Today’s Critical Thought is all about brands and branding in video games. I talked about the history of mascot/character brands and what it meant for early video games. Over the last decade things have shifted towards game/property branding. I also talked about the difference in major studios vs indies in branding themselves, and when branding causes trouble.

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This week’s Dissecting Design focused on Braid, and how the game combined action and puzzle design into something else. We also looked at the organic tutorial design that helped players come to terms with the unique puzzle mechanics.

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Continuing my talk on customization vs. personalization, we turn to customization. Allowing the player to decide how they play your game is not easy from a design point of view. I talked about how some choices can be considered too good, while others could be too bad. This is where we get into expert-level game design.

For the first part, you can find the link here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dlV09e7Arx0

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Today’s two part Critical Thought takes a look at personalization and customization. For today, we’re focusing on how personalization can help bring a player into the game. I talked about the major examples and the debate of removing personalization options.

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