How to Build a Game #78 Beat the Idea Block

The thought of Idea Block kind of freaks me out. But I know there are designers out there that experience it so I wanted to write a post about it. The only way I can think to help is to write down what I think I would do in case of idea block and hope that gets anyone out there with idea block on the path to idea generation.

I would start by playing published games I had never played before. Particularly games that had mechanics or themes that I have not used in any of my previous games. Beyond that, I would pull out my notebooks of ideas and see what I wrote down months/years ago. Maybe I could read over my notes while I was playing those games and try to apply the different mechanics of themes to my older ideas that never made it past the idea phase.

After that, I would revisit some of my inspirational resources. I’d YouTube some video games and see if that got any of my creative juices flowing. I would also chat with my designer friends and tell them I had idea block. We could use the time to throw around ideas, or listen to them throw around ideas.

While the idea of getting idea block freaks me out, I don’t think it would be difficult to get back on the saddle. At the very least, I have a plan to help myself should the day come.

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If you have any comments or questions, leave a comment here or email Chris at

If you have made it this far, would you like to go a little farther? We have a regular Google hangout with other designers. We talk about the games we are working on and share helpful tips and ideas on how to make designing our game easier. We meetup every other Saturday. Either comment here or tweet me or email me and I will add you to the list and send you a link to the Google hangout.

4 thoughts on “How to Build a Game #78 Beat the Idea Block

  1. Another great article! I’ve recently blogged on exactly the same thing, would it be crass to leave a link?

    The idea of watching some YouTube vids on video games isn’t something I’ve ever considered, will have to give that a go next time I hit the wall!

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