Chapter 14: Adding and Subtracting Mechanics

It usually starts like this: "Wouldn't it be great if...?" Next thing you know, someone wants you to add something to or to take something out of a game.Challenges for Game Designers

Unreal Tournament: Insta-gib and Low Gravity

In the video below, you'll see a heavily modded version of Unreal Tournament. They change three mechanics which alter the dynamics dramatically. In this gameplay video, you'll see they alter the server specifications to remove all weapons but one, the bullet damage has also increased so any damage kills, and the gravity value has been lowered so people float around and move differently. These mods created a community of players that preferred these altered settings over the real rules of the game that was released to the public.

Reflection and Discussion

After reading Chapter 14, and before your final project is due, playtest your game thoroughly. Experiment with adding, subtracting, or changing the mechanics in your game. You could also alter the resources used in some way, change the victory condition, redefine the balance dramatically. What was your playtesting process? Did you use any focus groups? What did you learn? Did anything improve based on this testing?

Warning: It is possible to make your game worse for the final project. Have a strategy for playtesting so this does not happen.

Further Reading

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