3 keys of being a successful entrepreneur: Devotion: Devotion is a word usually reserved for spirituality or an athlete’s dedication. You need to be disciplined about what you do, devoted to the cause of making your career succeed. Persistence: Being persistent is a habit that will allow you to be one of the rare people not to rely on luck, but to create their own luck. Luck is opportunity X preparation. Reinvention: Re-invention results in new habits. Habits are learned behaviors that become the way you do things. Maintaining GOOD habits forces you to constantly try to adapt, change, watch for opportunity, watch your competition, and maybe most of all, watch yourself getting settled into doing things the same way just because you are comfortable doing that. Get used to getting OUTSIDE of your zone of comfort.
He who has the gold makes the rules!
Game designers take on many different roles:
Builders make worlds to explore. Engineers make systems and mechanics that link together into a complete picture Scientists test new ways to improve the play experience Teachers teach players what to do and how the rules of the game work Dreams create new, unique, amazing experiences.
1. Session 1
Game Design 1
The Los Angeles Film School
2. Who Am I?
Instructor at LAFS
Game Designer at Electric Sheep
Co-creator of Boy Scouts of America
Game Design Merit Badge
3. How to Succeed in LAFS
Be your own Career Entrepreneur
4. How To Succeed in Game Design 1
Show up for class
Turn in the assignments on time
Turn in all parts of the assignments
Do what the assignment requires
Manage the scope of your work
Remember, this is a design class, not a
5. “I just want to do the minimum to
pass this class”
Classes are not kidney
If you think about them
in these terms, maybe
you’re on the wrong
6. Creativity Within Contraints
If you can’t be bothered to:
strive for originality even within established
norms or constraints
look beyond your initial idea
actually enjoy and actively want to do the
Then get used to the phrase
“Would you like fries with that?”
Your colleagues and faculty will most likely be
your doorway into the industry.
How do you want them to think of you?
Leave a professional and lasting impression.
They’re your first referees, either on paper or
via word of mouth.
8. Drop Box
You will be invited to the instructor’s DropBox folder “Game
There is one subfolder for each class assignment (for
example, “Assignment 1”).
Save each class game or written assignment into a subfolder
with your name. For example:
Game Design 1
○ Assignment 1
9. Make It Easy To Review Your Work
Sending bosses or potential clients or instructors files in
a format they can’t open will just make them angry! And
you don’t want angry people evaluating you!
So, always send documents in PDF format!
And send game executables in EXE format!
10. The Golden Rule
11. Send an email to
lafilm email account
13. Players vs. Designers
Players want the fun of playing a game as well as the
enjoyment of being with their friends.
Game designers are focused on how the game works:
How do you make it, and how to you break it?
What are the different elements and how do they fit
What skill level does a player need to successfully play
Does each player have an equal chance of winning and
a fair chance of experiencing all that the game has to
But NOT Boss
15. Main Role
The game designer’s main role is to be an
advocate for the player.
In some ways, designing a
game is like being the host
of a party. It’s your job to get
everything ready and then
open your doors to guests to
see what happens.
16. Extra Credits, Season 1, Episode 16 - So You Want To
Be A Game Designer (7:36)
Why is communication the game designer’s
What other skills does a game designer need?
Why is “idea guy” a poor definition for what a
game designer does?
Why shouldn’t game designers get too
attached to their ideas?
What is the number one cause of failed
18. A game is FUN!
So what’s fun?
19. The Lens of Fun
Fun is desirable in nearly every game, although
sometimes fun defies analysis.
What parts of my game are fun? Why?
What parts need to be more fun?
Jesse Schell, Lens #3
Play can be thought of the freedom of movement
within a more rigid structure.
In the case of games, the constraints of the rules and
procedures are the rigid structure, and the play within
that structure is the freedom of players to act within
those rules – the opportunity for emergent experience
and personal expression.
21. The Nature of Play
It helps us learn skills and acquire knowledge
It lets us socialize
It assists us in problem solving
It allows us to relax
It makes us see things differently
If induces laughter and fun, which is good for our
But it can also be serious – a process of
experimentation, pushing boundaries and learning
22. Fundamental Types of Play
Free-form play Rule-based play
Competitive play Unregulated Athletics
(foot racing, wrestling)
Chance-based play Counting-out rhymes Betting, roulette,
Make-believe play Children’s initiations,
Theater, spectacles in
Vertigo play Children “whirling”,
23. The Lens of Pleasure
What pleasures does your game give to players?
Can these be improved?
What pleasures are missing from your
experience? Why? Can they be added?
Jesse Schell, Lens #17
24. Aesthetics of Play
Game Designers Robin Hunicke, Marc LeBlanc and Robert
Zubek divide aesthetics within games into 8 categories:
Sensation: Game as sense-pleasure
Fantasy: Game as make-believe
Narrative: Game as unfolding story
Challenge: Game as obstacle course
Fellowship: Game as social framework
Discovery: Game as uncharted territory
Expression: Game as soap box
Submission (or Abnegation): Game as mindless pastime
25. Aesthetics of Play
Extra Credits: Aesthetics of Play (9:41)
What are Mechanics, Dynamics and Aesthetics?
Which does a Game Designer handle first when
creating a game?
What does a player experience first when playing
So what does Extra Credits think Game Designers
should focus on?
27. Layers Between Game And Player
28. Player Experience
A game designer does not create games.
A game designer creates experiences.
What experience do I want the player to have?
What is essential to that experience?
How can my game capture that experience?
Jesse Schell, Lens #1
29. What Experience Do I Want The Player To
Immersion: the illusion that you
are another person or in another
Novelty: New or unexpected
Challenge: meaningful “work”
where the player can make clear
progress and has incentive to try
again if s/he fails.
30. What Experience Do I Want The Player To
Stimulation: the emotional
element of play: victory, defeat,
Threat: when the player feels
tension, danger, provocation
32. How can I capture that experience?
33. The Lens of Endogenous Value
Think about your player’s feelings about the items,
objectives, and scoring in your game.
What is valuable to the players in my game?
How can I make it more valuable to them?
What is the relationship between value in the
game and the motivations for playing it?
Jesse Schell, Lens #5
34. Let’s Have Fun Making A Game!
35. 1. Download Game Maker 8.1 for Windows
Installer from from the LAFS GD1 website
Session 1 page
2. Download GD1 1 Resources from the
LAFS GD1 website Session 1 page
3. Create a Bounce The Ball game