CGD Podcast Episode 23 – “On Games At the Games”, A Conversation with Frank Lantz

Frank_Lantz_at_work_in_area_code_offices This week I had a great conversation with NYU Game Center director Frank Lantz about randomness and general game design philosophy. We meant to get to three other topics - execution, reading and improvisation, but not all-that-surprisingly, we never got there in the 70+ minutes of this episode. Mentioned in this episode:

Frank's "Against Design" article

David Deutsch's The Beginning of Infinity

Nassim Taleb's The Black Swan

Nick Bostrom's Superintelligence

  Let me know what you thought of the conversation in the comments below (if you're lucky, Frank may even be hovering nearby to respond!) If you enjoyed the show, please consider supporting the show by becoming a patron at!

Read More

The Clockwork Game Design Podcast: Episode 12 – Verificationism and Goals

cgdplogo_mediumIn this episode, I really talk about three things:

  1. I wanted to address some comments I got about last episode and whether I really agreed with much of what Charles Pratt said, as I seemed to to some listeners
  2. The idea of "verificationism" which I was introduced to by Sam Harris' latest podcast episode, and
  3. Goals - what makes a good goal, and what should we avoid in goal design?
Some stuff I referenced in the podcast: Sam Harris' latest podcast episode, which is absolutely recommended listening for my listeners My book, which has a lot more detail on good goal design Wikipedia article on verificationism My 3 Minute Game Design episode, "How Games Work" which touches on goals (other episodes in the series do as well) Thanks for listening, and as always, you can support the show by visiting my Patreon page. Patrons will soon gain access to a new top secret prototype I'm working on, by the way!

Read More

The Clockwork Game Design Podcast: Episode 11 – Good Formalism with Charles Pratt

cgdplogo_mediumToday's episode features an hour-long discussion with game designer at NYU Game Center teacher Charles Pratt. Charles and I met at the Practice conference and had some good discussions, and I think our perspectives live at that rare place where they're not too different so that we can't communicate, but they're also not so similar where we have nothing to discuss. Overall, I think it was a great conversation and I hope you guys agree. Here's a talk Charles did at NYU called Ground Truths: Articulating a Formalist Perspective on Games. Also, be sure to check out Charles' podcast (if you haven't already), called Another Castle. His podcast hasn't recorded an episode in a few years, but there's a bunch of interviews there with a ton of interesting people. As always, you can support the show by becoming a patron at Thanks for listening!

Read More