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The art of game design: a book of lenses

The art of game design: a book of lenses

Schell, Jesse, author

This title proposes that the most important skill for a game designer is not creativity as most suppose, but that of listening. The five kinds of listening (team, client, audience, game, and self) are shown to be the backbone of all successful game design methods

Paperback, Book. English.
Second edition.
Published Boca Raton: CRC Press, [2015]
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Statement of responsibility: Jesse Schell
ISBN: 1466598646, 9781466598645
Note: Includes bibliographical references and index.
Note: Previous edition: Amsterdam: Morgan Kaufmann, 2008.
Note: "An A.K. Peters book."
Physical Description: xliv, 555 pages : illustrations (black and white) ; 24 cm
Subject: Computer games Design.; Hobbies and Games.


  1. Table of Lenses
  2. Acknowledgments
  3. Hello
  4. In the Beginning, There Is the Designer
  5. Magic Words
  6. What Skills Does a Game Designer Need?
  7. The Most Important Skill
  8. The Five Kinds of Listening
  9. The Secret of the Gifted
  10. Other Reading to Consider
  11. The Designer Creates an Experience
  12. The Game Is Not the Experience
  13. Is This Unique to Games?
  14. Three Practical Approaches to Chasing Rainbows
  15. Psychology
  16. Anthropology
  17. Design
  18. Introspection: Powers, Perils, and Practice
  19. Peril #1: Introspection Can Lead to False Conclusions about Reality
  20. Peril #2: What Is True of My Experiences May Not Be True for Others
  21. Dissect Your Feelings
  22. Defeating Heisenberg
  23. Analyze Memories
  24. Two Passes
  25. Sneak Glances
  26. Observe Silently
  27. Essential Experience
  28. All That's Real Is What You Feel
  29. The Experience Takes Place in a Venue
  30. The Shifting Sands of Platform
  31. Private Venues
  32. The Hearth
  33. The Workbench
  34. The Reading Nook
  35. Public Venues
  36. The Theater
  37. The Arena
  38. The Museum
  39. Half Private/Half Public Venues
  40. The Gaming Table
  41. The Playground
  42. Anywhere
  43. Venues Mixed and Matched
  44. Other Reading to Consider
  45. The Experience Rises Out of a Game
  46. A Rant about Definitions
  47. So What Is a Game?
  48. No, Seriously, What Is a Game?
  49. Problem Solving
  50. The Fruits of Our Labor
  51. Other Reading to Consider
  52. The Game Consists of Elements
  53. What Are Little Games Made Of?
  54. The Four Basic Elements
  55. Skin and Skeleton
  56. The Elements Support a Theme
  57. Mere Games
  58. Unifying Themes
  59. Resonance
  60. Back to Reality
  61. Other Reading to Consider
  62. The Game Begins with an Idea
  63. Inspiration
  64. State the Problem
  65. How to Sleep
  66. Your Silent Partner
  67. Subconscious Tip #1: Pay Attention
  68. Subconscious Tip #2: Record Your Ideas
  69. Subconscious Tip #3: Manage Its Appetites (Judiciously)
  70. Subconscious Tip #4: Sleep
  71. Subconscious Tip #5: Don't Push Too Hard
  72. A Personal Relationship
  73. Sixteen Nitty-Gritty Brainstorming Tips
  74. Brainstorm Tip #1: The Write Answer
  75. Brainstorm Tip #2: Write or Type?
  76. Brainstorm Tip #3: Sketch
  77. Brainstorm Tip #4: Toys
  78. Brainstorm Tip #5: Change Your Perspective
  79. Brainstorm Tip #6: Immerse Yourself
  80. Brainstorm Tip #7: Crack Jokes
  81. Brainstorm Tip #8: Spare No Expense
  82. Brainstorm Tip #9: The Writing on the Wall
  83. Brainstorm Tip #10: The Space Remembers
  84. Brainstorm Tip #11: Write Everything
  85. Brainstorm Tip #12: Number Your Lists
  86. Brainstorm Tip #13: Destroy Your Assumptions
  87. Brainstorm Tip #14: Mix and Match Categories
  88. Brainstorm Tip #15: Talk to Yourself
  89. Brainstorm Tip #16: Find a Partner
