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Gamasutra Expert Blogs: From Classes To Civilizations

In the latest highlights from Gamasutra's Expert Blogs, industry notables from comScore and Wolfire comment on the importance of listening, the tedium of MMO classes, and models of civilizations.
In our weekly Best of Expert Blogs column, we showcase notable pieces of writing from members of the game development community who maintain Expert Blogs on Gamasutra. Member Blogs -- also highlighted weekly -- can be maintained by any registered Gamasutra user, while the invitation-only Expert Blogs are written by development professionals with a wealth of experience to share. We hope that both sections can provide useful and interesting viewpoints on our industry. For more information about the blogs, check out the official posting guidelines. In the latest set of Expert Blogs, industry notables from comScore and Wolfire comment on the importance of listening, the tedium of MMO classes, and models of civilizations, among others: This Week's Standout Expert Blogs Listening: The Lost Design Skill Timothy Ryan As teams get ever-larger and designers are split up into more and more specialties and hierarchies, longtime developer Timothy Ryan reminds game designers not to lose their grasp of an important skill: listening. Isn't Anyone Tired of the Same Old MMO Classes Yet? Edward Hunter Well, aren't they? comScore's Edward Hunter generated a massive comment thread with his reflection on massively multiplayer games, which almost without fail end up relying on the same tried-and-true player archetypes. Creating the Illusion of Accomplishment David Rosen Why have web games like You Have to Burn the Rope and Achievement Unlocked struck such a chord with players? Wolfire Games founder David Rosen offers his take. Guns Germs and Steel (and some Civilization) James Portnow Civilization IV is renowned not just as a crushingly addictive game experience, but also as a fascinating study of alternate history. James Portnow cross-references the game with Jared Diamond's acclaimed book Guns, Germs, and Steel to see how the two works' models of civilizations overlap.

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