Game Designer / Professor / Optimist

Games, Design and Play

A book capturing everything my co-author John Sharp and I know about making games, along with clear examples from all of our favorite game designers. We both teach from this book, so you might consider it for that, or as a way to take our game design class without taking our game design class! Official blurb below…

Unlike many other creative fields, game design is at its heart an iterative process guided by prototyping, playtesting and refinement. This process is easy enough to explain, but much more challenging to put into practice. Games, Design & Play makes the videogame design process—one seldom understood by anyone outside the game industry—accessible and actionable.

Drawing from less-known but important games of all types, Macklin and Sharp introduce a play-focused, iteration-based approach to videogame design. The authors conceive of game design as the design of “play experiences” where designers produce the apparatus with which players interact, but whose use is determined by the players. A play-focused approach to game design has to emphasize play. Using specific game examples, Macklin and Sharp show how a game’s structure enables different forms of play, and how to create play experiences for players.