Games II: Implementation and Project Management
Cross-listed in Computer Science and Interactive Multimedia
Grading Policy, Spring 2010
Tuesdays 12:30 - 4:20 PM
Instructor: Ursula Wolz
Office Hours: by appointment
Course Resources: including assignments and meeting agenda will be available at http://www.tcnj.edu/~wolz/SP10/GamesIISP10/. There is no required text, however readings will be assigned in books on reserve in the libary, and from the internet. During the second session we will define a set of reference materials for software development. You are responsible for getting access to these materials. If you are unable to do so, please report them to Prof. Wolz as soon as possible via email.
Course description: This is a multidisciplinary course that invites students from a variety of disciplines to participate in the implementation of a robust demonstration video game. Programmers, software engineers, digital artists, sound specialists and musicians will work collaboratively to create one or more games (designed in Games I). This semester, students will also collaborate with computer science students at Villanova working under the direction of Prof. Tom Way and students in Prof. Pearson's TCNJ Interactive Storytelling class, to implement a handheld game, a sprite editor and a storytelling engine. This class will take primary responsibliity for developing the game, and act as clients and testers of the sprite editor and storytelling engine. Each student in this class will define a personal role in the process so that no two students will complete the same set of course requirements. All students, however, will participate in learning about and implementing a project management structure to plan and execute the sequence of activities that must take place to complete the game. Students will also address issues of gender and racial equity in the games industry as well as social, ethical and health concerns.
Course Structure: The course meets Tuesdays from 12:30 to 4:20 PM. We will use the first 1/2 hour for getting organized and reviewing deliverables from the previous week. Approximately 2 hours will be used for "seminar", formal tutorials/presentations, and workshop time. The last 1/2 hour will be used to review the week's assignment, submit individual task assignments and arrange outside meetings. You will be expected to significant design and implementation work outside of the class time. Estimate that you will need approximately 4 - 6 hours per week to contribute to the game itself, and another 2 – 4 hours per week to meet with individuals and subgroups outside of class for planning and coordination of activities. Meetings may take place face-to-face, via chat, Skype, text or phone. Outside of class students are expected to:
Computer Access: We will be working primarily in a Macintosh environment, available in Holman 370. If you are unable to gain sufficient access to the lab, please contact Dr. Wolz immediately.
Grading: is base on 100 points as follows:
Deliverables and the Repository: Each of you will define individual deliverables from week to week that culminate in presentations at four milestones. Deliverables may consist of (a) code that implements the game, (b) enhancing, modifying the story, and implementing as "logic", (c) developing artwork (e.g. sprites, backgrounds and other objects), (d) maintaining records, managing the repository, developing public relations and technical documentation and organizing the usability study. Your grade at the milestones will reflect both the quality of the deliverables (75% of the grade) and the timely report that is filed (25% of the grade.) Reports are filed one week after the milestone. A wiki will be maintained to provide a repository and organizational structure for assembling media assets and code components for the game. Each student is responsible for getting an account on the server (during the first class) and using it effectively. The wiki automatically timestamps all interactions and provides a record of student activity. You will also be given read access to the Games I, Fall 09 wiki.
Deliverables Accountabiilty Sheets: Each week each student is responsible for processing two Accountability Reports, one for the previous week and one for the coming week. A sheet consists of two parts. 1) an action item list for the coming week and a resource dependencies list that is filled out before leaving class. Students may not leave class until an instructor has signed the sheet for the coming week. 2) a report on deliverables fromthe previous week that is filled out before coming to class. During the first 1⁄2 hour of class students review the deliverables report with an instructor, have it signed and hand it in. Late sheets will not be accepted (come to class on time.) The instructor keeps completed forms. These forms provide a week-by-week qualitative assessment of individual student progress. Instructors annotate the sheets. You will be asked to enter action items and job completion status on the class wiki each week as well.
Collaborative Milestones: there are four milestones for the entire class (grading rubrics for each will be distributed):