Data Driven Design
Not only is the voxel engine built on a data driven foundation, but almost every element of the design phase of TUG, including social structures and market interaction, will be guided by recursively assessing player feedback, habits, behaviors, and attitudes. This allows us to react to player behavior in a way that fosters positive interaction and immersion. We're bringing to the table a very unique set of interdisciplinary tools that run the gamut from mechanism design, statistical estimation, and machine learning, to full-scale behavioral experimentation.
Consider asking a few basic design questions:
- How to structure the environment so that players are more or less likely to come into conflict with one another?
- What is the best distance allowed for communicating with other players to foster the most positive interaction?
- How do NPC AI characteristics affect players’ likelihoods of trading versus fighting?
Insight to help guide answering these questions is out there, and we plan to use TUG’s framework to find it.
I know Jeff Lin at Riot and his team have been trying to tackle some very interesting issues related to player toxicity (corrosive behavior online) and game design. Something as simple as the color of the message displayed on the screen can correlate with a player’s mood and subsequent attitude towards others. This is especially important in online games where one player’s bad mood can have a destructive ripple effect throughout.
Not only will we use this research to improve the state of TUG, but we want to share this information with the public to try and improve the overall state of the industry -- one that, for too long, has been strong armed by too few with too much say. By integrating the gaming community into the design feedback loop, we can make game design truly adaptive and responsive to our players.
While some players might think that this resonates as a cop out (by us) in an attempt to circumvent blame for making a bad title (and we’ll take full responsibility if this approach fails, but keep in mind, this is a very NEW approach we are taking), the likelihood of the game sucking will decrease dramatically if you have constant support from a large enough cohort of gamers that are interested in helping fix it.
We are confident that we’ve assembled a very capable and specialized group of individuals to deliver something very unique by incorporating multiple perspectives before the fact -- we truly believe that this project can be a real game-changer. We’re promising that what you’ll get in TUG will be borne from an entirely different approach to game design. Whether or not this approach works is sensitive to the degree and quality of community involvement in the project.
It is no secret and we will not be shy - we need YOU!
p.s. We finally have an official Facebook page for TUG!!! Follow us there for news, updates, art, and more!