These Books Offer a Cross-Section View of Classic Game Designs

The 'Reverse Design' gets beyond design platitudes with close interrogations of classic games' inner workings.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

Derick Yu’s Spelunky from Boss Fight Books is a great read about his design process.

I read a lot of books in grad school about video games from a more theoretical perspective but not a lot on practical design.