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What are good game development/design blogs to follow?

Please one blog per answer (make sure to provide a link) and give a brief summary as to the content of the blog posts.

If you can, pick a single article that shows high value and share a snippet of it.

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closed as not constructive by Tetrad Jan 21 '12 at 20:52

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This question is a great resource. A few of these links I've seen before, but most are new to me. –  jhocking May 13 '11 at 12:04
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@Fxlll That's why it's a community wiki question ;) –  Jonathan Connell Jun 27 '11 at 11:07
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Why is this question closed...? –  Liosan Feb 23 '13 at 10:23

57 Answers 57

Lost Garden

General essays on game design theory. A good example read is an article on visualizing the creative process

All these thoughts and pictures can be summarized in a very short list.

  • Brainstorm: Create lots of low cost, real word experiments.
  • Cull: Rigorously apply agreed upon culling criteria to weed out the weak ideas and reinvest in your most promising experiments.
  • Cycle: Repeat the process until you generate meaningful value.
  • Practice: Across multiple projects, practice all stages of the creative process so you constantly improve the myriad of skills involved in brainstorming, culling and cycling.
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Second this one! Worth saying that in between the game design theory, the author also often touches on visual art and bizdev, giving a bit of insight beyond the standard "how to make your game more fun." –  Ian Schreiber Aug 26 '10 at 0:25
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Must mention the Nintendo's Genre Innovation Strategy article, an all time great: lostgarden.com/2005/09/nintendos-genre-innovation-strategy.html –  BrandFeelsGood Sep 5 '10 at 3:37
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Dan is also a real active, nice guy. I've emailed him and gotten very fast responses back. I also wrote a blog post in response to something of his and he was very quick to show up on my blog with comments about it. He's great to chat game design theory with. –  CodexArcanum Oct 28 '10 at 21:00

Auntie Pixelante

Some great thoughts on level design, pixel art and game design in general. Sometimes she goes off onto a bondage-themed pixel-art tangent though, so don't add this to your RSS list if these things offend you.

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Who could avoid reading something with a phrase like "Sometimes she goes off onto a bondage-themed pixel-art tangent, though"? –  Kzqai Aug 26 '10 at 4:33

Wolfire Blog

Wolfire blog is an example of one I already follow. They give many useful insights into the process they go through for the creation of their game, Overgrowth.

Example article: Linear Algebra for Game Programmers

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+1 Wolfire's Linear Algebra for Game Developers series was pretty helpful to me. (Starts here: blog.wolfire.com/2009/07/…) –  jdeseno Aug 25 '10 at 19:43

Gaffer On Games

In depth articles that mostly relate to either networking or physics. Two really good articles are What every programmer needs to know about game networking and fix your timestep.

What we want is the best of both worlds. A fixed delta time value for the simulation plus the ability to render at different framerates. These two things seem completely at odds, and they are – unless we can find a way to decouple the simulation and rendering framerates.

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I REALLY like the "fix your timestep" article and in fact I was preparing to write a question about that very subject; Markus (Notch) used the fixed timestep technique in his Ludum Dare entry this past weekend and I found it to be extremely elegant, whereas in my entry I used the first example of what not to do - a time delta, and I tried to have all my equations as functions of time, and it was challenging but overall reasonably successful. Not as good/easy as a fixed timestep though. –  Ricket Aug 26 '10 at 2:35
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+1, "fix your timestep" was excellent. And there's tons of useful networking stuff. –  Riley Adams Aug 27 '10 at 7:25

DoubleBuffered by our very own JZig

I am personally a fan of Why Can’t I Jump? The Perils of Player Autonomy, but that might just be because that is one of my biggest pet peeves.

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Ai Game Dev

Excellent source of Game Ai information from videos, to interviews, to articles, etc etc. The best content has to be paid for but is worth it since there are a lot of interviews with Game AI developers about techniques that aren't published anywhere else.

On top of that it allows you access to their AI Sandbox application for testing out your own AI implementations.

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Its frustrating to see a really interesting article title and then to have to go oh wait its premium. –  lathomas64 Aug 25 '10 at 21:17
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I love this site and think it's well worth the subscription fee as it's indeed hard to find detailed information elsewhere that pertains directly to applied (applied being the keyword here) game AI. –  Kaj Aug 26 '10 at 0:31

Games from Within

An iPhone game blog. Deals with indie production issues, OpenGL ES problems, iPhone specific features (such as in-app purchasing) and their results, shares sales data, as well as general production issues. A good general article is Prototyping: You're (probably) Doing It Wrong

  • Mistake #1: Going With The First Idea
  • Mistake #2: Not having a good question
  • Mistake #3: Taking too long
  • Mistake #4: Building a system, not a game

And don’t ever, ever, use the argument “if we take some extra time and do this the right way, we can reuse it in the game”. EVER.

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TigSource has been pretty good for keeping up on indy games I wouldn't normally hear about.

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GBGames – Thoughts on Indie Game Development
An Indie Game Developer’s somewhat interesting thoughts

I found this blog while looking for info related to object-oriented/component-based game design. I found this article, and kept reading because this blog is interesting and well-written.

I think I got hooked reading his progress reports from Ludem Dare #15.

