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January 28, 2020
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Updates » Design
Rock, paper, scissors design in JRPGs  
by John Harris [11.13.19]
This is an excerpt chapter from the book Level Up: A JRPG Creator's Handbook, available in the current Storybundle, about using non-transitive character and monster powers to design interesting encounters.
Console/PC, Design

Game Design Deep Dive: Crafting mystery through gameplay in Nauticrawl  
by Andrea Interguglielmi [11.13.19]
In this thorough Deep Dive, Nauticrawl dev Andrea Interguglielmi walks through his process of designing this atmospheric puzzle game to evoke feelings of genuine mystery and wonder.
Indie, Design, Deep Dive

Don't Miss: Devs recount their near-catastrophic run-ins with the sunk cost fallacy 4
by Rich Moss [11.12.19]
"We can't just abandon that feature that isn't working! We've already sunk too much time and effort into it!" That natural human response can be the undoing of game studios, as these stories attest.
Console/PC, Programming, Design, Production, Business/Marketing

Q&A: Respawn's Mohammad Alavi works for greater diversity in game dev  
by Staff [11.12.19]
Ahead of his GDC 2020 talk on character diversity in Apex Legends, Respawn's Mohammad Alivi sits down to chat about how he got into games, and why it's so vital for game dev to be inclusive & diverse.
Console/PC, Design

Epic Games acquires photogrammetry asset library and toolset maker Quixel 1
by Chris Kerr [11.12.19]
The Swedish company has a variety of products designed to help game and movie makers create photorealistic 3D content including Megascans, a massive library of 2D and 3D photogrammetry assets.
Console/PC, Design, Production, Business/Marketing

Blog: Composing the iconic theme music for The Dark Eye: Book of Heroes  
by Gamasutra Community [11.12.19]
Composer Winifred Phillips shares her creative process in composing the iconic main theme for one of her most recent projects, The Dark Eye: Book of Heroes.
Audio, Design

Q&A: Designing the foreboding Apple Arcade Soulslike Bleak Sword  
by John Harris [11.12.19]
We speak with more8bit's Luis Jimenez about his excellent minimalistic Soulslike Bleak Sword.
Smartphone/Tablet, Indie, Design, Video

U.S. VA evaluating how more accessible games help veterans heal  
by Alex Wawro [11.11.19]
"Whether it’s veterans [playing games]...with their families or to keep in touch with their fellow comrades, it’s something that we really want to be on board with," says VA therapist Colleen Virzi.
Social/Online, Design

Don't Miss: How Game Freak designs the iconic monsters of Pokemon 1
by Christian Nutt [11.11.19]
In this classic chat Gamasutra speaks to Hironobu Yoshida, the final art supervisor of the 20-person team that designs the creatures that form the core of Nintendo's killer handheld franchise.
Console/PC, Design

Video: Insights from the GDC 2019 Narrative Innovation Showcase  
by Staff [11.11.19]
In this 2019 GDC talk a group of creative game makers share stories behind their innovative narrative creations: the ambitions they had, the challenges they faced, the solutions they invented.
Console/PC, Indie, Design, Video, Vault

Blog: Analysing the success of Free Fire, the other king of battle royale  
by Gamasutra Community [11.11.19]
An analysis on Free Fire, the leading mobile battle royale in South East Asia and South America.
Smartphone/Tablet, Design, Business/Marketing

Blog: Making a successful indie game using the GemuKai framework 3
by Gamasutra Community [11.11.19]
GemuKai is a framework for indie game development teams to define a project which brings the best development experience and the most possible success.
Design

Why the Hearthstone devs wanted to make an auto battler 1
by Bryant Francis [11.11.19]
Blizzard producer Melissa Corning and game designer Dean Ayala discuss the inception of the new auto battler Hearthstone: Battlegrounds.
Console/PC, Design

Video Game Deep Cuts: Disco Elysium Gives You A Pistol Whip  
by Gamasutra Staff [11.10.19]
This week's roundup includes pieces on Disco Elysium & Pistol Whip, as well as the science of addiction, Japanese arcades, cryptography in Mario Maker 2, and lots more besides.
VR, Console/PC, Social/Online, Smartphone/Tablet, Indie, Programming, Art, Audio, Design, Production, Business/Marketing

Video: How to make your game more metal  
by Staff [11.08.19]
In this 2017 GDC talk, Dakota State University's Jeff Howard explores how themes common in the heavy metal genre can become a foundation for video game storytelling.
VR, Console/PC, Smartphone/Tablet, Indie, Design, Video, Vault

Don't Miss: How moving from 2D to 3D shaped the design of Risk of Rain 2 1
by John Harris [11.08.19]
Risk of Rain 2 developer Hopoo Games opens up about the process of taking its acclaimed 2D roguelike into 3D, and what it takes to build a great roguelike with a small team.
Indie, Design

Steam game sales for 'the other 50%' 12
by Simon Carless [11.08.19]
So, I've been spending time corresponding with the kind folks who replied to my 'call for Steam data'. This is the first in a series of columns exposing some of that data - or interviewing folks anonymously about their experiences.
Console/PC, Indie, Design, Business/Marketing

Don't Miss: Designing decisions that matter in Orwell 2
by Daniel Marx [11.07.19]
"In this article I will describe the iterations and considerations during the development process that shaped the choice-based mechanic and the feeling of impactfulness of decisions in the final game."
Console/PC, Indie, Programming, Design

Blog: A battle royale analysis from Q3  
by Gamasutra Community [11.07.19]
Following its strongest quarter in Q2, the mobile battle royale segment outside of mainland China is showing signs of weariness.
Design, Business/Marketing

Learn Blizzard's lessons from 15 years of World of Warcraft world-building at GDC 2020  
by Staff [11.07.19]
World of Warcraft is one of history's most popular and longest-running MMORPGs, and at GDC 2020 in San Francisco you'll enjoy a rare look inside how this enduring virtual realm was built!
Social/Online, Design, GDC