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Independent Games Summit: This is Why We Fight: Designing Meaningful Combat

Shawn Alexander Allen  (President & Game Design Director, NuChallenger)

Location: Room 2009, West Hall

Date: Monday, March 20

Time: 3:00 pm - 3:30 pm

Pass Type: All Access Pass, Summits Pass, Independent Games Summit Pass

Topic: Independent Games

Format: Lecture

Vault Recording: Video

Audience Level: All

Game combat is often seen as a means to an end, something to give players to do on their way from Point A to Point B. Yet we've seen time and again that combat can be extra meaningful when explored from a narrative lens, and even more so when it comes from the team. Dissonant combat may seem unavoidable, but who better than indies to explore that, break it down, and turn the notion on its head?

This talk is to encourage a different way of thinking about combat: making it smaller, more compartmentalized, more personal, and, overall, more meaningful.


Attendees should leave with an understanding on how to make the combat in their games more meaningful and impactful for players.

Intended Audience

This is for anyone who wants to design more deeply impactful combat that is focused on narrative reasons for engaging, and less on pure focus on big combos and scores (not that those aren't cool, too).