Psychochild's Blog

A developer's musings on game development and writing.

12 September, 2008

Weekend Design Challenge: Disasters
Filed under: — Psychochild @ 7:28 PM

As another Hurricane pounds the Gulf coast in the United States and I check that my flight is still scheduled, disasters are on many people’s minds.

So, let’s think about disaster-themed games and events this weekend.

8 September, 2008

Weekend Design Challenge: Anonymity

One of the best and worst things about the internet is anonymity. On one hand, anonymity allows people to be whistleblowers without putting themselves at risk; however, it also allows people to spread lies without being responsible for the effects.

So, let’s think about this in terms of online games. How does anonymity affect gameplay and metagame issues?

23 August, 2008

Weekend Design Challenge: The negative side of business
Filed under: — Psychochild @ 5:01 AM

I saw a really fascinating article online where Bill Roper of Flagship Studios’ fame talked about the demise of his company. It was a really fascinating and honest look on the inside of a business.

It’s also a perfect example of why I wanted to write and edit my book about business and legal issues. Here’s a competent developer who obviously was able to create a successful game as he did previously at Blizzard, but where not doing the proper business planning lead to a business failure.

(Personal to Bill Roper: contact me if you want to write a chapter for the next edition of the book. ;)

No particular challenge this weekend, but do read that article. A few of my own thoughts after the jump.

16 August, 2008

Weekend Design Challenge: Evaluating your local culture

This week, let’s turn our attention to ourselves for a change. Culture is an important part of games, so let’s take a look at what local cultural aspects are important to game design. This is hard, because it is often difficult to identify what makes your culture unique in the eyes of others.

11 August, 2008

Weekend Design Challenge: An Indie Game

This week, let’s look at another brief, indie game, Chatroom.

This is a brief adventure-type game set in the future. A few issues to consider after the break.

4 August, 2008

Weekend Design Challenge: PvP Event
Filed under: — Psychochild @ 8:31 PM

I’ve started work with a team on an upcoming indie game, Secondhand Lands. It’s a quirky little game involving sheep and wolves supporting different factions in a land heavily influenced by fairy tales. There’s quite a few PvP elements in the game, living up to the wolves vs. sheep characters in the game.

This week, let’s consider some possible PvP events in the game. More details about the game and the requirements after the jump.

27 July, 2008

Weekend Design Challenge: Review a Game
Filed under: — Psychochild @ 11:27 PM

This week’s challenge is going to be lengthy, but if you do it then it will be a great learning experience: write a review of a game.

More thoughts after the jump.

20 July, 2008

Weekend Design Challenge: Forming a community
Filed under: — Psychochild @ 10:49 PM

In this weekend’s exercise, explain how you would build a community for an online game on a limited budget.

My thoughts after the jump.

11 July, 2008

Weekend Design Challenge: Time off
Filed under: — Psychochild @ 8:00 AM

I wrote this entry ahead of time and set it to be published today. Figured I’d give people something to think about while I’m gone.

As I wrote before, I’m off visiting family without the benefit of an internet connection. That also means I’m not playing any online games. So, let’s think about what this means for most normal people.

How can we treat time away from our computers in online games?

7 July, 2008

Weekend Design Challenge: A new word
Filed under: — Psychochild @ 2:06 AM

Over at Brenda Brathwaite’s insightful blog, she talks about how she dislikes the term “gamer” on a very personal level.

So, this week, weigh in on your thoughts and propose new terms!

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