Iterative Game Design

What Does Iterative Game Design Mean?

Iterative game design is the process by which a video game is repeatedly proposed, prototyped, play tested and reevaluated prior to working product release. Iterative game design operates on the following principle: It is unrealistic to create an ideal product on the first try.


By creating and testing working models on core criteria (such as fun), game designers are able to refine product on a gradual basis and increase market success potential.

Techopedia Explains Iterative Game Design

Iterative design is applied in many fields but has had an outsized impact in gaming. Game designers use prototyping and play testing techniques to ensure game element functionality and expand or discover game concepts for increased user enjoyment. Many game studios have professional and volunteer play testing groups that test prototypes and provide vital feedback for subsequent prototypes.

Chess – a highly complex and innovative game with an unpredictable number of opponent moves – is a perfect working example of the iterative game design process. Chess programming is practically impossible because game development depends on user moves, which are learned by the central processing unit (CPU) during gameplay. The CPU utilizes moves as they are learned, allowing iterative game move development. This is known as Artificial Intelligence (AI).


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…