Anti-Design Philosophies: Quantity Design

There are a few philosophical positions on game development that are, I would say, “anti-design”. In this short series, I will go through a few of them. We’ll begin with an article about what I call “the quantity design philosophy”.

Recently there was a discussion on the Google+ development group for the game Hoplite. The creator, Doug Cowley, is making some improvements to the late-game and asking people for advice.

Then, sort of in the middle of the discussion, another game developer chimed in with:

“At some point you’ll have to accept that it’s impossible to make a perfect game and stop tweaking 🙂 (Also, make more games!)”

This statement really angered me, precisely because it’s such a common sentiment in the world of game development these days. Perfect can indeed be the enemy of the good, but really, who’s even going for “perfect”? Are any games you’ve ever played in danger of being “perfect”? Perfect, in this context where a person is simply trying to do the right thing and improve their game, is a strawman.

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