Category Archives: Game Design Theory

My Second Favourite German Word

There is a quote that goes something like “If you can’t explain something simply then you don’t understand it well enough”, variously ascribed to Einstein or Feynman. It’s been getting to this point that has taken the time. Even now, … Continue reading

Posted in Game Design Theory, Random Thoughts | 2 Comments

A point about game design

Monday’s post attracted a couple of interesting comments, and I’ve pulled out this one from EJ to reply as a post because I didn’t want it to get lost in the mix. It’s an interesting point, and worth discussing as … Continue reading

Posted in Game Design Theory, Nostalgia, Old Skool Skirmish | Tagged , , | 9 Comments

Game Design Theory: Benchmarks for Other Skirmish Games?

Having proposed the Collateral nightclub shootout as a benchmark for modern skirmishes, I’ve started to think about what might be an equivalent for ancient/medieval/fantasy games. I’ve got a few ideas kicking about, but before I prejudice your thinking too much, … Continue reading

Posted in Game Design Theory, Skirmish games | Tagged , | 27 Comments

Game Design Theory: A New Benchmark For Modern Skirmish Games

  Thanks for all the film suggestions folks. As you might expect, I’ve already got a number of them, though that doesn’t mean I’ve watched them recently. Even those I’ve seen are well worth re-watching. One comment that I thought was … Continue reading

Posted in Eternal Battle, Game Design Theory | Tagged , | 32 Comments

Research is Weird: SF Worlds

This post is really to make you think about the way AI may work (or not), and to give you something to consider when you’re working on the imagined future of your game. However, I have to get there by way of the internet’s omnipresent … Continue reading

Posted in Game Design Theory, Random Thoughts | Tagged | 2 Comments

Balancing DS Campaigns

The campaign rules on page 31 of the DKQ quest book include a simple balancing mechanism to tailor things to your group. The balance of the metagame is very sensitive to the relative skills of the different players, especially how cunning the Overlord is … Continue reading

Posted in Dungeon Sagas, Game Design Theory | Tagged , | 7 Comments

Game Design Theory: When Is A Skirmish Not A Skirmish?

When it’s too big. In my head I have a pretty clear definition of a skirmish game. It’s the same one I’ve been using ever since I started gaming, more than 30 years ago. It’s not a term that I made … Continue reading

Posted in Game Design Theory | Tagged | 30 Comments

Designer’s Notes

Here’s a question for everyone, sparked by a comment on a recent post. If I self-publish a book, I get to pick what I want to include. As I like talking about the why of a game as well as … Continue reading

Posted in Game Design Theory, Random Thoughts | 39 Comments

Did You Miss This?

I’m a bit surprised by the sparsity of comments on my post about design theory. Did it get lost in the shuffle? There have been some great suggestions so far, I just thought there might be a few more enquiring … Continue reading

Posted in Game Design Theory | 4 Comments

Overwatch In DZ

First principles: if all else is equal, simple is better. The discussion around Overwatch has been both interesting and frustrating to watch at the same time. After reading many comments I ended up more confused than when I’d started, and so … Continue reading

Posted in Deadzone, FAQ, Game Design Theory | 38 Comments