[game design] games toolbox

This weekend I tried to play this game. At the beginning I thought I might feel boring soon because there is no music or any photos or animation. But later I found it is a really good intervention! Or we can say, a really good game. 

No other things to distract the player’s attention, I paid a lot of attention on those words. I found they are so normal as we are all facing everyday. 

As a player, the game let me know, everyday could happen something and any choice I made can influence my life. During playing the game, I can know many details of low-income people’s life. For instance one in four Americans doesn’t have dental insurance and when they have to get an emergency surgery, that’s twice as expensive. “Over 44% of people living below the poverty line visit public library to get online.” I think the value of this game is not only to let us have a view of low-income people’s life, but also these information - it points some reality which I haven’t noticed before. 

During playing this game, my goal is not running out of the money and trying to live a better life or caring my family better. The left of money is always showing on the corner, very clear. And on the right side of the screen, I can see how many days I need to wait for the payment from my job. Like a lot of games, the SPENT is also about balancing and choices. The whole process of playing can evoke a strong feeling of empathy and I think it is smart for the game to offer a chance for players to transfer their feeling to a real action - donation. I think it is a game which has a strong social impact, maybe not so fun but meaningful.


It’s a new game for me and I start play it from this month. When I begin to pay more attention on “game” and want to try more, there are a lot of my friends recommend the Monument Valley to me at the same time.

When I try to play it at the first time, I felt really confused that what should I do or what kind of tools I can use to pass the game. So at that time I find the “exploration” maybe also a very important part of the game.

My favourite part of the game is the fantastic structure of architecture. They are so beautiful and super surprise when the structure changed by the perspective change. 

It’s a multiplayers game. If there are 5 players play the game, there should be 5 cards on the table, which 4 of them is A, 1 of them is B, B is the spy. (no matter how many players in the game, just to make sure there is one player to be the spy which means the person has a different card with other players) For example, A is ORANGE, and B is LEMON. 

Every player has a card and doesn’t let others know what they get. During each round, each player needs to say a word or a sentence to describe what they get in turns. People can not directly say the word they get on the card. The purpose of your description is to make players who have the same card with you know you are not the spy. At the same time, people can’t make the spy know what they get. In addition, the spy doesn’t know he or she is the spy or not. If you are the spy, your purpose is to make others think you are on their side. It means that you need to make others think you have the same card with them and the spy is someone else. As a spy, even you know the other word according to people’s description, you can’t protect yourself by describing the word which others’ have. Your description should be just for your word. 

After everyone describes for a round, the moderator will say three, two, one, and each play points to someone they think is the spy. The person who gets the most votes die. If there are only 3 players alive, the spy wins. Or the spy loss. 

I usually play this game with my friends when we take subway. I like it because this game is very simple and can be played at anytime and anywhere. Even no need a real card, we can type the two words on our phone and show each of them to players separately. There are a lot of thinking process in this game, and it all about the strategy and balancing. I think the key of the game is the two words. They should be very similar to each other, so that it will be hard to figure out who is the spy. 

This game I usually play during my “waiting” time, very simple and full of fun. Each level of the game has a special Target, limited Moves and Score. It is very clear to let players know what is their goal and how far along they are on the road to reaching the goal. Players can play in a strategic way - gathering “Striped” candy or “Wrapped” candy to clear as more candies as possible in one time, which I think is the most exciting moment during the game.

When I play it, I find that I’m usually addicted to it and cannot put my phone down, but I like the “total time limited” which after players keeping playing it for a long time, it forces you to wait several minutes or days to continue. I’m not sure whether the part is designed for this or not, but it really reduce worries of addiction. 

This is my favourite game and I always play it with a lot of my friends. I like it because the game is not only about the playing with cards, players need to role-play and debate for protecting themselves and convincing others. The moderator who controls the flow of the game has a really important role.

The rules of the game is a little complicated, the moderator have to know all the rules and the results after every action. The special villagers don't want to reveal their identity to the werewolves but they need to gain the trust from other villagers to avoid being lynched; and werewolves need to pretend that they are villagers so that not being killed during the day time; the general villagers maybe the most boring characters but still have a lot of play space according to different players. So I think it’s all about strategy and balancing, and full of challenge. 

As an extremely popular game, I have played it since I was a middle school student. It can simply be played by flipping a bottle and see which player is pointed. Or it can be combined with many other games. When someone lose that game, the “Truth or Dare” could be a punishment. 

There can be a lot of people play it at the same time, and the simple rule helps players understand easily. Choice of tool which is used in this game is very flexible, not only a bottle, it could be anything just to make sure the tool can “point” a player during each round of the game. It offers more creative space for players to adjust the game according to their specific situation. 

In addition, the questions for “Truth” and orders for “Dare” as the most important role make the game interesting and exciting. Players could be friends or someone they meet each other at first time, and the game would help them know each other better or a good way to break the ice. 

But some times we will find it is a little bit hard to think a funny “Dare” order or a good question for “Truth”, especially in very short time. So there are some people gather a lot of funny questions and put them online or some “question cards” are made especially for this game. 

As a whole I think, simple, flexible and multi-players are the key to make the game notable.



Platform: Digital / Website


First playing time: Feb 21, 2016






















Monument Valley


Platform: Digital / Mobil

Genre: Puzzle

First playing time: Feb 2016










Who is the spy!



Genre: Co-op Srategy; Multiplayers

First playing time: 2013

























candy crush


Platform: Digital / Mobil

Genre: Puzzle

First playing time: 2012














Platform: Tabletop

Genre: Co-op Srategy; Multiplayers

First playing time: 2010












truth or dare



Genre: Multiplayers

First playing time: 2007