Sorry it has been awhile. I started working on a new project in UE4 and have just been distracted by it.
I like to prototype. It helps me to figure out my thoughts and test the game mechanics to see if they are actually fun. Also I don’t have beautiful colors or great looking assets to cloud my judgment. It allows me to focus solely on the mechanics. I know it has been written to death and back about but I feel it is really important for Game Designers to spend some time prototyping. And in their prototypes try different things to see what works and what doesn’t. In the following video I ran through and created a prototype for an infinite runner.
As you can see it doesn’t look amazing. I used assets, which were in the Unreal 4 starter pack this allowed me to focus on the fun. Because of this I learned more about my game which I would have never known otherwise. For example: The free run element is not working it makes it too hard when the player can free run across the field. If I were to do a full version I would lock the player to 3 different tracks (Or columns depending on how you want to think about it). Amongst the crazy things I tried one was the double jump. This you can see when I hit the particle field it gives the avatar a boost up. This was surprisingly rewarding because it looked intimidating when I was approaching it. This is a small sliver of all the things I learned from prototyping but I will continue using this practice because I feel I learn a lot from it.
There are millions of different reasons why I prototype but the main reason is to help me find the fun. Because if I don’t find the fun, then later on the team may have to crunch to try to change a chunk of the game because it isn’t fun.