Rules of Play: Game Design Fundamentals / Edition 1

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Overview

As pop culture, games are as important as film or television--but game design has yet to develop a theoretical framework or critical vocabulary. In Rules of Play Katie Salen and Eric Zimmerman present a much-needed primer for this emerging field. They offer a unified model for looking at all kinds of games, from board games and sports to computer and video games. As active participants in game culture, the authors have written Rules of Play as a catalyst for innovation, filled with new concepts, strategies, and methodologies for creating and understanding games..Building an aesthetics of interactive systems, Salen and Zimmerman define core concepts like "play," "design," and "interactivity." They look at games through a series of eighteen "game design schemas," or conceptual frameworks, including games as systems of emergence and information, as contexts for social play, as a storytelling medium, and as sites of cultural resistance.Written for game scholars,
game developers, and interactive designers, Rules of Play is a textbook, reference book, and theoretical guide. It is the first comprehensive attempt to establish a solid theoretical framework for the emerging discipline of game design.

The MIT Press

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What People Are Saying

From the Publisher

" Rules of Play is an exhaustive, clear, cogent, and complete resource for understanding games and game design. Salen and Zimmerman describe an encyclopedia of game design issues, techniques, and attributes. In particular, they analyze the elements that can make a game experience richer, more interesting, more emotional, more meaningful, and, ultimately, more successful. It should be the first stop you make when learning about game design." Nathan
Shedroff
, author of Experience Design

The MIT Press

" Rules of Play makes a monumental contribution to the development of game theory, criticism, and design. It will instantly become a standard textbook in the field on the basis of its rigor and scope—yet it is written in such an engaging style that many will read it for pleasure. Salen and
Zimmerman do for games what Sergei Eisenstein did for cinema—offer an expert practitioner"sperspective on central aspects of the aesthetics and cultural importance of an emerging medium." Henry Jenkins , Director of
Comparative Media Studies, MIT

The MIT Press

"This is the most impressive book on game design I've ever seen. Broad in scope yet rich in detail, Rules of Play sets a new standard for game analysis." Will Wright , Game Designer of Sim
City
and The Sims

The MIT Press

"*Rules of Play* is an exhaustive, clear, cogent, and complete resource for understanding games and game design. Though successful, the game world is in dire need of innovation -- from the endless repetition of themes and structures,
celebrity characters, and movie and television tie-ins -- and this book points the way forward. Salen and Zimmerman describe an encyclopedia of game design issues,
techniques, and attributes. In particular, they analyze the elements that can make a game experience richer, more interesting, more emotional, more meaningful, and,
ultimately, more successful. It should be the first stop you make when learning about game design."--Nathan Shedroff, author of *Experience Design 1*Please note:
Endorser gives permission to excerpt from quote.

The MIT Press

"This is the most impressive book on game design I've ever seen. Broad in scope yet rich in detail, *Rules of Play* sets a new standard for game analysis."--Wil Wright, Game Designer of *Sim City* and *The Sims*

The MIT Press

"The future is created at the intersection of business, technology,
design, and culture. *In the Bubble* is an insightful and delightful explanation of this nexus and of how each force affects the others. Designers often miss a great deal in their educations about the real people who will use and inhabit their work.
Thackara astutely illuminates a lot of what designers don't know they're missing."--Nathan Shedroff, author of *Experience Design 1*

The MIT Press

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780262240451
  • Publisher: MIT Press
  • Publication date: 10/1/2003
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 688
  • Sales rank: 182,158
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.18 (d)

Meet the Author

Katie Salen Tekinbaş 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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Table of Contents

Foreword
Preface
About This Book 1
The Design Process 11
Commissioned Essay 22
Unit 1 Core Concepts 28
3 Meaningful Play 30
4 Design 38
5 Systems 48
6 Interactivity 56
7 Defining Games 70
8 Defining Digital Games 84
9 The Magic Circle 92
10 The Primary Schemas: RULES, PLAY, CULTURE 100
Commissioned Game 106
Unit 2 RULES 116
11 Defining Rules 118
12 Rules on Three Levels 126
13 The Rules of Digital Games 140
14 Games as Emergent Systems 150
15 Games as Systems of Uncertainty 172
16 Games as Information Theory Systems 190
17 Games as Systems of Information 202
18 Games as Cybernetic Systems 212
19 Games as Game Theory Systems 230
20 Games as Systems of Conflict 248
21 Breaking the Rules 266
Commissioned Game 286
Unit 3 PLAY 298
22 Defining Play 300
23 Games as the Play of Experience 312
24 Games as the Play of Pleasure 328
25 Games as the Play of Meaning 362
26 Games as Narrative Play 376
27 Games as the Play of Simulation 420
28 Games as Social Play 460
Commissioned Game 490
Unit 4 CULTURE 502
29 Defining Culture 504
30 Games as Cultural Rhetoric 514
31 Games as Open Culture 536
32 Games as Cultural Resistance 556
33 Games as Cultural Environment 570
Commissioned Game 588
Additional Reading and Resources 602
Conclusion 604
Bibliography 608
List of Games Cited 620
Index 638
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