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Gamasutra Member Blogs: From Effective Simulations To The Importance Of Player Agency

In highlights from Gamasutra's Member Blogs, our bloggers write about diverse topics, including the elements of a successful simulation, the fears of modern players, and how games should tell stories.
In highlights from Gamasutra's Member Blogs, our bloggers write about diverse topics, including the elements of a successful simulation, the fears of modern players, and how games should tell stories. 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. Here are the top member blogs for the week: This Week's Standout Member Blogs - Induced Human Behaviors As A Litmus Test For Simulations (Ron Newcomb) Ron Newcomb explains that an effective simulation should not be based on how accurately it replicates physics systems, but how believably it reacts to user input. - The Art Of Staying Sane (Robert Anderson) Sometimes, we cannot avoid getting stuck with a job we hate. Luckily, Robert Anderson explains how even the most undesirable professions can teach future developers to prepare for the challenges that come with any job in a production industry. - Half Life Crisis (Andrew Vanden Bossche) Examining a quote from Valve’s Gabe Newell about what players fear most, Andrew Vanden Bossche discusses how games should speak to the fears of their audience, especially as the industry grows and matures. - Level Design Analysis: Deus Ex Liberty Island - Part 1 (Justin Keverne) In his series of blog entries examining Deus Ex’s level design, Justin Keverne discusses why small elements of the game’s opening level implicitly tell the player about the world they inhabit and how they can interact with it. - Why I Hate Stories In Video Games (Josh Foreman) Josh Foreman examines storytelling in games, and asserts that games often try to mimic other media and fail due to design or technical constraints. Instead, he suggests that games embrace what makes the medium unique: player agency.

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