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Game Development Vs Game Design: What’s the difference



Dougles Brown


July 27, 2022



Most game developers say that the game design involves giving a game a specific theme to be differentiated from other games, while game app development is more about the design itself. In this article, you will learn about game design and video game development; you will get to know the difference between these two processes by examples mentioned to show how the two differ.

Game Design:

Game design is the process of architecting a game’s systems, while game development is the process of making a game. Game design is the theoretical framework that makes all that possible. The game design process is an iterative one, meaning that it is an ongoing process of change and improvement. The game design process is generally concerned with thinking up game mechanics. A game designer is someone who makes the rules for the game and then gives the game developer guidelines for how to make the game. As a game designer, you should build a set of design guidelines to guide your design decisions. These criteria are called “golden rules” or “design rules”. Game designers use the unity of game mechanics, aesthetics, and degrees of difficulty to produce excitement and delight in the audience.


Game Development:

Game Development is the process of creating video games, and it is the process of making a game that typically results in a video game. Game development experts are those who create video games, such as Mario, Zelda, and Skyrim.

Game development is the process of creating a video game. It typically involves the planning and design of a story world, the design of the gameplay mechanics, controls, and characters, the development of a codebase, and the testing and optimization of the game.

The critical difference between both game development and design:

The key difference between the two is that game development is creating games by assembling pieces, and in contrast, game design is producing a game by considering what’s possible and defining the optimal experience for the user.

Video game designers may also be called game prototype creators or game level designers, and their role is to create a working version of the game. This usually requires taking all the game components, such as graphics, sound, and mechanics, and figuring out how they’ll fit together. A game developer works on these components of a video game.

Steps involved in Game designing:

The game design process classifies into smaller steps.

– The first step is to figure out what the game is

– The second step is to plan,

– The third step is to design,

– The fourth step is to code,

– The fifth step is to test, and

– The sixth step is to release.

Steps involved in Game development:

The game development process is also divided into smaller steps.

– To have a complete game design process

– The second thing to have is the game concept process

– Then comes the level design process,

– The fourth step is the game balance process.

– The fifth step is to code,

– The sixth step is to test, and

– The seventh step is to release.

What makes a game development and game design process Successful?

Ultimately, the video game creator or developer hands the game over to a game tester. A game tester evaluates video games by playing them and providing feedback. A game tester must have proficiency in various areas, including game design, gameplay, the game design process, programming, algorithms, data structures and analysis, and testing. The role of the game tester is to test and validate that the video game design functions as planned. They push the game, both positively and negatively, and submit their results to the game designer, programmer, and artist so that the game may be improved.

Game Designing and Game Development Costs:

The game design costs for a game are a small number, whereas; Game development is more expensive than game designing, which is why game developers are much better off. The main cost of making a game is the time to develop it.

Every minute and every dollar spent on making a game is an opportunity cost. It’s the money you could spend making something else, like another game, writing a book, working on a side project, or giving a business idea. So you have to ask yourself: if you’re going to make a game, are you going to make something you enjoy, something that gives you a sense of accomplishment, something that makes you want to come back and play it again? If it’s the latter, then it’s not a game project.

Indeed, development costs are way more expensive than game designing, which is why a game developer can make more per hour, but I think a game designer can be just as good or better in the long run. I think it’s much easier to make games if you’re not limited by the technology and are free to try out all kinds of ideas.


The two jobs are similar, but they have different roles. You can’t have a complete game project without the other, and as Video Game Designing becomes more critical in making games, so does game development (or at least the specialization of game design within specific game contexts). The terms are synonymous, but they are different things with different purposes and techniques.

The two techniques are often combined since it can be hard to get enough game design out of one while keeping game development underway to make a game. Because of this, it is common for game design and development to be two separate processes, with different people completing each task, sometimes with an entirely different team of people to have a perfect game.


What Our Client Says It All

Adam Zurn
App Owner (Bee Present)

A year ago, I had the concept for the next killer app but no idea on how to make it a reality. Enter CMOLDS. They took the vision in my head and made BeePresent a functioning reality. In addition to creating a beautiful app, they developed all our artwork and logo which we now use on our website and for promotional items. Our account manager was always available—evenings and weekends—to solve and address any issues we had. CMOLDS was there every step of the way especially at the end when we struggled to gain App Store approval. They kept tweaking the app until we meet Apple’s strict guidelines. I would recommend CMOLDS to anyone looking to make their mobile application idea a reality.

Laura Moulder
App Owner (Who's My Mutter)

CMOLDS did a fantastic job developing my mobile application. From the beginning it was a daunting task that they took and ran with. The team was there for me through the whole process and provided realistic timelines along the way. They built the first ever facial recognition software for dogs for my mobile app Who’s My Mutter?. The uniqueness of the idea and the software only helped to enhance their vision of how to make it happen. I would highly recommend CMOLDS to anyone looking to bring their mobile application ideas to life.

Brianne Casey
App Owner (Checked In)

CMOLDS developed my idea for a mobile application (Checked In) into reality. Their developers do more than just build applications, they are active participants in creating the best user experience possible and contribute a lot of creativity to the project. The process is easy. You give the team at CMOLDS a clear understanding of what you want, and then they send back story boards and a timeline with bench marks for expected deliverables. CMOLDS is professional, creative, and they work very hard to make your application perfect.