VIDEO: The science of game design

How to know when to hold an idea and when to fold it

June 20, 2016
How do all these games actually come to be? Game design is a harder process than you might expect. [Image credit: Steve Petrucelli | CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

When it comes to game design, taking a spark of inspiration and turning it into reality isn’t all fun and games. It’s an actual science and there are schools devoted to teaching just that. We talked to Frank Lantz, director of the NYU Center for Game Design, and industry veteran Avonelle Wing from Double Exposure, for a quick introduction to how game design works.

But to get a real taste for the highs and lows of the process, we talked to first-time game designers Patrick Brennan and Jason Turner about their new game: Complicated Board Game the Card Game. They tell us how they’ve gone from idea to implementation with iterative playtesting and their plans to turn what started out as a hobby into a successful side business.

Produced by Meghan Bartels and Sandy Ong.

About the Author

Meghan Bartels

Meghan Bartels graduated from Georgetown University with a major in classics and a minor in biology. After college, she worked at a small environmental book publisher, where she learned that writing about science is fun when you get to use sentences that include both nouns and verbs. She also enjoys learning about history, drinking tea, and cheering on the Georgetown men’s basketball team.


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