Hazardous Software offers services in game and simulation development as well as consulting services for game balancing, serious game design, and incentive and reputation system design.
Game and Serious Game Development
If you’re looking to make a game or serious game that features rich strategic depth or is very innovative, Hazardous Software can provide any or all services/functions of game development. Hazardous Software also provides services to improve usability and incentives to traditional business software.
Simulation can offer insights to the dynamics of an important business problem. Hazardous Software brings unique capabilities to simulation development, including meta-time analysis, game theoretic modeling of strategic players, and the ability to change a simulated policy without requiring a programmer.
How will your multiplayer game remain balanced and fun after people have learned its secrets? How do you measure learning objectives that involve teaching players strategic thinking? What tools can help players better explore the game’s strategy space? Our analytical approach, game theoretic game balancing software, and processes can provide answers and bring science to the art of game design.
Incentive and Reputation System Design
Determining how to construct reward systems, markets, game mechanics, and other online interaction systems in a way to keep people engaged and interacting in desired ways can be a challenging endeavor. With that front of mind, Hazardous Software approaches such systems as a form of soft computer security, asking the tough questions of how people would likely disrupt the intended behavior.
Strategy-Level Game Design
The fields of game theory and information theory have been developed in other fields for many decades. Their use has made major advances in other industries and fields that feature strategic interaction, such as finance and politics. Hazardous Software applies these techniques to game design. In addition to balancing a game, game theoretic and information theoretic techniques can be useful to measure how well information about game mechanics is being imparted on players and how well players are learning the desired strategies.
By designing the strategy space and empirically validating it against an automated suite of runs of the game itself, we can quickly rebalance game mechanics around changes to only one part. This process allows us to treat balance issues in a similar manner to software bugs or other design defects, where we can perform root cause analysis and correct the issue without guessing.
In addition to the game theoretic and information theoretic design, we also specialize in time manipulation which directly affects players’ risk. Time manipulation can be as simple as extra lives and repeating a level or as complicated as editing a timeline.