Computer Games Development (Winter 2019/20)

The course gives a complex overview of computer games development. It covers programming (middleware for games, scripting languages, etc.), game design, project management, game marketing and also briefly touches basics of computer graphics for non-programmers. This is a joint course for students from multiple faculties and universities. In the course, the students create their own small game in small teams of 3-4 students. Every team is given own exclusive mentor who is a professional game developer. Lectures are led by game development professionals and a mini game development conference is organized as part of the course. The lectures will likely be given in English.

Main parts of the course are led by Otakar Nieder (Bohemia Interactive Simulations)Martin Klíma (Warhorse Studios)Jakub Gemrot, Lukáš Kolek and Cyril Brom (CUNI).

The course is opened for MFF UK students as well as limited number of students from FF UK, ČVUT, FAMU, ZČU Plzeň and VŠUP Praha.

This year, lectures will be given in blocks. Every block will run at MFF UK (Malostranské nám. 25) in the room S3 every Friday since 2019/Oct/04 according to the Schedule below. The blocks start typically at 9:00 AM and end typically between 11:00 AM and late evening (see Schedule below).


ORGANIZATION

  1. First of all, be sure to have fun!
  2. The Fun starts at 2019/Oct/04 at 9:00 AM, MFF UK (Malostanské nám. 25) room S3. Mark this in your calendar. YOU MUST ATTEND THIS INTRODUCTORY LECTURE. We are going to tell you EXTREMELY IMPORTANT organization information, which WILL NOT BE REPEATED AGAIN, plus we will be signing up you to the mailing conference. And the experiment.
  3. Read about the Grading (the scoring system), Team rules, the Experiment and Mini-grant applications at the second half of this (not so short) page.
  4. Subscribe to the lecture’s mailing conference. (Deadline: 2019/Oct/11)
  5. If you have Facebook, stay connected with our FB page.
  6. If you use Twitter, you can follow our Twitter account.
  7. Sign-up for the experiment, see information at the bottom of this page (Deadline: 2019/Oct/11).
  8. Attend networking events that are organized during Friday evenings (see schedule below).
  9. Decide on a game you want to make, find or form a team and as a team give a pitch presentation about your idea. The Pitch presentation session is organized during 2019/Oct/30.
  10. Mind the Team rules at the bottom of this page. Deadline for forming the team is 2019/Oct/25). Fill in your bio into this shared spreadsheet, which serves both us and you to track who is part of this course and especially who does not have a team yet.
  11. Decide whether your team needs some mini-grant money for SW or HW or assets. Mini-grant application deadline: 2019/Nov/15
  12. If you received a mini-grant, submit invoices to Jakub Gemrot. (VERY hard deadline:2019/Dec/06)
  13. Meet all deadlines, attend all mandatory events.
  14. Create a magnificent game prototype!
  15. Present your game prototype during the Presentation day (2020/Jan/10).
  16. You will pass the course with A if you manages to collect at least 90 points AND you participate on the experiment. See bottom of the page for grading details.

AWARDS

Teams who create high quality game prototypes will be granted money to present their games at Game Access 2020, Brno (date TBD)!

A team that creates the best game game prototype of indisputable commercial potential having self-esteem finish it commercially will be granted money to present their work at Gamescom 2020, Cologne.


SCHEDULE

Note that end-times can vary.

