Making Games

Recently, I have been getting into some of my hobbies again. I actually have quite a lot of hobbies that I tend to put down and then pick back up again when the time feels right. In particular, I have gotten back into making games for fun. While I am also a fan of playing games, there is something special about creating something yourself.

By games, I mean physical games, such as card games and board games, though I am also interested in learning how to program computer games. I even started learning the programming language Python, though I am not able to make anything interesting with it yet.

For examples of physical games, most people would think of a trump card deck as well as common board games for groups of players, like Monopoly, Clue, and Sorry. Though these games can be fun in their own right, I do not find them particularly fun to create. First of all, an important aspect of making games is to test them, and given the current situation in the world, it`s pretty difficult to find a group of 3-4 players to do anything together in an enclosed space, let alone play a home-made board game for 45 minutes to an hour. Second of all, the rules for these games tend to be fairly simple, and I prefer creating more complex games.

Other physical games include Chess, Shogi, and Go, which all have a rich tradition and date back to centuries ago. These kinds of games are difficult to make in some ways and easy in others. Chess, Shogi, and Go are turned-based strategy games. This means that players take turns moving his or her pieces in an attempt to defeat the other player. I do think it`s fun to make turn-based strategy games, but I usually do it in the form of trading card games and deck building games.

Trading card games, such as Magic the Gathering (MTG), are fun to make because you get to design lots of different kinds of cards that have all kinds of different effects. Typically, you need to buy new cards to play such a game, which can get extremely expensive. However, when you make your own game, you don`t need to spend much money at all. You only need to spend as much as it takes to buy the cardboard and pens to make the cards. It is also a chance to be creative, not only with what game rules you can come up with but also with the setting for the world the cards exist in. This means that it`s also a way to write a story as well as make a game.

On the other hand, I think deck building games are even more fun and come with the bonus of being possible to play by yourself, like the trump card game Solitaire. In a deck building game, you start with very weak cards and compete against other pre-made decks of cards. You can, with a little imagination, play the other deck of cards as well, either one card at a time without looking or by playing both hands (yourself and the opposing player). After finishing each battle, you get a new card. Over time, you improve your deck to keep up with the rising difficulty.

At their heart, all of the kinds of games I like are decision-based games, where players have to make correct choices to succeed. I think practicing making good decisions, both when playing and when making a game, is a very useful way to spend your time.



in one`s own right (idiom) – because of one`s qualities or efforts rather than because of an association with something else
turn-based strategy (noun) – a game based around making the best move by taking turns
defeat (verb) – win against someone or something
bonus (noun) – a positive, extra thing