Thursday, 16 September 2021

Four Months of Horizontal Game Production

About 6 months ago, I posted a call on this blog to find folks who would be interested in building a game in a non-hierarchical organization [fr]. This led to the assembly of a team of 7 people, and to the creation of the game Phytomancer, soon to be released. This is a post-mortem of our production period, looking back on all the mistakes we made and rejoicing about the few things we did correctly!

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Tuesday, 23 March 2021

Le Phytomancien a besoin de vous !

Bonne nouvelle : la création de mon studio de jeux vidéo en coopérative va bon train ! Après de multiples péripéties que je raconterais peut-être ici, j'ai constitué un tout petit groupe de trois personnes : James, Mathieu et moi-même. Nous avons commencé par nous échauffer en créant un petit jeu sur deux jours — Q, l'As du volant — et nous passons maintenant à l'étape supérieure. Nous allons créer un jeu, commercialisation comprise, en trois mois.

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Tuesday, 23 February 2021

Lessons learned working on my card game

[This is part 5 of my Study of Digital Card Games series.]

As I mentioned at the beginning of this series, I have been working on a digital CCG for several years now. As a lover of the genre — I've been playing Magic for about 20 years, and I tried as many other CCGs as I could — I want to create a game that is truly special, and different from its competition. Time will tell if I can succeed at that! Until then, here are some lessons that I've learned working on my game.

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Tuesday, 16 February 2021

The design of CCGs

[This is part 4 of my Study of Digital Card Games series.]

Now that we have a good grasp of what the major games of the digital CCG genre are, it's time for me to do my best analyzing it. In this article I'm going to look at the common points, what defines CCGs nowadays, then the differences, where CCGs tried to innovate, and finally I'll give a shot at guessing where the next innovations can be.

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Tuesday, 9 February 2021

History of a genre, part 2: 2017 - 2020

[This is part 3 of my Study of Digital Card Games series.]

Last time we explored the rise of the digital CCG genre. Let's now go over the end of its golden years, to get a good picture of all the major card games as of today.

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Tuesday, 2 February 2021

History of a genre, part 1: 2002 - 2016

[This is part 2 of my Study of Digital Card Games series.]

The first notable CCG that made it to the digital space was, guess who, Magic! There have been several software allowing to play the game on a computer, but the first to embrace online play was Magic: The Gathering Online, shortened as MTGO and released in 2002. The pitch is simple: it is exactly the same game, but playable on a computer with folks from all around the globe. It is still active today.

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Tuesday, 26 January 2021

It's a Kind of Magic

[This is part 1 of my Study of Digital Card Games series.]

In my intro to this series, I said I was going to focus on card games that were digital-first. Let's start with a mandatory exception to that rule: when Magic: The Gathering was released in 1993 by Wizards of the Coast, it was not (yet) a digital card game. It is, however, the Holy Father of CCGs. It is the starting point of the genre, and thus we need to start this journey with it.

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A Study of Digital Card Games

Collectible Card Games, shortened as CCGs, are a kind of card games that I have been playing for a pretty long time. I started with the Pokémon CCG when I was about 10, then got into Magic: The Gathering a few years later. I'm still playing Magic regularly today, about 20 years after I got into it. But as soon as I started playing them, I also started creating card games. I remember working on a card game on my family's computer back when I was, what, 11 years old? Since then, the idea of creating games, and creating a card game especially, never left me.

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