Yu-Chung Chen

Yu-Chung Chen is a designer working primarily on video games. He studied at Köln International School of Design and has contributed to a number of published games. Currently he works as a freelance UI designer at Keen Games.

Website: http://www.ycchen.de

Apollo Justice: Not-so-beautiful flaws

Playing the latest installment of the Ace Attorney franchise, Apollo Justice, reminds me why we started this very blog in the first place. In Chinese there’s a saying, “the more you love, the harsher your critique.” Since I’m a little fanboy to the series, I have quite a few points to bitch about.

These are all things [...]

"Having that sort of information gap is sort of like a puzzle or a riddle."

This quote from the Wired.com interview with the director of Super Mario Galaxy reactivated a thought I had a while back.
I was thinking about how reward schedules are so freuquently thought of one of the primary forces to drive player motivation and fun.
There must be something else, something that occupies the intellect more than behaviorism. The Do, [...]

FFXII Diary: License System Usability Issue

Remember how I complained about the lack of shop during a rather early phase in the game? Ironically, around the corner of where I stopped last time, there was a merchant.
Anyway. Yesterday I managed to play a bit more. Slowly the usual RPG addiction kicks in, but the whole Licence system is not knocking me off. [...]

FFXII diary. Strange pacing

5 hours into the game (yeah I know. 5 hours in almost a week is not much. Am I a casual now?)
Anyway, so far I find the pacing a little odd. After a couple of short, introductory quests in and around the first big city (can’t remember the name), I commenced a moderately long quest (long [...]

FFXII diary. Mostly rants

I started playing FFXII yesterday after everyone was raving about it (including Daniel Renkel, whose review I hope soon to comment properly after I played the game enough myself).
Anyway. So far I have the following complaints:
Typography. Dialogue texts and subtitles are in small cap… WTF?
Whoever thought this would be a good idea should be fired. If [...]

Dummes Zeug

Stern interviewt Will Wright.
Was für einen Scheiss? Ist das von Stern verfälscht oder warum gibt Wright so blöde Antworten, die falsche Bilder der Spieleentwicklung verstärken?
Game Design wird runtergespielt, da ja nur “Inhalte” zählen. “Der Editor/Baukasten ist viel Arbeit” – das hört sich nach Fleiß- und Programmierarbeit an, aber nicht nach Design-Herausforderung.
Kreativität: dass Publisher und der Markt wesentlich zur Monotonie beitragen, [...]

Soul Calibur IV

edit: the two images, both showing females butts, linked from gamefront.de are now dead.

WiiWare… details please

Gamasutra: Nintendo Confirms Plans For WiiWare Downloadable Content.
I’ve been waiting for this platform for a long time. It’s great to hear that they’re officially going to open up the platform for small developers, but too bad they haven’t announced any details on how to do so.
But what the hell, I wouldn’t be able to do [...]

Good enough is not good enough.

Let me start with an OT. Stupid editor lost my wip post only because I wanted to see if I can disable this stupid hotkey colliding with my text-editing habit (Shift-Control to select whole words). Of course, while implementing fancy Ajax hocuspocus, no-one thought about making user data sacred. How about auto-save when switching to [...]

Okami: Wii Daydreaming

When I wrote the Okami review a month ago, I actually imagined how Okami would work on Wii because gesture commands are almost a too obvious use for the Wiimote. With the rumored Wii version of Okami, I felt I might as well post up that control scheme of mine. Might be obvious, but what [...]


Game Design Reviews is a Blog used by a group of game designers from Germany to publish and discuss their thoughts on various games. The blog consists entirely of reviews of games. Each review focuses on the important game design ideas and concepts of that particular game. We also run a second, more informal Blog called Game Design Scrapbook.


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