Today I would like to talk about the tricky concepts around puzzles and puzzle-based games like New Sokoban. Puzzles are often considered to not be games at all. This means that designing a video-game entirely based on puzzles implies some issues that need to be addressed to minimize the inherent problems that puzzles have and maximize their benefits. We will see it applied to New Sokoban, a puzzle-solving game.
In the previous two articles I talked about game design aspects that I think that were well addressed in New Sokoban. However, today I’m going to talk about a very difficult and tricky topic that should be better applied to New Sokoban: endogenous value in games.
Today’s article is the second one in the series “Game Theory Applied”. You can find the first article of the series here. Today I would like to talk about game rewards, and how I applied them on New Sokoban.
Game rewards are a very important concept in game design. Actually, in some sense, players play games to be rewarded. It is a human need. Players need to be evaluated favorably. That’s why a well designed and balanced game rewards system is key in any game, even for the simplest one.
In today’s post I would like to start a series of articles about Theory of Game Designand how I applied (or tried to apply…) it to my projects. Usually games are made by inspiration and intuition. And this is not a bad approach because, at the end of the day, game creation is a deeply creative activity.
However, there are some game design aspects that have been theorized by experienced game designers that, despite sounding quite obvious, it is worth to keep them in mind while working on our games. I would like to start by one of the most interesting and effective concepts of game design: The Flow Channel. Applying this concept to New Sokobanhad a very positive impact on the games experience. Despite it being an intuitive aspect of games that you could have learned while playing a lot of games during your live, the first time I red about it was in Jesse Schell’s book The Art of Game Design. By the way, this book is highly recommended for game designers out there and wanna be game designers like me 😉
Today’s post will be a classical one: postmortem of New Sokoban. New Sokoban was officially launched around a month ago and I think that it is enough time to write this post. Basically because I think that things are not going to change a lot in the future concerning New Sokoban. So, here you have what went right and what went wrong.
Today’s post is the second part of an article about target audience and its implications on the development and commercialization of your app or game on the AppStore. You can find the first part here. In this second part I’m going to try to apply the theoretical concepts discussed on the first part onto my current project New Sokoban.
We talked about that it is important to fix the target audience of your game or app. And we also talked about that it is extremely difficult for your initial projects to do so… So, I’m doing my best 🙂 Anyway, I decided that I would like that the target audience for New Sokoban would be mainly casual. The reasons for that are mainly two: (1) casual gamers are the most and this means more potential downloads. (2) My family and friends are mainly casual gamers or even non gamers. Therefore, working on a casual game allowed me to receive more valuable feedback in early stages of development. Some years ago, I worked on a hardcore project (not for my own) and it was really frustrating to talk about that to family and friends and notice that they were not really interested on that, despite on their efforts to simulate interest. So, this time I realized that I needed all the support I could get and this also inclined me to start a casual game project.
In today’s post I’m going to talk about a quite tricky topic: target audience and its implications on the development and commercialization of your app or game on the AppStore. First of all I would like to clarify that I’m not by no means an expert about this topic. Everything I’m going to say is based on my experience with paintingWalls and New Sokoban. So, comments on this post will be specially appreciated 🙂
Probably when you start your first project that is intended to be published you don’t think about your target audience seriously. You probably focus on creating a great app or game and assume that this will be enough to reach mass market. Usually this is not true. Usually you need to create a great app for your target audience. And that implies that you need to fix or select your target audience first.
In today’s post I’m going to talk about art asset creation for New Sokoban. My artistic skills are limited and I am an autodidact in this field. So, I needed to create the art for New Sokoban taking into account this limitations. My idea was to create abstract assets playing with plain colors and some basic effects like shadows and border strokes.
I started with the game screen because I felt that it was the most important one and that it would set the artistic path to follow. In the following image you can see what was my first try.
In this post I would like to explain a little bit what New Sokoban is (or should be). I’m going to describe in a few paragraphs the first steps of the design process. However, I have been working using an iterative methodology, constantly revising all the aspects of the game, including the gameplay design. So, actually, the design phase could not be considered to be absolutely completed yet 🙂