Thursday, October 27, 2016

Homework 10: Interfaces

Homework 10: Interfaces
Assigned: Thur. October 27
Due: Thur. November 15 (new date)
Late homeworks will not be accepted.

Read Chapter 15 of Book of Lenses 2nd Edition, or the appropriate chapter in the 1st edition.

Answer the following questions in your blog:

1) list ten examples of interfaces between people and the real world.
2) Give an example of a good interface between player and game. Explain why it is a good interface
3) Give an example of a poor interface between player and game. Explain why it is a poor interface

When answering 2) and 3) above, refer to the book chapter to justify why the interface is either good or bad. What principles of interface design is the game using or not using?

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Homework 9: balance

Homework 9: balance
Assigned: Oct. 20, 2016
Due: Oct. 27, 2016

For this homework, please read chapter 13 (Game Mechanics Must Be in Balance, book 2nd edition) (about 35 pages). The chapter describes 11 aspects of balance that often come into play and must be thought about in games to provide a good experience. Address each of these aspects as it relates to your own team game. Homeworks are individual. If a particular item does not apply, say so. Each item must be addressed, and the answer should use complete paragraphs. We will not accept telegraphic style.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Homework 8, from Blender to Unreal to Git

Homework 8, from Blender to Unreal to Git
Assigned: Thur. Oct. 13, 2016
Due: Thur. Oct. 20, 2016

In this homework, each of you will create one (or more) object(s) in Blender that will be a part of your team's game. You have total freedom in the creation of this object. In your blog, describe the function/role this object(s) plays in the game and how it will be used. Include at least two pictures of your object: one when the object is in Blender, and a second image of your object in Unreal.  Import your object into your scene in Unreal, "push" your Unreal project to your git repository, and finally, provide a picture with all your team objects in your scene in Unreal.

In summary:

1) create one or more objects in Blender (15 pts)
2) Import these into Unreal  (15 pts)
3) Describe how these objects are used in your game (use your blog). The description should be in English prose, with full sentences/paragraphs. (20 pts)
4) Include two pictures of your objects (one in Blender, one in Unreal) (15 pts)
5) Upload your Unreal project to Git (git push or use the Desktop interface) (20 pts)
6) Once all the team members have uploaded their project, "pull" your project from git, and take a picture of all the objects within your scene.  (15 pts)

Each component has equal importance in the scoring of this assignment

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Homework 7: populate git repository

Homework 7: populate git repository
Assigned: Thur. Oct. 6
Due: Thur. Oct. 20

Over the next two weeks, each member of each team will have created assets using one or more programs (photoshop, Blender, Unreal, Audacity, etc. ). Import your personal assets into Unreal (via one or more maps/scenes), and update the team git repository. At the end, you should all have the identical Unreal Project on your laptops.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Homework 6, Git repository

Homework 6
Assigned: Oct. 4, 2016
Due: Oct 6, 2016

Git is a source control framework that allows a team to share game assets. We will discuss source control as it relates to Unreal on Thursday, Oct. 6, 2016. To prepare, please do the following:

1) Create an individual Git account. at .
2) Create a team repository.
3) Add team members as collaborators on this account.
4) Post your account name and link to your repository on your blog.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Homework 5, Game Assets

Homework 5, Game Assets
Assigned: Thur. Sept. 29, 2016
Due: Thur. Oct. 9, 2016

With the pitch document written and presented, it is time to start developing the game. To this end, each team member will choose to develop a small component of the game. Of course, task assignments will be the results of a team discussion. These tasks are left up to the team member. Examples of valid tasks are the building of a game asset (HUD, object, arg, music, game mechanic). The assets need not be implemented in Unreal, but they must be implemented in some program (Photoshop, Blender, Unreal, or yet another.) Please describe in writing what you have done in your blog, and how it relates to the team game. Provide pictures and/or video to support the description.

