CDN$ 79.90
  • List Price: CDN$ 84.22
  • You Save: CDN$ 4.32 (5%)
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.
The Art of Game Design: A... has been added to your Cart
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition Paperback – Nov 6 2014

5.0 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

See all 2 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price
New from Used from
Kindle Edition
"Please retry"
"Please retry"
CDN$ 79.90
CDN$ 62.48 CDN$ 77.17

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition
  • +
  • Theory of Fun for Game Design
  • +
  • Game Design Workshop: A Playcentric Approach to Creating Innovative Games, Third Edition
Total price: CDN$ 185.57
Buy the selected items together

No Kindle device required. Download one of the Free Kindle apps to start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, and computer.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 600 pages
  • Publisher: A K Peters/CRC Press; 2 edition (Nov. 6 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1466598646
  • ISBN-13: 978-1466598645
  • Product Dimensions: 3.2 x 20.3 x 24.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 1 Kg
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #21,377 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  •  Would you like to update product info, give feedback on images, or tell us about a lower price?

  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description


"… a solid pick and a ‘must’ for any collection looking for an in-depth, fundamental textbook on how to design and work with games."
Midwest Book Review, March 2015

Game Nite’s Editors’ Choice
"… this book is considered by many to be the ‘bible’ of game design. … Much of the material has been updated … the introduction to probability … is a must read for aspiring game designers … engaging and thought provoking … a substantial book for someone looking to get serious about game design. … the cards are brilliant and a joy to keep on your desk and pull one or more out and see how they relate to your current design. … Highly recommended."
Game Nite, Issue 2, 2015

"I could not think of a better name for this work because game design isn’t a skillset, it’s a Tao: a way of looking at the world. This was perhaps the most important thing that Jesse ever taught me. It is the principle lesson of this book. … The things you will learn here are universally applicable. … Each section individually is a lens and tool in your designer’s tool belt but, taken as a whole, they form a system of thinking that will allow you to tackle problems well beyond their scope. … this book trains you to think as a designer …"
―James Portnow, Game Designer, CEO of Rainmaker Games, and Writer of Extra Credits

Praise for the First Edition:

Winner of a 2008 Game Developer Front Line Award

"This book was clearly designed, not just written, and is an entire course in how to be a game designer. … The book is also intensely practical, giving some of the best advice on how to harness your own subconscious I’ve ever read, as well as short and useful descriptions of probability theory for non-mathematicians, how to diagram interest curves, working with a team, and dozens of other topics. It is simply the best text I’ve seen that really addresses what a designer should know, and then actually gives practical advice about how to gain that knowledge through life experience. It’s a marvelous tour de force and an essential part of anyone’s game design library."
―Noah Falstein, from Game Developer Magazine

"… a good book that teaches the craft of game design in an accessible manner. … The text goes just deep enough to give you practical insight into how the key concepts might be useful without becoming wordy. … If you are looking for a competent introduction to game design, this book is a good place to start."
―Daniel Cook,, February 2009

"As indicated by its title, Jesse Schell’s The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses uses many different perspectives (the titular lenses), which each prompt their own important questions, ranging from ‘What problems does my game ask the players to solve?’ to ‘What does beauty mean within the context of my game?’ These distinct points are interwoven throughout a step-by-step analysis of the design process that begins with the designer and his or her basic idea, and builds successfully from there. As with Rules of Play, the wealth of information presented by The Art of Game Design may seem daunting at first, but Schell’s agreeable voice eases the reader into a series of invaluable angles we can (and should) use to evaluate what we play."

"Easily the most comprehensive, practical book I’ve ever seen on game design."
―Will Wright, Designer of The Sims, SimCity, and Spore

"Jesse has lovingly crafted a great resource for both aspiring developers as well as seasoned gaming industry veterans. I highly recommend this book."
―Cliff "CliffyB" Bleszinski, CEO Boss Key and Former Design Director for Epic Games

"Inspiring and practical for both veterans and beginners."
―Bob Bates, Game Designer and Co-Founder of Legend Entertainment

"Jesse Schell’s new book, The Art of Game Design, is a marvelous introduction to game design by a true master of the form. Schell is the rarest of creatures: a gifted teacher who is also a talented and successful current game designer. This book reflects Jesse’s skill at presenting information clearly and coherently, and the knowledge he has acquired as a master game designer. I have already referenced this book while preparing lectures and classes in the U.S., Germany, and New Zealand, and recommend it as an invaluable aid for anyone interested in game design. The Art of Game Design is a pitch-perfect blend of valuable knowledge and insights with an informal and compelling presentation. The sections on harnessing the creative power of the subconscious mind are particularly insightful and delightfully written. It is immediately clear that Jesse Schell not only knows the theory behind what he writes about; he has also put it to use many times and honed his techniques to perfection. A must-read for anyone interested in interactive design, and even the creative process in general."
―Noah Falstein, Chief Game Designer, Google

"The Art of Game Design describes precisely how to build a game the world will love and elegantly crank it through the realities of clients and publishers. It draws wisdom from Disneyland to Michelangelo, gradually assembling a supply of concrete game design rules and subtle psychological tricks that actually work in surprising ways. It is fertilizer for the subconscious: keep a stack of Post-it notes nearby to record all the game ideas that will sprout out of your own head while reading."
―Kyle Gabler, Game Designer and Founder of 2D Boy, Makers of World of Goo

