Saturday, 26 March 2011

UDK Motorsport: Pacejka's tyre model (the theory)

I've covered at length how to move the car. I needed to get a car with proper behaviour regarding acceleration in order to study the next topic in appropriate conditions.

That topic is tyre adhesion model. As the tyres are the only points of contact the car has with the road, they account for much of the vehicle's behaviour and that is why, from a design perspective, they're the most important aspect of car physics to understand. Unfortunately, it happens to be one of the most complex ones.

Thursday, 24 March 2011

GDC 2011 sessions are live

Some presentations from GDC 2011 are available for free on GDC vault, with lots of post mortems from old games.

GDC Vault

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

Making a comparative analysis

Unless you are inventing a totally new genre, when you're designing a feature, chances are that someone has already done something that at least remotely looks like what you're trying to achieve. Incidentally, if you are making a game of a crowded genre, it is wise to look at what the competition has done, in order to not make the same mistakes and/or nick the interesting ideas. That's why you usually do comparative analysis (that's the part where you can say that your job as a designer consists in "playing" video games).

Monday, 14 March 2011

Methodology articles

Yet another introduction to what should be a recurring kind of articles.

These will be a bunch of articles in which I basically explain how I organise my work as a designer.

I feel like I need to emphasize that whatever will be presented in these articles is my way of approaching game design. By no means I will be trying to say "this is THE way it should be done", and if I ever do sound like I do, it will be most likely because I will assume it is common sense :).

If you don't agree with anything I write, please leave a comment and I'll be more than happy to discuss that in order to improve. 

Gaming Minutes

A small post to introduce a new series of blog post I intend to write over time.

The gaming minutes are simply when I write about a sequence I particularly enjoyed or hated in a game. Obviously, I'll try to explain why by pointing out and analysing the involved design mechanics and decisions.

They will mostly be about the games I'm playing at the moment of writing, so I might not be talking about old games (unless I get cracking on my list of games-bought-on-Steam-during-sales-but-never-installed).

Sunday, 13 March 2011

BioShock Infinite Prototype

It's quite rare to see commercial games in their really early stages, especially when they haven't been released yet.

It gives you an idea of how much detail you may put in your whitebox.

(The video is courtesy of Kotaku)

Combat Design in Resistance 3 (GDC 2011)

GDC 2011 presentation of Insomniac Games on how they designed the combat encounters on Resistance 3.

Key points are:

  • Give the combat area an easy to read layout.
  • Keep the action in the player's field of view.
  • Use subtle visual clues (e.g. enemy/ally movement) to hint the player at what to do/ where to go next.

Insomniac Games - Articles

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Intelligent Brawling

Gamasutra - Features - Intelligent Brawling

A very interesting article that breaks down melee combat in action games into fundamental components.