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Fundamentals of Game Design, Third Edition

Book Description

Now in its third edition, the classic book on game design has been completely revised to include the latest developments in the game industry. Readers will learn all the fundamentals of concept development, gameplay design, core mechanics, user interfaces, storytelling, and balancing. They’ll be introduced to designing for mobile devices and touch screens, as well as for the Kinect and motion-capture gameplay. They’ll learn how indie developers are pushing the envelope and how new business models such as free-to-play are influencing design. In an easy-to-follow approach, Adams offers a first-hand look into the process of designing a game, from initial concept to final tuning.

This in-depth resource also comes with engaging end-of-chapter exercises, design worksheets, and case studies.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover Page
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright Page
  4. Contents
  5. Introduction
    1. Whom Is This Book For?
    2. How Is This Book Organized?
    3. A Note on the Downloadable Files
  6. 1 Games and Video Games
    1. What Is a Game?
    2. Conventional Games Versus Video Games
    3. Games for Entertainment
    4. Serious Games
    5. Summary
  7. 2 Designing and Developing Games
    1. An Approach to the Task
    2. Key Components of Video Games
    3. The Structure of a Video Game
    4. Stages of the Design Process
    5. Game Design Team Roles
    6. Game Design Documents
    7. The Anatomy of a Game Designer
    8. Summary
  8. 3 The Major Genres
    1. What Is a Genre?
    2. The Classic Game Genres
    3. Summary
  9. 4 Understanding Your Player
    1. VandenBerghe’s Five Domains of Play
    2. Demographic Categories
    3. Gamer Dedication
    4. The Dangers of Binary Thinking
    5. Summary
  10. 5 Understanding Your Machine
    1. Home Game Consoles
    2. Personal Computers
    3. Portable Devices
    4. Other Devices
    5. Summary
  11. 6 Making Money from Your Game
    1. Direct Payment Models
    2. Indirect Payment Models
    3. World Markets
    4. Summary
  12. 7 Game Concepts
    1. Getting an Idea
    2. From Idea to Game Concept
    3. Summary
  13. 8 Game Worlds
    1. What Is a Game World?
    2. The Purposes of a Game World
    3. The Dimensions of a Game World
    4. Realism
    5. Summary
  14. 9 Creative and Expressive Play
    1. Self-Defining Play
    2. Creative Play
    3. Other Forms of Expression
    4. Game Modifications
    5. Summary
  15. 10 Character Development
    1. The Goals of Character Design
    2. The Relationship Between Player and Avatar
    3. Visual Appearances
    4. Character Depth
    5. Audio Design
    6. Summary
  16. 11 Storytelling
    1. Why Put Stories in Games?
    2. Key Concepts
    3. The Storytelling Engine
    4. Linear Stories
    5. Nonlinear Stories
    6. Granularity
    7. Mechanisms for Advancing the Plot
    8. Emotional Limits of Interactive Stories
    9. Scripted Conversations and Dialogue Trees
    10. When to Write the Story
    11. Other Considerations
    12. Summary
  17. 12 Creating the User Experience
    1. What Is the User Interface?
    2. Player-Centric Interface Design
    3. The Design Process
    4. Managing Complexity
    5. Interaction Models
    6. Camera Models
    7. Visual Elements
    8. Audio Elements
    9. Input Devices
    10. Navigation Mechanisms
    11. Accessibility Issues
    12. Allowing for Customization
    13. Summary
  18. 13 Gameplay
    1. Making Games Fun
    2. The Hierarchy of Challenges
    3. Skill, Stress, and Absolute Difficulty
    4. Commonly Used Challenges
    5. Actions
    6. Saving the Game
    7. Summary
  19. 14 Core Mechanics
    1. What Are the Core Mechanics?
    2. Key Concepts
    3. The Internal Economy
    4. Progression Mechanics
    5. Tactical Maneuvering Mechanics
    6. Social Interaction Mechanics
    7. Core Mechanics and Gameplay
    8. Core Mechanics Design
    9. Random Numbers and the Bell-Shaped Curve
    10. Summary
  20. 15 Game Balancing
    1. What Is a Balanced Game?
    2. Avoiding Dominant Strategies
    3. Incorporating the Element of Chance
    4. Making PvP Games Fair
    5. Making PvE Games Fair
    6. Managing Difficulty
    7. Understanding Positive Feedback
    8. Other Balance Considerations
    9. Design to Make Tuning Easy
    10. Summary
  21. 16 General Principles of Level Design
    1. What Is Level Design?
    2. Key Design Principles
    3. Layouts
    4. Expanding on the Principles of Level Design
    5. The Level Design Process
    6. Pitfalls of Level Design
    7. Summary
  22. 17 Design Issues for Online Gaming
    1. What Are Online Games?
    2. Advantages of Online Games
    3. Disadvantages of Online Games
    4. Design Issues
    5. Technical Security
    6. Persistent Worlds
    7. Social Problems
    8. Summary
  23. Glossary
  24. References
  25. Index