Looney Labs Icehouse Mailing list Archive

Re: [Icehouse] Icehousegames.org Wiki Administration

  • FromBrian Campbell <lambda@xxxxxxx>
  • DateThu, 12 Apr 2007 13:45:30 -0400
On Apr 12, 2007, at 1:00 PM, David Artman wrote:

1) I have done some clean-up of the Choosing Games page:

If you are a game designer, I recommend that you head over to that page and begin to update it for your game(s). There's 170 games on the wiki,
but probably only thirty or so actually are sorted into all those

This is deliberate. Did you read the paragraph at the top of the page, describing wht it is there? The point of the Choosing Games page is to list the best games for someone new to Icehouse to try out, not to list ever Icehouse game ever. For categorization of every game, we have the categories on the wiki; the problem is that if you look through all of the categories, it can still be hard to pick which games out of the categories to play.

What I wanted to do when creating the Choosing Games page is list the games that will be most rewarding for a new player to learn. This includes the best and most well known games. A game isn't much fun to play by yourself, and it can sometimes be difficult to convince players to learn a new game. Thus, games that are already fairly well known will have a larger community of player to choose from, as well as being more likely to be decent games than any game picked at random. Also, I want to provide a good impression for new players, and a giant list of every Icehouse game ever, where some of the games may be hopelessly broken, have ambiguous rules, or just plain not a very fun game, is not going to give them a good impression of Icehouse games.

Now, these judgements are obviously subjective; someone's absolute favorite game may be unknown to anyone else, or people may dislike one of the most popular games. But on the whole, I think the following criteria can be used as a decent metric:

1) Has it been published by Looney Labs? These games will pretty much by definition have a larger base of players, or at least people who have of them, and have passed the Looneys' quality judgements. 2) Has it won any competitions or awards? These games have definitely been playtested by players outside of the designers friends, and rated highly by the players. This includes the Icehouse game design competition, as well as ones like the Piecepack competition, or any others that a game might win based on actual playtesting and player ratings. 3) Has it been implemented on the computer, especially on an online gaming service like SuperDuperGames or Volity? This indicates that at least one person liked it well enough to spend the time and effort writing a computer implementation, and that a relatively wide group of players have been exposed to it. If on an online service, it means that it's fairly likely you'll be able to find players even if you have no local players, which can be a big plus.

I think that if you apply these criteria, you can get the list of games that should appear on the Choosing Games page. In general, I don't think that people should put their own games on that page; it should not be for self-promotion, but instead for introducing new players to the best that Icehouse has to offer.

Now, this is what I envisioned when I created the Choosing Games page. If enough people feel otherwise, we can include every Icehouse game on the wiki to it, but I feel like that would really dilute the value of the page. What do other people think? Are the criteria I list for inclusion sufficient?