  90. Look At All These Ideas! Now What?
  91. Other Reading to Consider
  92. The Game Improves through Iteration
  93. Choosing an Idea
  94. The Eight Filters
  95. The Rule of the Loop
  96. A Short History of Software Engineering
  97. Danger-Waterfall-Keep Back
  98. Barry Boehm Loves You
  99. The Agile Manifesto
  100. Risk Assessment and Prototyping
  101. Example: Prisoners of Bubbleville
  102. Prisoners of Bubbleville: Design Brief
  103. Ten Tips for Productive Prototyping
  104. Prototyping Tip #1: Answer a Question
  105. Prototyping Tip #2: Forget Quality
  106. Prototyping Tip #3: Don't Get Attached
  107. Prototyping Tip #4: Prioritize Your Prototypes
  108. Prototyping Tip #5: Parallelize Prototypes Productively
  109. Prototyping Tip #6: It Doesn't Have to Be Digital
  110. Tetris: A Paper Prototype
  111. Halo: A Paper Prototype
  112. Prototyping Tip #7: It Doesn't Have to Be Interactive
  113. Prototyping Tip #8: Pick a "Fast Loop" Game Engine
  114. Prototyping Tip #9: Build the Toy First
  115. Prototyping Tip #10: Seize Opportunities for More Loops
  116. Closing the Loop
  117. Loop 1: "New Racing" Game
  118. Loop 2: "Racing Subs" Game
  119. Loop 3: "Flying Dinos" Game
  120. How Much Is Enough?
  121. Your Secret Fuel
  122. Other Reading to Consider
  123. The Game Is Made for a Player
  124. Einstein's Violin
  125. Project Yourself
  126. Demographics
  127. The Medium Is the Misogynist?
  128. Five Things Males Like to See in Games
  129. Five Things Females Like to See in Games
  130. Psychographics
  131. LeBlanc's Taxonomy of Game Pleasures
  132. Bartle's Taxonomy of Player Types
  133. More Pleasure: MORE!
  134. Other Reading to Consider
  135. The Experience Is in the Player's Mind
  136. Modeling
  137. Focus
  138. Empathy
  139. Imagination
  140. Other Reading to Consider
  141. The Player's Mind Is Driven by the Player's Motivation
  142. Needs.
  143. And More Needs
  144. Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic Motivation
  145. Wanna vs. Hafta
  146. Novelty
  147. Judgment
  148. Other Reading to Consider
  149. Some Elements Are Game Mechanics
  150. Mechanic 1: Space
  151. Nested Spaces
  152. Zero Dimensions
  153. Mechanic 2: Time
  154. Discrete and Continuous Time
  155. Clocks and Races
  156. Controlling Time
  157. Mechanic 3: Objects, Attributes, and States
  158. Secrets
  159. Mechanic 4: Actions
  160. Emergent Gameplay
  161. Mechanic 5: Rules
  162. Parlett's Rule Analysis
  163. Modes
  164. Enforcer
  165. Cheatability
  166. The Most Important Rule
  167. Wrapping Up Rules
  168. Mechanic 6: Skill
  169. Real vs. Virtual Skills
  170. Enumerating Skills
  171. Mechanic 7: Chance
  172. Invention of Probability
  173. Ten Rules of Probability Every Game Designer Should Know
  174. Rule #1: Fractions Are Decimals Are Percents
  175. Rule #2: Zero to One-and That's It!
  176. Rule #3: "Looked For" Divided By "Possible Outcomes" Equals Probability
  177. Rule #4: Enumerate!
  178. Rule #5: In Certain Cases, OR Means Add
  179. Rule #6: In Certain Cases, AND Means Multiply
  180. Rule #7: One Minus "Does" = "Doesn't"
  181. Rule #8: The Sum of Multiple Linear Random Selections is NOT a Linear Random Selection!
  182. Rule #9: Roll the Dice
  183. Rule #10: Geeks Love Showing Off (Gombaud's Law)
  184. Expected Value
  185. Consider Values Carefully
  186. Human Element
  187. Skill and Chance Get Tangled
  188. Other Reading to Consider
  189. Game Mechanics Must Be in Balance
  190. The Twelve Most Common Types of Game Balance
  191. Balance Type #1: Fairness
  192. Symmetrical Games
  193. Asymmetrical Games
  194. Biplane Battle
  195. Rock, Paper, Scissors
  196. Balance Type #2: Challenge vs. Success
  197. Balance Type #3: Meaningful Choices
  198. Triangularity
