Browsing CategoryGame Design

Making a Game in JavaScript

As promised, I’m going to talk about my experience so far learning JavaScript and attempting to make a tiny, tiny game by May 1st. I’ve gotten pretty interested in game design lately, and it’s something I want to pursue further.  The best way to do that is to start making games!  I don’t know any programming languages, so I’m sort of having to start from scratch here. Luckily, I’m in the unique and fortunate situation of having a husband who is a very talented programmer and eager to teach me everything I need to know.  Private tutoring for free!  The…

#1reasonwhy

A new hashtag, #1reasonwhy, popped up on my Twitter feed over the past few days.  The trend was in response to the Games Project Specialist at Kickstarter asking why there are so few lady game creators.  Many men and women responded, bringing up the various difficulties women face in a male-dominated industry like games.  One reply ended with the hashtag “#1reasonwhy” (as in, one reason why there are so few lady game creators).  The tag blew up as tons of women game designers shared their experiences with sexism in the games industry. It would have been amazing enough already if…

TNNS

One of the nice things about having a blog is that I sometimes get the opportunity to use it as a platform to support my friends that are doing cool things.  One of those friends is a programmer, and he has been working on a mobile game called TNNS which is now available for purchase! TNNS is sort of Breakout meets minigolf meets tennis.  You control a paddle that slides up and down one side of the screen, and your goal is to keep the ball in play while collecting stars in and around the obstacles on the other side.…

Artemis Spaceship Bridge Simulator

  Well, we finally did it.  We played Artemis Spaceship Bridge Simulator!  Artemis is a multi-player networked computer game where each player mans a station on a spaceship, very Star Trek-style, completing missions in space.  It’s kind of like a more realistic video game version of Space Alert, my favorite board game.  For my birthday, my husband went ahead and bought the game for me and organized a get-together of enough friends to play the game! The big thing about Artemis is that it’s not a particularly accessible game.  You need at least three players, each with their own computer (plus one…

Fear and Spookiness

There is a certain puzzle on The Stone that I hate because it scares me.  It has a creepy sound element, and it scared the bejeezus out of me the first time I accidentally moused-over and heard it.  The topic of the puzzle was spooky as well, and the solving process was tortuous for me.  I couldn’t finish it fast enough (and we all know the Stone solving process isn’t exactly quick to begin with).  Though a lot of Stone puzzles gave me the creeps over the years, this is the only one I have actively avoided after solving.  I…

Ludum Dare 24 – My First Game Jam

Last weekend, I got to participate in a fun event called the Ludum Dare Game Jam.  A typical game jam involves working solo or as a team to make a game from start to finish within a short period of time, usually over the weekend.  The three of us who did the jam always end up talking about game design whenever we get together, and we had been wanting to actually sit down and work on a project together for a while, so Ludum Dare was the perfect opportunity to buckle down and make that happen.  Although I mostly just…

Games About Something

I’m super busy today, so I need a post I can write quickly.  I write quickly about things I’m feeling fired up about.  Today I’m feeling fired up about game design!  I hope this topic is still interesting to some of my readers, even if it isn’t exactly puzzle/mystery-related.  (Maybe I should just formally extend the genre of this blog to include games and game design in general…) I have never designed and built a game, but I’ve been thinking about it more and more.  Games have always been a part of my life to a certain extent, growing up…

Space Alert

Space Alert cover

I’d love to post about mysteries and puzzles today, but honestly all I can seem to think about is Space Alert, a real-time collaborative board game by Vlaada Chvátil.  Last weekend, a friend of ours brought over Space Alert with the sales pitch “It only takes about 30 minutes to play.”  Fast forward three hours later, and we had only decided to stop playing because it was 3 a.m. and our engineer was falling asleep at the terminal.  This game is addictive. Here’s the basic concept:  You and your teammates are recruits for a space research initiative.  A ship aptly named…

Experience: Presence, Novelty, and the Heart vs. the Brain

Running this blog and becoming more active and committed to it over the past few months have fostered this interesting sort of creative cycle. The more I search for things to write about, the more connected I become to the community, the more cool stuff I learn about, the more I actively participate, and the more I have interesting discussions with like-minded people. All of that compounds, leveling me up and giving me more and more to think and write about. It reminds me (and my husband) of the way our Japanese teacher in college described the process learning Japanese,…

Ico

Ico - Title Screen

We recently picked up the Ico & Shadow of the Colossus Collection for PS3 which comes with two critically-acclaimed and award-winning action-adventure games by Team Ico.  The games are similar to the 3D Legend of Zelda games featuring basic gameplay mechanics of running, climbing, swinging a sword, etc., combined with puzzle-based objectives.  We finished up Ico last week, so I thought I’d give it a few words here. Ico is presented in a very minimal way, to its benefit, from the seamless and virtually undetectable tutorial to the simple story.  You are Ico, a young boy who is captured and…