A note on Philosophy

Well, I wanted to sort of introduce you fine folks to what I think makes a game fun, and give you an idea of what flavor of entertainment you can expect from me.

And away we go…

The core of my ‘design philosophy’ (which is an ostentatious term I know, but what the hell, let’s roll with it) orbits around the idea that we have been playing rehashes of the same handful of generic games for quite a while now. Surely the graphics have been updated, and maybe a new novelty is tossed in the mix, but essentially it’s been the same first person shooter, the same RTS, the same MMORPG, etc. etc. We’ve all been playing Pac-Man, only now he has individually rendered hairs. I think that graphics are largely overrated, and the rude game play equation needs to be the pillar supporting any truly great game. Don’t get me wrong, graphics are pretty…that’s what they do, but the foundation needs to be strong before prettiness should even be considered, lest ye waste your time spit polishing a turd. So what I’m hoping to do is put together some engaging and truly fun distractions, and if I’m lucky, maybe even create something great.

When I think of ‘something great’ in the context of a game, it should conform to a few simple parameters:

– Only be as graphically complicated as is minimally necessary.

– The ‘entertainment value’ should lie in a well executed and engaging game mechanic, and should lean secondarily on the specific content. (and by ‘content’ I mean story lines, game maps, dialog, cut scenes and all that sort of thing)

– Strong replay value is a must, so the noble goal is to have either:

A) Engaging, dynamically generated content

B) Simple yet addicting gameplay, upon which ‘content’ is thinly draped (not to beat the pac-man thing to death, but it’s a good example)

– A game should aspire to enhance the experience of playing in some new and interesting way, or at least approach an old favorite from a idiosyncratic new angle.

So that’s the grand plan, which I hope to be able to actually implement, but I acknowledge that (especially in the beginning) I may not be able to fully realize. It’s unavoidable that producing anything complex (in this case, software) is a constant series of trade-offs, but each compromise is made one goal in mind: barter for as much quality as you can get.

Given that this whole endeavor is essentially a lark and a hobby at this point, I have the luxury of trying new ideas with wild abandon, so I’m damn well going to do it. I fully expect that some, if not most, will be total failures. I guess that’s just the nature of the game if you’re trying to pull off something truly worthwhile. If I have to climb a mountain of failures to build something great at the summit, then it’s time well spent. (how’s that for a dramatic metaphor!)

So stay tuned, and have enjoy the ride, I know I will.

-Joe out.

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