Mike Stout considers a game mechanic "the meeting point of two design ideas: a Question the designer asks the player, and the Tools the player has for answering that question." This article explores how they interrelate with Choice Fields.Where are the key locations on this map? Where do I find my favorite weapon? The subject of this chapter is teaching players how to play your levels, and why this is important.A piece on playtesting, Mike Stout's game design series continues, Super Mario Bros level design, and a video on backtracking. Also, a map preview, content from the Architectural Imagination and Twitter, and a reminder about our November ChallenBacktracking in a game is boring - there's just no denying this fact. In this featured video, Extra Credits addresses this issue, pointing out pitfalls to avoid, and providing numerous methods of designing levels so that backtracking isn'tSuper Mario Bros is widely recognized for its levels, masterfully designed to teach players about the rules of the universe they've jumped into. In today's featured article, Abhishek Iyer effectively uses level 1-1 to demonstrate how this iQuixel and Epic Games have joined forces. As a result, Quixel's Megascans, Bridge, and Mixer will be available for free for all Unreal Engine users.Part 2 of this series on Playtesting from Pascal Luban has him diving deeper into the subject. The final part of the series gets into the logistics and organization of them, along with how to collect and communicate the resulting feedback.Reaching Perfection is a series of short articles on Level Design, written by Ray Benefield over the course of several years, covering everything from Threat Zones, to Peer Review, to Cohesion. Chapter 1 digs into the subject of First Impressions.Mike Stout believes that “a game is fundamentally a conversation between a game’s designer and the game’s players.” He sets out to share his design methodology, which he calls 'Trinity' through a series of articles, of which this is the firThis article from Josh Ge, designer of Cogmind, detailing each stage of his level design process from conception to implementation. It covers everything from high level layout, to items, NPC's, and more.The importance of playtesting cannot be overstated. Pascal Luban, veteran designer of games such as Splinter Cell and Alone in the Dark, shares his insights into how to select playtesters, and how to employ protocols to get the most out of them.Josh Bycer illustrates the differences between Environmental Design and Level Design, contending that one is about aesthetics, architecture, and sometime lore, while the other involves creating content to test players. Also includes a 14 minute videoChris, of Purposeless Rabbitholes, swears a Fu**ing lot. You've been warned. Listen in, if your ears aren't too tender, as he breaks down the fantastic level design of Dishonored 2, and points out the attributes he believes makes it specialInspired by a question about a specific element of the original Halo (Quick Camo), Hardy LeBel wrote a series of articles which demonstrate in detail his approach to game design and balance - Universal Truth Number Three.