This week we're discussing one of the most important skills for a professional game designer to cultivate -- workplace communication! We share thoughts and personal anecdotes on how to clearly get your ideas across, how to foster a non-toxic work environment, and how to align your whole team behind the same set of goals.
Continuing on from last week's discussion of non-standard RPG stats in games, we dig into the confusingly named stats that make up Bloodborne's progression system. Designs will be analyzed, honor will be challenged, and in true From Software fashion, one of our hosts will die.
The gang discusses Digimon World's Brains stat and how it allowed the designers to tutorialize the game's combat by abstracting the player's access to each monster's moves until they had gained a certain level of familiarity with them. Also: the start of a bitter feud that threatens to tear the world of Pretentious Game Ideas apart.
Rob and Jon take to the mics alone to discuss Ladykiller in a Bind, Christine Love's 2016 visual novel about queer romance and mistaken identities. Specifically, we're digging into Ladykiller's innovative dialogue system, breaking down what makes it work so well and what other games can learn from it.
Ryan's computer is down for the count, so Rob and Jon go it alone to discuss Beat Saber's campaign mode and how its modifier-based system makes it both more fun and more educational than other rhythm games' campaigns.
The gang discusses Mario Kart 8's various gameplay assistance features and how they manage to walk the line between making the game more accessible while still maintaining its competitive spirit.
Ryan leads the gang through a discussion of healthy work-life practices for game designers. How can you change your work habits to optimize your productivity, focus your creative energies where they're most important, and avoid the dreaded burnout? All will be revealed!
The gang digs into Mysterium's clairvoyancy token mechanic. What does it add to the game? Does it have to be so dang complex? How did it become part of the design in the first place? And could all of this be the work of malicious spirits influencing the designers from beyond the grave?
The gang talks about Supergiant Games' new early access roguelike Hades and its excellent Boon system, which allows players to temporarily increase the game's difficulty for the chance to earn a permanent bonus.
The gang discusses Matt Leacock's 2013 cooperative board game Forbidden Desert. Although the game is considered by many to be a modern classic, we're digging into its Meteorologist class, and how one of its abilities is just... not fun?