On the morning of 14 November 2008, a 15 year-old boy was rushed to hospital in Laholm, Sweden. He was suffering from an apparent epileptic fit, brought on by exhaustion and dehydration. Investigating doctors discovered that the cause of his illness was self-inflicted. The boy had been playing Wrath of the Lich King, an expansion of […]Read more "The Three Fundamentals of Powerful Interactive Communications"
We all know conversation is a game. Sometimes it’s a game with a very definite prize, like getting someone to think you’re interesting enough that they’ll give you their phone number, or getting someone to trust you enough that they’ll consider your business proposal. Whatever the goal is, conversation is challenging, scalable, and interactive – […]Read more "Conversation: the Rules"
Valve is a fast-growing business in a dying market. They’re one of the biggest forces in PC gaming, thanks to great games and also Steam, their gaming network/app store/publishing platform. But PC sales are in freefall, so Valve has realized that they are doomed. Doomed, that is, unless they make a play for either mobile devices or the […]Read more "How the Steam Console could disrupt the gaming market"
This is a transcript (sort of)of an Ignite session I just delivered at the Melcrum Digital Communications Summit in London.Read more "Kill it With Fire: why Gamification sucks and Game Dynamics rule"
Comedy gold. In anticipation of this documentary and ensuing flame-wars, the head of communications for BBC Worldwide, Phil Fleming, has announced that the BBC’s own games are “absolutely not addictive”. Fleming suggested the firm’s own game output is completely safe in the hands of minors. “The games that we do are family-based, they’re not about […]Read more "Update: BBC Video Games “Not Addictive”"
Tonight, BBC Panorama will air an episode about video game addiction. Here’s the trailer: That trailer is meant to shock, grab your attention and make you watch the piece – so naturally it exaggerates the tone of the documentary, for effect. It’s supposed to be incitatory. As always with this topic, the trailer has kicked […]Read more "BBC Panorama: Addicted to Games?"
This is the typical view you get if you’re riding a London tube train at rush hour. In the morning it’s packed but high-energy and it smells faintly of cologne and coffee. On the way home it’s different. Everyone retreats into their own world even more than normal. They’re tired. They’re packed together. It’s been […]Read more "Obvious Delight"
My self-taught, practical course in level design continues. After a weekend of obsessive forging, I present another multiplayer map for Halo: Reach. Here’s the Beta version of Boulevard of Broken Dreams. This one’s a $10,000 map – I used every cent of Reach’s complexity allowance. It’s built for team slayer or capture the flag, a […]Read more "Lessons in Level Design: Boulevard"
My thoughts about game design have been stirred lately by the creative opportunities afforded by Bungie’s Halo: Reach. As well as being an excellent game in its own right, Reach includes a very powerful level editor with quite easy controls. The learning curve is steep but very short, and it’s entirely possible to be creating […]Read more "Level Building in Halo: Reach"
Here’s a few words I said to kick off BoardGameCamp this morning. It was 9:30 and some people had been traveling a long way. Hi Everyone. Early start today eh? Let’s see who was up the earliest. Seven o’clock? [many hands] Six o’clock? [a couple fewer] Five o’clock? [a handful of people] How about four […]Read more "Ludo, ergo sum."