  199. Balancing Type #4: Skill vs. Chance
  200. Balancing Type #5: Head vs. Hands
  201. Balance Type #6: Competition vs. Cooperation
  202. Balance Type #7: Short vs. Long
  203. Balance Type #8: Rewards
  204. Balance Type #9: Punishment
  205. Balance Type #10: Freedom vs. Controlled Experience
  206. Balance Type #11: Simple vs. Complex
  207. Natural vs. Artificial Balancing
  208. Elegance
  209. Character
  210. Balance Type #12: Detail vs. Imagination
  211. Game Balancing Methodologies
  212. Balancing Game Economies
  213. Dynamic Game Balancing
  214. The Big Picture
  215. Other Reading to Consider
  216. Game Mechanics Support Puzzles
  217. The Puzzle of Puzzles
  218. Aren't Puzzles Dead?
  219. Good Puzzles
  220. Puzzle Principle #1: Make the Goal Easily Understood
  221. Puzzle Principle #2: Make It Easy to Get Started
  222. Puzzle Principle #3: Give a Sense of Progress
  223. Puzzle Principle #4: Give a Sense of Solvability
  224. Puzzle Principle #5: Increase Difficulty Gradually
  225. Puzzle Principle #6: Parallelism Lets the Player Rest
  226. Puzzle Principle #7: Pyramid Structure Extends Interest
  227. Puzzle Principle #8: Hints Extend Interest
  228. Puzzle Principle #9: Give the Answer!
  229. Puzzle Principle #10: Perceptual Shifts Are a Double-Edged Sword
  230. A Final Piece
  231. Other Reading to Consider
  232. Players Play Games through an Interface
  233. Between Yin and Yang
  234. Breaking It Down
  235. The Loop of Interaction
  236. Juiciness
  237. Primality
  238. Channels of Information
  239. Step 1: List and Prioritize Information
  240. Step 2: List Channels
  241. Step 3: Map Information to Channels
  242. Step 4: Review Use of Dimensions
  243. Modes
  244. Mode Tip #1: Use as Few Modes as Possible
  245. Mode Tip #2: Avoid Overlapping Modes
  246. Mode Tip #3: Make Different Modes Look as Different as Possible
  247. Other Interface Tips
  248. Interface Tip #1: Steal
  249. Interface Tip #2: Customize
  250. Interface Tip #3: Design around Your Physical Interface
  251. Interface Tip #4: Theme Your Interface
  252. Interface Tip #5: Sound Maps to Touch
  253. Interface Tip #6: Balance Options and Simplicity with Layers
  254. Interface Tip #7: Use Metaphors
  255. Interface Tip #8: If It Looks Different, It Should Act Different
  256. Interface Tip #9: Test, Test, Test!
  257. Interface Tip #10: Break the Rules to Help Your Player
  258. Other Reading to Consider
  259. Experiences Can Be Judged by Their Interest Curves
  260. My First Lens
  261. Interest Curves
  262. Patterns inside Patterns
  263. What Comprises Interest?
  264. Factor 1: Inherent Interest
  265. Factor 2: Poetry of Presentation
  266. Factor 3: Projection
  267. Interest Factor Examples
  268. Putting It All Together
  269. Other Reading to Consider
  270. One Kind of Experience Is the Story
  271. Story/Game Duality
  272. Myth of Passive Entertainment
  273. The Dream
  274. The Reality
  275. Real-World Method 1: The String of Pearls
  276. Real-World Method 2: The Story Machine
  277. The Problems
  278. Problem #1: Good Stories Have Unity
  279. Problem #2: The Combinatorial Explosion
  280. Problem #3: Multiple Endings Disappoint
  281. Problem #4: Not Enough Verbs
  282. Problem #5: Time Travel Makes Tragedy Obsolete
  283. The Dream Reborn
  284. Story Tips for Game Designers
  285. Story Tip #1: Goals, Obstacles, and Conflicts
  286. Story Tip #2: Make It Real
  287. Story Tip #3: Provide Simplicity and Transcendence
  288. Story Tip #4: Consider the Hero's Journey
  289. Vogler's Synopsis of the Hero's Journey
  290. Story Tip #5: Put Your Story to Work!
  291. Story Tip #6: Keep Your Story World Consistent
  292. Story Tip #7: Make Your Story World Accessible
  293. Story Tip #8: Use Clichés Judiciously
