Stealing Game Ideas: What Never Happens

in a seemingly strong showing of faith in his fellow game designers, the brilliant phil steinmeyer of new crayon games is putting a bunch of game prototypes out there for feedback. sort of an open sourcing of game design, one might say.

will anyone take one of these fun and funky concepts and run with them? of course not. can we give him valuable feedback to actually make a difference in the end product? absolutely. will it end up a better game because of it? absolutely. will anyone get rich off it? not likely. (sorry phil)

here’s what i thought of his game concepts:

game b

  • rating – 7
  • the size ratio of the negative space to blocks snatched needs to be greater. more inline with that bubbles game and less tetris. needs more air. feels frustrating and tight now.
  • the squares are okay, but i don’t think they’d lend themselves to as much ‘puzzle joining’ goodness as hexes would.
  • the clinging bubble meme works well and could make for some fun imagery.

game c

  • i have no idea whatsoever what the objective is. sorry.

game d

  • rating – 4
  • kind of a retread. lots of similar gameplay already out there. from zuma to just about every corporate branded canon-clinging-fruit-tree game.
  • the four sides thing isn’t enough of a break from previous game bulwarks to really stand out.

game g

  • rating – 5
  • the grabbing and placing the falling tetris blocks isn’t really different enough. it still feels like tetris.
  • the basic mechanic is still move these to fall in the correct position.

game i

  • rating – 8
  • the placing of single blocks allows more strategic planning.
  • scratches sort of the pharoahs needle itch.
  • feels constructive. building up. good vibes.
  • lends itself to more modes of play.

game j

  • rating – 6
  • not different enough from i to be its own game. more like one of the modes i was talking about.
  • dragging through the other blocks could entail some fun animation or ‘heavy feeling’ to the user controls.

game k

  • rating – 3
  • feels like a ‘blackout’ mode for bejeweled.
  • not nearly different enough.
  • is it fun? sure. like bejeweled or jewel quest is fun. we already know those are great games, tho.

game n

  • rating – 1
  • all of the fun of bejeweled minus the fun, insert frustration.
  • i understand the thought. add more forward thinking strategy to the game.
  • throwing up barriers, tho, is a penalty – not a bonus for getting something right.
  • ogg thinks game bad. ugh.

game p

  • rating – 10
  • now we’re talking!
  • handles could have a fantastic ‘springy-pinball-plunger’ type feel.
  • great inspirations for animation.
  • i don’t think the ‘set it and forget it’ mode works, tho. the handles, once you pull (or push, either way) them to make a match, they need to ‘spring’ back out to reset.
  • fun animation like looking at piano keys from the front as the pianist runs his fingers down them. lots of little bobbles and noises.
  • different enough with enough room to add ‘oooh ahhh’ factor.
  • much fun. nice work.

game r

  • rating – 9
  • i like the concept you are going for. similar construction strategy thing as i.
  • the double elements make for some surprising results.
  • could even vary it — mix it up with singles, doubles or triples.
  • good mix of time-based play and strategy.

thanks for letting us play, phil.


p.s. looking back at some of his notes in the readme, it seems like he’s on the same page as i am with a few of these. good to know.


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