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  • Game Design Challenge: Just In Time

    - Danny Cowan
  •'s Game Design Challenge is an exercise in becoming a game developer, asking you to look at games in a new way -- from the perspective of a game creator, producer, marketer, businessperson, and so forth.

    Every month, we'll present you with a challenge about developing video games. You'll have two weeks to brainstorm a brilliant solution (see below for how to submit your answers). After the two week submission period elapses, the best answers and the names of those who submitted them will be posted.

    The Challenge

    Design a game with a time travel mechanic.

    Assignment Details

    From some of civilization's earliest myths to modern sci-fi epics, time travel has been a popular art motif throughout the history of mankind. Video games are no exception, with the popular Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time and the 2008 indie hit Braid being among the many games that utilize time travel mechanics to both tell a story and provide a unique gameplay challenge.

    For Game Career Guide's latest Game Design Challenge, your job is to design a game centered around a time travel mechanic.

    Time travel presents many opportunities for creativity, so feel free to explore any gameplay genre you wish in your entry. Some sample ideas include a hidden object game where players travel in time to discover rare goods before other treasure hunters do, a squad-based sci-fi shooter in which you can pick up artifacts to rewind time during each match, or a point-and-click mystery game where players travel through different eras to foil crimes. Make sure that your entry explains what kind of challenges players can expect to face when using your time travel mechanic, and have fun!

    To Submit

    Work on your ideas, figure out your strategy for coming up with a solution, and ask questions on the forums. When your submission is complete, send it to [email protected] with the subject line "Game Design Challenge: Just In Time." Please type your answer directly in the email body -- do not submit .pdf or Word documents.

    Submissions should be no more than 500 words and may contain up to three images. Be sure to include your full name and school affiliation or job title.

    Entries must be submitted by Wednesday, November 21.

    Results will be posted Tuesday, November 27.

    Disclaimer: is not responsible for similarities between the content submitted to the Game Design Challenge and any existing or future products or intellectual property.


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