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Links 1 through 5 of 5 by Rachel Clarke tagged gamedesign

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To be expected, the game is very well designed. From happy pixel citizens to cute tail-wagging dogs, CityVille keeps you emotionally glued to the screen in ways only a behavioral psychologist could understand.

For this post I've decided to deconstruct the "social sharing" of CityVille, levels 1-3. To grow their user base Zynga uses Facebook wall posts and target friend invitations through their "Goal/Reward/Share" system.

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Part of the reason why we don’t hear more about compulsive behaviour in games is that the subject has been buried under a mountain of more serious (yet also ridiculous and unsupportable) assertions, such as the notion that games cause violence or rot young brains. The games industry has rightly opposed these neanderthal-like ideas, but unfortunately the battle with the media has created an adversarial relationship and caused gamers to become incredibly defensive – despite the fact that everyone who makes and plays games knows that in rare cases, they can lead to compulsive behaviour, but no one really wants to say or do anything about it.

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SCVNGR, which makes a mobile game with real-world challenges, has a playdeck. It is a deck of cards listing nearly 50 different game mechanics that can be mixed and matched to create the foundation for different types of games. I’ve republished the accompanying document below, which should be interesting to anybody trying to inject a gaming dimension into their products.

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An overview from a developers viewpoint. What went right and wrong with producing Bioshock

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