Matt Snyder recently posted an interesting piece he calls How the sausage is made, in which he takes a look at his game design process.

This is the sexy life of a game designer, folks. Within that increasingly bent and beaten little notebook are my raving chicken scratches. This is how I design. I carry on a bizarre dialog with myself, writing myself questions which I answer in writing. Or, I’ll sketch numbers and ideas vertically along short passages. Snippets here, circular questions and answers there.

Eventually a game emerges from this mess. I have similar volumes for Dust Devils. Nine Worlds spanned several, and it was a messy affair. It’s a bit of personal archaeology to go back through those notebooks. On some pages I can remember just where I was when disjointed inspiration hit. For Dust Devils it was on a jetliner somewhere over Tennessee after a business trip.

Worth a read, especially if you’re a fan of Matt’s games. I’m definitely looking forward to the release of his new game, Dreamspire.