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Fundamentals of Game Design

Seems like we’ve had a number of game related posts recently. And the streak continues.

Fundamentals of Game Design:

The first thing to understand is that games are made out of games. A large game is actually composed of minigames. Even a small game is built out of very very simple small games. The smallest games are ones that are so simple and stupid, you can’t lose. You can think of this as “game atoms,” if you like.

The fun comes from the mastery process. But what the player is mastering is the model. All games are mathematical models of something… Even games like Tic-Tac-Toe are expressible as math puzzles. Games of resource management over time (like an RTS or Civilization) are exercises in calculus. RPGs where you make choices in character building are actually examples of exploring possibility spaces searching for local maxima… games lie to us all the time about what they are really about.

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