View, browse and sort the ever-growing list of sessions by pass type, track, and format. With this Session Viewer, you can view session and speaker details for the 2024 Game Developers Conference. New sessions are regularly added leading up to GDC, and all dates and times will be announced about 4 weeks before the event. Once live, you will be able to build your schedule with the GDC Mobile App.
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Alex Jaffe (Game Design Manager, Riot Games)
Pass Type: All Access Pass, Core Pass - Get your pass now!
Vault Recording: TBD
Audience Level: All
Designers build games around player fantasies. These typically concern something the player "pretends" to be inside a game. But another kind of fantasy is often overlooked: "Player Mythologies". These are the narratives through which players view themselves as players. Explorer, spy, collector, artist - these archetypes don't just describe a character in a game. Remarkably, they sometimes describe the actual players, and how a specific game or genre fits into players' lives. By understanding these narratives, designers can gain profound insight into their players' mindset and motivation, reshaping traditional ideas of "good" and "bad" design.
In this talk, Alex Jaffe introduces player mythologies, showing their impact and their root causes in subtle design choices. He then presents a case study on the player mythology of fighting games. He shows how this lens unlocked his work on Riot Games' Project L, and illuminates the beauty of the genre along the way.
Attendees will learn a new design framework for understanding what makes their players tick - to reveal player motivation and preferences, and to help drive design decisions large and small. Examples and a case study will prepare attendees to apply the framework to their own games.
This talk concerns the broadest questions of what games are for, but connects these questions to detailed design decisions and consequences. As such, every game designer (or design-curious developer) should find something of interest, whether they're responsible for strategic product decisions, fine-grained tuning changes, or anything in-between.