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Rules of Play: Game Design Fundamentals Hardcover – 4 Nov 2003


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Rules of Play: Game Design Fundamentals + Theory of Fun for Game Design + The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition
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Product details

  • Hardcover: 650 pages
  • Publisher: MIT Press (4 Nov. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0262240459
  • ISBN-13: 978-0262240451
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 3 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 64,179 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

...a monumental examination of the emerging field of games design... -- Guardian, 27 November 2003

About the Author

Katie Salen Tekinbas is Professor in the School of Computing and Digital Media at DePaul University and Chief Designer and Researcher at Institute of Play. Eric Zimmerman is a game designer, game design theorist, and co-founder and CEO of gameLab. He has taught at universities including MIT, the University of Texas, Parsons School of Design, New York University, Rhode Island School of Design, and the School of Visual Arts.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Jakub on 18 April 2011
Format: Hardcover
I spent several hours choosing a game design book, and from the other reviews I figured thi must be the one. However, I discovered that it reads much more as a theoretical textbook than a practical guide. Mind you - I have a Ph.D. in IT so theory is great, but only when it's actually useful for something.

If you want 7 definitions of "what is a game" and an in-depth discussion about what is a rule and what is not a rule, spiced up by discussing how Tic-Tac-Toe permeates and influences the contemporary culture, you're going to be satisfied. If you wish to learn how to design games, you're also going to learn quite a lot but on the way there you'll have to skip quite a few sections of this hefty tome.

I bought The Art of Game Design: A book of lenses at the same time. Although my focus is not on digital games, the Book of lenses is so much more practical and inspirational that I just have to recommend it, along with Challenges for Game Designers which may not be as inspirational but is all the more practical.

Hope I helped :o)
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is cited wide and far in all areas of game research and ludology. It is a perfect introduction to game research and academia, although it is rigorous enough that even a professional will want to revisit it. It shows how games can be understood as not just stories or gameplay, but as cybernetic systems, as information systems, as systems of conflict, of gambling, and many other things. If you want to gain a huge amount of knowledge about games, and game design and research, this is a great book. If you're at all interested in game academia, you should read this. If you want to make games, you should definitely own it.
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12 of 16 people found the following review helpful By M C Adams on 24 Mar. 2006
Format: Hardcover
Rules of Play is a mix of a student textbook about games and a practical guide for game designers. It is extremely comprehensive, clear and well written, admirably synthesising a diverse set of perspectives on the ways in which games function. It is structured to allow the reader to dip into particuar areas and read the book in any order. As a designer of games this is by some measure the finest book I've found on the subject.
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