Invogames
Game Design Basics Guide

Game Design Basics Guide

Invogames

Game Development

|

February 12, 2024

|

3 min read

Before a video game is pushed further to the development stage, a detailed game design document is formed to give the game developers a clear direction. 

 

Getting familiar with game design is the basics; it is the first step to creating a cohesive and compelling Game Design Document. 

 

This blog will explore game design basics and the key aspects that create engaging and enjoyable video games. 

 

Game Design and It’s Key Aspects

 

“Game design is the formation of the rules and content of any game, except programming, art or animation, or marketing, or any of the other myriad tasks.”

 

Game design is the fusion of technical expertise, creativity, and problem-solving skills to form a game world with life. You’ll never see a video game without creatives succeed. 

 

Aside from that, it engages players with an experience that ensures seamless functionality. In this way, game design isn’t a solo act. It’s a collaborative effort of the game artist and the developer who work tirelessly to bring life to the magical game world. 

 

Let’s start with understanding game design basics for an exhilarating gaming experience. 

 

Key Aspects of Game Design Basics

 

When it comes to game development, understanding and mastering the game design basics is the name of the game. A difference between the good and OK-ish tells how important game design is for a video game, as it is the only aspect that has the potential to make or break the gaming experience.

 

For a simple understanding, we have categorized each element of game design basics into three categories. Take a look below!

 

Key Aspects of Game Design Basics

 

Core Concept Of Game Design

 

The core concept of a game design is its statement of purpose. For example, the core concept of the Battlefield game series is designed around surviving a wartime. 

 

Concept and Theme

 

In game design basics, the concept is the soul of your game. It is the concept artists who create the big picture to define what your game is all about. It answers questions like: What's the player's goal or objective? What makes your game unique? 

 

On the other hand, the game theme is the overall vibe that ties everything together. It impacts the visual style, the story, and the overall experience players will have in the game.

 

So, when we talk about game design basics, nailing down an intriguing concept and theme is where the magic begins.

 

Game Mechanics

 

Take game mechanics as the nuts and bolts of your game. You identify and design the rules that make your game tick in the basics. Rules like these command every player's interaction with the game – from simple movements to complex maneuvers.

 

Game Mechanics

 

It is more like making the game hard, which makes it exciting. The introduction of rewards, keeping players motivated, and a sense of progression make the journey worthwhile. 

 

Story and Narrative

 

In game design basics, creating a compelling story is like breathing a soul into your game. The narrative should do more than what it does. Its responsibility is to immerse players in how they feel connected and invested. 

 

The game isn't just about what happens but how it happens and correlates with the player's actions. The story should complement the experience and establish a cohesive adventure that players crave to be a part of. 

 

Building Blocks of a Successful Video Game

 

Characters, user interface, and visual details are the building blocks of any successful game. These traits help players to understand and access the game's features quickly. 

 

Characters and Avatars

 

In game design basics, characters and avatars are essential in making the game world more immersive by connecting players with the characters. 

 

Regarding connection, game characters should have defined personalities, motivations, and roles within the game. When game designers put enough time into character development, players unknowingly get invested, enhancing the gaming experience. 

 

User Interface (UI) and User Experience (UX)

 

User Interface (UI) and User Experience (UX)

 

Now that we know much about core concepts, mechanics, and narrative, let's dive into how players interact with your game. 

 

The User Interface (UI) is all about designing a natural interface, from the menus, buttons, and displays that players use to control the game. A good UI helps players easily understand and access the game's features. 

 

But it's not just about looks. It's also about the overall User Experience (UX). A smooth UX doesn't just let players play your game but also makes them love the entire experience. UI and UX should be prioritized to boost retention and attract more players. 

 

Graphics and Visual Design

 

Graphics and visual design in game design basics are like the first impression your game makes. Choosing an appropriate game art style is critical. The graphics, images, animations, and overall visual elements must be in harmony with the game's theme. 

 

In the grand scheme of game design basics, game developers should pay close attention to graphics and visual design to create a playable and visually appealing game world. 

 

Sound and Music

 

Sound and music are a collection of sonic aspects we use to add depth to the environment. 

 

Adding audio elements

 

Sound and music are among the most contributing factors in a game design, elevating the whole gaming experience. It is more than just hearing, feeling, and interacting with the game. Syncing sound effects and music within the game significantly contributes to the player's immersion. 

 

When done right, sound and music become the heartbeat of your game, foster engagement, and make the virtual world feel alive with the lively music. 

 

Balancing soundscapes

 

Sound design is not the game's music; it is the collection of all sonic aspects utilized to improve the realism and depth of each scene, from the sound of footsteps to the deep roar of extraterrestrial beasts.

 

The role of sound design can be defined in one word: realism.

 

Aside from the complexity of the characters, a realistic feel allows the players to fully sink into the story, with sound components such as wind, echo, and flowing water playing essential roles in creating a compelling virtual environment.

