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July 31, 2015
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Updates » Design
Uncovering innovation in the hidden picture genre Exclusive  
by Bryant Francis [07.31.15]
Serbian studio Eipix proves that there's a lot of innovation happening right now in the genre known as HOPA (hidden object puzzle adventures). You just have to know where to look for it...
Console/PC, Smartphone/Tablet, Design, Exclusive

The difficulty with game difficulty: Advice from the 2015 Game Career Guide Exclusive  
by Staff [07.30.15]
Looking for advice on how to tackle game difficulty? Klei Entertainment designer and programmer James Lantz offers a slew of practical advice on the topic, in our free-to-download Game Career Guide.
Console/PC, Design, Exclusive

Fear and change: How making the hard decision saved our game 2
by Gamasutra Community [07.30.15]
"A clear lesson we learned from this painful process was this; If no amount of adjustments fixes the problem, you have a fundamental issue which you must address first."
Indie, Design, Production

GDC 2016 opens call for papers, welcomes new board member Amy Hennig  
by Staff [07.30.15]
Heads up game devs: GDC 2016 officials have opened the Call for Papers, running until August 27th, and added new advisory board member Amy Hennig.
Console/PC, Social/Online, Smartphone/Tablet, Indie, Serious, Programming, Art, Audio, Design, Production, Business/Marketing, GDC

New VRDC virtual reality conference will debut at GDC 2016  
by Staff [07.30.15]
Game Developers Conference officials are proud to debut a new standalone Virtual Reality Developers Conference (VRDC) that will take place March 14th and 15th in San Francisco alongside GDC 2016.
Console/PC, Social/Online, Smartphone/Tablet, Indie, Serious, Programming, Art, Audio, Design, Production, Business/Marketing, GDC

Writing a more compelling game narrative 14
by Gamasutra Community [07.30.15]
"The majority of people never get anywhere close to the end of games. Itís much easier to start a great story if you donít have to worry about where youíre going with it. We all deserve what we keep falling for."
Console/PC, Indie, Design

Tips and trends in making escape games 2
by Gamasutra Community [07.30.15]
"I frequently get asked for help on designing these games. So I decided to answer some of the most frequent issues that people inquire about from general tips, to trends, to how much to charge."
Indie, Design, Production, Business/Marketing

Freddy's dev: Focus on your own success, don't tear others down 2
by Alex Wawro [07.29.15]
In a rare public post, Five Nights At Freddy's dev Scott Cawthon publicly admonishes his critics and asks 'haters' to turn their passion towards creating things, rather than tearing others down.
Indie, Design, Business/Marketing

Sponsored: Professional game development tools 4
by Dave Voyles, Sr Tech Evangelist, Microsoft [07.29.15]
Microsoft tech evangelist Dave Voyles runs down the tools that every professional game developer should know about.
Programming, Design, Production, Microsoft Sponsored

How a ragtag band of modders restored Star Wars KOTOR II Exclusive 8
by Bryant Francis [07.29.15]
How a ragtag band of rebel modders fleshed out crucial missing sequences in Obsidian's Knights of the Old Republic II, and how that material came to be incorporated into the official Steam version of the game.
Console/PC, Programming, Design, Exclusive

Devs mod Soda Drinker Pro to help stroke survivors recover  
by Alex Wawro [07.28.15]
Indie dev Will Brierly's sipping simulator Soda Drinker Pro has been repurposed as a physical therapy aid for stroke survivors after a chance encounter between Brierly and Myomo intern Sean Halloran.
Console/PC, Indie, Design

Video: How Blizzard built Reaper of Souls to redeem Diablo III 12
by Staff [07.28.15]
At GDC 2015 Diablo game director Joshua Mosqueira speaks frankly about the seismic shifts in gameplay design, core philosophy, itemization and rewards that Blizzard implemented to fix Diablo III.
Console/PC, Design, Video, Vault

Don't Miss: Why The Swindle only gives players 100 tries 6
by Phill Cameron [07.28.15]
Now that The Swindle is out, read our chat with dev Dan Marshall about his firm stance against unlimited lives, regenerating health, "aggressive tutorialization," and other challenge-sapping features
Console/PC, Indie, Design

A beginner's guide to writing for games 2
by Gamasutra Community [07.28.15]
A detailed workflow for cooking up a functioning game story. "No method can ever replace your individual experience and personality, quite the opposite: it must be used at your convenience to convey them into the story."
Console/PC, Design

GDC Europe EIGS Roundtable: What's the state of European indie dev?  
by Staff [07.28.15]
A few of the judges behind next week's second annual European Innovative Games Showcase at GDC Europe sit down to talk about what matters to European indie game makers.
Indie, Design, Business/Marketing, GDC, GDC Europe

What makes Symphony of the Night's level design so special? 4
by Gamasutra Community [07.28.15]
Symphony's level design, in general, has a clarity and consistency that never resurfaced with the same potency in the series since its release.
Console/PC, Design

On replayability: Emotion, mechanics, and necessity 4
by Gamasutra Community [07.28.15]
"Not every game needs to be replayable. ... itís not automatically, invariably a good thing, and something that developers should strive to work towards."
Console/PC, Indie, Design

Street Fighter for Designers: Top 8 Lessons from Evo 2015 Exclusive 4
by Patrick Miller [07.27.15]
The Evo Championship Series gives game designers a chance to see how fighting games try to create a rich, rewarding and diverse competitive play space. (And how players try to break it)
Console/PC, Design, Exclusive

Don't Miss: The visual guide to multiplayer level design 16
by Staff [07.27.15]
This highly visual 2014 guide to multiplayer level design, adapted from Ben Bauer's work at Crytek by Firefall designer Bobby Ross, gives you a timeless grounding in how team-based shooters work.
Indie, Design

Elegant balance changes: Keeping players from binging  
by Gamasutra Community [07.27.15]
"If you can keep players from feeling obliged to check a game every few minutes, or from feeling forced into huge daily binge visits, in certain reward contexts this is going to help players to have a much improved experience."
Console/PC, Social/Online, Design