Tags » Problem Machine

Anniversary

Three years ago this month I started this blog. It was a hot Summer day like this, because that’s how years work, and I’d had a few solid shots of vodka for no reason in particular, but that probably contributed substantially to Problem Machine actually coming into existence. 496 more words

Problem Machine

Team Colors

It’s useful knowing what team you’re on. Red vs Blue, Shirts vs Skins, Us vs Them: In game design, we try to make that difference obvious on first glance, we make the shapes different, tall and thin vs short and bulky, add distinctive hats, make everyone on one team red and everyone on the other team blue. 484 more words

Problem Machine

Tiny Gods

One appealing aspect of religion is that it lets us presume our world is crafted with the same care and intent that we put into our art. 474 more words

Problem Machine

The Unknowable

Games tend to offer us questions just so they can supply the answers. In life, a vast amount of information is lost forever. Most of it is unimportant: For most people, it’s impossible to know, say, what they had for lunch this day three years ago (much less what someone else had). 652 more words

Problem Machine

Balancing Numbers

There’s an issue I’ve noticed comes up a lot in game design, particularly when it comes to balancing items and abilities against each other: The differentiation and conflation of absolute and relative values. 1,043 more words

Problem Machine

Listen

Dark souls is frequently described as masochistically difficult. I don’t think this is very apt: Masochism implies a state of being acted upon, of being made to suffer by an outside force. 480 more words

Problem Machine

War Stories

America has a relationship with violence that is, let’s say, a little too friendly. That’s not to say that the American mindset is violent necessarily, that we are predisposed to… 980 more words

Problem Machine