I’ve started seeing a lot of games like this one that allow users to create their own content. It’s also clear that the age of the empowered player is here, with Little Big Planet, Minecraft, Bad Piggies, and other various construction based games burning up the charts across multiple platforms.

It’s great that it’s happening. Developers always dream of turning their development tools into a consumer experience, especially when they’re proud of the software they’re building.

But there are pitfalls to this desire, and they’re worth paying attention to. The challenge at the core of any experience is to make sure that it’s as fundamentally entertaining as a game woud be. Building a content creation engine that’s fun for users to play with is one of the most challenging tasks you can take on as a designer. It’s is also time and resources that are being taken away from the game experience with the added risk that building an outward facing tool set may end up diminishing the quality of your internal tools.

Mobile development already has a great deal of foundational work that has to be done to cover the needs and expectations of your users, your platforms, and your business model. Adding in another layer is probably more than most devs can handle, and is more than most users want.

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