Dev Blog Week 7 – Assignment 1 Post Mortem

This post mortem will reflect on the development of the Boulder’s Revenge. In the post mortem a few key elements of both the design and the development will be analysed.

Planning

Planning is an important part of the project in order to be able to deliver and finish the project on time. The last week of the project was extremely busy with more than 50% of the work being done, usually, there is more work done in the last week of a project, trying to finalise the project to be in a deliverable state. However, with this project, a large portion of the project was done in the final week of the delivery due to the lack of planning.

There are a number of reasons for the lack of planning which can be identified as follows.

  • No schedule or milestones –  There wasn’t a schedule or milestones set throughout the project, this meant that there was no indicator throughout the project about how I was progressing throughout the project.
  • Tasks done or completed –  The progress of ongoing tasks and completed tasks were not monitored properly, this meant again there was no indicator of how many tasks were left to complete at the end of each week.
  • Light Documentation – Even though I had documentation, the documentation that I had was quite light and wasn’t in enough detail for proper planning. The documentation described the function and how each section of the game was supposed to work, However, did not go into enough depth as to how to achieve that level of functionality.

There are a number of actions that can be taken to improve on the planning aspect of the project. These future actions are as follows:

  • Setting Clear Milestones – Setting clear milestones is a good way to check the progress of the project, it also encourages the developer to put more effort into the project to meet those milestone deadlines. A schedule is another way for the player to track their progress and know what they need to do each week. This can be documented through Gantt Charts, which help with scheduling and being able to write down what needs to be worked on week to week.

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  • Tracking Tasks – Setting up a list of tasks to go each week with the scheduling is a manageable way to check the tasks that need to be done in that week. This can be done through HackNPlan which is a resource for game developers that help track milestones and tasks that are in progress or have been completed. This resource allows the developer to create milestones and tasks for that milestone, they are then able to set an estimated amount of time for that task.

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  • Further Documentation and Research – The only solution for incomplete documentation is to continue to expand the documentation with the method mentioned in the previous blog, by continually asking ‘how’ until all avenues have been exhausted. If I encounter a section of the documentation that I do not know how to complete then I should do some research until I know how to achieve the function.

Assets and Modelling

Character assets and 3D models are an important of any 3D game project, having a consistent style or models for your game enhance it the experience of the game greatly. As a programmer, my 3D modeling and any skills that are art related are lacking, this caused quite a few problems in when creating the game as trying to find models and assets to populate the game were quite difficult.

Finding and or editing these assets for the game were quite difficult and it can be attributed for few reasons:

  • Lack of knowledge in 3D modeling and animation –  As a programmer, I am able to code my way out of nearly every situation, but when it comes to 3D modeling and animations it becomes quite difficult. The lack of knowledge in how 3D models animation works means that I can only use out of the box models or animations.
  • Sources – There are numerous sources for game assets and models however my lack of knowledge limits my options for sources. The only sources that I know for game assets are the Unity Asset store and therefore mostly limited to the Unity Standard Assets.

There are a number of solutions to this dilemma assisting with the sourcing of assets and they are:

  • Learning basic 3D modeling and animating – Learning something new is all part of the creative process and 3D models and animations is something that is an important aspect of games development. There are multiple sources available to teach myself 3D modeling and animating:
    • Game Asset Creation in Unity 5 – 1. Modeling – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TXwaiTOlK9g
    • How to create a 3D model for video games – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ptjEuJ8LbS0
    • Udemy: Creating Simple 3D Models in Blender for Unity – https://www.udemy.com/creating-simple-3d-models-in-blender-for-unity/
  • Finding Other Sources – Another way to get around that is by finding other sources for 3D models for games such as:
    • Make Human – http://www.makehuman.org/
    • Open Game Art – https://opengameart.org/content/game-ready-3d-models
    • Turbosquid – https://www.turbosquid.com/Search/3D-Models/free
    • CGTrader – https://www.cgtrader.com/free-3d-models

 

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