Level Up! : The Guide to Great Video Game Design

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2010-07-06
  • Publisher: Wiley
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Want to design and build cutting edge video games? Not sure where to start? Or just want to tweak the projects you're already working on? Then this is the book for you!Written by leading video game expert Scott Rogers, who has designed the hits; Pac Man World, God of War, Maxim vs. army of Zin and SpongeBob Squarepants. This book is full of Rogers' wit and imaginative style which demonstrates everything you need to know about designing great video games.Level Up! has been written with all levels of game designers in mind. From beginner level through to the more experienced game designer.It covers the entire video game creation process, allowing you to learn: How to develop marketable ideas What perils and pitfalls await them during a game's pre-production, production and post-production stages Creative ideas to serve as fuel for your own projects from game theme and environments to gameplay mechanicsAll in all it's an indispensible guide for video game designers both 'in the field' and the classroom.Other topics covered: Understanding what gamers want Compelling character design Working with player actions Techniques for non-human characters Camera techniques - the camera as a character Designing UI and HUD Use level design to tell game's story What game designers can learn from theme parks Combat, puzzles and game mechanics Fun and UNFUN How to make the world's greatest Boss battle (and why not to do it)and tons more - including the business of design, creating design documents, the pitch and more. The book also contains templates to create your own pitch and design documents.

Table of Contents

About the Author
Press Start!
Acknowledgments: Everything I Learned about Writing a Book
Welcome, N00bs!
A Brief History of Video Games
Game Genres
Who Makes this Stuff?
Sound Designer
Have You Thought about Publishing?
Product Manager
Creative Manager
Art Director
Technical Director
And the Rest . . .
Level 1's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
Ideas 23
Ideas: Where to Get Them and Where to Stick Them
What do Gamers Want?
Why I Hate "Fun"
Breaking Writer's Block
Level 2's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
Writing the Story
The Triangle of Weirdness
Time to Wrap It Up
Creating Characters
A Few Pointers on Writing for Kids of All Ages
Writing for Licenses
Level 3's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
You Can Design a Game, But Can You Do the Paperwork?
Writing the GDD, Step 1: The One-Sheet
ESRB Ratings
Writing the GDD, Step 2: The Ten-Pager
The Rule of Threes
Ten-Pager Outline
The Game Design Document (and the Awful Truth about Writing Them)
Gameplay Progression
The Beat Chart
Above All, Don't Be a Schmuck
Level 4's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
The Three Cs, Part 1-Character
Personality: Do We Really Need Another Badass?
Let's Get Personal
Finally, We Talk about Gameplay
Why Walk When You Can Run?
The Art of Doing Nothing
Might as Well Jump
Hoists and Teeters
What Goes Up, Must Fall Down
Me and My Shadow
The Water's Fine… or Is It?
Be Kind to Our Four-Legged Friends
Using All of the Parts
We Are Not Alone
Who Are the People in Your Neighborhood?
Level 5's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
The Three Cs, Part 2-Camera
Get It Right: Camera Views
First Person Camera
Third Person Camera
Giving Up Control
So You've Decided to Let the Player Control the Camera
So You've Decided to Not Let the Player Have Control Over the Camera
So You've Decided to Let the Player Sometimes Have Control Over the Camera
Two and a Half D
Isometric Camera
Top-Down Camera
Special Case Cameras
Tunnel Vision
Camera Shot Guide
Camera Angle Guide
Camera Movement Guide
Other Camera Notes
Always Point the Camera to the Objective
Never Let the Character Get Out of the Camera's Sight
Multiple Player Cameras
Level 6's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
The Three Cs, Part 3-Controls
Dance, Monkey, Dance
Character or Camera Relative?
Shake, Rattle and Roll
Level 7's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
Sign Language-HUD and Icon Design
Health Bar
Ammo Gauge
Context-Sensitive Prompt
The Clean Screen
Icon Has Cheezburger?
Don't Get QTE
HUDs, and Where to Stick 'Em
There Are Other Screens Than the HUD
The Pause that Refreshes
A Final Word on Fonts
Level 8's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
Everything I Learned about Level Design, I Learned from Level 9
The Top 10 Cliché Video Game Themes
The Name Game
Everything I Learned about Level Design, I Learned from Disneyland
The Beat Chart
Re-using Re-use
The Gary Gygax Memorial Mapping Section
The Dave Arnenson Memorial Mapping Section
Wrapping Up Mapping
Illusional Narrative
Gray Matters
Leave the Training Level for Last
Level 9's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
The Elements of Combat
Quatloos on the Newcomer!
Now You have to Kiss Me
On Moving
On Guarding
State of the Art Bang Bang
The Best Gun for You
Run and Gun
Not Just Shooting
Dammit Jones, Where Doesn't It Hurt?
Death: What is It Good For?
Level 10's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
They All Want You Dead
Bring on the Bad Guys
I Love Designing Enemies
I Hate You to Pieces
Non-Enemy Enemies
How to Create the World's Greatest Boss Battle
Who's the Boss?
Size Matters
Location, Location, Location
Why Not to Create the World's Greatest Boss Battle
Level 11's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
The Nuts and Bolts of Mechanics
Holy Death Trap!
Time to Die
The Music of Mechanics
A Nice Little Calm Spot
Riddle Me This
A Short Word on Minigames and Microgames
Level 12's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
Now You're Playing with Power.
"Love Thy Player"
More Wealth Than You Can Imagine!
Level 13's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
Multiplayer-the More the Merrier
How Many is the Right Number?
MMORPGS, or Hell is Other People
Level 14's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
Some Notes on Music
Sounds Like a Game to Me
Level 15's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
Cutscenes, or No One's Gonna Watch 'Em Anyway
How to Write a Screenplay in Eight Easy Steps
Level 16's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
And Now the Hard Part
No One Cares about Your Stupid Little World
Video Games is a Haaaard Business
What to Do for an Encore?
Level 17's Universal Truths and Clever Ideas
The One-Sheet Sample
The Ten-Page Design Document Sample
Game Design Document Template
The Medium-Sized List of Story Themes
The Big List of Environments
Mechanics and Hazards
Enemy Design Template
Boss Design Template
High Concept Pitch Presentation
Achievement Unlocked: Exactly Like Making Chili
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

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