What's new

Game Design Workshop, 4th edition, follows the same basic table of contents as the first three editions. There are some important changes, hover, from the first two editions. If you are using the 3rd edition, you will already be familiar with these structural changes. Chapter 13 has been renamed “Stages and Methods of Development” as it now includes a discussion of Agile development methods. Chapter 14 has been renamed “Communicating Your Designs,” since it now deals primarily with strategies for communicating designs rather than focusing on the development of a design document. And, Chapter 15 has been renamed “Understanding the New Game Industry,” as it now looks at emerging developments in the new industry. Additionally, the illustrations, photographs and screenshots in the 4th edition have all been updated to full color, making them much more readable and useful as examples.

The core of the book remains focused on the playcentric method, with updates throughout to include references and examples to new platforms and genres of play. Also, there are new sidebars on important areas such as game direction, game loops, building inclusive teams, game metrics, mobile games, virtual reality and experimental game design. For those who have taught with or read the book before, it retains its familiar structure and flow. For those just picking it up, I hope that it this new version will be as useful to you in your study of game design as it has to others in its previous editions. CRC Press has made a sample chapter from the 4th edition available for download here.

As those familiar with the book know, one of its key features are the Designer Perspectives, interviews of many of the best known game designers in the field. In an effort to make room in the book up for exciting new voices from the changing face of the industry, I have moved many of the great Designer Perspectives from previous editions to this website. Also, a number of sidebars from previous editions that contain valuable insights and information are available here. You can find links to these here: Designer Perspectives from previous editions, Sidebars from previous editions.


Part 1  Game Design Basics

Chapter 1  The Role of the Game Designer

Chapter 2  The Structure of Games

Chapter 3  Working with Formal Elements

Chapter 4  Working with Dramatic Elements

Chapter 5  Working with System Dynamics


Part 2  Designing a Game

Chapter 6  Conceptualization

Chapter 7  Prototyping

Chapter 8  Digital Prototyping

Chapter 9  Playtesting

Chapter 10  Functionality, Completeness, and Balance

Chapter 11  Fun and Accessibility


Part 3  Working As a Game Designer

Chapter 12  Team Structures

Chapter 13  Stages and Methods of Development

Chapter 14  Communicating Your Designs

Chapter 15  Understanding the New Game Industry

Chapter 16  Selling Yourself and Your Ideas to the Game Industry