Game Design

How To Simulate Ten Zombies with UE4: Tools for Rapid Prototyping and Diverse Crowd Animation - by Anna Ploegh

Gamasutra.com Blogs - 12 February 2018 - 6:04am
A scalable solution for creating a multitude of realistic, interactive agents without keyframe animation.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Perhaps, the most unusual puzzle game on Google Play - by Andrey Sklyarov

Gamasutra.com Blogs - 12 February 2018 - 6:04am
It may be a bit arrogant but I decided to entitle this with one of the reviews on my game.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Dune 2000, never forget! - by James Holden

Gamasutra.com Blogs - 12 February 2018 - 6:04am
Dune 2000 was published in 1998 by Westwood Studios, it was my first true online gaming experience an boy I was an addict. Dune 2000 was the successor of Dune, a game inspired by the Dune movies. Westwood studios are long gone and taken over by EA games.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

New Necromunda and Shadespire Releases Available To Order From Games Workshop

Tabletop Gaming News - 12 February 2018 - 6:00am
Apparently, it was Skirmish Game Saturday over at Games Workshop this weekend. They’ve got new releases for both Necromunda and Shadespire, so no matter whether you like futuristic or fantasy gang skirmish warfare, they’ve got you covered. From the website: The rules included with the Necromunda: Underhive boxed game cover battles between Houses Escher and […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Mashups & Conceptual Writing In Roleplaying Games Pt. 1

Gnome Stew - 12 February 2018 - 5:00am

Recycling isn’t just for paper & plastics anymore. Turns out you can recycle anything, even art. A popular exercise in many internet music circles is the Mashup, two or more distinct tracks chopped & screwed together to make one new piece of art, that would not have been possible without the presence of the old. I’m a fan of mashups, they allow me a new perspective on both the old and the new and I’m fascinated by the effort that goes into the more complicated ones. Introduce identifiable and distinct elements that together create a new experience rather than altering existing structures to create a new lens on which to experience the art of roleplaying games. 

Mashups turn the experience of enjoying music from a passive one (Artist creates music, I listen to music) into an active one (Artist creates music, I listen to music, I transform music into something new, gaining new appreciation for the original and enjoying a hand in creation, someone down the line enjoys the transformed music). On a basic level all roleplaying games are mashups. At some stage the designer of an RPG has created a piece of art. Game books are fantastic artifacts, the best of them featuring elegantly composed text, evocative artwork, mechanics presented in ways that inspire us upon reading. We as consumers of these products take them and transform them on our own, processing all of the art (visual, mechanical, and textual) and perform this transformation live at the table for people who then (hopefully) enjoy the experience.

We are the medium through which the original art has been processed, and no two GMs will produce the same game.

But I’m always interested in pushing one step farther into analysis, so I’m looking for more ways to mashup RPGs, to transform the art and have a more active role in the production of my experience. A common practice among gamers is to hack their favorite games, to alter and transform the mechanics of games to produce something new. Hacking to me feels more like remixing music, similar to making mashups but not quite what I’m after. Certainly the practices I’ll describe here could be seen as hacking, but the intent here is not to alter or change a game’s structure or execution, but rather to introduce identifiable and distinct elements that together create a new experience rather than altering existing structures to create a new lens on which to experience the art of roleplaying games.

People don't mix and match PbtA playbooks nearly as much as I want.

— James Malloy, Tide Commercial (@AndTheMeltdowns) January 23, 2018

One way to run a mashup game is to utilize character options from compatible systems, for example, running a vibrant Beacon from Magpie Games’ Super-Youths game, Masks in the melodramatically black & white Noir World by John Adamus. Game systems like Cypher, D20, PbtA, all build themselves off of the same engines, which makes it easy to smooth out any wrinkles in combining their different elements. Think of this like taking two music tracks that have the same key and tempo and mixing & matching. If I take this class from this game, the feats from this other one, and the spell list from a third, I’ve created either an unplayable nightmare or an optimization board’s dream. Where the final cog in the equation comes in is justifying the disparate parts and finding the synthesis that makes the whole concoction sing. Mashups need to go beyond “here are two things that are now one”, they need to have a thematic throughline that produces the magic. What does it mean that these elements come together, what do you get out of this new combination? What message is your story telling if The Beacon, a paragon of optimism, finds themselves in the gritty world of film noir? Your job will be to make that story fit, and make the mashup compelling.

Join me in the next article for another way to mashup your RPG experience that redefines how you approach some of your favorite texts.