"He embodies a tradition of reconciling diverse disciplines, extending the possibilities of each and creating new theories and opportunities for both industry and academia. Jesse is like the Einstein of entertainment."
―Mk Haley, Walt Disney Research

"Packed with Jesse’s real-world experience and humorous insight, The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses is a tool chest crossed with a kaleidoscope. Both fantastical and practical, methodical and wonder-full, this book and deck will have you looking at and dreaming up games with a fresh vision. Like a chemistry set for making mental explosions, it’s an idea(l) book guiding the design process for both new and seasoned game designers. In short, using Jesse’s book is FUN."
―Heather Kelley, Artist and Game Designer

"The Art of Game Design is one of a handful of books I continuously reference during production. Whether you’re just starting out or looking for ways to approach your design from a fresh perspective, this book is a must for your library."
―Neil Druckmann, Creative Director on The Last of Us at Naughty Dog

"On games industry desks, books tend to come and go, but they all seem to go on top of Jesse Schell’s The Art of Game Design, because that’s the one book that seems to stick around."
―Jason VandenBerghe, Creative Director, Ubisoft

"Ken Rolston, internationally celebrated game designer, recommends Jesse Schell’s The Art of Game Design both for smart people and for people who are learning how to be smart."
―Ken Rolston, Director of Design, Turbine

About the Author

Jesse Schell is distinguished professor of the practice of entertainment technology for Carnegie Mellon University's Entertainment Technology Center (ETC), a joint master's program between Carnegie Mellon's College of Fine Arts and School of Computer Science, where he teaches game design and leads several research projects. He is also CEO of Schell Games, LLC, an independent game studio in Pittsburgh. Formerly he was creative director of the Walt Disney Imagineering Virtual Reality Studio and chairman of the International Game Developers Association (IGDA). Schell worked as a designer, programmer, and manager on several projects for Disney theme parks and DisneyQuest. He received his undergraduate degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and master's degree in information networking from Carnegie Mellon. In 2004, he was named as one of the World's 100 Top Young Innovators by MIT's Technology Review.

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5 stars
5 star
4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
See all 4 customer reviews
Share your thoughts with other customers

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
One of the best books in my collection. This book is amazing. I was inspired the whole way through. Opens your mind and Forces creativity from it. Highly recommended.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
Extremely complete. Really interesting and perfect for more advanced game designer.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
best game design book out there
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Just what I needed. Well written, comprehensive.
One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
Report abuse

Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa283d300) out of 5 stars 33 reviews
51 of 56 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa2848f6c) out of 5 stars Kindle version is a PDF -- buy it in paperback instead. June 3 2015
By leelor - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This poor review is for the digital book only.

DO NOT BUY THE DIGITAL OR KINDLE VERSION. I was so disappointed to find out this book was a plain old PDF, which is a real pain in the butt to read on a screen device. You can't search, don't have fluid margins, can't increase the font size or change to night mode, etc.

Huge disappointment in that regard, but the content in the book itself is wonderful. I recommend purchasing it in old-fashioned paperback.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa284b1d4) out of 5 stars If you could only read one book about Game Design, this is the one you should read. A masterpiece. March 31 2015
By Joseph J. Cassavaugh - Published on
Format: Paperback
I've been creating games for over 20 years and this book had me questioning a lot of my assumptions that I've made about Game Design. It even changed my mind on a few tightly held beliefs. This book should be read by every potential Game Designer out there. It should be a required textbook/course for anyone studying game design at the college level. It's simply a masterpiece. Everything a Game Designer needs to think about and consider is covered in this book. Both thorough and thoroughly entertaining from cover to cover.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa284b414) out of 5 stars The foundational knowledge every game designer/developer should know Feb. 6 2015
By Ryan Bemowski - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Most definitely the best all inclusive text on game design I've ever seen. I've read the entire book from cover to cover and the amount of information is absolutely worth every penny. Depending on your goals, some areas of this book have to be taken with a grain of salt, but as a general source of knowledge and reference, it is outstanding. I would recommend this book to anyone looking to get into the field of game design/development or anyone who has dabbled but not taken any formal courses or read many definitive texts on the subject.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa284b5b8) out of 5 stars Not just for Game Designers... Filmmakers take notice! Aug. 31 2015
By Webb Pickersgill - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a filmmaker, and now lead cinematic artist for the video game industry, I wanted to get a better perspective on what "makes games tick." I quickly discovered that this game is much more valuable that it appears. As a filmmaker, many of the ideas and principles that are described can be applied to filmmaking. This book has not only got me quickly up to speed on the art of what goes into making a quality game, but it has also improved the way that I approach and perceive creating films and linear-based entertainment. I can't recommend this book enough.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa284b48c) out of 5 stars Amazing Book Aug. 3 2015
By Griffin Harris - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Awesome book about the principles of informed design, which can easily be abstracted for anything. If you think about it (and read the book), you'll realize that everything can be thought of as a game in some way or another (fun is not required), so if you understand how to make great games, you'll understand how to make great experiences of all kinds.