View Full Version : Good game design

09-30-2014, 01:34 PM
I want to make this thread about good game design, because I´m interested in game design, and I think many of the differences i have with many people there is that we do not see sight to sight on what is optimal game design. Now, people make a lot the logic fallacy of authority. If they read it from an actual designer instead of the dense guy in the forums people inmediatly give it a lot more credit.

So I will start to bring subjects in this thread about game design, specially articles and lets talk about it.
I decided o start with the left foot though and bring a mark rosewater comment. I say this because while I think that while Mark rosewater is a good game designer in some sense, he is also full of crap. He has to defend a monetization system that has no defense other than, we want to make money at the cost of hurting game quality.
He has used though in an article the best defense possible. ¨But if we make more money, we can spend more money to improve the game!¨ which is....not a bad argument, but I´m not gonna talk about it now. I will present his article

Magic is, at its core, a game about change. I believe the reason that Magicis as healthy as it is (and has lasted as long as it has) stems from the fact that R&D accepts that Magic is an ever-evolving system. We don't fight change but rather allow it to be a tool that lets the game constantly reinvent itself. We use this as an opportunity to keep making Magic better and better.

That´s how the article start and I strongly agree. Magic has changed made changes to his rulebooks like basically every year. In some cases the changes were HUGE. And I think that was key for the success of MTG. Specially in the first 2 years of magic, and Ive been there since Visions, the amount of changes to the game was DRASTIC.

So when people are against ¨game changing¨ it gets on my nerves.

09-30-2014, 03:18 PM
Just a question, would this thread be better suited to the Other Games section of the forum?

09-30-2014, 03:24 PM
Maaaaybbeeee, like My idea was about how the articles im gonna post applies to Summoner wars. But......I wouldn´t mind either if a mod consider to move it to other games.

10-02-2014, 02:01 PM
Well, Magic is also a system where due to the blind purchase model and power creep, the game balance is pretty awful, so is MtG really a game we want Summoner Wars to emulate?

10-02-2014, 02:06 PM
Yes, we want summoner wars to emulate the good things of Magic. Which is becoming better, be willing to embrace change for improvement. (strongly supporting the competitive community is something else we want SW to emulate)

Having older cards become obsolete is a very very small problem.

Having said that Magic release cards that are obsolete as soon as it hits the market, and are intended to be so. Which is a MTG problem and I would like not SW to emulate that.

Also SW has cards that did become obsolete really quick.
Phoenix elves Archers and tundra orcs fighters are two of the earliest examples. If you ask me they were obsolete on release. (the right move were to get second deck, get 10 Warriors, and then place whatever in the remaining spots since they were gonna be built as magic 99% of the time)
However Is ok when cards turn out to be too weak to play because playtesting or design mistake. MTG does it on purpose, which is terrible.

I think lack of desire to improve is sinking SW on it´s own weight. They are right now imo surviving on what I said life support, if they want to keep alive they need to keep releasing content non stop, but if they are unwilling to change for the better, is only a matter of time where the death line arrives even with all the influx of new content trying to hook new players in with the whole ¨Hey new stuff for ya¨ That, as I´ve seen in other games, is enough to survive a little more in the short term(few years), but with ONLY that, long term is just not enough.

In fact I think SW success limit itself a lot because that lack of change as I said many times before.
I find sad though many SW players around have expressed that they want SW to remain only a niche.

10-02-2014, 02:16 PM
I think old cards becoming obselete in SW is quite a large problem, relatively. Hence why designers are avoiding it.

02-17-2015, 09:46 AM
This is a great video about LOL monetization, for anyone interested in design and developing of games.
A relevant part to SW is how They talk riot decided to minimize expenditure of advertising of the game and decide that most of it´s advertising to be done through promotion of their competitive events. Basically boosting tournaments, since they considered is more money efficent way to promote their games. This comes to the talk of the value of appeal to competitive players, even when they are a very small percentage of your gaming population

05-04-2015, 05:14 PM

05-04-2015, 06:02 PM
This guy's reasoning is very sound, but it is not anything new (which doesn't in any way impact how right he is). It's essentially the reasoning behind any sort of VP system in wargames. Hell, it's the reason why I won't play any wargames without a VP system. And no, I don't consider SW to be a wargame - it's a mix between that and a card game, a sort of pseudo-wargame, with different characteristics. Anyway, VPs encourage aggression, particularly when they are based off of occupying an area that is much closer to your enemy's (starting area/summon spot/whatever) then to you. BattleLore 2.0 does a great job of this with both a vanilla VP system that is very encouraging of aggression, and scenario-specific objectives that give you extra VP, firepower, or other bonuses for occupying large amounts of enemy space. Summoner Wars main flaw (and IMO, 1 of only 2 really relevant flaw that needs fixing), is that it has some inevitability, but has just too little in order to make excessive turtling a possibility. SW's inevitability stems from the simple small size of the board in relation to how far unit's can move and attack, as well as the fact that you can summon units very close to your enemy's lines, or even on top of them. That leads me to problem 2, Etch/Rune Mages, that fix problem 1, but destroy aggressive wall placement, the main instigator of aggression in SW.

05-25-2015, 09:43 AM
Excuse me, call me dumb but what is "VP System"?

Its the first time I heard about it being talked relating to game designs.

05-25-2015, 12:24 PM
A lot of board games goal is just to get ¨VP¨ (victory points), its a so common mechanic in euro games that you can almost tell if a board game is an euro game or not, based the presence of VP or not.

If you never played an euro game, a VP, is something that you collect that does nothing, but be a VP, and generally the winner is declared by who has more VP at certain point or who reaches a certain VP limit first. A lot of times the VP can be collected similarly to how you collect other things in the game, other times VP are rewarded for doing certain actions.
VP system is called at the system in which players are incentivized to get VP points to win. Generally they are popular in euro games because they are less direct than ¨win when you kill the opponent summoner¨ or ¨win when control 75% of the map¨

05-25-2015, 04:03 PM
Waterd, I wouldn't say that VP is a good indicator of a Eurogame. VP is also a very common system in tactical wargames. And I don't mean games like SW with nothing but a grid. I'm talking about games with, at least a relatively large map (or no map at all, like Warhammer and WH40K), terrain, and a lot of freedom of movement and range (unlike SW, which limits almost all interactions orthogonally). It's usually based off of killing enemy units, like in Memoir '44, occupying terrain, like Battlelore, or both, which tends to be the case in much larger wargames like Warhammer, Warmachine, or 40K. In the wargame context, the VP system is usually a great instigator of aggression, because you can reward the player for aggressive play by making them get VP for occupying a space deep in enemy territory, or killing a large number of enemy troops.

08-15-2016, 05:53 PM
I couldn´t stop thinking about Summoner wars during this talk on game design.