[In highlights from Gamasutra's Member Blogs, our bloggers write about diverse topics, such as encounter design in shooters, adapting an HTML5 game's controls for the iPad, lessons from BioWare veteran Tobyn Manthorpe, and more.
Member Blogs can be maintained by any registered Gamasutra user, while invitation-only Expert Blogs -- also highlighted weekly -- are written by selected development professionals.
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This Week's Standout Member Blogs
Encounter Design In Shooters 101
Designing interesting gameplay in shooters that keeps on being entertaining is a difficult task. Eric Schwarz breaks down level and enemy design to help you understand how to design a good encounter for a shooter.
From Keyboard And Mouse To On-Screen Analog Thumb Sticks
Lost Decade's Onslaught! Arena
began as a web game built in HTML5. Before porting it to iPad, the studio had to tackle the difficult task of reimplementing the control mechanism. Here, Matt Hackett documents the journey from keyboard and mouse to analog thumb sticks.
From BioWare to Cedar Hill Games: A Jack-of-All-Trades Develops
Tobyn Manthorpe discusses his 10-year career at BioWare Corp. -- working on everything from Baldur's Gate
to Neverwinter Nights
to Knights of the Old Republic
, and Dragon Age
to the developer's Eclipse engine -- and the learning experiences that count.
The Half-Cinderella: Why Gameplay Never Leaves The Ball
Contemplating Kurt Vonnegut's lecture on the shapes of stories, Paul Sztajer argues that the ludonarrative arc of most games is good at going up on the Good/Ill Fortune graph, but very bad at going down it.
On Playing a Set Character in Video Games
One traditional strength of the RPG genre and increasingly many others is avatar customization. Rebecca Phoa, though, asks what happens if you simply have no choice? What then? Does not being able to control the main character from top to bottom make a game lesser?