CISC 105: Intro to Game Modding
Lecture 2: Pre-Planning and Documentation
Charles Palmer – Fall 2013
Unit: Pre-Planning
• Why we mod
• Development documents
Why we Mod
Modding brings the process of game creation to the general
public. Creating mods is a great way of exercising y...
Why we Mod
• Although Spacewar! started the industry, most modern games
can trace their roots to Wolfenstein 3D.
• A commu...
What game should I mod?
• What have you played – check your current game collection
• Community activities – look for an a...
It all begins with a dream
and some paper…
why is DOCUMENTATION the key
to success?
Documentation
• Official
o describe the relationships between publishers and game developers, and lay
out the responsibili...
Skyrim: Questing
• Quests are tasks the player can perform in Skyrim.
Various NPCs can initiate quests, allowing for
rewar...
Assignment 2: Concept Ideas
One of the first steps of the development process is
documenting your ideas. This process is u...
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in...5
×

Intro to Game Modding - Lecture 2

109

Published on

"The cost and development process for creating full-scale AAA console game has skyrocketed from tens of thousands on the original PlayStation titles to today’s $8-15 million dollar blockbusters. The necessary man-hours, equipment, and software development kits have taken the fantasy of game creation from our basements to monolithic skyscrapers. But, modding bring the process back to the general public. Creating mods is a great way of exercising your creativity and getting started in the game development industry."

This lecture is an introduction to pre-production and the early documentation process.

0 Comments
0 Likes
Statistics
Notes
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Views
Total Views
109
On Slideshare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
0
Actions
Shares
0
Downloads
1
Comments
0
Likes
0
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide
  • Why we modThe cost and development process for creating full-scale AAA console game has skyrocketed from tens of thousands on the original PlayStation titles to today’s $8-15 million dollar blockbusters. The necessary man-hours, equipment, and software development kits have made the fantasy of game creation from our basements to monolithic skyscrapers. But, modding bring the process back to the general public. Creating mods is a great way of exercising your creativity and getting started in the game development industry. Creating a game from scratch requires a sizable investment of time and resources. It’s almost impossible for any one person to complete the art, sound, coding, designing, and testing all on your own. On the other hand, modifying an existing game makes the process manageable for smaller (1-6 person) teams; giving you a jumpstart into the game making process.
  • Mods are actually a set of tools packaged together to handle level design, asset management, scripting, and delivery. Although Spacewar! started the modding industry, most modern modding activities can be traced to WOLFENSTEIN. id Software’s code base was easy to access and manipulate, so many hobbyist constructed new level packs which extended the gameplay experience. As the community grew id and other developers began separating the programming code from the media assets and levels making it easier for modders to distribute their changes.
  • What have you played – check your current game collection. Many PC come packaged with modding tools. Additionally, you’re already familiar with the game’s mechanics and should be able to adapt those to your concept.Community activities – you’ll want to make sure there is a community out there to help you along with development and to make sure there is an avenue for sharing your creation. Remember your mod needs exercise and wide open spaces to roam, and you need community feedback to help you and your mod grow and succeed.What else is out there – another reason to search online for a community, is to find out what else is out there. Before you start down the development path check out sites like www.moddb.com or those created by your chosen toolset to find out what the market is looking for in a game, or identify directions not undertaken by other modders in an effort to set yourself apart.Compatibility of toolset – here the goal is to make sure you’re using a modern toolset that will run on your operating system and an easily accessible hardware setup. There is nothing worse than to start planning a fantastic idea and be waylaid because the toolset doesn’t work under a modern OS.
  • The dream part is up to you. But unless you intend on working along in a dark basement, without any external support. You better have a plan!!!What happens if you don’t have a plan???FailureScope problemsSchedule issuesIll conceived ideas
  • Question for the class to answer…
  • The documents, and in some cases the assets, created during production generally fall into one of four categories, although many can belong to more than one category depending on their use. The four categories are official, deliverable, functional and administrative. OfficialThese documents include contracts, amendments and milestone charts.DeliverableThese documents are usually decided upon and laid out in the contract between the developer and publisher. Almost all of the documents and assets listed in the preproduction through post production stages of this paper are deliverables in some form or fashionFunctionalsuch as the game design documentAdministrativedocuments related to running the company, including executive summariesYOU’LL READ MORE ABOUT DOCUMENTS AND ASSETS IN THE READING.
  • In standard full-scale game production, assets are the elements needed (excluding programming code) to bring your game to life. Things like 3d models, textures, materials, sounds, animations, narration, and so on are created by the various artists (graphic, 3d and audio) on the development team. In modding these elements are provided by the toolset. The tools will give you access to the tiles (background/environment art), objects (weapons, character items), animations, and sounds used in the full-scale game and as long as those work for your partial or complete conversion you will be fine. But, if your project requires special assets you’ll need additional time and skills to development these items. The pre-planning phase is the perfect time to identify asset needs. You’ll need to determine if the skills are available within your team or if you need to look for outside sources to assist. Making these decisions early can be the difference between completing your project, or miserable failure.
  • The game asset pipeline is the path that all game assets follow, from conception until being loaded into the game. It can consist of a large number of different components, which are interconnected in various different ways. Some are quite independent, while others need to be developed alongside of other components. The figure shown here shows the relationship between different parts of the pipeline. The assets are first created using some tool (bottom). The tool itself is considered part of the pipeline too, although it is not a large topic from the perspective of the pipeline. The major work of the pipeline is the pipeline processing. The assets cannot be loaded directly from the creation tools, so they need to be processed first. An important aspect that might not immediately be obvious to those who have not actually been involved in the development of a game is the content management system. This stores all assets, usually both in the original form and in the exported form so it is accessible by the game engine and the asset developer for further tweaks and refinement. The content management system is of key value to allow developers to work together smoothly in a large team.
  • Intro to Game Modding - Lecture 2

