Technical Game Development II
IMGD 4000 - D Term 2010

Final Game Projects: Click here for gallery!

Professor: Charles Rich (See home page for office hours)

Teaching Assistant: Paulo de Barros (pgb)

TA Hours: Mon 10am-11am, Thu 4pm-5pm (FL 318)

Lecture Times: Mon/Tues/Thurs/Fri, 2:00pm - 2:50pm

Lecture Location: Salisbury Labs, Room 305

Project Lab: Weds, 4:00pm - 4:50pm (FL222 - joint with IMGD 4500)

Official Course Description: IMGD Courses Page

Text Books: Mat Buckland, Programming Game AI by Example, Wordware, 2005. (Required)

Detailed Schedule: Lectures, Assignments & Project Milestones
(Schedule is subject to change!)

Lecture Notes (posted after lectures): Game Engines, Decision Trees/State Machines, Advanced Pathfinding, Steering, MiniMax Search, Scripting, Basic Physics, Shader Programming, What's New in Graphics,

Networked Game Development, Behavior Trees in Halo, Novel Input Controls, Camera Control in GoW, Game Design

Discussion Forums: myWPI (Subscription option recommended)

Homework Instructions:
  • The four homework assignments (see below) are to assess your individual progress. You are encouraged to talk about solutions with classmates, even to help each other debug code. However, cutting and pasting someone else's code or emailing your code to someone else crosses the line. (See Cheating policy below.)

  • Homework assignments are due at midnight on each of the due dates indicated in the schedule via Web Turn-In. Late homeworks will be penalized 50% of the grade and will not be accepted more than 24 hours after the original due date.

  • Upload a single executable jar file. Verify before uploading that this jar file executes in Java 1.6 assuming only the runtime libraries and 3d models distributed at the start of the class are on the classpath. (See detailed instructions for jar file preparation.)

  • Uploaded jar file should also contain all source files and javadoc (see javadoc documentation or use Eclipse command 'Project>Generate Javadoc').

  • Uploaded file should contain a 'README.txt' file in toplevel directory to briefly explain any problems or special features to the TA and instructor.

  • Final Project Milestones:
  • Fri, Mar 19: Three game proposals ("pitches") from each team due midnight via Web Turn-In. See example and blank work sheet. Instructors will return one choice in first class following week.

  • Fri, Mar 26: Detailed project plan and schedule from each team due midnight via Web Turn-In (see template in spreadsheet and pdf format). Instructors will return comments in first class following week.

      The project plan should briefly describe every art asset and technical component required for your game and provide a date in the calendar when it will be completed. Keep this plan up-to-date and make it a "living document" by adding and deleting assets and components and moving milestone dates as the project evolves.
  • Mon, Apr 12: Joint art/tech progress presentation (5 minutes), 2pm-2:50pm in FL 222 lab.

  • Tues, Apr 20: Joint art/tech first playable demonstration (5 minutes), 2pm-2:50pm in FL 222 lab.

  • Mon, Apr 26: Joint art/tech feature freeze demonstration (5 minutes), 2pm-2:50pm in FL 222 lab.

  • Mon, May 3: Joint art/tech final presentation (10 minutes), 1pm-2:50pm in FL 222 lab.

  • Grading: 28% Individual Homework Assignments

    42% Final Game Project

    The final game project will be developed in groups consisting of two or three IMGD 4000 (tech track) students and two IMGD 4500 (art track) students.

    In order to reinforce cooperation between the art and tech, 12 points of the total final course grade will be awarded equally to all team members (art and tech) based on successfully achieving each of the six joint milestones: pitches, project plan, web site, progress presentation, first playable, feature freeze (2 points per milestone). There will be no late credit for milestones.

    The remaining 30 points for tech students will be based on the quality of the technical components of the game shown in the final presentation.

    30% Exams (15% Mid-Term, 15% Final)

    The final exam will cover only material after the mid-term exam.

    Final grades will reflect the extent to which you have demonstrated understanding of the material and completed the assigned work. The base level grade will be a "B" which indicates that the basic objectives on homework, exams and project have been met. A grade of an "A" will indicate significant achievement beyond the basic objectives. A grade of a "C" will indicate not all basic objectives were met, but work was satisfactory for credit. No incomplete grades will be assigned unless there exist exceptional, extenuating circumstances. Similarly, no makeup exams will be given unless there exist exceptional, extenuating circumstances.

    Policies: Attendance
    • Regular class attendance (and active participation) is expected.
    • If you have an unavoidable need to be absent from the lecture, you do not need special permission, but you are responsible for the work covered.
    • Taking credit for work you did not do or getting unauthorized help on assigments or exams is cheating. If you are in doubt, ask the instructor first!
    • Cheating is a serious offense, punishable by an automatic NR for the course.
    • Institute policy on academic honesty will be followed in all cases.