 

When creating the ideal soundscape, sound designers consider all of these aspects.

 

Gameplay Balance

 

If the game has biased player progression, it could be more enjoyable. When designing game basics, add balance to character abilities, player development, and multiplayer gameplay. 

 

Player progression

 

Progression comes in three varieties. However, a "Player" progression refers to the individual playing the game, enhancing their skill and knowledge of the game design. 

 

Several action-based titles are designed around the player improving at the game to have a chance of winning — a prominent example being the Souls series.

 

Character abilities

 

Character  abilities are scripts that allow your character to perform actions. This is where it all happens, whether it's jumping, sprinting, or clicking a button. Having these different ability scripts allows for the greatest possible design. It will also make it much easier to develop your abilities.

 

Some of the standard abilities of your character can include:

 

  • CharacterJump2D/3D 
  • CharacterMovement 
  • CharacterOrientation2D/3D 
  • CharacterPathfinder3D 
  • CharacterPathfindToMouse: CharacterPause 
  • CharacterPersistence 
  • CharacterRotateCamera 
  • CharacterRotation2D 
  • CharacterRun 
  • CharacterSwap 
  • CharacterSwitchModel 
  • CharacterTimeControl 
  • Character Ability Node Swap 

 

Multiplayer balancing 

 

In multiplayer, players compete or collaborate to win. Players' strengths on each team can have progressive effects on gameplay, and many game developers go for a particular scale of players to create enjoyable experiences.

 

Multiplayer balancing splits players into teams based on a designed ratio. Most multiplayer games balance teams equally, so no one team has any benefit. Some games voluntarily create unbalanced scenarios, like putting four players against one overpowered player. 

 

Despite the setup, multiplayer balance is critical for creating exciting experiences for multiple teams.

 

Regarding game design basics, it is finding the perfect balance between the different gameplay elements for an enhanced player's experience. Balancing gameplay is about making it satisfyingly challenging, not too easy that it feels bland, and not even too hard that it becomes annoying. 

 

Overall, gameplay balancing ensures that every element works together harmoniously, creating a pleasant experience that makes players return for more. Talk to our best game designer to get started. 

Before a video game is pushed further to the development stage, a detailed game design document is formed to give the game developers a clear direction. 

 

Getting familiar with game design is the basics; it is the first step to creating a cohesive and compelling Game Design Document. 

 

This blog will explore game design basics and the key aspects that create engaging and enjoyable video games. 

 

Game Design and It’s Key Aspects

 

“Game design is the formation of the rules and content of any game, except programming, art or animation, or marketing, or any of the other myriad tasks.”

 

Game design is the fusion of technical expertise, creativity, and problem-solving skills to form a game world with life. You’ll never see a video game without creatives succeed. 

 

Aside from that, it engages players with an experience that ensures seamless functionality. In this way, game design isn’t a solo act. It’s a collaborative effort of the game artist and the developer who work tirelessly to bring life to the magical game world. 

 

Let’s start with understanding game design basics for an exhilarating gaming experience. 

 

Key Aspects of Game Design Basics

 

When it comes to game development, understanding and mastering the game design basics is the name of the game. A difference between the good and OK-ish tells how important game design is for a video game, as it is the only aspect that has the potential to make or break the gaming experience.

 

For a simple understanding, we have categorized each element of game design basics into three categories. Take a look below!

 

Key Aspects of Game Design Basics

 

Core Concept Of Game Design

 

The core concept of a game design is its statement of purpose. For example, the core concept of the Battlefield game series is designed around surviving a wartime. 

 

Concept and Theme

 

In game design basics, the concept is the soul of your game. It is the concept artists who create the big picture to define what your game is all about. It answers questions like: What's the player's goal or objective? What makes your game unique? 

 

On the other hand, the game theme is the overall vibe that ties everything together. It impacts the visual style, the story, and the overall experience players will have in the game.

 

So, when we talk about game design basics, nailing down an intriguing concept and theme is where the magic begins.

 

Game Mechanics

 

Take game mechanics as the nuts and bolts of your game. You identify and design the rules that make your game tick in the basics. Rules like these command every player's interaction with the game – from simple movements to complex maneuvers.

 

Game Mechanics

 

It is more like making the game hard, which makes it exciting. The introduction of rewards, keeping players motivated, and a sense of progression make the journey worthwhile. 

 

Story and Narrative

 

In game design basics, creating a compelling story is like breathing a soul into your game. The narrative should do more than what it does. Its responsibility is to immerse players in how they feel connected and invested. 

 

The game isn't just about what happens but how it happens and correlates with the player's actions. The story should complement the experience and establish a cohesive adventure that players crave to be a part of. 

 

Building Blocks of a Successful Video Game

 

Characters, user interface, and visual details are the building blocks of any successful game. These traits help players to understand and access the game's features quickly. 

