Video Game Design – Definition, Examples, History & More – Digital Art and Technology Glossary

What is Video Game Design?

Video game design is the process of creating the content and rules of a video game. It involves a combination of art, programming, and storytelling to create an engaging and interactive experience for players.

Video game design encompasses everything from the overall concept of the game to the specific details of gameplay mechanics and level design. Designers must consider the target audience, platform, and genre of the game when creating their vision.

Game Mechanics

Game mechanics are the rules and systems that govern how a video game is played. They include everything from how players interact with the game world to how they progress through levels and achieve objectives.

Game mechanics can vary widely depending on the genre of the game. For example, a platformer game may focus on jumping and navigating obstacles, while a role-playing game may emphasize character customization and strategic combat.

Level Design

Level design is the process of creating the individual levels or stages that make up a video game. It involves designing the layout of the environment, placing obstacles and enemies, and determining the flow of gameplay.

Good level design is crucial to the success of a video game, as it can greatly impact the player’s experience. Levels should be challenging but not frustrating, and should encourage exploration and creativity.

Character Design

Character design is the process of creating the visual appearance and personality of the characters in a video game. This includes designing their costumes, animations, and abilities, as well as writing their dialogue and backstory.

Well-designed characters can help players connect with the game world and become emotionally invested in the story. They should be memorable, relatable, and visually appealing to capture the player’s attention.

User Interface Design

User interface design is the process of creating the menus, buttons, and other interactive elements that players use to navigate a video game. It involves designing the layout, color scheme, and functionality of the interface to make it intuitive and easy to use.

A well-designed user interface can enhance the player’s experience by providing clear instructions, feedback, and options. It should be visually appealing, responsive, and accessible to players of all skill levels.

Storytelling in Video Games

Storytelling in video games is the art of creating a narrative that unfolds as players progress through the game. It involves writing dialogue, creating cutscenes, and designing quests and missions that advance the plot.

Good storytelling can elevate a video game from a simple pastime to a memorable and immersive experience. It can engage players emotionally, intellectually, and creatively, and can leave a lasting impact long after the game is over.