Blog Post 7: Game prototyping – stage 2

This week I spoke more to my tutor, Richard, about the potential mechanics behind my game. We delved more into the ‘fashion game’ concept, and talked about turning it into something that can be fun to play with and easy to understand. The idea was inspired by the movie ‘Mean Girls’ (2004) and this particular scene:

The ridiculousness behind these group ‘rules’ will be translated into the game. I want my players to feel like they can be as catty and immature with the way they play and to not take it too seriously, because high school politics are a joke.

No playtesting was done this week because I have felt really stuck with my game idea and this week has more so been about a breakthrough with conceptual ideas. However, we discussed the use of symbols per tab to differentiate and categorise them e.g.

  • blue coloured shapes
  • red coloured shapes
  • yellow coloured shapes
  • green coloured shapes

Below are pictures of a rough prototype developed in class:

Example of different symbols per tab.
Showing this in practice.
Rough example of prototype showing the idea of rules behind each tab relating to it.
Basic prototype of how the form would come together using 7 sheets of A4 paper.

The weekly lecture made me reflect on the degree of abstraction within my game.
The way I see it, abstraction is the simplification of a concept to the point where it has lost its complexity and ability to represent something.
Applying this concept to a game would result in a theme-less one where mechanisms and components do not represent anything in the real world. However, I could argue that an element of my game that utilises abstraction is the use of additional rules on the back of each tab. These rules are used to sabotage the next players chance of winning a round and may be considered strategical elements within each booklet that can only be discovered per round; players only get 15 seconds to choose an outfit.

With this in mind, the degree of abstraction within my game is minimal. My game relies on a specific theme as well as the representational skills of its visuals to evoke feelings of familiarity and understanding within my audience. My game is based around trying to evoke an experience. This recognition of real world objects in my game will determine whether or not it is played correctly. Last weeks ‘OOO‘ concept would definitely not fit into this game. Players need to reflect on how petty female relations are represented in pop culture in order to understand the purpose of and the humour behind the game. Even if humans were not involved somehow in my game, clothing is still made by us, so ‘the connection to human sense‘ is ever present.

Ultimately, I need to work on the basic mechanics of the game and the more intricate rules behind each tab. This could be the factor that defines the game as simple or complex.

Flip Fashion, 2013, book, Lucille Clerc.

Additionally, my research led me to ‘Flip Fashion’ (2013), a book by Lucille Clerc. I love the illustrative and typographic style of this book, which I think is something to consider for my own game.

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