Game Design Knowledge From Our Members

GDKeys is not only the blog you are browsing at the moment: it is first and foremost a community of designers, indie developers, and game design enthusiasts that share a passion, learn, and grow together. And many of our members are accomplished designers producing their own content.

This article, that will be updated regularly with new content, is here to shed some light over the amazing learning material they produce: videos, articles, presentations… This is a gold mine of knowledge and a perfect complement of this blog.

Happy reading, and don’t forget to give them all some love by liking, sharing, and commenting their work!

User Experience

ARTICLE: The UX of Video Game Tutorials

Author: Bramha Dalvi

An exploratory article on tutorials approached through the lens of Flow and emotions, that challenges designers by identifying key decisions to be made while designing one.

ARTICLE: How UX Breaks the Fourth Wall to Make Better Video Games

Author: Bramha Dalvi

A deep article challenging the usual misconception of UX = UI and giving keys to understanding that UX  is not about “how can we make this easy” but “how can we help players fulfill what they seek” to quote Bramha.

PRESENTATION: UX Tools for Designing a Portfolio

Author: Iris Vos

What if creating a Portoflio could be approached with the same process and tools used for any UX-oriented project? A short presentation opening doors to classic UX tools.

ARTICLE: Video Game UI that Helps Immersion — Weapons Wheel

Author: Bramha Dalvi

A great study of usability, immersion, and experience fluidity, from the lens of a now-ubiquitous UI element in video games: weapons/items wheels.

ARTICLE: Player Motivations and Video Games

Author: Bramha Dalvi

Another look at player motivations approached through the toy/game distinction and the self-determination theory. Expands beautifully on the motivations article found on this blog.

System Design

VIDEO: “Mis-stakes”, Urgency and the Problem with Main Quests

Author: @Chemical

An excellent video exploring the sense of false urgency in games when narrative stakes and core gameplay collide against one another: the “mis-stakes” as @Chemical calls them (genius!).

ARTICLE: “Dear”, a letter-writing simulator

Author: Lila Grimaldi

What started as a small piece of portfolio turned into a unique look behind the curtain of narrative design, its tools, approaches, and philosophy, and the rational design logic behind it.

ARTICLE: 3C Design for Large Scale Traversal Systems

Author: Bramha Dalvi

As video games worlds become bigger and bigger, so grows the complexity of navigating them. This study explores the 3Cs of giant games in an extremely comprehensive manner.

Combat Design

Article: Anatomy of an Enemy Attack in Dark Souls 3

Author: Jerry Zhang

A precise study of Dark Souls 3 combat direction through the lens of its enemies attack and timings. Excellent to follow-up after the “Anatomy of an Attack” article.

Video Games Studies

ARTICLE: Design Analysis of Control

Author: Jordan Dube

What makes Control such a damn good experience? This article studies the game’s pillars: Weapons, Abilities, Enemies, and Upgrades, to try and shed some light on the hidden elegance of its design.

VIDEO: Fallout 2, Nostalgia, and the ‘I Only Play Real Games’ Crowd

Author: @Chemical

How does Nostalgia affect our perception of past games? Here is a deep video study of the design limitations of the timeless Fallout 2: combat, skills, narration… A fresh look at design progress over the past 20 years.

Article: Why do we Play Dark Souls

Author: Jerry Zhang

Less a Dark Souls study than a players study, this article dives into the inner motivations that drive us to play hard and punitive games, using the Competency pillar of the SDT as a base.


ARTICLE: Board Game Marketing Plan

Author: Jordan Dube

An exceptionally dense article breaking down the construction of a board game business plan: thought process, analysis, studies, and strategies… A gold mine of information.

Share your Experience

Up ↑