Story Vs Design

“What is more important: story, or design?”

I’ve had this argument countless times, and come down on either side of it (really, whichever side made me right and the other guy wrong). But I’ve been thinking about this lately, and without an ego-interest in either side I’m having a hard time defining the difference between design and story.

One way of splitting the two is this: “Design is what the player does and the story is what is done to the player.”

I don’t really like that one, because it limits story as a non-interactive element. This definition breaks … Continue reading

A Little Design 101

With my designer friends we always refer to obvious designer maxims as “Design 101” — in context: “Oh yeah, that’s Design 101 material right there.”

So I figured I’d pull out a few design 101 maxims every so often and discuss them:

– Levels should begin with a good opening view
Don’t start the player looking at a wall. It’s much more interesting to give him a good vista or a view of some interesting object. Further, if you can compose the starting view so that the player gets a look at a place he’ll be going later on … Continue reading