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SimCity creator Will Wright is teaching a game design course

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SimCity and Sims creator Will Wright has taken a brief detour from making games to teach a 20-part game design course for MasterClass, a company that sells video classes taught by the likes of author Margaret Atwood and musician Carlos Santana.

Wright’s been designing games for over 30 years and with SimCity inspired countless city builders, and even seminal games like Civilization. It spawned a series of simulations, too, leading up to EA’s DLC money-maker, The Sims. So, yeah, he probably has a few things he could teach people. 

“It’s not so much about getting started as a game designer or about programming or the technical aspects, it’s more about the design aspects,” Wright told Variety. “How do you approach developing a game from a designer’s perspective? How do you integrate systems? How do you gauge a person’s interactive experiences?”

The course isn’t for people looking for advice on how to break into the industry, and Wright hopes that game developers will also take the course. There are game design critiques and practical stuff exploring different systems.

“I think it’s pretty broad, but I think it’s more focused toward people who are seriously into this,” he told VentureBeat. “These might be people that learn a bit of coding. They’ve made a few little games or whatever. They’re starting to understand the mechanical aspects of it. Now there’s this wide open landscape in front of them. What do I do? How do I think about this? For those people that are ready for that step, this is going to give them a way to think about the whole field.”

Wright’s also working on a new game, Proxi, which sounds intriguing but has unfortunately only been announced for mobile, so far. It’s a sim where you create a world out of memories collected by your personal AI, the titular Proxi. It’s still a year away. 

Fraser is the UK online editor and has actually met The Internet in person. With over a decade of experience, he's been around the block a few times, serving as a freelancer, news editor and prolific reviewer. Strategy games have been a 30-year-long obsession, from tiny RTSs to sprawling political sims, and he never turns down the chance to rave about Total War or Crusader Kings. He's also been known to set up shop in the latest MMO and likes to wind down with an endlessly deep, systemic RPG. These days, when he's not editing, he can usually be found writing features that are 1,000 words too long. He thinks labradoodles are the best dogs but doesn't get to write about them much.