a manifesto for gentle games
A downloadable manifesto
(Note: I don't think all games should be like this, but manifestos need to have emphasis and be inflammatory, you know)
We've gotten good at making them look gentle, but this is just a cover for systems and gears controlled by a machine. Players continuosly die in the cogs. We should make our games be gentler.
- Don't think of victory and win conditions, think of outcomes to actions.
- Make games with unimportant decisions. Decisions that won't have an effect on the outcome of the whole thing.
- Let your players adapt your game. Let them erase and change things you put there.
- Make it possible to skip to any part, the way you can open a book at any page. Don't lock things until the player finishes other things.
- Make the interactions in your game meaningful like words on a poem. Something to hold in your hands when you need it.
Make games about decisions that make your life better. Happy decisions. There's enough games about bad decisions and terrible situations.
Make games about nice situations, make games about gentle characters, make games about lovely interactions.
make gentle games