Thick air

  • Absorb/disperse
  • Porous boundaries

Game progress

  • Start with a normal human view
  • Then perceive with a plant's eye view
  • Get more abstract as game goes on (toward 'plant perception')

Game mechanic actions

  • Use the plant guild list
  • Raise water
  • Store nitrogen
  • etc

Open L systems - capable of modeling multiple plants and the interactions between them at the same time.

Work plan

  • Release early
  • Lots of iterations, based on player feedback
  • Test multiplayer asap, see what people (test on us first) want to do

Game time

  • Day/Night - different plants
  • Link to real world sunset and sunrise
  • Means people will want to play at different times to see what it's like

Link to local weather conditions for similar reasons


Increasing people's attention span by creating a sense of ownership

  • Plant graffiti
  • Plants emailing/messaging you after you have created them

Gameplay duration

  • Shouldn't be overly worrying about creating a game with a long gameplay duration
  • 5 minute games are often more interesting than games that take months to complete
  • Means less of a focus on goal directed play

2 types of gameplay

  • Resource management - sole player, 'build your plant'
  • Multiplayer - connections with other players, and the environment

Sense of environment slowly changes into plant sensed - air thickens


Pheromones - represented by colour, transport abilities such as:

  • Flowering amount
  • Sounds

Broadcast via

  • Wind
  • Insects

Decision to concentrate on communication, multiplayer without resource management. Start game with a random plant.

Plant googles

“Glasses” with which to see different views/properties.

  • Choice/selection of different views
  • Your choice influences the type of plant you become


  • Urban - cracks and forgotten places in the city
  • Plant view of the city

Cacti on trollies

  • Keeping a sense of the unpredictable/non-sequitur
  • Need to make it easy to create lots of elements - low overhead means more experimentation and fun!

Looking at games


  • Backstory is about conflict, all be it a flowery one
  • Sound is important
  • Nice grass
PixelJunk: Eden

  • 2D = good
  • Nice animation
  • Techno plants

  • Lack of rules
  • Simple growth
  • Complexity in textures rather than geometry
Nobi Nobi Boy

  • Good example of game design by setting up a world and then throwing lots of stuff into it

Noby Noby Boy is an important step forward for videogames as a whole. It puts a dollar value on an experience more akin to a box of LEGO than a true gaming experience. It's a decidedly risky move – providing a plaything that has ultimately very little payoff for players (wiggle 'BOY' around, submit your length, help 'GIRL' reach the next planetary body). It's experimental stuff; whereas Katamari and its variants had a defined structure and goals – something that even the most 'sandboxy' games out there have – Noby Noby Boy's sole request is that you submit your length to the greater good.

  • groworld_meeting_5th_march_2009.txt
  • Last modified: 2009-03-10 11:08
  • by nik