Mark Fennell | Technical Director | Game Developer

HTML5, iOS, Android, AS3, UX, Process

Game Development : What makes a great game?

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What makes a great game?

This is a mindmap I created to start to try to answer that question.

Its aimed more for the casual game developer, I use it as a loose framework for planning the casual game development and deployment cycle.

It also shows all the additional considerations that need to be thought through when creating a game.

 

 

What makes a great game

  • Story
    • Gives Context
    • Immersive
  • Appeal
    • Pick up and play
    • Broad age range
    • Broad appeal
    • Quick Fix
      • Short Levels
      • Gameplay Bursts
  • Design
    • Interface / Experience
      • Sensible navigation
      • Pause / Resume
      • Sound Controls
    • Graphics
      • Memorable Characters
    • Theme
    • Polished
  • Sound
    • Music creates atmosphere
    • Sound Effects
      • Non repetitive
      • Unique
      • Suited to the game type
  • Marketing
    • Blogs
      • Review Blogs
      • Developer Blogs
    • Building Hype
      • Pre release
      • Promotional
      • Videos
    • Promotional
      • Gameplay Video
      • Press Release
      • Screenshots
      • Cheat codes / Easter eggs
    • Social
      • Rewards
      • Easily Shared
        • Facebook
        • Twitter
    • Community
    • Publisher
  • Gameplay
    • Originality
    • Fun
      • Addictive
        • Evolving levels
        • New Challenges
        • Trickier puzzles
        • Curiosity
        • Surprises
      • Fair
        • Player can win
      • Psychology
        • Rewards
        • Overcoming Challenges
        • Risk & Reward
        • Exploration
      • Challenge
        • Mastery
    • Intuitive
      • Self explanatory Gameplay
        • Can be explained without words
      • Natural Controls
    • Mechanic
      • Makes sense
      • Learning
      • Role Play
      • Physics
    • Character
      • Upgrades
      • Skills
        • Take Time to master
        • Need to keep learning to progress
      • Items / Accessories
      • Avatars
    • Competition
      • Against friends
        • Social Networks
      • Global
      • Challenges
      • Betting
  • Updates
    • More characters
    • New Levels
    • Bug fixes
    • New Gameplay
    • Themes
  • Feedback
    • Bug Reporting
    • Praise
    • Criticisms
  • Types of Game
    • Action
    • Action-Adventure
    • Arcade
    • Adventure
    • MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games )
    • Music
    • Puzzle
    • Role-Playing Games
    • Simulation
    • Sports
    • Strategy
    • Gamer Profiles
      • Socializer
      • Conqueror
      • Achiever
      • Mastermind
      • Seeker
      • Daredevil
      • Solver
      • Survivor
  • Rewards
    • Unlockable items
    • Leaderboards
    • Achievements
    • Rank and Status
    • Power
    • Money

Game Concepting: Monster Trucks and Zombies

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I love making games, and at any one time I have a few under development, some coded by me, some outsourced. I have been building games for web ( and recently mobile ) for a number of years now, and want to share the development process that I use to take the game from concept all the way through to production and release.

So this post will look at the first part. Concepting.

I have an idea for an iPhone game, it involves Zombies and Monster Trucks, for some reason those two things together really resonate with me. I have a few ideas for gameplay mechanics and how it might work, but nothing concrete yet.

My first stage is to create a mindmap of the game. I use this to throw down all my ideas, then I start to hone and iterate it into what I think would make a fun game.

I find mindmaps really powerful at this stage, as they are fast to use, and allow me a quick overview of all parts of the game process.

Below is my iterated mindmap of my game involving Monster Trucks and Zombies, and this will be the basis for the next stage in my game development process – creating a Game Definition Document.