More recently, it's been interesting to follow Gianfranco Berardi as he quits his day-job to concentrate on game development full-time.

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The Word of Notch

This is the official Tumblr blog of Markus Persson ("Notch"), creator of Minecraft.

There was a time when it had a lot of good content; now most of the posts are about Minecraft (and they're quite frequent), but there are a few gems in there. For example, he occasionally posts a YouTube video of a game I've never seen before, or talks about a Game Dev competition that I find interesting, and occasionally when talking about a problem or accomplishment he will sprinkle bits of code into his posts (i.e. here and there) which I find interesting.

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realtimecollisiondetection.net blog

The blog of Christer Ericson, author of the excellent book Real-Time Collision Detection (who'd have guessed? ;). Equal parts general programming, physics programming, and graphics programming.

Selected reading:

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LightSleeper's Blog

Pete Isensee of the Xbox platform team. Focuses mostly on C++ and Xbox, with some side-steps into leadership.

An exemplary post might be something like API Principles:

[...] If you're developing your own API set, these guidelines can help ensure that your customers have that dreamy experience developers get when using a great API. You'll also spend less time having to update documentation, write complex sample code, or staffing a large support team.

His GDC presentations are all quite solid too.

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Beautiful Pixels

A blog about game technology development, graphics, and productivity for developers. Some popular posts include:

Updates infrequently.

(Disclosure: This is my own blog.)

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HobbyGameDev by Chris DeLeon.

This is a great site to learn about the basics, follow cool interesting things about game development and generally learn A LOT. Take a look at the sample games and enjoy the ride!

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That's a Terrible Idea

Design blog that focuses on design aspects of MMORPGs. Is often critical of many elements in most sandbox MMO designs. Instead of pure criticism, the blog does offer up design suggestions and theories on how to improve.

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This is my blog. I'm honored to be mentioned in the company of some of the others here. The blog is now more about general game design. I've written articles about strategy games more than MMOs over the last few months. –  evizaer Aug 30 '10 at 19:31

CoderCorner

Pierre is not posting very often these days (though his blog is not dead), but you can go through archives and find a lot of interesting information, he was quite a big inspiration for me in years.

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iDevBlogADay

iDevBlogADay is a fairly recent initiative to aggregate blogs of a some iPhone developers and bloggers and while usually projects like this one rarely produce good results, right now iDevBlogADay is probably the most interesting blog I read daily. It's not strictly about game development, but iPhone development is like 60% about games, so you won't be disappointed.

And excellent GamesFromWithin blog mentioned above is a part of this initiative.

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Mischief Mayhem Soap by Maciej is an awesome gamedev-blog: http://msinilo.pl/blog/

He puts a lot of effort into explaining performance, caches, general issues that are commonly overlooked etc. I think it's a "must-read" if you're a game-dev.

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Game School Gems

A blog from one of the teachers at a game development school in Sweden. He's worked at Massive Entertainment for 12 years as Senior Software Engineer. Some very interesting stuff! (Spelling could be better ;)

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Ray Wenderlich

An awesome blog with well-written, simple to follow tutorials for anyone interested in developing for iOS or using the cocos 2D game development framework.

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KWIGBO is pretty good. I'm starting iPhone development using Cocos2D and it's great for that (and more).

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Shawn Hargreaves Blog - Game programming with the XNA Framework

Shawn was the original developer of the Allegro library and is now one of the developers working on XNA at Microsoft. His blog covers loads of stuff about XNA, but also touches on games he's worked on in the past, such as this post about the AI coordinate system in MotoGP

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Cliffski's Blog

Ex-Elixir Studios and Lionhead coder who went indie with his own one-man-band gamedev company, Positech Games.

The blog covers all aspects of working as an Indie, including game design, programming and also the business side of things. For example, this interesting post on the marketing / production tradeoff.

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Learn & Master Cocos2d Game Development - by Steffen Itterheim

Shameless plug, it's my own website, I hope you don't mind. :)

I offer insights into sales, compare array performance metrics and cocos2d tutorials, links and other learning materials.

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Agile Game Development

I follow this one and it has some good thoughts on using agile methodologies in the game development space. I find it a pretty good read most of the time.

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Squidi.net

Avid gamer (and game developer?) who set up a goal to create a new game idea or gameplay mechanic once per day for 300 days.

Originally, it was a challenge to myself to create a new game idea or gameplay mechanic once per day for 300 days. I failed this challenge and stopped updating daily at entry #050. However, I still occasionally update with new entries as the impulse hits me. I hope to reach the full three hundred one day.

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The link is broken. –  Christopher Horenstein Oct 28 '10 at 18:29
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I think he's just an idea guy, no actual implementations yet. Seems like he has some iPhone apps though? I kind of wonder how many of his ideas have been picked up on. I know that there's a series of flash puzzle-platformer games loosely similar to the light & shadow concepts he started out with. –  CodexArcanum Oct 28 '10 at 21:13

In the Games of Madness

The blog of frictional games, the 5 person development team that created the fantastic Amnesia The Dark Decent.

Frictional Games is a small game company located in the dark depths of Sweden. We have currently developed the Penumbra games series and Amnesia: The Dark Descent.The Dark Descent.

Any aspiring game developer is sure to gather inspiration and hope from these guys and their blogs.

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