One of my very best friends has a birthday coming up. Over the last year he has thrown himself into game design as a hobby with his eyes on the horizon of possibly pursuing it professionally down the line. My friend is incredibly practical and intelligent so I am not so much interested in a gift that is very "how to" but instead I would love a book that looks at games on a critical level and deconstructs how they craft narrative. I've seen some questions on the green suggesting guides on a practical level and one a from a couple years ago of material that was mostly excellent blogs/posts but can anyone think of good gift books that explore ludo narrative in this way?
I plan to spend 2 weeks in the west coast to one day move there. I am hoping to travel to various cities and explore video game related places. I want to network and talk to people from all video game walks of life, from indie developers to touring game studios. What places should I visit? What studios does tours? I was planning to tour around late June, but should I center it around PAX Prime?
What are some good books by or about videogame designers? [more inside]
What's the best path to take for a high school student aspiring to get into Game Design in college? Any advice? [more inside]
Why, in video games, am I moving through an endless variety of environments but killing the same enemies over and over? [more inside]