Principle 4: KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid)

Every aspect of a product should be obvious and easy to understand.

For instance, allowing players to access every option within two button clicks may be simpler than having 37 unique keys to press. Forcing a player to press Alt+Ctrl+Shift A to get his character to kick an opponent would be ridiculous. Likewise, having to press “A,” “B,” “C,” and “D” to control the movements of an airplane in a flight simulator would drive the average player crazy. If a player has to repeatedly press four keys to perform a task, the game design should include a superkey or a one-key macro to simplify the operation.

Keep design interfaces simple. I once designed games for an arcade manufacturer, and the president of this company taught me a valuable lesson about design. He said if a player doesn’t grasp the interface of a computer game or video game, that player will read the manual since $50 (or so) was invested in the game. With arcade games, however, the player has only invested a quarter or two, so if the game isn’t understandable, addictive, and compelling, the player moves on to the next machine. Who cares about wasting pocket change? While this is especially critical for arcade games, I think it’s important to remember when designing games for any platform.



Game Design Foundations
Game Design Foundations (Wordware Game and Graphics Library)
ISBN: 1556229739
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2003
Pages: 179

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