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CSCE 4220: Game Programming 2

CSCE 4220 is offered by the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of North Texas in Spring semesters. The instructor is Ian Parberry. CSCE 4220 is part of a Certificate in Game Programming.

The class uses the DirectX Developer's Kit from Microsoft to develop simple 3D games for Windows using Visual C++. It follows on from CSCE 4210 and assumes a close familarity with the material covered there. Like CSCE 4210, the aim of this class is not merely to script a game. There are many systems available for free download that will let you script a game with minimal programming. The aim of this class is to allow you to get familiar with the native code needed to support game programming. To that end, this class is taught using SAGE, a Simple Academic Game Engine developed in the Laboratory for Recreational Computing at the University of North Texas, and the skeleton of a 3D version of Ned's Turkey Farm from CSCE 4210. Unlike commercial game engines, which have hundreds of thousands of lines of code, leave little for the student to do, and have hidden code, SAGE has only 35,000 lines of code, has a framework for the student to develop their own code and ideas, and is fully exposed in C++.

Screenshot.

Grades will be based on a project with several milestones along the way. You will write a complete, playable game demo in groups. A typical group will consist of two or three programmers from this class, plus one or two students from a parallel class taught concurrently in the College of Visual Arts and Design. You will be graded on the code, and the art students will be graded on the artwork. Unlike other CSCE courses, you will be graded on how well the executable runs, not on the source code.

Participation in group development of a simple game demo with other programmers and artists is a key part of this class. Since the art class and the programming class are scheduled at the same time in the same building, you will be able to meet face-to-face regularly. Both class will use an open-source version control system called Subversion so that group members can submit work from any place, at any time. Class materials, including source code and lecture notes, will be available to class members in a Subversion repository.

What's expected of you? You can see some past games from this class in 2011. You can also see a list of alumni who have studied game programming in the Laboratory for Recreational Computing at the University of North Texas.

Created February 18, 2009. Last updated May 25, 2011.

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