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my game is special because...

image from splinter cell: double agent
Splinter Cell: Double Agent (Xbox)
Why should people play your game? What are the key elements that make it stand out from all the other games already out there?

You need something unique that catches people's curiosity and pulls them in. Try to isolate and clearly define each individual piece of gameplay or game mechanic and how they work together to create your core game experience.

Often the most original ideas come from combining a few simple concepts in a new way. So when coming up with an idea for your game try to avoid just taking your favourite game and 'improving' it by making it more complicated, adding features, or combining it with another favourite game.

That's not to say you can't take a game style you like and rework it into something original.

The Thief games repurposed the First Person Shooter genre, traditionally combat focused, into a moody stealth game or First Person Sneaker with a few simple changes. Reducing player combat abilities made fighting dangerous, forcing the use of stealth to progress. A good start, but by itself this is more frustrating than fun. But the introduction of shadows to hide in, and searching behaviour for the guards creates a dynamic familiar to everyone - the timeless game of hide-and-seek. Thief has three simple elements that work together to create unique gameplay full of tension and atmosphere.

More good examples of original game design are the simple web games at They are incredibly simple, often using only single mouse clicks, but demonstrate how small adjustments to a game mechanic can dramatically change how a game plays. Look at a few games, and see how a single game type or mechanic is often developed in different ways, as the creators explore its potential in search of new gameplay.

See Games: a short history

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