Video Game Elements

I’ve spent the past few months outlining my definitions to help conceptually navigate the different aspects of video game development. While I plan on delving in more detail how these definitions apply with examples, I feel it is now possible introduce my new meta-concept.

I am pleased to introduce Video Game Elements, what I humbly consider a better organized and interrelated collection than formal systems / atoms. Here is a graphic illustration:

Video Game Elements is intended to be a map of what every video game needs to be considered or implemented.

First of all, we need the Player as the nexus to engage with the Hardware that powers the Software. The Software consists of three layers.

The left/highest/conceptual layer is called Play Motifs, which consists of five main patterns of interaction that includes the visuals, characters, overarching play, etc. that attracts the Player’s attention. Play Motif would be like an art gallery that contains a particular theme amongst its contained pieces.

The middle/middle/engineering layer is called Play Fundamentals, which consists of four aspects that frames the Player’s interaction. Play Fundamentals would be like the picture frame, canvas, materials used to make a piece.

The right/base/technical layer is called Play Mechanics, which consists of four aspects that details the Player’s interaction. Play Mechanics would be like brush strokes, colours, and tools given by the developer to the Player to use and master.

All of these definitions are available at the Glossary page.

Because this a conceptual model, I accept that it will evolve and anticipate that I’ll be updating it as I carry on with my game development journey. Until then, I hope that the Video Games Elements model can help you navigate your own journey.