    1. 1. CISC 105: Intro to Game Modding Lecture 2: Pre-Planning and Documentation Charles Palmer – Fall 2013
    2. 2. Unit: Pre-Planning • Why we mod • Development documents
    3. 3. Why we Mod Modding brings the process of game creation to the general public. Creating mods is a great way of exercising your creativity and getting started in the game development industry.
    4. 4. Why we Mod • Although Spacewar! started the industry, most modern games can trace their roots to Wolfenstein 3D. • A community grew out of id’s software when the company separated the programming code from the assets and levels Wolfenstein 3D Mods Collection Screenshots
    5. 5. What game should I mod? • What have you played – check your current game collection • Community activities – look for an active community avenue for sharing your creation • What else is out there – how are people currently modding the game, and what directions have not been undertaken • Compatibility of toolset – check the requirements of the toolset, not just those of the game
    6. 6. It all begins with a dream and some paper…
    7. 7. why is DOCUMENTATION the key to success?
    8. 8. Documentation • Official o describe the relationships between publishers and game developers, and lay out the responsibilities of a game development company • Deliverable o are those required by a publisher to be turned in during game production • Functional o communicate the elements of a game • Administrative o documents related to running the company, including executive summaries
    9. 9. Skyrim: Questing • Quests are tasks the player can perform in Skyrim. Various NPCs can initiate quests, allowing for rewards to be gained by completing them. Rewards are monetary, items, increased skill levels or open opportunities for followers or marriage proposals. • The "main quest" denotes tasks the Dragonborn is compelled to complete as part of the game's main story. Other quests can be performed for a guild or faction, while others are considered side quests, which skirt on the periphery of the game's plotlines.
    10. 10. Assignment 2: Concept Ideas One of the first steps of the development process is documenting your ideas. This process is used to solidify the key concept and outlining relevant information. To begin your design process please create 5 side quest ideas for Skyrim. Your ideas should include the primary mission objective, a brief description of key locations, types of challenges the player must overcome and any important NPCs (non-player characters) the player will in their journey. See the Moodle assignment for the complete instructions and a submission template
    1. A particular slide catching your eye?

      Clipping is a handy way to collect important slides you want to go back to later.

    ×