Home > Store

Introduction to Game Design, Prototyping, and Development: From Concept to Playable Game with Unity and C#, 2nd Edition

eBook (Watermarked)

  • Sorry, this book is no longer in print.
  • Includes EPUB and PDF
  • About eBook Formats
  • This eBook includes the following formats, accessible from your Account page after purchase:

    ePub EPUB The open industry format known for its reflowable content and usability on supported mobile devices.

    Adobe Reader PDF The popular standard, used most often with the free Acrobat® Reader® software.

    This eBook requires no passwords or activation to read. We customize your eBook by discreetly watermarking it with your name, making it uniquely yours.

Not for Sale

Also available in other formats.

Register your product to gain access to bonus material or receive a coupon.


  • Copyright 2018
  • Dimensions: 7" x 9"
  • Pages: 1024
  • Edition: 2nd
  • eBook (Watermarked)
  • ISBN-10: 0-13-465992-9
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-13-465992-3

Master the Unity Game Engine to Design and Develop Games for Web, Mobile, Windows, macOS, and More!

If you want to design and develop games, there’s no substitute for strong hands-on experience with modern techniques and tools—and that is exactly what this book provides. The first edition was frequently the top-selling game design book on Amazon, with more than 70% of the reviews being 5 stars. In a testament to the iterative process of design, this new edition includes hundreds of improvements throughout the text, all designed to make the book easier to understand and even more useful. This book was written with Unity 2017; the book.prototools.net website will cover changes for later versions of the software.

Award-winning game designer and professor Jeremy Gibson Bond has spent more than a decade teaching game design and building great games. In that time, his most successful students have been those who combine knowledge of three critical disciplines: game design theory, rapid iterative prototyping, and practical programming. In this book, Bond distills the most important aspects of all three disciplines into one place.

Part I: Game Design and Paper Prototyping
• The Layered Tetrad framework: a synthesis of 50 years of game design theory
• Proven practices for brainstorming and refining game designs through the iterative process of design
• Methods and tools to manage game projects and small teams
• Processes to make playtesting and feedback easier

Part II: Digital Prototyping with Unity and C#
• Chapters that guide you through learning C# the right way
• Instruction that takes you from no prior programming knowledge through object-oriented programming
• Deep exploration of Unity, today’s most popular game engine on both macOS and Windows
• Methods for understanding and debugging code issues you encounter

Part III: Game Prototype Examples and Tutorials
• In-depth tutorials for seven different game prototypes, including a simple action game, a space shooter, a solitaire card game, a word game, and a top-down adventure
• Instructions to compile these games for PC, web, or any of the dozens of other release platforms supported by Unity
• Improved structure and layout that makes the steps of each tutorial easier to follow
• A completely new Dungeon Delver prototype not present in the first edition


Companion Site

Please visit the companion site for this book at http://book.prototools.net. This site includes all the files referenced in the chapters, lecturer notes, starter packages, playable examples of some of the games, updates, and more.

