AP 4370.501
Computer Game Development

University of Texas at Dallas
School of Arts and Humanities
2003 Spring

Description

Instructor David Wallace Croft
Number AP 4370.501
Title Computer Game Development
Time Mondays 19:00 - 21:45
Location HRA 102 PC
Description

An introduction to computer game development using the Java programming language. Topics will include sprite animation, game architecture, and Web-based deployment. Students will be required to design, develop, and deploy computer games independently and as members of a team.

Prerequisite Experience with a computer programming language, Java preferred.
Text

Java 1.4 Game Programming plus material provided by instructor.

Grading

5% Compilation Exercise
5% Web Deployment Exercise
25% Individual Project #1
25% Individual Project #2
25% Team Project
14% Attendance (1% per lecture)
1% Best Team Project Award

Grades will be based upon attendance, timely completion of assignments, and project quality.

Assignments are due at the beginning of class. Late assignments will be penalized one letter grade each week that they are overdue unless excused. Students will not be permitted to participate in the Team Project until they have completed the previous assignments.

To receive attendance points, students must be present during roll call. No excuses will be permitted for the attendance grade. Students must attend a minimum of 50% of the lectures to pass the course.

The Best Team Project Award will be granted by the instructor.

Schedule

2003-01-13 01 Demonstrations and Development Setup
2003-01-20 -- Holiday
2003-01-27 02 Frameworks and Web Deployment
2003-02-03 03 Animation Engine
2003-02-10 04 Game Logic
2003-02-17 05 Individual Project Presentations & Design/Code Reviews
2003-02-24 -- Class canceled due to inclement weather
2003-03-03 06 Advanced Graphics
2003-03-10 -- Spring Break
2003-03-17 07 Data and Persistence

"How to Do Stuff Cheap", John Hattan, The Code Zone

2003-03-24 08 Individual Project Presentations & Design/Code Reviews
2003-03-31 09 Game Architecture
2003-04-07 10 Multiplayer Networking
2003-04-14 11 Java Media APIs
2003-04-21 12 Artificial Intelligence
2003-04-28 13 Team Project Presentations and Postmortems

The basic topics will be presented during the first two-thirds of the course when the first and second individual assignments come due. Knowledge of the basic topics will be sufficient to complete the individual and team assignments. Advanced topics will be presented in the final third of the course when the students are engaged in the team project. These advanced topics such as networking, artificial intelligence, performance optimization, and emerging standards will not be required knowledge in order to complete the assignments.

Assignments

Due Date
% Grade
Description
2003-01-27
5%
Compilation Exercise
  • Demonstrate the ability to make a change to the source code of one of the example games, recompile, and run the modified program from the operating system command line.
2003-02-03
5%
Web Deployment Exercise
  • Deploy one of the example games to your student web page as an applet.
  • Deploy one of the example games to your student web page as a Java Web Start application.
2003-02-17
25%
Individual Project #1
  • Design and develop a simple game using the sprite animation library provided by the instructor.
  • The design, code, graphics, and audio files must be created by the individual student.
  • Deploy both as an applet and as a Web Start application from your student web page.
  • Demonstrate game and show samples of your source code to class and discuss design choices.

The first two individual assignments should be confidence builders. Students are advised that they should keep the games simple and do the minimum required to demonstrate knowledge of the basic concepts such as sprite animation. For the first assignment, I will provide students with a framework which they will modify to create their first game.

2003-03-24
25%
Individual Project #2
  • Design and develop a simple game using the Java game engine of your choice.
    Any use of third-party Java libraries must not violate copyright law.
  • The design and code must be created by the individual student.
    Any use of third-party graphics and audio files must not violate copyright law.
  • Deploy both as an applet and as a Web Start application from your student web page.
  • Demonstrate the ability to save and load persistent data between game sessions.
  • Demonstrate game and show samples of your source code to class and discuss design choices.
2003-04-28
25% + 1%
Team Project
  • Divide into teams of three or four.
  • Organize, design, and develop as desired.
  • The design, code, graphics, and audio files must be created by the team.
  • Demonstrate game in class and discuss effectiveness of organization, design, and development decisions in post mortem.

Instructor

Name David Wallace Croft
Job Title Lecturer I
Office Hours

I am available immediately after class for student consultation. Frequently I will be available in my office at other times as well. Please do not hesitate to contact me for an appointment or simply drop by.

Office Location Jonsson 3.924
Office Phone (972) 883-2205
Home Phone (214) 731-9284
E-Mail david@croftsoft.com
Experience

David Wallace Croft earned his B.Sc. from the United States Air Force Academy in 1990 and his M.Sc. from the California Institute of Technology in 1995. In 1996 he joined an online multiplayer Java game Internet start up and has been programming in Java exclusively ever since. He formerly served as the President of the Silicon Valley Java Users Group and is the Founder of the Game Developers Java Users Group. He is currently writing a book on Java game programming.

Lecture Breaks

19:00 Roll Call and Lecture
19:55 5 Minute Break
20:00 Lecture Resumes
20:55 5 Minute Break
21:00 Lecture Resumes
21:45 Dismissal

Students are encouraged to prompt the instructor if a break is overdue.

School Closings

If the University closes, that information is immediately posted to the home page at www.utdallas.edu. The major radio and TV stations will also receive the information.

Disabilities

Disability Services facilitates the delivery of academic accommodations for students with disabilities. All new and returning students needing this service should contact Kerry Tate at 972-883-2098 before classes begin each semester, and should provide that office with a copy of their class schedule once registration is complete.


Creative Commons License

© 2003 David Wallace Croft
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution License.