Categories: Game Theory & Design

Fuzzy Thinking: Pro Tip #5

RPGNet - 12 February 2018 - 12:00am
Fuzzy GMs like to smile.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Review Roundup

Tabletop Gaming News - 10 February 2018 - 11:00am
Helloooooooo, Saturday. You know you’re my favorite. I hope the other days of the week get jealous, but you’re just so great. Time to put on some appropriate music and relax… and probably play some games, too. I plan on doing that as well. But, before I go do that, I gotta make sure the […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Animal Ailments Party Card Game Up On Kickstarter

Tabletop Gaming News - 9 February 2018 - 3:00pm
So, I’m told that, occasionally, people will have parties where they play games. I just have to take y’all’s word for it, solitary creature that I am. One such game played at parties like this is Charades. But that can get kinda boring, so why not liven it up some by mimicing your favorite animals […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Nexon closes 2017 with record Q4 revenue

Social/Online Games - Gamasutra - 9 February 2018 - 2:11pm

This time around, Nexon says that relatively stable economies within its countries of operation helped drive the company's progress within the past year. ...

Categories: Game Theory & Design

WYSIWYGames Posts Planet of the Apes Preview

Tabletop Gaming News - 9 February 2018 - 2:00pm
I’m guessing most of you weren’t around when the original Planet of the Apes movie came out. I mean, it was 50 years ago, as of yesterday. But even if you didn’t see Charlton Heston screaming, “You blew it up! You maniacs!” on the silver screen during its initial release, you can still get pumped […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

February LE Minis Now Available For Guild Ball

Tabletop Gaming News - 9 February 2018 - 1:00pm
Steamforged has started making a habit of releasing special, limited-edition minis for Guild Ball around the various holidays. I, for one, welcome our alternate-sculpt overlords. In this case, it’s the Puppy Love set, including a new version of Brisket and Boiler for the Butcher’s Guild. There’s also an exceedingly adorable new ball token with a […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Wyrd Previews Artillery Team For The Other Side

Tabletop Gaming News - 9 February 2018 - 12:45pm
“Jamie wants big boom.” It’s a rather iconic line from Mythbusters. And I’m sure Jamie would be wanting to add the Artillery Team for The Other Side to his army. It’s certainly a big boom. Check it out in Wyrd’s Friday Preview. From the post: One of the most defining features of the King’s Empire […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

13 Clues Now Available From CMON

Tabletop Gaming News - 9 February 2018 - 12:00pm
Scotland Yard has seen a massive rise in crime lately. Their regular squad of bobbies is doing their best, but they’re going to need help. That’s where you come in. Take on the role of a detective looking to solve some of London’s most baffling cases. Be the first to figure out your clues and […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Friday Snippets

Tabletop Gaming News - 9 February 2018 - 11:00am
Hello, Friday, my old friend. As usual, Friday’s one of my favorite days of the week, busy as it often is. But busy’s good. It’ll make the day go by quick and I can get to the weekend that much faster. Not 100% sure what I’ll get into this weekend. I think I want to […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Sonic the Hedgehog: Battle Racers Board Game Up On Kickstarter

Tabletop Gaming News - 9 February 2018 - 10:00am
Anyone else got a sudden hunger for chilidogs? Extra onions? Just me? … Maybe that’s what I’ll have for lunch today. Meanwhile, in the world of fast creatures and rings, Shinobi 7 has launched a Kickstarter campaign for Sonic the Hedgehog: Battle Racers. Grab your favorite anthropomorphic furry critter, lace your shoes up tight, and […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Asmodee Acquires Mayfair Games

Tabletop Gaming News - 9 February 2018 - 9:44am
Add another one to Asmodee’s collection. Mayfair Games has announced that they’ve been acquired by the board game company, effectively immediately. From the announcement: As of today, the management team at Mayfair Games, Inc. announces we will wind down game publishing. After 36 years, this was not an easy decision or one we took lightly, […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Sailor Moon Crystal Dice Challenge Combat Game Available To Pre-order

Tabletop Gaming News - 9 February 2018 - 9:00am
I have to admit, I know very little about Sailor Moon. My knowledge of anime pretty much starts and stops at Trigun and Cowboy Bebop. I do know, though, that it’s a popular series that many people out there love. Well, if you want to bring it to your tabletops, you’re in luck Dyskami Publishing […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

New 40k and Necromunda Releases Available to Order From Forge World

Tabletop Gaming News - 9 February 2018 - 8:00am
Bit of a shotgun release week for Forge World. You’ve got a new Primarch in the form for Rogal Dorn. You’ve got some Legio Custodes characters and bits (space janitors have the coolest gear). Then there’s the Space Wolf terminators and bits. And, of course, new Hired Guns for Necromunda. Like I said, a bit […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Mobile Game Optimization Tools 2018 – Top 23 ASO Tools Reviewed - by Marcus Kay

Gamasutra.com Blogs - 9 February 2018 - 7:16am
Which mobile game optimization tools are Right for You? When I started doing app store optimization (ASO), I was so overwhelmed by the numerous ASO tools available in the market. If you are looking for your best ASO tools, check out my reviews below.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Omens of the Pharaoh Is Now Available for Elder Sign

Tabletop Gaming News - 9 February 2018 - 7:00am
With all the troubles in the world today, we all know that the true evil is… Ancient Egypt! *Imperial March plays* At least, the minions of Nephren-Ka are evil, and they’re looking to bring the long-dead pharaoh back to life. You investigators will have to make sure that doesn’t happen. It’s what you’re tasked with […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

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