More news from Weird City. Actually just more discussion of topics from the book mentioned previously.
In the Art of Game Design – the author breaks down games into four elemental components and stresses that they should all be balanced and support each other and the overall theme of the game. The more coherence betwixt the four the stronger the game can be.
Mechanics – how the game works, the rules, the mechanisms that determine how you play, how you win, how you lose, interact. Example mechanic is in Cribbage how the points are scored – pair is two, run of three is three etc. This sets up how you are able to move your pieces around the board. One of the most interesting mechanics of cribbage is pegging in that you count your hand once for interactive play and once by itself.
Story – The story of the game. What is happening in the game. What do your player tokens represent. How you can be involved in the story and how flexible the story is. This is the key to immersive game play and allows players to buy into the game experience.
Technology – The medium for the story, mechanics and aesthetics. How the game is represented physically. Cards, Boards, character sheets, dice.
Aesthetics – This is the presentation, the flavor, the art of the game. This meshes closely with story but is less concerned with narrative and more with look and feel. We have all played Settlers of Catan and who doesn’t like just playing around with the roads and buildings. They are nice wooden pieces that are pleasing to touch and can be put together to form many different shapes. This is an aesthetic choice that really draws players into the world – even before play begins.
More of the holy quatro latro.