In a world of ever-increasing online products, courses, programs, bootcamps, and degrees—finding the right option for your needs can be a real pain in the buns. Which programs teach X? Have people actually benefited from this online course? Which bootcamps line up with my career change goals? Some programs are transparent, others are not. What’s […]
Knowledge is Power - Learn Digital Design
These archives include all posts related to learning video game design, game development, and art as it applies to games and apps.
We've included our own in-depth tutorials and guides, as well as links to to some of our favorite online resources for you to continue your education. You can find recommended game design college programs here.
If you're brand new to game design and development start with the posts listed below, these are our most popular articles from this category. Once you get a basic idea of what you're looking for, then you can navigate through the rest of our posts.
Some Popular articles from this category:
- What is a Game Design Document?
- How to Start Designing Video Game Characters?
- 50 Amazing Game Design Tutorials (Hand-Picked)
- The 10 Best Video Game Engines
- Unity Game Engine Tutorials
If you’re new to the game and are unsure of what tools or software to get started with, I suggest reading a few of the “Tools Tutorials” and "Development Guides".
The "Tools Tutorials" go into the specifics of each popular game design/development tool.
The "Development Guides" are a more general approach to game design. Here you'll learn more about the themes, and strategies you can utilize when creating your game. It's less technical, but very important.
From these guides you can get a better idea of what’s the best fit for you.
Our 'Tools Tutorials' series:
Our series on Video Game Development:
- Game Sizing and Scale
- Creating Game Plot and Narrative
- Using Physics in Your Game
- How Hard Should Your Game Be?
- Video Game Level Design
- How to Design Characters
Take your time when going through these articles. Take notes when you need to, and send us a message if you have any questions or requests for new content.
How familiar are you with game theory? If you’ve never heard of it before, the term can be quite misleading. Game theory has no official ties to the games we think of, which is pretty counterintuitive. According to a definition provided by the trusty Merriam-Webster online dictionary, a “game” is an “activity engaged in for […]
Designing Characters Character Design–Conceptualizing Tutorial This tutorial walks you through how one artist developed his concept for a “crossbow archer.” He starts with his idea, he shows his sketches, and he walks you through everything from form to color palette, to putting it all together at the end. If you want to see how another […]
We’ve all been there. Struggling to unwrap the cellophane casing, fingers not finding any purchase. Pulling again and again at the tape holding the box shut. Waiting for the crisp “pop” of the game case’s premiere opening. Smelling faint adhesive residue. Admiring the glimmering, shining object within. A new game. Few things beat the excitement […]
Game design documents have been an industry standard for a long time. More recently, arguments against the game design document have begun to surface. “It becomes obsolete immediately after it’s published.” “No one on the team likes using it.” “Nobody updates it and that leads to serious confusion.” While there is some merit behind these […]
Have you ever seen a real-life giant? If you’re a long-time wrestling fan or an avid viewer of The Princess Bride, you probably know about Andre the Giant (or Fezzik, in The Princess Bride). And if you don’t know about Andre the Giant, well… all you really need to know is that he was a […]
The great plot challenge. Plot is the kind of thing that can ruin your game. Or take it to the next level. For a game like Angry birds, the plot is….eh, not really there. Birds fighting pigs, kamikaze-style? Ok… but we don’t really know why. And there isn’t much of a story. There’s nothing telling […]
Developing a Pong knockoff might sound like a piece of cake to you and your 2D design skills. But pop that into a third dimension, and all of a sudden we’re looking at some pretty complex stuff! 3D game design can be daunting, especially if you’re a beginner or planning an ambitious project. The good […]
Newton! Aristotle! Galileo! Descartes! Newton’s Laws! These might be some of the exciting thoughts that popped into your head when we brought up physics. Apples! Gravity! Ok, that’s probably good for now. Feel free to shout ‘em out if any more come to you. The forces and energy behind physics have always impacted our world […]
