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Design a Game Project: Rules & Prototype

Updated: Jun 6, 2021

Welcome to week 3. Last week I asked you to research your topic and game mechanics. I hope that you have some great ideas starting to bud in your mind. At this point in the Steorra design, my son had settled on a tile placement game with hexes. He was inspired when he got a set of Gravitrax and had a pile of punch out hexes from the boards. These pieces of trash were about to become very handy.

This week you are going to begin the process of building rules and crafting a prototype. We often save the bits from games that get wrecked or that no one wants, so we have pieces for making games. You can make a game from anything though. My kiddo made his first prototype with those discarded pieces from the Gravitrax set. Be creative as you construct your pieces.

If you want to kick start your game bits collection, check out our Pocket Game Design Kit review here.

Keep your design very simplistic at this point. Artwork is fun, but distracting and time consuming to make. Those things will come later. The Steorra tiles started with just a number on them. The kiddo wrote with pencil for making quick and easy changes. This won't be the final product or even the final prototype, so keeping the design simplified will make it easier to change and play test next week. The point of this first prototype is simply to see if the mechanics you came up with work and are fun when you are play testing next week. Cool art sells, but a bad game with good art is still a bad game underneath.

Be sure to write down your rules. They are not final, but make it easier to remember what you are doing in the game. Next week you will be play testing with your family and they will appreciate written rules. Steorra did not have written rules for a while and it made testing it with the kiddo frustrating. He made changes throughout the game sometimes and then we couldn't remember where everything started. Do this! Your families will be happy you did.


  • Write rules for your first prototype game

  • Make a prototype of your game

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