 

Characters and Avatars

 

In game design basics, characters and avatars are essential in making the game world more immersive by connecting players with the characters. 

 

Regarding connection, game characters should have defined personalities, motivations, and roles within the game. When game designers put enough time into character development, players unknowingly get invested, enhancing the gaming experience. 

 

User Interface (UI) and User Experience (UX)

 

User Interface (UI) and User Experience (UX)

 

Now that we know much about core concepts, mechanics, and narrative, let's dive into how players interact with your game. 

 

The User Interface (UI) is all about designing a natural interface, from the menus, buttons, and displays that players use to control the game. A good UI helps players easily understand and access the game's features. 

 

But it's not just about looks. It's also about the overall User Experience (UX). A smooth UX doesn't just let players play your game but also makes them love the entire experience. UI and UX should be prioritized to boost retention and attract more players. 

 

Graphics and Visual Design

 

Graphics and visual design in game design basics are like the first impression your game makes. Choosing an appropriate game art style is critical. The graphics, images, animations, and overall visual elements must be in harmony with the game's theme. 

 

In the grand scheme of game design basics, game developers should pay close attention to graphics and visual design to create a playable and visually appealing game world. 

 

Sound and Music

 

Sound and music are a collection of sonic aspects we use to add depth to the environment. 

 

Adding audio elements

 

Sound and music are among the most contributing factors in a game design, elevating the whole gaming experience. It is more than just hearing, feeling, and interacting with the game. Syncing sound effects and music within the game significantly contributes to the player's immersion. 

 

When done right, sound and music become the heartbeat of your game, foster engagement, and make the virtual world feel alive with the lively music. 

 

Balancing soundscapes

 

Sound design is not the game's music; it is the collection of all sonic aspects utilized to improve the realism and depth of each scene, from the sound of footsteps to the deep roar of extraterrestrial beasts.

 

The role of sound design can be defined in one word: realism.

 

Aside from the complexity of the characters, a realistic feel allows the players to fully sink into the story, with sound components such as wind, echo, and flowing water playing essential roles in creating a compelling virtual environment.

 

When creating the ideal soundscape, sound designers consider all of these aspects.

 

Gameplay Balance

 

If the game has biased player progression, it could be more enjoyable. When designing game basics, add balance to character abilities, player development, and multiplayer gameplay. 

 

Player progression

 

Progression comes in three varieties. However, a "Player" progression refers to the individual playing the game, enhancing their skill and knowledge of the game design. 

 

Several action-based titles are designed around the player improving at the game to have a chance of winning — a prominent example being the Souls series.

 

Character abilities

 

Character  abilities are scripts that allow your character to perform actions. This is where it all happens, whether it's jumping, sprinting, or clicking a button. Having these different ability scripts allows for the greatest possible design. It will also make it much easier to develop your abilities.

 

Some of the standard abilities of your character can include:

 

  • CharacterJump2D/3D 
  • CharacterMovement 
  • CharacterOrientation2D/3D 
  • CharacterPathfinder3D 
  • CharacterPathfindToMouse: CharacterPause 
  • CharacterPersistence 
  • CharacterRotateCamera 
  • CharacterRotation2D 
  • CharacterRun 
  • CharacterSwap 
  • CharacterSwitchModel 
  • CharacterTimeControl 
  • Character Ability Node Swap 

 

Multiplayer balancing 

 

In multiplayer, players compete or collaborate to win. Players' strengths on each team can have progressive effects on gameplay, and many game developers go for a particular scale of players to create enjoyable experiences.

 

Multiplayer balancing splits players into teams based on a designed ratio. Most multiplayer games balance teams equally, so no one team has any benefit. Some games voluntarily create unbalanced scenarios, like putting four players against one overpowered player. 

 

Despite the setup, multiplayer balance is critical for creating exciting experiences for multiple teams.

 

Regarding game design basics, it is finding the perfect balance between the different gameplay elements for an enhanced player's experience. Balancing gameplay is about making it satisfyingly challenging, not too easy that it feels bland, and not even too hard that it becomes annoying. 

 

Overall, gameplay balancing ensures that every element works together harmoniously, creating a pleasant experience that makes players return for more. Talk to our best game designer to get started. 

frequently asked questions

It is excellent to have a background in development knowledge science, graphic design, nuanced storytelling through creative writing, etc. Every other online game development guide can help you learn game design basics.

In game design degrees, you learn about the general education curriculum with language arts, math, and science courses. You can then go for the core primary curriculum; in core subjects, you will cover topics like interaction, study media, level design, and digital soundscaping.

A game designer is the one who designs the complete gameplay and sets the rules and structure of your game. You can start your career in video game design with testing departments and other functions in game development, or where mistakes by others can be seen immediately.

Writer InvoGames

Written By:

Kammil Sarbuland
Content Writer

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