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For one of the videos this week (depending on how much I can get done besides the stuff on my channel), I wanted to focus on game design a little bit with my background in Computer Science. Great game design comes in a variety of forms of course, and it all depends on the audience that you are going for, the genre and story that you are playing with, and a variety of other factors.

But what I’ve noticed lately in the gaming world are games that attempt to do way too much and have way too many mechanics. Adding feature after feature into gameplay that doesn’t complement the rest of the game itself and is lacking in design overall. However, Crypt of the Necrodancer (which you can read TechRaptor’s review here) is the exact opposite of this. In this video, I highlight the surprising central mechanic behind the game that people may miss, and it’s not exactly what you think it would be.

Really, I appreciate a wonderful game design, and the guys over at Brace Yourself games definitely know how to design a game. Early access probably did help them get feedback for the game of course; however, their overall vision for the game and their understanding of what worked well with their movement mechanics made a game that actually made me fall behind on content for my Youtube channel and for TechRaptor, because I was way too busy playing it. You know a game has done a fantastic job if it’s able to do that to you rather easily, and needless to say I will be looking for more games from Brace Yourself Games for years to come.

Do you agree that the movement mechanic is the core mechanic of the game, or is it something else? If you played the game, did you notice how much your movement style changes when it comes to weaponry? And if you haven’t played or looked at the game, can a game design and breakdown like this help convince you of picking up a game?

On an unrelated note, for those who are looking for The Hunt segment I do, I’ve transferred it to a Monthly video, and will be hitting TechRaptor approximately at the end of May, with a bit of changes. Needless to say, it’s under going a bit of a transformation.

More About This Game

Shaun Joy

Staff Writer

YouTuber Dragnix who plays way too many games, and has a degree in Software Engineering. A Focus on disclosure on Youtubers, and gaming coverage in general.



  • aoede

    It’s certainly something well known to the dedicated community, that range and mobility are tradeoffs in many weapons. In zones 3 and 4 in particular, certain weapons are viewed with wariness because of their tendency to get you “caught” on things — taking hot coal damage, stuck repeatedly hitting invulnerable blademasters, etc. But movement is pretty core to a great majority of games, even if they don’t focus on it, and on the flip side, I wouldn’t make such a clear-cut distinction between movement and rhythm. Think about the titular dance, yes? It is not movement alone, not random movement, but *patterned* movement. And this includes temporal patterns, which is to say, rhythm. (The devs did actually make it clear that Bard was included for players who had difficulty/didn’t want to bother with moving to a beat, not as a demonstration of a core concept or something.)

  • Shaun Joy

    While that may have been the case regarding the Bard portion, I think it illustrated the point nicely, and the fact that it indicates that it’s not bothering moving to a beat, makes it even more so a point in the favor it. What the point I wanted to make was how the game based off the movement mechanic was so refreshing in terms of its design, the inclusion of the attack mechanics for example could have easily been done in other ways, but that idea of the movement being such a key part of the attack portion was the key for me. I admit, I’m not very deep into the COTND community, and my view was to bring the game to the core gaming audience and show them the game design elements of it. Of course, this comes down to an opinion, but it’s what I saw for the game, and really felt did the job in terms of game design.