It can be easy to talk about game design as a discrete phase of game development: an initial step in the process where you firmly set down what it is that you want to build. In fact, effective game design is something that occurs continuously through game creation, with iteration, revision, and experimentation being key drivers in finding the heart of a project. On Episode 29 of Vertical Slice we’re celebrating this process of design as discovery, and talking about the practical approaches that successful designers use to uncover their best work.
- Red Hook Studio’s founder Chris Bourassa’s talk on the design of Darkest Dungeon is a superb example of using a game’s art style and creative direction to discover the nuances of its gameplay.
- Joel Burgess, senior designer at Bethesda Studios, describes how Bethesda leverages the power of predictable iteration to build their games’ massive worlds.
- Tim Keenan found his way to the excellent and highly creative gameplay of Duskers through a process of successive discovery: identifying and then strengthening core design pillars over the game’s development journey.
Image credit: Tyler Spaeth