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Brainy Gamer – Put me in, coach!

May 9, 2012

When I started doing some research in advance of starting this blog, I found that there really wasn’t a lot of material out there that covered sports and game design in a meaningful way. One of the few sources that did give this topic some occasional treatment is Brainy Gamer. Recently, Brainy gamer posted an entry about some of the lessons that mainstream video game design can learn from sports video games, specifically regarding MLB The Show, which is widely regarded as being an excellent baseball game.

Brainy Gamer cites a variety of design lessons, ranging from a of clever implementations of available technology (handheld-console save game compatibility) to meta-lessons about different gameplay contexts in which the game can be enjoyed. One note in particular, about how The Show allows you to play anything from a single player’s career to a broader manager’s view seems derived directly from the different ways that people enjoy sports and the different roles that need to be filled in a professional environment. Even spectators can have a very different experience watching a game live, or on TV, playing a pickup game in the local park or league or or even online via a fantasy team. Sports have always offered multiple different modes of interaction around the same basic ruleset, and it’s a clear and useful lesson that mainstream gaming could easily integrate into other concepts.

If you haven’t read it yet, I whole-heartedly recommend it.


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