Creating A Paper Prototype

Creating paper prototypes can be a very important part of game design, depending on your game it can be a quick and easy way to test out game mechanics. My team is currently working on three prototypes for different games, two of them are digital and one is a paper prototype. I have been spearheading the paper prototype and at first I was having a bit of trouble figuring out what to do. I decided to ask my team what features they wanted the prototype to show off. I was told to emphasize: resource gathering and management, the feeling of a big journey, and stealth. Once I figured out what features to focus on the process became much easier, I started working on the crafting system and creating a scenario that would allow the player to experience all the different features that the team told me to highlight. Using a grid and tokens I was able to create a movement system and item searching system as well as a stealth system. I had a meeting with one of my design professors and he gave me some really good advice about paper prototypes which was: make sure you show how the player could lose. Paper prototypes are not the best way to go for every game you may want to pitch but they can help you think about your game mechanics and flesh them out in ways that are unexpected.

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