Self Aware Games has posted an insightful article about the game design process:
Building a game is essentially a giant resource management game in itself. You’re creating something – you’ve usually got a deadline and a budget. Maybe a target audience, and a platform you’re working on. As a lead designer, you have a handful of really important goals:
1. You need to figure out what the game *is*.
2. You need to get people psyched about making it.
3. You need to make sure you can build it with the resources you have available.
– Admin @ Self Aware Games
These principles could form the basis of a game — something like The Movies, but set in a game design studio, where the goal of the game is to create a successful game.