Welcome to the Platypus Wiki!


What is it..?

The Platypus 'Resource Systems in Games Wiki' is a Wiki dedicated to explore resource systems in games. It is part of the Master's Thesis "An Analytical Approach to Resource Systems in Games" by Peter Hald Rasmussen and TrĂ³ndur Justinussen of the IT University of Copenhagen.

In the thesis, we ask whether patterns exist between different resource types in different games, and whether they can be mapped and compared across different game genres. Not much research have been focused on these very important game elements. In order to answer this question, we have located and analyzed all the resource systems of 20 very different games by categorizing them into Archetypes. This is done by asking questions about the resource's behavior through a list of properties. These properties contain different specifications which answers the questions the properties ask. All these archetypes, properties and specification is collected into a single model, through which resource systems can be analyzed.

What does it do..?

The purpose of this wiki is to:
  • Aid the ideation process for creating novel resource systems for game designers.
  • Create a shared language for discussing resources, by establishing familiar concepts, patterns and vocabulary to describe resources and resource interaction.

What's in it..?

A collection of archetypes, properties and specifications created by analyzing the resource systems of 20 digital games. Out of all this, an analysis model has been created, around which the Wiki is centered.

How do I read it..?

Using the Navigation tool, the Archetypes, Games, Misc., Properties and Specification tabs brings you around the wiki.
  • In the Games tab, there is an overview where all the games are listed. Within each game is an analysis of its resources using the model.
  • In the Properties tab, there is an overview where all the properties are listed. Here you can learn what they are and which specification they contain.
  • In the Specifications tab, there is an overview where all the specifications are listed. Here you can learn about what they do and in which games they are present.
  • In the Archetypes tab, there is an overview of the different Archetypes into which the resources were categorized. Here you can learn what constitutes each archetype.

What's the point..?

  • By reading the analysis of games, you can see how each resource is constructed through a combination of different specifications. You can then use the model to try and piece different resource specification combinations together, and form never before seen resources. This can in turn inspire new resources and game mechanics.
  • By reading the list of specifications and properties, you can be inspired to create specifications and properties that are not on the list, allowing for even more combinations of resource ideas to be created.
  • By navigating around the wiki, a lot of words and concepts are presented which you can use to describe the intricate mechanisms and patterns of resources. This is an effort to starting the creating of a shared language for discussing resources.

What are resources..?

Resources are game elements used to fund actions in games. Easily recognizable resource systems include Mana in Role-Playing Games, Money in Strategy Games, Ammunition in First-Person Shooters etc. These are all resource systems of different kinds, but share many traits. Our definition of resources are as follows:

"Resources are quantifiable game elements controlled by a player.That player decides how or when to use them.Resources are valuable because of their scarcity and can be consumed to fund actions in order to achieve a goal."

The Model:

The Property Model is a list of all Properties and Specifications. The first row indicates where in the resource life cycle the specifications are found. The second row are contains all the properties. The rest of the model are all the different specifications.
Gain
Store
Spend
Non-Spatial
Generator
Focus Loci
Storage cap
Entity
Conversion
Options
Produces
Outcome
Consequence
Regenerates
Enemy (Kill)
Unit
Limited
Virtual
Trade
Multi
Object
Positive
Diminish
Non-Temporal
Being (Action)
Avatar
Unlimited
Object
Craft
Single
Effect
Negative
Constant
RM
Pick-Up
God's Finger

Abstract
Exchange
Degenerates
Abstract

Invest
Reward
Recharger



Consumable
Lost
Unit

Vital
Starting
Lim. Vendor








Trade
Vendor








Exchange
Mine








Consumable
Supplier








Craft









Ally









The Archetype Table:

This is a table of all the archetypes, and which combination of specifications they contain. A unique combination of specifications constitute the archetype.
  • Not all of the archetype's properties are defined, and the blank spaces can have any specification.
  • The key specifications of each archetype are not exclusive - the archetype can contain several other specification within each property.
  • Specifications marked '%' means that they never contain this specification.


Gain
Store
Spend

Non-Spatial
Generator
Focus Loci
Storage cap
Entity
Conversion
Options
Produces
Outcome
Consequence
Action
Non-Temporal + Starting
%Generator

Limited
Virtual

Single

Positive

Ammo

Generator
%Unit
Limited



Effect
Negative
Diminish
Currency



Unlimited
Virtual

Multi

Positive
Constant
Health
Starting


Limited
Virtual
- None -
Lost


Vital
Mana
Regenerates


Limited
Virtual
%Trade

Effect

Diminish
Material

Generator
Avatar

Abstract
Trade
Multi
%Virtual
Positive
Constant
Physical

Generator


%Virtual

Single
Object
Positive
Constant
Potion

Generator
Avatar
Limited

Conversion
%Multi

Positive
Diminish
Rage

Being (Action)
Avatar
Limited
Virtual
- None -

Effect

Diminish
Skill Point
Reward


Unlimited
Virtual
- None -
Multi
Effect
Positive
Constant
Rune
Craft



Abstract
Craft
Single
Effect
Positive
Constant

How can I contribute..?

This wiki is meant to be powered by the community, allowing new ideas to flow and expand on the model. The model can be expanded by adding new properties, specifications, archetypes and game analyses, creating a stronger, more inclusive model.

If you have any feedback or questions for the authors, or are you interested in adding information to this wiki, we would really appreciate your feedback! Feel free to contact pras@itu.dk or tjus@itu.dk

Errors and limitations

The model is by no means meant to be comprehensive of all games, only the 20 games in the analysis - with the prospect of expansion in the future.
It is a large wiki, and there have been many iterations of the model, so some of the data might be outdated, lackluster or flat out wrong. Please bear with us.

Thank you for reading!