Over the years I have read a LOT of material having to do with the creation of games and/or game design, and here are the books that I think I have benefited the most from reading or wished that I read/watched when I was starting out. Hopefully for any budding designers looking for a good start will find something useful here and if you happen to buy anything from Amazon here, I get a bit back at no cost to you. At the end I also have a list of sites that I frequent that have something to do with the game industry in some fashion. Without further to do, enjoy!


General Game Industry:

GamasutraPretty good general news having to do with game dev. Lots of interesting articles if you’re willing to search around.

Effective Marketing in the Game Industry – A must read if you’re trying to get into the industry, I found the GDC articles particularly interesting.

An Indie Game Developer’s Marketing Checklist – For those of you making the jump to indie or thinking about how to get your game out there, this is some great advice!

Game Design Fundamentals:

Game Maker’s Toolkit – A great series by Mark Brown which delves into a number of topics on game design. Something I recommend all of my students watch.

Extra Credits – Generally written by James Portnow, Extra Credits talks a lot about general game design topics. Great to catch up on every once in awhile, their So You Want to Be A Game Designer video is one I often show people who are interested in game design.


General Level Design:

MapCore Professional Level Designers like to post their stuff here that isn’t under an NDA, nice to look at from time to time.

How to Reverse Engineer Level Design and Game Environment Art – For my environment artist/level designer friends, World of Level Design has posted an awesome tutorial with how to reverse engineer the sample levels provided in game engines. I know seeing other people’s work is a really good learning tool, so if you’re still learning UDK I’d suggest checking it out!


General Game Programming:



Infinite AmmoGood introduction to Unity and what it can be used for. Series of 3 videos.

uScript – If you’re familiar with how to use Blueprints/Kismet in Unreal and want to transition to Unity, you will probably fall in love with uScript as it basically recreates it.


Unreal Engine 4:

World of Level Design – Some of the best free tutorials that I see out there currently for UE4.




Networking / Professional Development:

Effective Marketing in the Game Industry – A must read if you’re trying to get into the industry, I found the GDC articles particularly interesting.

Advice for the Entry-Level Artist – Now I am in no way that great of an artist. My good friend Bryanna Lindsey however is, and wrote this with advice on getting a job in that field. Still worth reading as a designer because a lot of things overlap.

I’ve Heard Great Things About You – Building a Personal Brand

Slide Design for Developers – Once I discovered this I’ve been following the suggestions for slide design.


Other Recommended Books:


Non-Industry Game News


Older Engines

While they aren’t used as much nowadays, I can suggest these if you’re dealing with legacy codebases.

Unreal Engine 3/UDK:

Hourence’s – Some of the tutorials are dated, but  it is what I used when I was first starting out in Unreal. Also has job postings for possible design jobs.

WoLD – Series of 3 tutorials that really helped me a lot in learning the efficient way to building an area out, definitely worth checking out.

Creating a Side-Scrolling Game – When you’re ready to jump into doing something a little more in depth with UDK this is a good place to start

Flash /AS3:

Fellow Designers

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