Casual Game Artwork: From Concept to Completion

What’s involved in building a casual game these days?

There is a lot more to making a casual game than most people realize. I learned this first hand recently, as I participated in the 2005 OMG Cup these past two months. I always believed casual games were simple and quick to develop. Compared to the modern enourmous budget A-list first person shooter games, I guess they are — but for a one person development shop it’s still a lot of hard work.

Phil Steinmeyer has given us a hint to just how much work is involved by sharing with us the artwork life cycle for his recently released game, Bonnie’s Bookstore.

I love when developers allow the outside world to see how their games were built. Sharing knowledge is what the internet is about. In this case, Phil not only shows us the artwork that made it into the game, but also the artwork that was rejected.

Phil also discloses his method for deciding on what theme his word game should use. It’s very interesting to see the numbers behind his survey and what themes people liked or not. I had not thought of surveying blog readers for their opinion on game design directions.

But, why not? Readers would probably be a ready and usually willing participant in the process. After all, readers are already participating by visiting your site. By allowing readers to join the design process, they get a small stake in the success of the game and may be more apt to purchase and spread the word.

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