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Elyot Grant's Blog


About Elyot:

A former gold medalist in national competitions in both mathematics and computer science, Elyot has long refused to enjoy anything except video games. Elyot took more pride in winning the Reddit Starcraft Tournament than he did in earning the Computing Research Association's most prestigious research award in North America. Decried for wasting his talents, Elyot founded Lunarch Studios to pursue his true passion.


About Lunarch Studios:

Since its founding in 2010, Lunarch Studios has been developing Prismata, a new turn-based strategy game that borrows familiar elements from real-time strategy games, CCGs and tabletop strategy games. Think Starcraft with no map, or Hearthstone with workers and an economy. Learn to play, or follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Visit now to sign up for a beta key!


Our Design Philosophy:


Strategy games have advanced surprisingly slowly. CCG, RTS, and tactics games all rely on the same basic 20-year-old formulas. At Lunarch, we disregard formulas in favour of a purely analytical approach: we define metrics—elegance, intuitiveness, novelty, simplicity, skill ceiling—and exhaustively search for game rules and design parameters that maximize them. The end result feels perfectly crafted and refreshingly fun to play.


We transcend "easy to learn, yet difficult to master", a deceptive tagline espoused by many games in which mastery ultimately becomes a grind of calculation, memorization, or dexterity. Instead, we heighten the skill ceiling by maximizing the richness of the emergent interactions spawning from simple game mechanics. Our games are a joy to master—a neverending endorphin rush as players uncover each new layer of strategic complexity.


As expert competitive gamers, some of our saddest moments transpire when a high-profile tournament boils down to a single unlucky card draw, low-probability execution mistake, or completely arbitrary rock-paper-scissors choice. Many games depend on elements of chance as a crutch to obscure hidden balance issues, or to offer cheap gambling thrills to conceal underlying shallow gameplay. At Lunarch, we vow to do better. And we must.

Genuinely Free

Free-to-play is here to stay, but the message from players is very clear. They're fed up with pay-to-win. They're fed up with pay-or-grind. And they're fed up with greedy corporations attempting to monetize their frustration. Player exploitation is no longer a sustainable business model, and games like Dota 2 have exhibited a very profitable alternative. We intend to build an enduring brand by respecting our users. We're in this for the long haul.


Member Blogs

Posted by Elyot Grant on Fri, 14 Aug 2015 01:58:00 EDT in Business/Marketing, Console/PC, Serious, Smartphone/Tablet
Superdata's latest industry report shows that Hearthstone pulls in over 20 million in monthly revenue. However, since releasing the game on phones, PC revenues are down, and 30% of mobile revenues are eaten by platform holders. Was mobile a mistake?

Posted by Elyot Grant on Thu, 26 Mar 2015 02:03:00 EDT in Business/Marketing, Indie
Have you ever wondered how indie devs survive conventions? Well, wonder no more. We've got five "life hacks for indie game exhibitors" that show how it's done.

Posted by Elyot Grant on Tue, 09 Dec 2014 02:59:00 EST in Design, Programming, Console/PC, Indie
What if a card game like Magic: The Gathering or Hearthstone had no luck? Would it be playable? Exciting? Balanced? Skill-testing? If done right, removing randomness and luck can actually make a card game better.

Posted by Elyot Grant on Tue, 02 Dec 2014 02:07:00 EST in Design, Console/PC, Serious, Indie
Unit-on-unit combat has a strong role in traditional games. So why does Prismata choose to abandon it?

Posted by Elyot Grant on Mon, 27 Oct 2014 01:48:00 EDT in Audio, Console/PC, Indie
Your video game's soundtrack is one of the most important (and underrated) elements of game design. Read about our process, and then listen to the product!

Posted by Elyot Grant on Thu, 16 Oct 2014 02:09:00 EDT in Design, Console/PC, Serious, Indie
Hearthstone's design team told us we'd be crazy to make a game without luck. But here's the secret to why games without luck are actually more addictive, and players are far better off without it (contrary to what most AAA studios would have you believe).

Elyot Grant's Comments

Comment In: [Blog - 03/26/2015 - 02:03]

My source is the following: ...

My source is the following: the sticker on the bottom of the stool says don 't go over 350 lbs. You can probably check if the sticker is there on yours.

Comment In: [Blog - 10/16/2014 - 02:09]

After 4 years, the base ...

After 4 years, the base set of units in our game just 10 of a pool of around 70, which are drawn randomly each game has not been solved yet.