Sample Content

Table of Contents

Foreword by Richard Lemarchand    xxiii
Preface     xxvii

Chapter 1  Thinking Like a Designer     3

You Are a Game Designer     4
Bartok: A Game Exercise     4
The Definition of Game     10
Summary     17
Chapter 2  Game Analysis Frameworks     19
Common Frameworks for Ludology     20
MDA: Mechanics, Dynamics, and Aesthetics     20
Formal, Dramatic, and Dynamic Elements     24
The Elemental Tetrad     28
Summary     29
Chapter 3  The Layered Tetrad     31
The Inscribed Layer     32
The Dynamic Layer     33
The Cultural Layer     34
The Responsibility of the Designer     36
Summary     37
Chapter 4  The Inscribed Layer     39
Inscribed Mechanics     40
Inscribed Aesthetics     47
Inscribed Narrative     49
Inscribed Technology     59
Summary     60
Chapter 5  The Dynamic Layer     61
The Role of the Player     62
Emergence     63
Dynamic Mechanics     64
Dynamic Aesthetics     70
Dynamic Narrative     75
Dynamic Technology     78
Summary     78
Chapter 6  The Cultural Layer     79
Beyond Play     80
Cultural Mechanics     81
Cultural Aesthetics     82
Cultural Narrative     83
Cultural Technology     84
Authorized Transmedia Are Not Part of the Cultural Layer     85
The Cultural Impact of a Game     86
Summary     89
Chapter 7  Acting Like a Designer     91
Iterative Design     92
Innovation     98
Brainstorming and Ideation     99
Changing Your Mind     103
Scoping     105
Summary     106
Chapter 8  Design Goals     107
Design Goals: An Incomplete List     108
Designer-Centric Goals     108
Player-Centric Goals     111
Summary     127
Chapter 9  Paper Prototyping     129
The Benefits of Paper Prototypes     130
Paper Prototyping Tools     131
Paper Prototyping for Interfaces     133
An Example Paper Prototype     134
Best Uses for Paper Prototyping     139
Poor Uses for Paper Prototyping     140
Summary     140
Chapter 10  Game Testing     143
Why Playtest?     144
Being a Great Playtester Yourself     144
The Circles of Playtesters     145
Methods of Playtesting     148
Other Important Types of Testing     156
Summary     157
Chapter 11  Math and Game Balance     159
The Meaning of Game Balance     160
The Importance of Spreadsheets     160
The Choice of Google Sheets for This Book     161
Examining Dice Probability with Sheets     162
The Math of Probability     174
Randomizer Technologies in Paper Games     178
Weighted Distributions     182
Permutations     184
Using Sheets to Balance Weapons     186
Positive and Negative Feedback     194
Summary     194
Chapter 12  Guiding the Player     195
Direct Guidance     196
Four Methods of Direct Guidance     197
Indirect Guidance     198
Seven Methods of Indirect Guidance     198
Teaching New Skills and Concepts     206
Summary     209
Chapter 13  Puzzle Design     211
Scott Kim on Puzzle Design     212
Puzzle Examples in Action Games     219
Summary     221
Chapter 14  The Agile Mentality     223
The Manifesto for Agile Software Development     224
Scrum Methodology     225
Burndown Chart Example     228
Creating Your Own Burndown Charts     238
Summary     238
Chapter 15  The Digital Game Industry     239
About the Game Industry     240
Game Education     243
Getting Into the Industry     246
Don't Wait to Start Making Games!     250
Summary     253

Chapter 16  Thinking in Digital Systems     257

Systems Thinking in Board Games     258
An Exercise in Simple Instructions     259
Game Analysis: Apple Picker     261
Summary     267
Chapter 17  Introducing the Unity Development Environment     269
Downloading Unity     270
Introducing Our Development Environment     273
Launching Unity for the First Time     277
The Example Project     278
Setting Up the Unity Window Layout     278
Learning Your Way Around Unity     283
Summary     283
Chapter 18  Introducing Our Language: C#     285
Understanding the Features of C#     286
Reading and Understanding C# Syntax     292
Summary     294
Chapter 19  Hello World: Your First Program     295
Creating a New Project     296
Making a New C# Script     298
Making Things More Interesting     303
Summary     312
Chapter 20  Variables and Components     313
Introducing Variables     314
Strongly Typed Variables in C#     314
Important C# Variable Types     316
The Scope of Variables     319
Naming Conventions     319
Important Unity Variable Types     320
Unity GameObjects and Components     327
Summary     330
Chapter 21  Boolean Operations and Conditionals     331
Booleans     332
Comparison Operators     336
Conditional Statements     339
Summary     345
Chapter 22  Loops     347
Types of Loops     348
Set Up a Project     348
while Loops     348
do...while Loops     352
for Loops     352
foreach Loops     354
Jump Statements within Loops     355
Summary     357
Chapter 23  Collections in C#     359
C# Collections     360
Using Generic Collections     362
List     363
Dictionary     368
Array     371
Multidimensional Arrays     376
Jagged Arrays     379
Whether to Use Array or List     383
Summary     383
Chapter 24  Functions and Parameters     387
Setting Up the Function Examples Project     388
Definition of a Function     388
Function Parameters and Arguments     391
Returning Values     393
Proper Function Names     395
Why Use Functions?     395
Function Overloading     397
Optional Parameters     398
The params Keyword     399
Recursive Functions     400
Summary     401
Chapter 25  Debugging     403
Getting Started with Debugging     404
Stepping Through Code with the Debugger     410
Summary     418
Chapter 26  Classes     419
Understanding Classes     420
Class Inheritance     428
Summary     431
Chapter 27  Object-Oriented Thinking     433
The Object-Oriented Metaphor     434
An Object-Oriented Boids Implementation     436
Summary     455

