Video Game Development

Ever wonder how video games are developed? We look at the creation of your favorite games and technologies. Read how 3DO creates their games, what game ratings mean or how game characters move so fluidly.


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Are cheat codes really cheating?

Asking whether a cheat code constitutes cheating may seem silly. "Of course it is!" you say. "It has the word 'cheat' right in it!" Perhaps, but the history and purpose of cheat codes in video games makes this question not so cut-and-dried.

Are there video games designed for moms?

With 74 percent reporting that they already play video games weekly, moms aren't exactly waiting around for game makers to craft them the perfect "mom game." But then again, what does a mom game even look like — and are there any on the market?

How are video games regulated in the U.S.?

Video games sometimes get a bad rap for corrupting the world's youth. But while some of these concerns might be overblown, keeping "Mortal Kombat" away from 5-year-olds is probably a good idea. So how do we regulate responsibly?

How do free-to-play games make money?

"Candy Crush." "Flappy Bird." "Farmville." You've likely played at least one of the many "freemium" games out there — and chances are you've also wondered how these companies make any money. Sure, ads help, but there's a bit more to it than that.

What are quick-time events?

Quick: Press X to not die! If normal gameplay in your favorite video game has ever been interrupted by a sudden, unexpected moment of desperate button-mashing, then you've probably experienced a quick-time event.

How close are we to holographic gaming?

Most gamers have dreamed of a holodeck-style environment where they can experience true immersion in gaming worlds. But how much longer do we have to wait for anything even close to that technology?

How MotionScan Technology Works

Animation just keeps getting more and more realistic, as emerging technology MotionScan demonstrates quite nicely. What's the deal with digitizing faces? And how lifelike do we really want our animated figures to be?

Does violence in movies and video games desensitize us to the real thing?

People find violent movies and video games entertaining, but over the years more people have become concerned with the notion that watching violence makes people less sensitive to it. Is there reason for concern?

How the Emotiv EPOC Works

Emotiv has a leg up on an intuitive interface for video games. For anyone who's ever fantasized about having the Force of Jedi Knighthood, the EPOC is a dream come true.

How Becoming a Video Game Designer Works

Video game designers need to have analytical knowledge as well as strong creative skills. How do you become a video game designer?

How Making a Video Game Works

Playing a video game nowadays is like entering another world, one with its own unique sights, sounds and realities. Game playing is also growing in frequency -- users spend up to four hours a day playing games. But how many players stop and think abo

How Video Game Testers Work

Many people think that being a video game tester is a dream job, but it isn't as easy as you think. Learn more about the responsibilities of a video game tester in this article.

Are surgeons using video games for training?

A study suggests surgeons who play video games might have finer surgical skills than those who never play. So should med school students throw down the anatomy book and grab a joystick?

Do violent video games lead to real violence?

Entertainment media has always made a great scapegoat for bad behavior and violence. But is it legitimate? Do violent video games really lead to real-life violence?

What are the best video games that were never made?

For serious gamers, there's nothing worse than finding out an eagerly anticipated video game has been scrapped. Is your favorite game that never was on our list?

How the ESRB Works

With sales topping $7 billion last year the focus on game ratings will only intensify. Find out how the Entertainment Software Ratings Board (ESRB) rates games how the ratings are enforced and how ratings affect game sales.

HowStuffWorks Visits Bungie Studios

Bungie Studios was nice enough to give us a tour of their digs just before the Halo 2 launch. Check out the story of the whirlwind visit and hear about our first peek at the game.

How do the characters in video games move so fluidly?

If you've ever gotten immersed in your game character's story and movements, you've probably wondered how these creations can move so fluidly. Here's your chance to find out!

How do developers get such realistic environments in video games?

How do developers get such realistic environments in video games? Learn about the game-creation process and how it's getting more advanced every year.

How 3DO Creates Video Games

3DO is one of the top video game companies in the U.S. with dozens of popular titles. Go behind the scenes and learn exactly how 3DO creates a new game!

What do video game ratings mean?

Just like film and television, the video game industry maintains a level of age-related ratings. Find out how the ESRB system works.

What are Gouraud shading and texture mapping in 3-D video games?

If you look at the description of some 3-D video games, you'll see references to Gouraud shading or texture mapping. What does that mean?