Artistic Concepts in Game Design
In August of 2007 a feature article I wrote was published on the website, a sister site of The article was about the use of classical artistic techniques in the realm of game design. You can download the article in its entirety at the bottom, but below is an excerpt:
In this new age of computational power, designers should not be allowed to forgo simple artistic considerations. Although game developers know (all too well) that something always causes their games to be rushed out the door before they're ever really ready, these simple artistic considerations are generally timeline independent. Decisions about art style should be made well ahead of any drastic timeline cuts. To meet release deadlines, developers often yank features, characters, or levels to cut back scope (since they are the most time-consuming). This means that artistic considerations will generally remain in tact. Working out the artistic aspects early can be crucial to releasing a great product.
An example I have heard on multiple occasions is that a designer spends large amounts of time creating and balancing a special weapon only to have it pulled. This wasted time -- so early in a project, too -- would have been better spent discussing the artistic appeal of the lead character. With the exception of a few drastic cases, the lead character is in no danger of being cut from the project. The player's relationship to this character is imperative, and a few simple artistic design considerations can make or break that relationship. These same considerations can be applied not only to characters, but also to vehicles, levels, and even worlds. By considering the science of visual perception early you can create emotion immediately. Feature Article