Game Development Reference
In-Depth Information
Game Rules and Mechanics
But how can we speak of mere play, when we know that it is precisely play and
play alone, which of all man's states and conditions is the one which makes him
whole and unfolds both sides of his nature at once?
Friedrick von Shiller
4.1 Introduction
Games for recreational use are as old as known civilization. The oldest complete
board game set thought to be the precursor of backgammon, the Royal Game
of Ur (played with seven markers and three tetrahedral dice), dates back to 3000
BC. Other such games include Wei-qi, otherwise known as Go, played in China
as far back as 2000 BC, and the Egyptian Dogs and Jackals (1800 BC).
The underlying activity in games is play . Play can be found in all human
cultures and most animal populations. At the most instinctual level, play
provides teaching and learning opportunities. For example, young children
will play to assist them in practicing life skills. This is also evident in the animal
kingdom through observing the young of cats, dogs, and other mammals;
for example, puppies play fight with each other and practice pouncing on
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