Extensive research has shown that the act of play is extremely important in the lives of human beings. It is thus not surprising that games have a long and continuing history in the development of almost every culture and society. The advent of computers and technology in general has also been akin to the need for entertainment that every human being seeks. However, a curious dichotomy exists in the nature of electronic games: the vast majority of electronic games are individual in nature whereas the nonelectronic ones are collective by nature. On the other hand, recent technological breakthroughs are finally allowing for the implementation of electronic multiplayer games.
Because of the limited experience in electronic, multiplayer game design, it becomes necessary to adapt existing expertise in the area of single-player game design to the realm of multiplayer games. This work presents a model to support the initial steps in the design process of multiplayer games. The model is defined in terms of the characteristics that are both inherent and special to multiplayer games but also related to the relevant elements of a game in general. Additionally, the model is used to assist in the design of two multiplayer games.
“One of the most difficult tasks people can perform, however much others may despise it, is the invention of good games …”