  294. Story Tip #9: Sometimes a Map Brings a Story to Life
  295. Other Reading to Consider
  296. Story and Game Structures Can Be Artfully Merged with Indirect Control
  297. The Feeling of Freedom
  298. Indirect Control Method #1: Constraints
  299. Indirect Control Method #2: Goals
  300. Indirect Control Method #3: Interface
  301. Indirect Control Method #4: Visual Design
  302. Indirect Control Method #5: Characters
  303. Indirect Control Method #6: Music
  304. Collusion
  305. Other Reading to Consider
  306. Stories and Games Take Place in Worlds
  307. Transmedia Worlds
  308. The Power of Pokemon
  309. Properties of Transmedia Worlds
  310. Transmedia Worlds Are Powerful
  311. Transmedia Worlds Are Long Lived
  312. Transmedia Worlds Evolve over Time
  313. What Successful Transmedia Worlds Have in Common
  314. Worlds Contain Characters
  315. The Nature of Game Characters
  316. Novel Characters
  317. Movie Characters
  318. Game Characters
  319. Avatars
  320. The Ideal Form
  321. The Blank Slate
  322. Creating Compelling Game Characters
  323. Character Tip #1: List Character Functions
  324. Character Tip #2: Define and Use Character Traits
  325. Character Tip #3: Use the Interpersonal Circumplex
  326. Character Tip #4: Make a Character Web
  327. Archie
  328. Veronica
  329. Betty
  330. Reggie
  331. Jughead
  332. Character Tip #5: Use Status
  333. Character Tip #6: Use the Power of the Voice
  334. Character Tip #7: Use the Power of the Face
  335. Character Tip #8: Powerful Stories Transform Characters
  336. Character Tip #9: Let Your Characters Surprise Us
  337. Character Tip #10: Avoid the Uncanny Valley
  338. Other Reading to Consider
  339. Worlds Contain Spaces
  340. The Purpose of Architecture
  341. Organizing Your Game Space
  342. A Word about Landmarks
  343. Christopher Alexander Is a Genius
  344. Alexander's Fifteen Properties of Living Structures
  345. Real vs. Virtual Architecture
  346. Know How Big
  347. Third-Person Distortion
  348. Level Design
  349. Other Reading to Consider
  350. The Look and Feel of a World Is Defined by Its Aesthetics
  351. Monet Refuses the Operation
  352. The Value of Aesthetics
  353. Learning to See
  354. How to Let Aesthetics Guide Your Design
  355. How Much Is Enough?
  356. Use Audio
  357. Balancing Art and Technology
  358. Other Reading to Consider
  359. Some Games Are Played with Other Players
  360. We Are Not Alone
  361. Why We Play with Others
  362. Other Reading to Consider
  363. Other Players Sometimes Form Communities
  364. More than Just Other Players
  365. Ten Tips for Strong Communities
  366. Community Tip #1: Foster Friendships
  367. Community Tip #2: Put Conflict at the Heart
  368. Community Tip #3: Use Architecture to Shape your Community
  369. Community Tip #4: Create Community Property
  370. Community Tip #5: Let Players Express Themselves
  371. Community Tip #6: Support Three Levels
  372. Community Tip #7: Force Players to Depend on Each Other
  373. Community Tip #8: Manage Your Community
  374. Community Tip #9: Obligation to Others Is Powerful
  375. Community Tip #10: Create Community Events
  376. The Challenge of Griefing
  377. The Future of Game Communities
  378. Other Reading to Consider
  379. The Designer Usually Works with a Team
  380. The Secret of Successful Teamwork
  381. If You Can't Love the Game, Love the Audience
  382. Designing Together
  383. Team Communication
  384. Other Reading to Consider
  385. The Team Sometimes Communicates through Documents
  386. The Myth of the Game Design Document
  387. The Purpose of Documents
  388. Memory
  389. Communication
  390. Types of Game Documents
  391. Design
  392. Engineering
  393. Art
  394. Production
  395. Writing
  396. Players
  397. So, Where Do I Start?
