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Video: Designing without a pitch - The FTL postmortem

FTL devs Matthew Davis and Justin Ma speak frankly at GDC 2013 about how and why they frequently altered or abandoned aspects of the game's design as they developed it to evoke a specific feeling.
"We just had this one idea and it steered out path, allowing us to follow the fun and find what was interesting."

- FTL developer Justin Ma

By focusing on a high-level goal of experiencing a singular feeling ("What would it feel like to captain a starship?") and developing it with minimal preconceptions about what their game should be, Subset Games managed to create the lauded space roguelike FTL: Faster Than Light

At GDC 2013, FTL co-creators Matthew Davis and Justin Ma spoke frankly about how they frequently altered or abandoned aspects of the game's design, and shared practical tips for letting this creative process guide your game's development from concept to crowdfunding to release.

It was an incisive look at how you can find success without a hard-and-fast production plan, and if you missed it in person you can now watch the whole thing for free via the official GDC YouTube channel.

About the GDC Vault

In addition to this presentation, the GDC Vault and its new YouTube channel offers numerous other free videos, audio recordings, and slides from many of the recent Game Developers Conference events, and the service offers even more members-only content for GDC Vault subscribers.

Those who purchased All Access passes to recent events like GDC, GDC Europe, and GDC Next already have full access to GDC Vault, and interested parties can apply for the individual subscription via a GDC Vault subscription page. Group subscriptions are also available: game-related schools and development studios who sign up for GDC Vault Studio Subscriptions can receive access for their entire office or company by contacting staff via the GDC Vault group subscription page. Finally, current subscribers with access issues can contact GDC Vault technical support.

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