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World Components

Like the pieces of a board game, video games create spaces in which we play by how they are constructed. The video game worlds we play in are presented to us in various ways. The choices a game makes about this not only define how we interact and move around the world, but how it feels to spend time in this space.
 

2D Overhead
COMPONENTS
Play in a world where you explore and interact in two dimensions. You view the world from above, either directly looking straight down or offset to allow you to see some of the height of objects.

 
03/02/2023 / 16 months ago

2D Side-On
COMPONENTS
Play in a world where you explore and interact in two dimensions. You view the world from the side, which is common for platform games.

 
03/02/2023 / 16 months ago

3D First-Person
COMPONENTS
Play in a world where you can explore and interact in three dimensions. Your view of the world is First-Person, through the eyes of your character. You don't see your body, just your hands.

 
03/02/2023 / 16 months ago

3D Third-Person
COMPONENTS
Play in a world where you can explore and interact in three dimensions. Your view of the world is Third-Person, over the shoulder of your character, who you see on screen.

 
03/02/2023 / 16 months ago

Blocks
COMPONENTS
The worlds in which we play video games are constructed in different ways. Many games you are not aware of how they are constructing their world, but some lean into their construction so that it becomes a noticeable component of the space they create:
  • Blocks: Games like Minecraft are built of blocks.
  • Pixels: Games like Space Invaders are built of different coloured pixels. Modern games like Unpacking often adopt this look and interaction.
  • Hand-Drawn: Games like Tearaway or Cup Head are designed to look like they employ traditional animation. This aesthetic includes stop-motion, pen and ink, stitched, folded and hand-drawn graphics.

 
06/02/2023 / 16 months ago

Day and Night
COMPONENTS
The world of the game changes in the day and the night. As you play there is a Day-Night Cycle of time that moves through the day and into the night (and back again) like the real world. This includes games where this is merely an aesthetic aspect of play as well as games that use the day and night periods to change the things you can do and how the world responds to you.

 
03/02/2023 / 16 months ago

Grid
COMPONENTS
Moving around a video game world can be complex. Some games provide a grid of movement rather than letting the player move wherever they want. This not only simplifies and focuses each choice in the game up opens the door to a wide range of strategies.

 
19/02/2023 / 16 months ago

Open World
COMPONENTS
Play in a world that sets few artificial limits on where you go. These spaces invite exploration and investigation as part of the enjoyment. While there may be some limits on size, they don't funnel the player down a narrow way forward and allow for interactions to happen in various orders.

 
03/02/2023 / 16 months ago

Most games invite you to play in an unusual world for a period of time. You either win or lose and then start again. Games with persistent worlds continue on after you have stopped playing. This may be offered by a Minecraft server, or a specific games whose world evolves over a long time.

 
29/11/2023 / 6 months ago

Weather
COMPONENTS
The game has weather like in the real world. This changes from sun to rain to snow in different areas of the game. This includes games where this is just an aesthetic aspect of play, as well as games where the climate has an affect on your character.

 
03/02/2023 / 16 months ago

Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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