  398. Other Reading to Consider
  399. Good Games Are Created through Playtesting
  400. Playtesting
  401. My Terrible Secret
  402. Playtest Question the First: Why?
  403. Playtest Question the Second: Who?
  404. Playtest Question the Third: Where?
  405. Playtest Question the Fourth: What?
  406. The First What: Things You Know You Are Looking For
  407. The Second What: Things You Don't Know You Are Looking For
  408. Playtest Question the Fifth: How?
  409. Should You Even Be There?
  410. What Do You Tell Them Up Front?
  411. Where Do You Look?
  412. What Other Data Should You Collect During Play?
  413. Will I Disturb the Players Midgame?
  414. What Data Will I Collect after the Play Session?
  415. Surveys
  416. Interviews
  417. Other Reading to Consider
  418. The Team Builds a Game with Technology
  419. Technology, At Last
  420. Foundational vs. Decorational
  421. Mickey's First Cartoon
  422. Abalone
  423. Sonic the Hedgehog
  424. Myst
  425. Journey
  426. Ragdoll Physics
  427. The Touch Revolution
  428. The Hype Cycle
  429. The Innovator's Dilemma
  430. The Law of Divergence
  431. The Singularity
  432. Look into Your Crystal Ball
  433. Other Reading to Consider
  434. Your Game Will Probably Have a Client
  435. Who Cares What the Client Thinks?
  436. Coping with Bad Suggestions
  437. Not That Rock
  438. The Three Layers of Desire
  439. Firenze, 1498
  440. Other Reading to Consider
  441. The Designer Gives the Client a Pitch
  442. Why Me?
  443. A Negotiation of Power
  444. The Hierarchy of Ideas
  445. Twelve Tips for a Successful Pitch
  446. Pitch Tip #1: Get in the Door
  447. Pitch Tip #2: Show You Are Serious
  448. Pitch Tip #3: Be Organized
  449. Pitch Tip #4: Be Passionate!!!!!
  450. Pitch Tip #5: Assume Their Point of View
  451. Pitch Tip #6: Design the Pitch
  452. Pitch Tip #7: Know All the Details
  453. Pitch Tip #8: Exude Confidence
  454. Pitch Tip #9: Be Flexible
  455. Pitch Tip #10: Rehearse
  456. Pitch Tip #11: Get Them to Own It
  457. Pitch Tip #12: Follow Up
  458. Hey, What about Kickstarter?
  459. Other Reading to Consider
  460. The Designer and Client Want the Game to Make a Profit
  461. Love and Money
  462. Know Your Business Model
  463. Retail
  464. Direct Download
  465. Free to Play
  466. Know Your Competition
  467. Know Your Audience
  468. Learn the Language
  469. General Game Business Terms
  470. Free to Play Business Terms
  471. Know the Top Sellers
  472. The Importance of Barriers
  473. Other Reading to Consider
  474. Games Transform Their Players
  475. How Do Games Change Us?
  476. Can Games Be Good For You?
  477. Emotional Maintenance
  478. Connecting
  479. Exercise
  480. Education
  481. Giving the Brain What It Wants
  482. Facts
  483. Problem Solving
  484. Systems of Relationships
  485. New Insights
  486. Curiosity
  487. Creating Teachable Moments
  488. Transformational Games
  489. Transformational Tip #1: Define Your Transformation
  490. Transformational Tip #2: Find Great Subject Matter Experts
  491. Transformational Tip #3: What Does the Instructor Need?
  492. Transformational Tip #4: Don't Do Too Much
  493. Transformational Tip #5: Assess Transformation Appropriately
  494. Transformational Tip #6: Choose the Right Venue
  495. Transformational Tip #7: Accept the Realities of the Market
  496. Can Games Be Bad For You?
  497. Violence
  498. Addiction
  499. Experiences
  500. Other Reading to Consider
  501. Designers Have Certain Responsibilities
  502. The Danger of Obscurity
  503. Being Accountable
  504. Your Hidden Agenda
  505. The Secret Hidden in Plain Sight
  506. The Ring
  507. Other Reading to Consider
  508. Each Designer Has a Purpose
  509. The Deepest Theming
  510. Goodbye
  511. Endnotes
  512. Bibliography
  513. Index

