Product Design

Stages of a Game's Lifecycle

Stages of a Game's Lifecycle

It may be surprising to learn that every publisher has their own way of tackling the complete process game publishing. It seems like the work of a designer is fairly diverse, while publishers follow a fixed map of steps. But that’s not the case at all! The process a publisher takes to bring a game to press can have just as much art and personality to it as the process of designing the game in the first place.

There is a lot of room to carve your own path and processes in the world of publishing, and the path to creating a final, finished product is quite diverse. Here’s what ours looks like!

Player Archetypes - Deques, Shur, Cardine, and Morrey

Player Archetypes - Deques, Shur, Cardine, and Morrey

Many of us are familiar with the classic Johnny/Timmy/Spike archetypes shared by Mark Rosewater in his now-famous article for Wizards of the Coast. While these archetypes work great for Magic, every company is a bit different. One of the exciting truths about being game designers is that we get to choose who we serve and who we build our games to attract.

Most of Level 99 Games’ fans fall into one of these archetypes, or are split across two of them. Aside from the three main archetypes, there is one additional meta-archetype, for a total of four. To describe them, I’ve used familiar characters from Millennium Blades, who were designed with these motivations in mind. Unlike the Rosewater archetypes, our archetypes are less about what players engage with in the games, and instead focus on why they engage with the games in the first place. And of course, we have a bit more ground to cover, since we’re designing entire game experiences and not just cards and expansions.