Through taking CS 247G, I’ve been able to build a great foundation for appreciating, understanding, and developing different types of games. Growing up, I had played many different types of games, most of which through the computer.
Formalizing the game design process with clear intentionality in every design decision was something I was completely unaware of ; through the class, I appreciate how we’ve been able to dive deep into a wide range of games: from analog to card games to video games like Lague of Legends, I was able to get a sense of what people were developing now, and I appreciate the care to emphasize the current state of game development.
Some of the biggest takeaways I had were from the abstract fundamentals we focused on in this class. One useful framework was the types of fun (sensation, fantasy, narrative, fellowship, discovery, expression, submission), and through critical plays we did several others for different types of games + sensations, like horror games, puzzles, narratives, etc.
In particular, I now share a deep admiration for the design process that thoughtful and unique games require. In particular, learning all the different variations of werewolf and designing our own versions of similar games was great, because it helped me develop a mental model for how to break a game down to its constituent parts and tie together a narrative that also regulates the different rules for the game.
The talk by George Fan for the onboarding in Plants vs. Zombies assignment. The focus on onboarding for players and that level of detail and care to enable each user who comes onto Plants vs Zombies was a great example of the care and detail that goes into it, and it’s transferable to different types of games and applications as a whole:
I also appreciated the focus on breaking down games into rounds, each with specific processes, whether physical, digital ,or oral, to better understand the game. This mental model was great for helping me understand the game were were analyzing.
In a game like Avalon, there’s an ulterior focus to also be persuasive, to play mindgames, built into the mechanics of the game. Similarly, for social games like Card Against Humanity, it’s important to be funny, perhaps to read a room, to be able to be funny to other people. This kind of learning helped me implement feedback for games much more effectively.
In the future, I hope to continue to playtest various games and integrate feedback from teammates effectively.
My P1 was a great experience in designing the rules of a game from scratch. We took a game from 0 to 1 and designed the game in its entirety, which was a great experience.
My P2 was a great experience in designing a game, and we were met with a lot of challenges. We decided to create a digital game mixed with an Escape Room. The digital component was going to be a single arduino-connected door that would open or let some kind of key down. First, we knew that we had to develop the different rules of the game. After we developed the theme and the rules for the game we then developed the puzzles. This part was great and very fun; we went around and had to buy props and different tools to develop the games. After developing the games, we had a great ability to then connect all of the games together.
In short, I had a great time in CS 247G and learned a great deal about myself and how to design games.