Author note

Jesse Schellis distinguished professor of the practice of entertainment technology for Carnegie Mellon University's Entertainment Technology Center (ETC), a joint master's program between Carnegie Mellon's College of Fine Arts and School of Computer Science, where he teaches game design and leads several research projects. He is also CEO of Schell Games, LLC, an independent game studio in Pittsburgh. Formerly he was creative director of the Walt Disney Imagineering Virtual Reality Studio and chairman of the International Game Developers Association (IGDA). Schell worked as a designer, programmer, and manager on several projects for Disney theme parks and DisneyQuest. He received his undergraduate degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and master's degree in information networking from Carnegie Mellon. In 2004, he was named as one of the World's 100 Top Young Innovators by MIT's Technology Review.


". a solid pick and a 'must' for any collection looking for an in-depth, fundamental textbook on how to design and work with games."
-Midwest Book Review, March 2015

Game Nite's Editors' Choice
". this book is considered by many to be the 'bible' of game design. . Much of the material has been updated . the introduction to probability . is a must read for aspiring game designers . engaging and thought provoking . a substantial book for someone looking to get serious about game design. . the cards are brilliant and a joy to keep on your desk and pull one or more out and see how they relate to your current design. . Highly recommended."
-Game Nite, Issue 2, 2015

"I could not think of a better name for this work because game design isn't a skillset, it's a Tao: a way of looking at the world. This was perhaps the most important thing that Jesse ever taught me. It is the principle lesson of this book. . The things you will learn here are universally applicable. . Each section individually is a lens and tool in your designer's tool belt but, taken as a whole, they form a system of thinking that will allow you to tackle problems well beyond their scope. . this book trains you to think as a designer ."
-James Portnow, Game Designer, CEO of Rainmaker Games, and Writer of Extra Credits

Praise for the First Edition:

Winner of a 2008 Game Developer Front Line Award

"This book was clearly designed, not just written, and is an entire course in how to be a game designer. . The book is also intensely practical, giving some of the best advice on how to harness your own subconscious I've ever read, as well as short and useful descriptions of probability theory for non-mathematicians, how to diagram interest curves, working with a team, and dozens of other topics. It is simply the best text I've seen that really addresses what a designer should know, and then actually gives practical advice about how to gain that knowledge through life experience. It's a marvelous tour de force and an essential part of anyone's game design library."
-Noah Falstein, from Game Developer Magazine

