topical media & game development

talk show tell print

print / present / tag(s)

part v. game development

man is a playful animal

johan huizinga



reading directives

In the final two chapters of this book, we will look at game development, with an emphasis on both implementation and design. In particular, we will discuss the motivation for using game technology to develop serious application, which in summary may be characterized as the requirement to allow for immersion, understood as experiental involvement of the user.

Essential sections are 11.2, in which we describe the development of VU-Life using the Source Half-Life 2 SDK, and 12.1, which presents a semi-formal game model, that may serve as a reference for designing more complex games.


Game development is essentially teamwork, and generally involves both artists as well as more technical developers. In addition, with to the commercial impact of games, many factors influence the design and implementation of games. As a consequence, we may look at game development from (among others) the following perspectives:

perspectives -- game development

  • artistic -- plot, narrative, style
  • technical -- choice of game engine (SDK)
  • sociological -- sharing within game communities
  • tool selection -- supporting the workflow
  • commercial -- success factors
  • management -- teamwork
It is only very recently that game development became a topic with academic credibility. From an academic perspective, game technology may be regarded as enabling technology, that is related to many areas of computer science, including graphics, computer organization, distributed systems and software engineering.

essay topics

In accordance with the variety of perspectives, an essay may focus on the commercial aspects of games, or, for example, software engineering aspects, or the design of community games. Consider writing an essay about:

  • the success of games -- criteria for comparison
  • game engine architecture -- options for extensibility
  • community games -- models for sharing information
When writing, make sure that you provide enough information about the actual history of games. And, remind that games require real-time performance, whereas the movies that may have triggered your phantasy may get away with effects that require many hours of processing. Afterall, games are about interaction!



the artwork

  1. manuscript -- used as a desktop by my favorite student.
  2. signs -- abstract symbols,  [Signs], p. 214, 215.
  3. photographs -- Jaap Stahlie, commissioned work.

[] readme course(s) preface I 1 2 II 3 4 III 5 6 7 IV 8 9 10 V 11 12 afterthought(s) appendix reference(s) example(s) resource(s) _

(C) Æliens 04/09/2009

You may not copy or print any of this material without explicit permission of the author or the publisher. In case of other copyright issues, contact the author.