Generative Design Games Promotes Non-Linear Design Workflows

A major advantage of using generative design games is their natural affordance of flexible, non-linear design workflows. Conventional design programs privilege a linear workflow: the designer often needs to follow a prescribed process to develop and iterate design schemes. A typical example is Autodesk Revit. It prescribes a workflow beginning with massing and floor layouts. Users of Revit often need to “misuse” it to accommodate alternate thought processes.

Generative design games, on the other hand, allow users to conveniently customize the design workflow. One can begin design explorations with fixed window dimensions or stylistic wall paneling patterns. In real-world practice, development projects delivered through design-build contracts may require architects to prioritize the use of certain building components/products due to budget restrictions or construction needs. There are also occasions when architects (or collaborating artists) may prioritize stylistic details to introduce marketable experiences in design. Generative design games would be relevant in these design scenarios.

I created a YouTube playlist that showcases the three alternate workflows the WatertownFacadeGame enables. The generative game is a design exploration tool for designing a boutique hotel facade in downtown Watertown, SD. It aids architects to seek optimal solutions by reconciling the spatial demands of hotel development and the urban design concerns for an infill project in historic downtown.

  • Common Workflow

Design Work Flows-20

  • Window Openings First Workflow

Design Work Flows-21

  • Facade Paneling First Workflow

Design Work Flows-22

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