Is there such a thing as a new idea? Or are all creative products ultimately a combination of existing things? When a newly announced videogame was presented via analogy with two existing games, I had to consider how much of a role existing works should play in the creative process.
A while back I was on an email thread discussing the newly announced game by Trion, Atlas Reactor. There was a positive response, and someone commented, “Dota meets XCOM. I’m in.”
So, I’ve just passed the 2-year mark working as a game designer at Certain Affinity. Although this isn’t my first rodeo, I’m blessed to work here. I continue to learn a great deal, both in practical and organizational terms.
One of the things you should know about game designers is that they pretty much universally think they know best. Continue reading →
Valve produced a handbook for new employees at the start of 2012. It’s surprisingly gripping reading, for an employee handbook, and also features some of Valve’s trademark humor:
If you stop on the way back from your massage to play darts or work out in the Valve gym or whatever, it’s not a sign that this place is going to come crumbling down like some 1999-era dot-com startup. If we ever institute caviar-catered lunches, though, then maybe something’s wrong. Definitely panic if there’s caviar.
It’s great to finally see my company, Certain Affinity, getting some love for our co-development of Halo 4’s competitive multiplayer, ‘War Games’, with 343, including working on game modes such as Dominion, and on a majority of multiplayer maps, such as Adrift and Longbow.
Here are the highlights, from a range of top videogame news sites:
When I was writing last week about Derek and/or Eric, the imaginary 10-year-old from Idaho, and our need to think about that potential market of 10-year-olds when working on the story and script for Driver: San Francisco, it reminded me of various discussions I’ve had at three different games developers (Free Radical Design, Ubisoft and Zindagi) about the issues which arise when you’re writing content for a young audience.
Rather than bore you with stories about those specific conversations, I’m going to let David Mitchell have his own eloquent way with the subject: