Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Day 49: FotLC through the 113 lenses from The Art of Game Design

Day 49 - Lens 71: The Lens of Beauty
Beauty is mysterious. Why, for example, do most beautiful things have a touch of sadness about them? Use this lens to contemplate the mysteries of beauty in your game by asking yourself these questions:

What elements make up my game? How can each one be more beautiful?
The physical components: These could be of higher quality. The roads and bases are now painted cardboard. They would be better if they were made out of actual metal. The physical rules documents could be given some professional graphic design. While I want then to look hand drawn that doesn't mean they can't be more carefully designed

The Rules: The rules could have a more concise form, just writing that might help trim off some rough bits where I have added special cases. I have tried to make them simple and elegant, and while I am pretty happy with that creating a non-themed version might help me focus on the kind of elegance I want there.

The story: A good portion of the story is pretty generalized, some of that is god but letting the players identify with a tribe more could make them more compelling and make the choices they are given at the end 'beautiful'.

Some things are not beautiful in themselves, but are beautiful in combination. How can elements of my game be composed in a way that is poetic and beautiful?
I think that the whole that the game's individual parts form is greater than any one of them. It's a cliche of the Art of Game Design, but I think that I have succeeded in creating a fun and interesting experience with my story mechanics and technology... but I do want fun and interesting to become beautiful and I am probably not there yet. So I will keep trying things and testing.

What does beauty mean within the context of my game?
I think that there are two kinds of beauty I am trying to achieve. The first is that the game and the play of the game be beautiful. Mechanics and esthetics working together. The second is the kind of lasting transformative beauty that games like Spec Ops: The Line achieved for the players that were open to it where the meaning of the game revealed it's self in a way that made the player look inward and question their experience of playing the game and perhaps even themselves.