There are a certain set of what I like to call “occupational hazards” in being a game developer/designer. The biggest one is that you spend a lot of time playing games. The corollary is that you spend a lot of time analyzing games, too. Having a wide range of experience with different games gives you a lot of reference points for the “rules” of different types of games. Not merely to copy them, but to also know when your “original” idea has even a chance of truly being original. Plus, I like the phrase, “You have to know the rules in order to break them.”
I’ve been playing some Might and Magic: Book 1 (M&M1) lately. So, let me share some of my analysis with you, so I don’t feel like I’ve completely wasted my time playing a truly old-school game.