Final Game

In addition to creating many small games over the course of the semester, students will work in groups of 3-4 to create a larger game. This game will require a significant time commitment from all members of the group.

In order to keep this large undertaking on track, as well as to provide a simulation of what it is like to work in industry, groups will be strictly held to a series of deadlines. This means that there are no late days available for any milestones or the final version of the game.

The final game will be graded based on the product (i.e. any lacking axis drags the game down) of its performance along three axis:

A word about ambition

There is a tendency in project classes such as this to grade results based on what they aspire to be, rather than what they are. It is important to notice that the grading criteria above are specifically designed to avoid this. You are graded on the quality of the game you make, not the quality of the game you set out to make.

There will be a significant amount of time devoted to working with project groups to set goals, plans, and fall-backs so that the final game is right-sized.

The Final Game Process

  1. Elevator Pitches. (2 points) Everyone in the class will have one minute (strictly enforced) to quickly pitch a game concept. The pitch should clearly convey the core of the game and what makes it unique. Illustrations of some sort are encouraged, but complexity is obviously infeasible.
  2. Refined Pitches. (2 points) Based on voting from the class (and some instructor english), approximately half the pitches will make it to the next round. These will be re-pitched in five-minute slots by groups of two.
  3. Group Selection. Students will select several games they want to work on and several they do not. This information, along with some randomness, will result in a division of students into approximately seven project groups.
  4. The Design Document and Prototypes. (2 points) Once groups are announced, they have one week to create a specification (design document) outlining their game. The document should also break the components of the game into the essential, the useful, and the simply nice-to-have. This design document should be backed by prototypes of the core game elements. I expect roughly one prototype per group member. The design document and prototypes will be discussed by the class as a whole.
  5. The Demo. (3 points) At some point the teams will be required to muster their resources and create a demo. This demo should demonstrate a segment of near-finished gameplay, or at least hide the seams quite well (e.g. Will Wright's early demos of Spore). These demos will be played by the class and discussed.
  6. The Final Version. (8 points) The final version of the game will be shown in an epic Final Crit during the exam slot of the class. You will be scored on this version of the game.

Turn-in and Logistics

To be determined.