A question as old as games themselves (well, maybe the question wasn’t always asked…). Easy, Medium, Hard, Extreme, Nightmare–many games present players with a sliding scale of difficulty. The designers give players the choice over their level of challenge. Sometimes adjusting difficulty isn’t an option. In online multiplayer games, for example, the difficulty is largely […]
A whole new world! Don’t you dare close your eyes…. Any Aladdin fans out there? No? What’s the latest Disney focus–live-action Beauty and the Beast? We’re out of touch. Out of touch is not where you want to be when you’re designing levels. Luckily for you, we’ve decided to compile a list of tutorials that […]
Character creation is your chance to let your imagination run wild. If you already have ideas, it’s easy to hit the ground running. If you don’t have ideas….well…. That can be a different story. We’ve put together a brief beginner’s guide to tutorials that will help you create characters. Some offer ideas for finding inspiration, […]
C++ has a long history–a history that started around 45 years ago, with the inception of C. The C language was invented by a man named Dennis Ritchie at Bell Labs in 1972. C++ came about as a “subset” of the C language. It was developed in 1979 by a man named Bjarne Stroustrup, who […]
If you’re familiar with the Unreal Engine, developed by Epic Games, you know that puppy can pack a real punch. The Gears of War franchise, most recently added to with Gears of War 4 back in October, takes advantage of the Unreal Engine. We Happy Few, available as an early-play for PC on steam, has […]
History The Blender game engine was released in 2000, developed by Erwin Coumans and Gino van den Bergen, part of the Dutch company, Blender Foundation. It was designed to bring a more natural way of developing games and animation to people who otherwise wouldn’t have learned how to. After 18 years, in April of 2018, […]
Mobile games are all the rage! On February 8th, 2017, Game of War: Fire Age, made $1,919,237. That number might not sound like much in the grand scheme of game sales… But then you realize that the figure we quoted is from a single day of sales. Fire Age came out in July of 2013. […]
Python is a simple language to start with, and if you’re looking for a quick win in your quest to master all coding languages (the Ultimate Quest!), Python is a good place to start. To get any value out of the game-making side of Python tutorials, you need to first be familiar with some core […]
Coming up with a story is a deceptively complex challenge. You’re developing a game and your game needs a story. Ok, you’ll just go ahead and whip up a story then! Sounds easy, right? If only the task was that simple… Creating a story people will enjoy is no small feat, but we’ve put together […]
The biggest smash hit game of the summer (and subsequently the quickest to fizzle out) was running on the Unity engine. Do you know what we’re talking about? Pokemon GO! Certainly, a game that was fun while it lasted. If you’re still playing, more power to you. Unity is one of the most iconic gaming […]
According to Apple, “Swift is a robust and intuitive programming language created by Apple for building apps for iOS, Mac, Apple TV, and Apple Watch. It’s designed to give developers more freedom than ever. Swift is easy to use and open-source, so anyone with an idea can create something incredible.” Because of Swift’s popularity and […]
Everyone has one… Do you know what we’re talking about? Favorite characters, of course! Everyone has a favorite video game character, whether they admit it or not. You can ask just about anyone what their favorite video game character is, and they’ll have an answer for you. They don’t even have to be avid gamers. […]
Java has been around for quite a while. We’re talking 1995 here, folks. That’s over twenty years ago. Java was born at a time when we were all waist-deep in JNCO jeans and accessorizing our craniums with scrunchies, butterfly clips, and frosted tips. We don’t know about you guys, but we’re still holding out for […]
If you have ever played a very old video game and had an extremely hard time trying to figure out where to go next or what is going on in the scene because the words are jumbled or don’t make sense, you’ve experienced video game translation in its infancy. The industry has changed exponentially over […]
You could own a restaurant and have the best food in the entire world. If the interior looks like crap and you filled the place to bursting with chairs and tables, no one is going to come to eat at your restaurant! Excellent food or not! Much in the way that creating an entire experience […]
In 2017, Adobe released a statement that shook many veteran Internet users to their cores. More or less, Adobe was cutting the cord to its cornerstone program, Flash. Since 1996, Flash had been a dominant and memorable computer program in use by people of all ages. The games provided by talented contributors were time-killers, sure, […]