Brain Design Central: TED Talk on Brain Manipulation

Brain designer seems like a less interesting job than game designer, but it does have a certain ring to it. And let’s face it, your work is more likely to be described as “mind-blowing,” which is how I’d describe this TED talk from Rebecca Saxe, who studies the brain at the eponymous Saxelab at MIT. […]

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Game artist: caught clipping

A game artist goofup A game artist has a hard life. You spend years – nay, a lifetime – honing your skills and craft. You sketch incessantly, driven by your passion for visual expression. You paint, you sculpt, you design, you draft. After your traditional art training, you pick up the digital tools of creation. […]

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Game design innovation… in today’s market?

I guess a few game designers were paying attention The game design plaint that I most routinely dispense is doubtlessly one you’re familiar with. Game design is a dying craft. Publishers have forgotten what makes great games. Sequels are the spawn of Satan. But maybe I was wrong. A few fresh game design ideas are […]

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Do good.

Do Good Now Do good while doing nothing? How about working on a cure for cancer while picking your nose? How many of you can do that? That’s what I’m doing today. I’m gonna do good while doing absolutely nothing. Okay, to tell the truth, I’m going to do good by installing the World Community […]

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JJ Abrams’ Lost Thoughts on Creativity

JJ Abrams’ Lost Thoughts, get it? Ha ha… sorry. Anyhow, a friend recently turned me on to TED.com, a site where you can view talks from the cognoscenti from all sorts of incredible fields and backgrounds. On TED, I recently found this entertaining and thoughtful lecture by JJ Abrams, the creative guy behind Lost, Cloverfield, […]

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Game design: Call of Juarez

Game design case study of the Xbox 360’s Call of Juarez I played a decent chunk of this shoot-em-up – “the only Western first-person shooter experience on Xbox 360” – the other evening. I’m curious as to what other Westher shooter experiences there might be in the game universe. I’m offering $25, public accolades, and […]

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Game developer subtly admits, “Our game writing was swill!”

Game writing in the original Gears of War is one of my pet peeves*, and I haven’t unloaded that gem yet. However, I’d like to quote a little news nugget I found in the February EGM. In a teaser about Gears of War 2 (Xbox 360), page 59, developer Epic Games is emphasizing the writing. The writing? […]

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Game design goofup: goodbye, Devil May Cry 3

Game design has changed from the Dark Ages of arcade development. Back when arcades ruled the roost, a game designer could assume a few things about his* audience. They were under 18. They were male. They were playing in a movie theatre lobby or arcade. And they were really freakin’ bored. The classic arcade audience […]

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Game design case study: why can’t I stop playing Bard’s Tale?

Game writing trumps game design? My current crap-game obsession is inXile’s Bard’s Tale for the PS2. An ill-fated classic-game revival, BT has very little in common with its storied predecessor (which I also loved back in the days when I was too young to buy my own computer – can you say “floppy disk swapfest”?). […]

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