Schedule Legend Lectures / Blocks / Consultations / Events
(mandatory for everybody
if not stated otherwise)
Deadlines
(be sure to meet them)
Optional events
(you do not have to attend those,
but they are featured as interesting
opportunities)
Experiment
(you have to attend
at least one slot, read 
info below in Experiment
section)
Date Entry Place Notes
2019/Oct/04
(9:00-12:00)
Introductory lecture
(for everybody, mandatory)
MFF UK, S3 Led by Otakar Nieder, Martin Klíma and Jakub Gemrot. Handouts for the experiments. Extremely important to attend.
2019/Oct/04
(15:15-17:15)
Networking: Primer
(for everybody, optional)
VR gaming house at Hradčanská (map) We invite you to VR gaming house to experience the latest and greatest VR equipment – HTC Vive and Oculus Rift! Come and see (for free) what VR is about and meet your colleagues in informal and highly inspiring setting! Unfortunately we will have to split into two groups as the capacity of the gaming house is rather limited (15 people).
2019/Oct/11
(9:00-13:00)
Block: Design
(for everybody, mandatory)
MFF UK, S3 Led by Martin Klíma. Slides from 2016, Stash of example GDDs
Free pizzas for the lunch! Do not forget to bring a bottle of water!
2019/Oct/11 Deadline: Sign-up to the conference
(for everybody)
Sign-up to the mailing conference, see information below.
2019/Oct/11 Deadline: Sign-up for the experiment
(for everybody)
Sign-up to the experiment, see information at the bottom of this page.
2019/Oct/17
(19:00-22:00+)
Networking
(for everybody, optional)
Some pub near Malostranské náměstí or Anděl Let’s meet together and talk about games and stuff in the informal atmosphere of a warm pub and cold beers / colas / juices / water / pizzas. If you do not have a team yet, be sure to come!
2019/Oct/18
(10:00-13:00)
Block: Presentations
(for everybody, mandatory)
MFF UK, S3 Led by Jakub Gemrot and Lukáš Kolek. This block is targeted to develop your presentation skill wrt. to the upcoming evening when you have to pitch you game idea to the mentors.
2019/Oct/25 Deadline: Team Registration
(for everybody)
Register formally your team; one team member has to send us an email on behalf of the whole team. State: name of the team, name of the game, all team members (their names, emails and what faculty are they from). Submit the registration through mailing conference, i.e., send email to: SWI115@artemis.mff.cuni.cz
2019/Oct/25
(9:00-12:30)
Block: Production
(for everybody, mandatory)
MFF, UK, S3 Led by Martin Klíma.
2019/Nov/01
(18:30-20:30)
Pitch Session
(for everybody, mandatory)
MFF UK, S3 Pitch Session where your team will be presenting an idea for a game you would like to make in front of your future mentors. Prepared to be asked tough questions about your idea! In your team, prepare a pitch presentation, max 5 minutes long! Aim for 3 minutes! (You will the most likely be nervous and talk slower than usual.) See pitch presentation tips and example pitch presentations from 2016: Black sun, Press to play, 2017: Toasty Conquest, Tenebris, 2018: Silicomrades, Straitjacket
2019/Nov/01
(20:30-23:00)
Meet your mentors!
(for everybody, mandatory)
Some pub near Malostranské náměstí or Anděl We will all conclude the day with a glass of [fill in your favorite drink] talking with your mentors about project management and game development.
2019/Nov/??
(??:??-??:??)
Experiment slot
(you must attend one of those)
MFF UK
2019/Nov/08
(9:30-13:30)
Block: Programming
(mandatory for programmers only)
MFF UK, S3 Led by Otakar Nieder. Will be a bit longer.