You will be graded on 1) the implementation, 2) the description, and 3) the images/videos that you  provide.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Homerwork 4: Pitch Document

Homework 4: Pitch Document
Assigned: Sun Sept. 18, 2016
Due: Sunday, Sept. 25, 2016

Please create your pitch document, and email it to us by Sunday night, September 25th. Read the book section, chapter 2 on Experience, which is crucial to game design.

The guidelines for the pitch document are:

1. Cover page: Title of project and group members.
2. Executive summary (1/2 page max): Briefly describe the game in two paragraphs.
3. Game Description (7 page max): Describe the game in greater detail. (Label and include
    a. Overview: (1/2 page max) Big picture of the game, main quest, main players, etc.
    b. The Quest: (1/2 page max) Describe the quest in further detail, obstacles, rewards, and the final objective. Is the game broken into levels or intermediate stages of gameplay?
    c. Main Character: (1/2 page max) Describe main character, powers, change with gameplay, firstperson, thirdperson?
    d .Sketch of Main Character: (1 page max) A sketch of the Main Character.
    e. Opponents: (1/2 page max) Describe main opponents, intelligence, attack, hide, or evade?
    f. Sketch of Opponents: (1 page max) A sketch of the primary Opponents.
    g. Environment: (1/2 page max) Description of the environment in which the game is played, outer space, urban, futuristic, etc.
    h. Sketch of World: (1 page max) A sketch of the level in which the game is played.
    i. Menus: (1/2 page max) initial menu screen and any options include a sketch.
    j. Controls: (1/2 page max) Describe interface (up, down, run, shoot, fast, slow).
    k. Sounds: (1/2 page max) Describe background sounds: music, footsteps, Vehicle, Door, etc. 

4. Summary (1/2 page max): This is the final sales pitch. Include a brief summary that would make someone want to buy your game!

Monday, September 12, 2016

Homework 3: Unreal first steps

Homework 3: Unreal First Steps
Assigned: Tuesday, Sept. 13,
Due: Tuesday, Sept. 20

Create a basic scene with Unreal starting with a blank slate (you may use the Starter Content, if you wish.) Add at least one light, a camera, and a few objects. Beyond that, use your creativity. The homework is individual. Describe what you did in your blog, including snapshots of what you did.

You are required to create a standalone executable of your project and upload it to dropbox, google drive or other repository and provide the link in your blog for retrieval by one of us. The executable should be for windows 64 bit.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Homework 2, Due Sept. 15, 2016

Homework 2: Team Meeting
Assigned: Sept. 8, 2016
Due: Sept 15, 2016

Have a meeting (face to face or electronic) with your team, start planning your game (experience, storyline, characters, etc.) and report on this meeting on your blog.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Homework 1, Aug. 30, 2016

Homework 1: First Blog Entry
Assigned: Tue. Aug. 30, 2016
Due: Tue. Sept. 1, 2016

Your first assignment is:
  • Create a Blog at
    • email the name of the blog to the and
      • Put gd2015 in the subject of the email so that I may easily find it
    • create a video with voiceover (your own voice) describing the content of the video (using for example Open Broadcaster Software)
    • upload this video to YouTube and copy the link into your blog
      • alternatively, embed the video directly into the blog.
    • Provide a description of this video in writing in the blog. 
    • Create a second blog entry that contains one or more images created by you. Include descriptions of each image in the blog entry. 
    • Find two games that you particularly like, provide links to them in the blog and state what you like about them.
  • Install the following software onto your computer: 
    • Unreal version 4.12.5
    • Gimp (or another software to manipulate images. Might be used for format conversion and texture manipulation)
    • Audacity (for sound editing and format conversions. Alternatives are also accepted.)
    • Blender version 4.77 (in case modeling is required)
  • You can use information at the following two links to help you out: 

  • Blog entry 1, maximum grade: 40
  • Blog entry 2, maximum grade: 40
  • Description of the two games: maximum grade: 20
  • Software installation: no grade. 
Bring your computer to class so you that we can work on Blender together.