Game Design Overview


A quick note: I make no claims to the sensitivity or awareness of the authors – some are fantastic, some could use some work, and all points between. All of these books have been quite helpful in my quest to understand more about the illusive discipline called game design. Enjoy. sdc


Fundamentals of Game Design, 3rd Edition, Ernest Adams
An Architectural Approach To Level Design, Christopher W. Trotten
Level Design: Concept, Theory and Practice, Rudolf Kremers
Game Narrative Toolbox, Tobias Heussner, Toiya Kristen Finley, Jennifer Brandes Hepler, Ann Lemay
Players Making Decisions, Zack Hiwiller
Beyond Game Design, Chris Bateman (editor)


Rules of Play, Katie Salen and Eric Zimmerman
How to Do Things with Videogames, Ian Bogost
Unit Operations, Ian Bogost
Persuasive Games, Ian Bogost
Extra Lives, Tom Bissell
Half-Real, Jasper Juul
How Games Move Us, Katherine Isbister


Indie Game: The Movie (film), James Swirsky and Lisanne Pajot
Indie Game: Life After (film), James Swirsky and Lisanne Pajot
Rise of the Videogame Zinesters, Anna Anthropy
The State of Play, Linus Larsson and Daniel Goldberg (editors)
Embed with Games, Cara Ellison
Developer’s Dilemma, Casey O’Donnell
This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things, Whitney Phillips


What Is Your Quest?, Anastasia Salter
Dungeons and Dreamers, Brad King and John Borland
Replay, Tristan Donovan


No Bullshit Math and Physics, Ivan Savov
3D Math Primer for Graphics and Game Development, Fletcher Dunn and Ian Parberry
Game Programming Algorithms and Techniques, Sanjay Madhav
Game Coding Complete, 4th Edition, Mike McShaffry and David β€œRez” Graham
Game Engine Architecture, Jason Gregory


Writing Interactive Fiction with Twine, Melissa Ford
Unity in Action, Joseph Hocking


A Composer’s Guide to Game Music, Winifred Phillips