Making Design Patterns Work

The game industry seems to be reluctant to use design patterns. This article explores the obstacles encountered in the application of many design pattern libraries. Rather than instructing the industry the proper use of design patterns, it aims identify the things academics can do to improve the practical value of design pattern libraries. It argues that design pattern libraries should depart from a clearly defined theoretical core that creates an informative lens on a particular aspect of game design. Patterns should prescribe generic solutions to common problems. Finally, in order to create libraries with a large expressive range, the number of patterns is of less importance than the number of interactions between the patterns.

This paper was presented at the Design Patterns Workshop at the FDG Conference in May. Grab the full pdf version here.