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Josh Bycer's Blog


Over the last seven years, I have been researching and contributing to the field of game design. These contributions range from QA for professional game productions to writing articles for sites like Gamasutra and Quarter To Three. My goal as a game theorist is to analyze past and present game design trends to better understand and forecast the future development of the industry

With my new site Game-Wisdom our goal is to create a centralized source of critical thinking about the game industry for everyone from enthusiasts, game makers and casual fans. To hopefully continue improving our industry and provide an easy to understand explanation on the concept of game design.


Member Blogs

Posted by Josh Bycer on Wed, 17 Sep 2014 04:55:00 EDT in Design, Console/PC, Indie, Social/Online
The term "floaty" has been used to define poor controls in video games and today's post examines the elements that make up great or "grounded" control schemes.

Posted by Josh Bycer on Tue, 09 Sep 2014 03:35:00 EDT in Design, Console/PC, Indie, Social/Online
Rewarding someone through playing comes in two types: Intrinsic and Extrinsic which require unique considerations and design. Today's post examines these methods using the updates to Diablo 3 and Payday 2 as examples.

Posted by Josh Bycer on Fri, 05 Sep 2014 01:22:00 EDT in Design, Production, Console/PC, Indie, Social/Online, Smartphone/Tablet
Understanding Game Design requires both an abstract and literal thought process and today's post examines these two and how you can use them when trying to create a game.

Microtransactions have become important marketing tools for both PC and mobile titles. However despite having the same purpose, there are unique considerations that must be taken into account based on the platform.

Posted by Josh Bycer on Thu, 21 Aug 2014 10:04:00 EDT in Design, Console/PC, Indie, Social/Online, Smartphone/Tablet
Creating a good tutorial can mean the difference of getting new fans and scaring them off. Today's post examines the difficulty of making a good tutorial and some suggestions for complex titles.

Posted by Josh Bycer on Fri, 15 Aug 2014 04:36:00 EDT in Business/Marketing, Design, Production, Console/PC, Indie
An underrated importance of video games becoming mainstream was the standardization of control design and today's post examines how this came to be with some lessons for new designers.

Josh Bycer's Comments

Comment In: [Blog - 08/15/2014 - 04:36]

That 's interesting and something ...

That 's interesting and something that I bet a lot of us take for granted. I remember just how horrible I was when I was learning the Playstation one controller for the first time and had to wrap my head around pressing the trigger buttons.

Comment In: [Blog - 07/16/2014 - 03:15]

The thing is that with ...

The thing is that with Payday 2, it 's not a loot driven game but their system does provide motivation for acquiring loot in the form of the payday card selection. r n r nThere is some debate however from fans that having a random chance define the progression model ...

Comment In: [Blog - 07/09/2014 - 12:57]

Here 's a question that ...

Here 's a question that I 've been wondering about for some time. The concept of catharsis or releasing tension and strong emotions, is there any research or studies confirming or refuting that video games are possible of producing a cathartic effect I remember when I was in college and ...

Comment In: [Blog - 07/07/2014 - 02:40]

A good example of padding ...

A good example of padding I feel would be Dragon 's Crown and the release version of Diablo 3. Both games force someone to play through basic content and doesn 't get challenging or interesting until several hours in. Dragon 's Crown 's first difficulty is at least a good ...

Comment In: [Blog - 07/07/2014 - 09:33]

It 's definitely an interesting ...

It 's definitely an interesting craze that has taken over. I have friends who go completely crazy for steam trading cards and there is surprisingly big business now happening with buying and selling those cards. r n r nRegarding achievements I think there is a fine line between something that ...

Comment In: [Blog - 06/30/2014 - 03:50]

Regarding morality, that is definitely ...

Regarding morality, that is definitely more a philosophical debate and I don 't know if I 'm the right person to answer that. I see things personally in the broader context: How does this event impact the world or people around me As opposed to examining every thing you do ...