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Appreciating the weird beauty of game prototypes

What do your prototypes (failed or otherwise) look like? That was the question posed by Vlambeer's Rami Ismail on Twitter Friday, and devs' answers make for illuminating (and entertaining) reading.

As a game dev, what do your prototypes look like?

That was the premise of a question posed on Twitter last Friday by Vlambeer's Rami Ismail, and the responses which have accumulated since then offer a cornucopia of sample game/system prototypes for curious devs to study.

Pulling together this big pile of ideas that are on their way to being games also highlights how beautiful and striking seemingly simple mechanics or designs can be, and multiple devs chimed in on the thread with examples of basic prototypes that proved surprisingly engrossing.

Many were the product of game jams, of course, and most (though far from all) of them went on to be built out into larger, more robust games. We've taken the liberty of embedding the original tweet and a few choice replies below; you can (and should!) read the full thread over on Twitter.

And if you're looking for longer thoughts on the value of prototypes you might find some useful stuff in the Gamasutra archives, including this classic feature on how to prototype a game in seven days and this GDC 2017 talk about the value of rapid prototyping.

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