Youtuber, Indie Dev & general all round industry veteran, Tim Ruswick*, discusses what makes a good strategy game and includes interesting methods to get the best out of time spent making a game.

To make a good strategy game, you’ll need depth, complexity and variance. Keep reading below to find out more about these 3 key elements.

(*Tim Ruswick is a successful YouTuber and indie dev, who's created more than 30 games in the last 5 years (wow!), and joined as our marketing monster).

Listen to the whole chat here:

Our 'AHA' moments

  • No Rick!? 😲
  • Making a strategy game requires strategy…
  • Complexity gives players lots of choice
  • Including variance keeps the game varied and adds replay value

Depth In A Strategy Game (8:08 - 10:17)

The first thing to consider in a strategy game is depth. Such as the number of viable options at any one time, this could include interesting decisions, fun gameplay, immersive worlds, character customisation and skill trees.

Complexity In A Strategy Game (10:17 - 13:11)

The second thing to consider is complexity. If your game is a turn based strategy game (like the one you can create in our new course - you could add complexity by giving all units the ability to move and attack. This increases the complexity of the game and the number of options available to players.

An example of this is XCOM. During battle you are presented with a number of options, including shooting, special abilities, melee attacks, throwing grenades or waiting for the next turn.

Variance In A Strategy Game (18:07 - 22:11)

Variance is how different things are over time, and how things change with progression.

This can be advancing in a level, or picking up a weapon like a sniper rifle and the game forcing you to view the world through the scope of the weapon.

Or it could be a level up system which unlocks different rewards, stat improvements with XP gained or a game where each new playthrough is different because the world is procedurally generated.

Variance is important, even if you have depth and complexity, you still need moments that will keep the game interesting and replayable.

Variance is important

We hope these tips help you when making your strategy game!

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Until next time, happy dev'ing!