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Procedural Generation in Game Design Paperback – June 3, 2017
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About the Author
Tanya X. Short is the director of Kitfox Games, the indie game studio behind Moon Hunters and Shattered Planet. Previously, she worked as a designer at Funcom Games on The Secret World and Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures. In her spare time, she acts as the co-director of Pixelles, a non-profit helping more women make games.
Tarn Adams is best known as the developer of Dwarf Fortress since 2002 with his older brother Zach. He learned programming in his childhood, and designed computer games as a hobby until he quit his first year of a mathematics post doctorate at Texas A&M to focus on game development in 2006.
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It does warn you early into the book to not expect every problem to be solved instantly by PCG (a fair message) and it doesn't dig into the technical implementation details beyond a surface discussion.
This is NOT a technical recipe book for building a bunch of different PCG systems you can use in games.
Great starting point if you're interested in learning about PCG in other ways than you've already been exposed to.
The variety of authors is very beneficial since each topic has its complex gotchas. It feels as if the authors talking about subjects have grappled firsthand with the problems that you'd face within that topic.
The only minor fault is some of the charts don't line up with where you'd want them to be: 'As seen in Figure N-1' and Figure N-1 would turn out to be on the next page.
My only complaint is that I wanted to read essays from Tanya and Tarn too!
I enjoyed every chapter of this book, but what really stood out to me were the two chapters focusing on graph grammars; one for level generation, and the other for story generation. Reading those chapters made me want to immediately go out and make games using them. In fact, I want to write a game right now. I think I'll do that.
If I had a complaint, it would be that the editors didn’t contribute at least a chapter each.