2019/Nov/08-10
(48+ hours)
GDS Jam
(for everybody, optional, open-event, invite even your friends!)
Game development jam done just one week before GDS! Extremely useful experience, highly recommended. MFF UK students may even score extra credits for doing the game jam via course SWI159 (but only if they create a different game that they are working on for GameDev Course).
2019/Nov/14 Deadline: GDD
(for everybody)
Every team has to submit a GDD for their game. You have to follow given template. GDD examples from 2016, 2017. Submit them to (both via CC): otakar.nieder@gmail.com and jakub.gemrot@gmail.com
2019/Nov/15 Deadline: Minigrant Applications
(for every team that is interested in getting a mini-grant)
You can ask for a small amount of money on gamedev SW & HW; this is a deadline for applications.
2019/Nov/15
(??:??-??:??, 30 minutes per team)
Consultations: First round
(for everybody, mandatory, whole team must attend)
MFF UK, S3 Led by Otakar Nieder, Jakub Gemrot and Lukáš Kolek.
2019/Nov/22
(10:40-12:00)
Block: Serious and Learning Games
(for everybody, mandatory)
MFF UK, S3 Led by Cyril Brom and Lukáš Kolek, they will share you another perspective on games, games as a learning medium.
2019/Nov/??
(??:??-??:??)
Experiment slot
(you must attend one of those)
MFF UK
2019/Nov/29-30
(48+ hours)
Game Developers Session
(for everybody, optional, but extremely recommended)
National House of Vinohrady, Prague Czech traditional gamedev conference, opportunity to get in touch with everyone who is doing gamedev professionally in Czech Republic. A place to be for everyone interested in game development. All course students are eligible for the free pass! Email: jakub.gemrot@gmail.com (Deadline for obtaining the free passes is 2019/Oct/31).
2019/Nov/30 Cyberspace 2018
(for everybody, optional)
MUNI, Faculty of Law (Veveří 70, Brno) Video Games and Society conference track.
2019/Dec/06 Deadline: Mini-grant Invoices
(for all teams that received a minigrant)
Mini-grants — invoices etc. all given to Jakub Gemrot. If your team received a minigrant, you have to submit any invoices or bills to Jakub Gemrot (jakub.gemrot@gmail.com); otherwise, they will not be refund. Period.
2019/Dec/11 Deadline: Game Prototype Alpha Submit us you game prototype alpha version.Use a service like uschovna.cz or wetransfer.com to submit your prototypes to (via CC): otakar.nieder@gmail.com, jakub.gemrot@gmail.com, lukaskolek@live.com
2019/Dec/13
(9:00-12:30, 30+15 minutes per team)
Consultations: Second round
(for everybody, whole team must attend)
MFF UK, S3 Led by Otakar Nieder, Jakub Gemrot.
2020/Jan/15 Deadline: Game Prototype Beta
(for everybody)
Submit us your game prototype beta version.Use a service like uschovna.cz or wetransfer.com to submit your beta to all following emails: otakar.nieder@gmail.com, jakub.gemrot@gmail.com, martin.klima@warhorsestudios.cz, zc.inuc.ffm.ivsk reverse-it morb
2020/Jan/17
(9:00-??:??, 20 minutes per team)
Presentation Day!
(for everybody, mandatory)
??? Present your game prototype final version.
Evaluated by Otakar Nieder, Martin Klíma, Jakub Gemrot, Cyril Brom and Lukáš Kolek.
2020/Jan/??
(??:??-??:??)
Lecture: Educational games and experiment debriefing
(for everybody, optional)
MFF UK, S1 Extra post-course lecture regarding educational (aka serious) games including debriefing of the experiment you participated on.
2020/May/?? Game Access ’20 Brno All promising game prototypes will gain free pass and a chance to present their games at Game Access ‘20 Brno as well!

