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Gamasutra member blogs: From the Breakout problem to Zelda tutorials

In highlights from Gamasutra's Member Blogs, our bloggers write about diverse topics, such as how Shatter solved "The Breakout Problem," examining Legend of Zelda tutorials, and more.
[In highlights from Gamasutra's Member Blogs, our bloggers write about diverse topics, such as how Shatter solved "The Breakout Problem," examining Legend of Zelda tutorials, and more.] Member Blogs can be maintained by any registered Gamasutra user, while invitation-only Expert Blogs -- also highlighted weekly -- are written by selected development professionals. We hope that our blog sections can provide useful and interesting viewpoints on our industry. For more information, check out the official posting guidelines. This Week's Standout Member Blogs Tutorials of Zelda: When do players get to "play?" (Cary Chichester) Cary Chichester examines his playthoughs for four Zelda titles, comparing the time it takes for each game to end the tutorial and let him feel like he's really playing a Zelda game. Shatter solved The Breakout Problem. Please don't keep making the same mistake. (Ron Dippold) The Breakout genre has a fundamental problem with lack of player agency causing long stretches of player boredom and frustration. Ron Dippold says Shatter solved this problem -- please take heed if you're going to make a new Breakout game. Applying social theory to games (Justin Nearing) Social games have been improving, but the social mechanics behind these systems have not evolved. Justin Nearing lays down the foundation of what true social gameplay is, and why you would want to create a true social experience within your product. Ultima IV's success with narrative through gameplay (Radek Koncewicz) Ultima IV: Quest of the Avatar is one of the few games that tells a story largely through its gameplay. Radek Koncewicz takes a closer look at how it achieves this rare feat. Conveying tragedy in the key of C Sharp (Matt Waldron) Using Shadow of the Colossus as the primary example, Matt Waldron discusses how successfully conveying emotion in a game goes well beyond the commonly associated factors and penetrates all the way down to the efficacy of a game’s physics and coding.

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