Design Dive #33
Quality of Life Features
Kelly Tran - Co-founder and Game Designer at Evolved Play. Previously, Game Design Professor researching games and players at High Point University. PhD in learning and tech. Solo Twitch - Group Twitch - Website
Dan Felder - Senior Game Designer Riot Games. Previously Abrakam, Blizzard, EA.
Connor Hillen - Game Development Instructor at Carleton University.
Brandon Dolinski - Level Designer Eidos Montreal. Previously Mass Effect Andromeda and Dragon Age.
Mohamed Abdel Khalik - Head of Game Design Relations at Machinations. Previously, Consultant at Mezan Studios.
Think of more mechanical QoL and features.
Mods provide feedback (do I know I’m tanking? Threat Meter let’s you know proactively).
Choice is one of two options that appears equal.
Calculation is when of the choices is clearly better.
Elegance in design.
Systems that interact with each other really well.
QoL increases accessibility of the game.
Complexity is the wall you have to get over before you’re allowed to have fun:
Things to learn.
Things you have to actually get used to.
Cover and aim and move and attack at the same time.
Remove unnecessary complexity.
Depth is understanding the techniques.
Goal is attack opponent in chess.
Success is understanding what a good move is.
Put players in the context of what a success looks like.
Have the scenario of the game and let the players practice the game in context.
Practice but not 10 times in a row.
Players are discarding as much on the spot useless info as possible.
Players discard information from one scenario to the next.
Lower frustration and don’t poison experience purposely.
What is working during prototyping?
It’s easy to write theory on solving problem.
Focus on articulating goals for the experience.
Bright spots that deliver on these goals or new goals that emerge.
Find what is working and throw everything else out.
Understand why it works.
Don’t theorycraft problem-solving.
The game evolves organically.
Designers need to prioritize high impact problem and not small issues.
Get information as fast as possible on where the fun drops.