Game concept

Tutorials in the game concept theme will essentially help you to do three things:


- TO DEFINE THE CORNERSTONES OF A GAME
Having a good idea is not enough to develop a good game concept. It must meet certain constrains and requirements. My tutorials will provide a method to guide you along the process.

- TO WRITE A PROFESSIONAL PITCH
The pitch is the "must have" document you will use when showing your game project to potential partners like publishers. I will give you a template and explain how to make it persuasive.

- TO GIVE A CATCHY ORAL PRESENTATION
In just 5 minutes and get your listener's attention. Most of the time, that's how you'll introduce your game project ... and don't expect to have more time.

Game mechanisms

How can you embed a monetization system in your game? What should you plan in your design to accommodate events that will keep your community on its toes? How should you design and integrate game achievements?

Game mechanics are not only about camera management, controls interface or menu design. I will provide tutorials for those but I will also cover other key aspects of game mechanics that are becoming increasingly important: monetization, going viral and long term player retention. Today, we don't design games as stand-alone applications but we strive to create long-lasting experience for players. In others words, we design games so they become part of a player's life.

Level design

LEVEL DESIGN is a topic that is not well covered in game design literature. There is a reason for that; Level design appears very different from one genre to the other. What is common between the level designs of Call of Duty and Angry Birds?

There is no theory that can apply uniformly to all genres indeed, but there are good practices to follow, no matter the genre. 

The first tutorial of this serie will describe what I call the six golden rules of level design, six principles to keep in mind when planning a level design. Another tutorial will give you a template for the preparation of an entire level design. This tool is great to make sure that your game system has what it takes to do a great level design. Other tutorials will provide practical solutions to address issues like the construction of the difficulty curve or the game pacing.

Storytelling

"Making people believe the unbelievable is no trick; it’s work"
(Stephen King)

Many games feature a story. Most of the time, it is a mere dressing for the action but, in some cases, there is a real intention to make the storytelling a part of the player's experience. It is a difficult task because the very nature of a game does not fit well with the requirements of good storytelling.

For those of you who believe, as I do, that story does matter in a game, I will offer two families of tutorial:

- The basics of narrative. you'll learn how to build drama, to define interesting characters and to create their environment.

- Techniques to merge story and gameplay. Depending on the relevance of the story to your game's genre, I will propose different templates; one does not write a story for a first person shooter as for an adventure game.

Tools & methods

The tutorials in the other categories will bring you most of the pratical knowledge you ought to have in order to design a game. However, if you belong to a small team, you'll probably need to master other skills as well.

This category will teach you how to manage production-related jobs such as:
- Planning playtests and getting the best out of them
- Preparing the proper documention for the localization of your game
- Communicating about your game and creating a community around before launch
- Writing up a contract with a contractor
- Negotiating a distribution deal.