". a good book that teaches the craft of game design in an accessible manner. . The text goes just deep enough to give you practical insight into how the key concepts might be useful without becoming wordy. . If you are looking for a competent introduction to game design, this book is a good place to start."
-Daniel Cook,, February 2009

"As indicated by its title, Jesse Schell's The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lensesuses many different perspectives (the titular lenses), which each prompt their own important questions, ranging from 'What problems does my game ask the players to solve?' to 'What does beauty mean within the context of my game?' These distinct points are interwoven throughout a step-by-step analysis of the design process that begins with the designer and his or her basic idea, and builds successfully from there. As with Rules of Play, the wealth of information presented by The Art of Game Designmay seem daunting at first, but Schell's agreeable voice eases the reader into a series of invaluable angles we can (and should) use to evaluate what we play."

"Easily the most comprehensive, practical book I've ever seen on game design."
-Will Wright, Designer of The Sims, SimCity, and Spore

"Jesse has lovingly crafted a great resource for both aspiring developers as well as seasoned gaming industry veterans. I highly recommend this book."
-Cliff "CliffyB" Bleszinski, CEO Boss Key and Former Design Director for Epic Games

"Inspiring and practical for both veterans and beginners."
-Bob Bates, Game Designer and Co-Founder of Legend Entertainment

"Jesse Schell's new book, The Art of Game Design, is a marvelous introduction to game design by a true master of the form. Schell is the rarest of creatures: a gifted teacher who is also a talented and successful current game designer. This book reflects Jesse's skill at presenting information clearly and coherently, and the knowledge he has acquired as a master game designer. I have already referenced this book while preparing lectures and classes in the U.S., Germany, and New Zealand, and recommend it as an invaluable aid for anyone interested in game design. The Art of Game Designis a pitch-perfect blend of valuable knowledge and insights with an informal and compelling presentation. The sections on harnessing the creative power of the subconscious mind are particularly insightful and delightfully written. It is immediately clear that Jesse Schell not only knows the theory behind what he writes about; he has also put it to use many times and honed his techniques to perfection. A must-read for anyone interested in interactive design, and even the creative process in general."
-Noah Falstein, Chief Game Designer, Google

"The Art of Game Designdescribes precisely how to build a game the world will love and elegantly crank it through the realities of clients and publishers. It draws wisdom from Disneyland to Michelangelo, gradually assembling a supply of concrete game design rules and subtle psychological tricks that actually work in surprising ways. It is fertilizer for the subconscious: keep a stack of Post-it notes nearby to record all the game ideas that will sprout out of your own head while reading."
-Kyle Gabler, Game Designer and Founder of 2D Boy, Makers of World of Goo

"He embodies a tradition of reconciling diverse disciplines, extending the possibilities of each and creating new theories and opportunities for both industry and academia. Jesse is like the Einstein of entertainment."
-Mk Haley, Walt Disney Research

"Packed with Jesse's real-world experience and humorous insight, The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lensesis a tool chest crossed with a kaleidoscope. Both fantastical and practical, methodical and wonder-full, this book and deck will have you looking at and dreaming up games with a fresh vision. Like a chemistry set for making mental explosions, it's an idea(l) book guiding the design process for both new and seasoned game designers. In short, using Jesse's book is FUN."
-Heather Kelley, Artist and Game Designer

"The Art of Game Designis one of a handful of books I continuously reference during production. Whether you're just starting out or looking for ways to approach your design from a fresh perspective, this book is a must for your library."
-Neil Druckmann, Creative Director on The Last of Usat Naughty Dog

"On games industry desks, books tend to come and go, but they all seem to go on top of Jesse Schell's The Art of Game Design, because that's the one book that seems to stick around."
-Jason VandenBerghe, Creative Director, Ubisoft

"Ken Rolston, internationally celebrated game designer, recommends Jesse Schell's The Art of Game Designboth for smart people and for people who are learning how to be smart."
-Ken Rolston, Director of Design, Turbine