GDC Vault offers for free a lecture from the 2009 Game Developers Conference on how to design puzzles effectively to help players feel smart, given by Tiger Style's Randy Smith. Rather than providing too much advance information or dumbing the challenge down, Smith argues for user-centered puzzles that provide "guidance on demand." He shows Tomb Raider and Portal puzzles as excellent examples that scale to the players' needs and provide more hints only if necessary. In this presentation, Smith covers puzzle structure along with six principles of user-centered design: visibility, affordances, mapping, visual language, feedback, and conceptual models. Check out the free video here. Session Name: Helping Your Players Feel Smart: Puzzles as User Interface Speaker(s): Randy Smith Company Name(s): Tiger Style Track / Format: Game Design
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Video: Designing puzzles that make players feel smart
Tiger Style's Randy Smith discuses how puzzles with good user-centered design empower players and and keep them feeling smart, in this free lecture given at the 2009 Game Developers Conference.