sucks.

So while I LIKE the game - I hate that I cannot get the cards I want to play with... Because of the Booster CCG model. It's cool ... and at the same time it sucks.

To be real honest, my last live playtest of "Tradewars - Homeworld" at the FLGS, was probably more FUN than anything I've done in the past 6 months... It's very satisfactory to see people who are just learning the game - get into it, that they use some of the deeper strategy. It gives you a sense of validation!

lewpuls
lewpuls's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/04/2009
If you've played a lot of

If you've played a lot of games, you don't need to play a lot more.

My favorite game is the game of designing games. I'd rather play one of mine solo than play something else.

ruy343
Offline
Joined: 07/03/2013
Actually...

It appears that what you're most interested in, QuestCCG, is becoming a game developer, rather than a designer. You talk a lot about the refinement process, as well as the honing of mechanics, which is the role of the developer in larger game companies, while designers typically are the ones who come up with a rough set of rules or a theme and run with it to the point that a rough game is made.

Personally, I'm more of a designer - I get a lot of ideas, but I rarely have the means to transform what I make into something great. I've made about a dozen games so far, and each one has hit a roadblock for one reason or another. In your case, however, you're more adept at refining and publishing the game, given your previous experience.

At least, that's what I glean so far from your introspective posts thus far.

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
Well I met a nice "Account Manager"

This weekend I had a Mini-Con at which I demo-ed "Tradewars - Homeworld".

It was a good experience most people who played the game enjoyed it.

The highlight of my day was speaking with an "Account Manager" for another local Game Designer. Looks like she will be involved in speaking with retailers directly - for a couple game designers.

She said that she liked my game - and told me about local distribution channels and how to get the game out to the locals (in and around my home - Quebec).

This was cool - because it kind of HELPS me in a positive way: I know of someone who is willing and able to sell to FLGSs.

Now I've got to get a better source for Manufacturing since as an "Account Manager" she would by-pass the distributors (who want a 70% discount off of retail) and would mean that I could sell at 50% discount off of retail...

There are still logistics to figure out, like local shipping costs or duties when receiving shipments from China, etc. I also need very competitive pricing from manufacturers or middle-men. We'll see what I can get as a better manufacturing price - considering I now have a couple options now:

1. Deal with a distributor that she told me of.
2. Deal directly with her and do the warehousing myself.

Still need to do a bunch of number crunching and see what works best...

Masacroso
Offline
Joined: 05/05/2014
questccg wrote:I've been

questccg wrote:
I've been "playing" "Magic Puzzle Quest" and for some reason - it doesn't have the same appeal that "Board Game Design" has...

Maybe it's because in BGD you can become a millionaire by having your game become so popular that everybody is playing it... Wait a sec - that's Pokemon Go! :P

No but seriously, for some reason I'd rather sit down and try to fight with figuring out HOW I can improve a design over playing a nice game like "Magic Puzzle Quest". The design bug has me...

When I think about all the collaboration between me and an artist - and the cool designs that come before it... Playing games - seems boring, plain and ordinary.

Does anyone else feel like this about "playing" vs. "designing" games???

I feel something similar but in the other hand Im too lazy to design a game, so my laziness compensate the fun. then in my case playing a game or design one is balanced xDD

But in general I get a lot more fun out of games (reading a book or seeing a film).

Syndicate content


forum | by Dr. Radut