Chapter 28  Prototype 1: Apple Picker     459

The Purpose of a Digital Prototype     460
Preparing     461
Coding the Apple Picker Prototype     470
GUI and Game Management     484
Summary     494
Chapter 29  Prototype 2: Mission Demolition     495
Getting Started: Prototype 2     496
Game Prototype Concept     496
Art Assets     497
Coding the Prototype     502
Summary     544
Chapter 30  Prototype 3: Space SHMUP     545
Getting Started: Prototype 3     546
Setting the Scene     548
Making the Hero Ship     549
Adding Some Enemies     557
Spawning Enemies at Random     566
Setting Tags, Layers, and Physics     568
Making the Enemies Damage the Player     571
Restarting the Game     575
Shooting (Finally)     577
Summary     581
Chapter 31  Prototype 3.5: Space SHMUP Plus     583
Getting Started: Prototype 3.5     584
Programming Other Enemies     584
Shooting Revisited     592
Showing Enemy Damage     609
Adding Power-Ups and Boosting Weapons     612
Making Enemies Drop Power-Ups     622
Enemy_4—A More Complex Enemy     625
Adding a Scrolling Starfield Background     634
Summary     636
Chapter 32  Prototype 4: Prospector Solitaire     639
Getting Started: Prototype 4     640
Build Settings     640
Importing Images as Sprites     642
Constructing Cards from Sprites     644
The Prospector Game     661
Implementing Prospector in Code     664
Implementing Game Logic     677
Adding Scoring to Prospector     685
Adding Some Art to the Game     698
Summary     704
Chapter 33  Prototype 5: Bartok     707
Getting Started: Prototype 5     708
Build Settings     710
Coding Bartok     711
Building for WebGL     750
Summary     752
Chapter 34  Prototype 6: Word Game     753
Getting Started: Prototype 6     754
About the Word Game     754
Parsing the Word List     756
Setting Up the Game     763
Laying Out the Screen     769
Adding Interactivity     778
Adding Scoring     782
Adding Animation to Letters     785
Adding Color     788
Summary     790
Chapter 35  Prototype 7: Dungeon Delver     793
Dungeon Delver—Game Overview     794
Getting Started: Prototype 7     795
Setting Up the Cameras     796
Understanding the Dungeon Data     798
Adding the Hero     808
Giving Dray an Attack Animation     818
Dray's Sword     821
Enemy: Skeletos     822
The InRoom Script     825
Per-Tile Collision     828
Aligning to the Grid     832
Moving from Room to Room     839
Making the Camera Follow Dray     842
Unlocking Doors     843
Adding GUI to Track Key Count and Health     848
Enabling Enemies to Damage Dray     852
Making Dray's Attack Damage Enemies     856
Picking Up Items     859
Enemies Dropping Items on Death     861
Implementing a Grappler     864
Implementing a New Dungeon—The Hat     872
The Delver Level Editor     877
Summary     877

Appendix A  Standard Project Setup Procedure     881
Appendix B  Useful Concepts     887
Appendix C  Online Reference     947
Index     953



To submit errata that you have found or view known errata, please visit the book's website at http://book.prototools.net.

Submit Errata

More Information

InformIT Promotional Mailings & Special Offers

I would like to receive exclusive offers and hear about products from InformIT and its family of brands. I can unsubscribe at any time.


Pearson Education, Inc., 221 River Street, Hoboken, New Jersey 07030, (Pearson) presents this site to provide information about products and services that can be purchased through this site.

This privacy notice provides an overview of our commitment to privacy and describes how we collect, protect, use and share personal information collected through this site. Please note that other Pearson websites and online products and services have their own separate privacy policies.

Collection and Use of Information

To conduct business and deliver products and services, Pearson collects and uses personal information in several ways in connection with this site, including:

Questions and Inquiries

For inquiries and questions, we collect the inquiry or question, together with name, contact details (email address, phone number and mailing address) and any other additional information voluntarily submitted to us through a Contact Us form or an email. We use this information to address the inquiry and respond to the question.

Online Store

For orders and purchases placed through our online store on this site, we collect order details, name, institution name and address (if applicable), email address, phone number, shipping and billing addresses, credit/debit card information, shipping options and any instructions. We use this information to complete transactions, fulfill orders, communicate with individuals placing orders or visiting the online store, and for related purposes.


Pearson may offer opportunities to provide feedback or participate in surveys, including surveys evaluating Pearson products, services or sites. Participation is voluntary. Pearson collects information requested in the survey questions and uses the information to evaluate, support, maintain and improve products, services or sites, develop new products and services, conduct educational research and for other purposes specified in the survey.

Contests and Drawings

Occasionally, we may sponsor a contest or drawing. Participation is optional. Pearson collects name, contact information and other information specified on the entry form for the contest or drawing to conduct the contest or drawing. Pearson may collect additional personal information from the winners of a contest or drawing in order to award the prize and for tax reporting purposes, as required by law.


If you have elected to receive email newsletters or promotional mailings and special offers but want to unsubscribe, simply email information@informit.com.

Service Announcements

On rare occasions it is necessary to send out a strictly service related announcement. For instance, if our service is temporarily suspended for maintenance we might send users an email. Generally, users may not opt-out of these communications, though they can deactivate their account information. However, these communications are not promotional in nature.

