A friend of mine just asked me if I had any complete game design documents of released games lying around. Since I happened to know of a few, and this is not the first time I get asked this question, I figured I might as well turn the answer into a blog post.
David Jaffe recently posted the game design document of the game he is currently working on, Calling All Cars on his new blog. Thanks to Tobi for pointing this out to me.
And Al Lowe, creator of Leisure Suit Larry, has posted the game design documents for six of his games on his website. Thanks to Vlummi for sending me this.
I could’ve sworn there was a game design document for a Bubsy game flying around somewhere on the Internet, but I can’t find it.
Know of more ‘real’ game design documents? Please post a comment or send me an email, and I will update this post. Thanks!
Update: Tobi just sent me a few more links – thanks!
The original Doom bible from 1992 is online.
There is a ton of old Atari coin-op documents on Andys Arcade Web Site. These obviously refer to very old games, but it is still very interesting, especially if you are really into Pole Position and Crystal Castles.
Update: I just got some more links from Tobi (thanks again). Radical Entertainment, a very well-organized developer in Canada, is cooperated with the Computer Science department of the University of Calgary for a computer game programming course. As part of the course, they provided various game documents from their titles: game designs, high concept documents and technical game designs for titles such as Dark Angel, The Hulk, etc. They can be found here and here.