Customer Service

We communicate with users on a regular basis to provide requested services and in regard to issues relating to their account we reply via email or phone in accordance with the users' wishes when a user submits their information through our Contact Us form.

Other Collection and Use of Information

Application and System Logs

Pearson automatically collects log data to help ensure the delivery, availability and security of this site. Log data may include technical information about how a user or visitor connected to this site, such as browser type, type of computer/device, operating system, internet service provider and IP address. We use this information for support purposes and to monitor the health of the site, identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents and appropriately scale computing resources.

Web Analytics

Pearson may use third party web trend analytical services, including Google Analytics, to collect visitor information, such as IP addresses, browser types, referring pages, pages visited and time spent on a particular site. While these analytical services collect and report information on an anonymous basis, they may use cookies to gather web trend information. The information gathered may enable Pearson (but not the third party web trend services) to link information with application and system log data. Pearson uses this information for system administration and to identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents, appropriately scale computing resources and otherwise support and deliver this site and its services.

Cookies and Related Technologies

This site uses cookies and similar technologies to personalize content, measure traffic patterns, control security, track use and access of information on this site, and provide interest-based messages and advertising. Users can manage and block the use of cookies through their browser. Disabling or blocking certain cookies may limit the functionality of this site.

Do Not Track

This site currently does not respond to Do Not Track signals.


Pearson uses appropriate physical, administrative and technical security measures to protect personal information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure.


This site is not directed to children under the age of 13.


Pearson may send or direct marketing communications to users, provided that

  • Pearson will not use personal information collected or processed as a K-12 school service provider for the purpose of directed or targeted advertising.
  • Such marketing is consistent with applicable law and Pearson's legal obligations.
  • Pearson will not knowingly direct or send marketing communications to an individual who has expressed a preference not to receive marketing.
  • Where required by applicable law, express or implied consent to marketing exists and has not been withdrawn.

Pearson may provide personal information to a third party service provider on a restricted basis to provide marketing solely on behalf of Pearson or an affiliate or customer for whom Pearson is a service provider. Marketing preferences may be changed at any time.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user's personally identifiable information changes (such as your postal address or email address), we provide a way to correct or update that user's personal data provided to us. This can be done on the Account page. If a user no longer desires our service and desires to delete his or her account, please contact us at customer-service@informit.com and we will process the deletion of a user's account.


Users can always make an informed choice as to whether they should proceed with certain services offered by InformIT. If you choose to remove yourself from our mailing list(s) simply visit the following page and uncheck any communication you no longer want to receive: www.informit.com/u.aspx.

Sale of Personal Information

Pearson does not rent or sell personal information in exchange for any payment of money.

While Pearson does not sell personal information, as defined in Nevada law, Nevada residents may email a request for no sale of their personal information to NevadaDesignatedRequest@pearson.com.

Supplemental Privacy Statement for California Residents

California residents should read our Supplemental privacy statement for California residents in conjunction with this Privacy Notice. The Supplemental privacy statement for California residents explains Pearson's commitment to comply with California law and applies to personal information of California residents collected in connection with this site and the Services.

Sharing and Disclosure

Pearson may disclose personal information, as follows:

  • As required by law.
  • With the consent of the individual (or their parent, if the individual is a minor)
  • In response to a subpoena, court order or legal process, to the extent permitted or required by law
  • To protect the security and safety of individuals, data, assets and systems, consistent with applicable law
  • In connection the sale, joint venture or other transfer of some or all of its company or assets, subject to the provisions of this Privacy Notice
  • To investigate or address actual or suspected fraud or other illegal activities
  • To exercise its legal rights, including enforcement of the Terms of Use for this site or another contract
  • To affiliated Pearson companies and other companies and organizations who perform work for Pearson and are obligated to protect the privacy of personal information consistent with this Privacy Notice
  • To a school, organization, company or government agency, where Pearson collects or processes the personal information in a school setting or on behalf of such organization, company or government agency.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects Personal Information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this web site.

Requests and Contact

Please contact us about this Privacy Notice or if you have any requests or questions relating to the privacy of your personal information.

Changes to this Privacy Notice

We may revise this Privacy Notice through an updated posting. We will identify the effective date of the revision in the posting. Often, updates are made to provide greater clarity or to comply with changes in regulatory requirements. If the updates involve material changes to the collection, protection, use or disclosure of Personal Information, Pearson will provide notice of the change through a conspicuous notice on this site or other appropriate way. Continued use of the site after the effective date of a posted revision evidences acceptance. Please contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Privacy Notice or any objection to any revisions.

Last Update: November 17, 2020