Teams

Each team should have 3 – 4 people, 4 is an ideal number, 5 is a bit too many but acceptable occasionally. Members of the team must be from at least two different faculties. Every team must have a programmer. Ideally, every team should have at least one creative guy/gal. There can be at max 1 person from FF UK in each team. (Students from FF UK should not flock together!)

Deadline for forming teams is: 2019/Oct/25 !

We advise you to write your name into this spreadsheet that can be used to quickly check who still does not have a team…

Follows the table with currently registered teams.

Team Name
Members Affiliation Role Game
Mentor Awards
2-PM Marek Cieslar
Petr Bureš
Petra Feňďová
FF UK
MFF UK
FAMU
Sound designer
Programmer
Art designer
Escape Goat
Pitch
GDD
Landing page
Trailer
Jan Kunt
About Fun
The Best Pitch
Asymetric Eliška Suchardová
Jaroslav Vozár
Patrik Říha
Simona Fábryová
MFF UK
MFF UK
FF UK
FF UK
Programmer
Programmer
Presentater, marketer, writer
Graphic artist

Spring and Forge
Pitch
GDD
Repo
Landing page
Trailer

Jiří Mikoláš
Notre Game
DES.X Lucia Tódová
Makanova Sofia
Marcel Hruška
Michal Bali
Sergei Gavroche
MFF UK
UMPRUM
MFF UK
MFF UK
UMPRUM
Programmer
3D–artist, sound
Rendering/AI
Programmer
UI designer
The Elementalist
Pitch
GDD
Repo
Landing page
Trailer
Lukáš Miláček
Bohemia Interactive Simulations
Educators’ Award
Desperatos Kourosh Riahidehkordi
Lucie Gašparínová
Ludmila Hrnčířová
MFF UK
ZCU-FDU
FF UK
Programmer
Art designer
Game designer
Afterlife: Dogs of Eden
Pitch
GDD
Landing page
Trailer
Filip Krijt
Bohemia Interactive
GOPPA Anna Havlová
Gabriela Palijová
Ondřej Lazar
Peter Guba
Petr Polák
FF UK
FAMU
ZCU-FDU
MFF UK
UMPRUM
Game designer
Sound Designer
Animator
Programmer
Illustrator
The Young Man and the Sea
Pitch
GDD
Landing page
Trailer
Jaroslav Meloun
Santa Ragione
Audience Award
Infinite Pixels Federico Sergio
Gregor Krmelj
Lucie Laštovková
Martin Hahn
MFF UK
MFF UK
FF UK
ZCU-FDU
Programmer
Programmer
Game designer, sound designer
Graphic designer, animator
Cursornetic
Pitch
GDD
Repo
Landing page
Trailer
Filip Dušek
Keen Software House
Omega Ke Gao
Kryštof Novák
Petr Šedivý
MFF UK
UMPRUM
FF UK
Programmer
Artist
Game designer
Stolen Gravity
Pitch
GDD, Visuals
Landing page
Trailer
Jan Vaněček
Geewa / Keen Software House
Poetics Bart Bieliński
Daria Kashcheeva
Kryštof Petrásek
Lucie Vostárková
Michaela Ružinská
FAMU
FAMU
FF UK
FAMU
MFF UK
Sound designer
Art designer
Game designer
Art designer
Code designer
Edgar
Pitch
GDD
Landing page
Trailer
Vladimír Geršl
Gold Knights
Rotten Bananas Jakub Mirovský
Klára Ondračková
Kryštof Josefus
Miki Mitevski
Tereza Chudáčková
MFF UK
FAMU
UMPRUM
MFF UK
FAMU
Programmer
Sound designer
Game designer, artist
Programmer
2D/3D artist
Ooo
Pitch
GDD
Repo
Landing page
Trailer
Andrew Barron
Bohemia Interactive Simulations
The Infima Alex Smirnov
Jakub Kozelka
Lance Heartclaw
Václav Kučera
MFF UK
UMRPUM
MFF UK
MFF UK
Lead programmer, Visual artist
Writer, 2D-artist
Game Designer, programmer, manager
Composer, sound designer
Breach
Pitch
GDD
Landing page
Trailer
Martin Kolombo
Bohemia Interactive Simulations
The Best Doable Game

Deadlines

All deadlines are here to be met!

As in game industry itself, all deadlines are strict. If not stated otherwise, deadline 2019/Oct/25 means the very day till 23:59:59 GMT+1. If you are unable to deliver, you have to mail us in advance explaining your problems. If you mail us after the deadline, you’re doomed (well not literally, you will not receive points, but that may ultimately lead to failing the course).

Piece of advice to teams (and their leaders), make sure all your team members is committing to deadlines, otherwise they might lose motivation working on the project if they found out they will not be able to receive A…


Project

In this year, your goal will be to develop a small casual game that can compete with other existing games on an international level. Creating such game is a question of good game design and 15-30 days of programming and graphics making. You can check on projects from previous years 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018. We will require you to form a team, write a Game Design Document (the link contains a template with instructions) and implement the game according to it. Finally, you will have to present and defend your game during presentation day.

Student teams are interdisciplinary as gamedev teams usually are. We aim at having a distinctive person for roles: programmer, designer, artist at each team. But it is up to you to form teams. Deadline for forming a team is  2019/Oct/25. We require that all members creatively contribute to the project. No team member should be “hiree-to-do-some-dull-stuff”.

You can use our Facebook page or email conference to promote yourself or propose your projects. We are going to organize two informal networking events in (2019/Oct/04, 2019/Oct/17). You should also read “Teams Rules” section above first (if you haven’t already)!

We are trying to find external mentors who have a lot of experiences with game development and team management to help you with project management and game development. Each team should get one and you will have to report to them regularly; take this opportunity to learn from them!

You will have to pitch your project to mentors first (2019/Nov/01) as if they are potential investors (which they truly are, they will be investing their own time to you!).

You are also required to use Git as SCM (namely GitHub); if you do not know what that is, ask your programmers ;-). GitHub provides you with many useful stuff, namely it allows you to have a project’s front page, wiki, forum, etc.

As a part of the project we will require you to create a webpage that describes your game (example pages from 2018: SilicomradesOut of Sight, 2017: Trashscraper, Toasty Conquest; 2016: Spring, 2015: Swappie) and a small gameplay video (examples: Toasty ConquestSpring). You can setup your own webpage anywhere, but you can also use GitHub Pages or similar services.


Experiment

You have to attend an experiment related to educational games development.

Short “pen and paper” experiment (60 – 80 min) focused on topic of multimedia learning.

In case of organisational questions please contact: Karolína Faberová karolina.faberova@gmail.com nebo experiment.uk@gmail.com.


Grading

You final grade depends on your team performance throughout the whole semester. Points are collected both by teams and individual members. Every team member can gain up-to 134 points in total. We will be sending a link to the scoring sheet through mailing conference, if you miss it, mail to jakub.gemrot@gmail.com who will resend the link to you.

Grade Point range
A (124-)99-90
B 89-80
C 79-70
Fail 69-0

You can receive points for various meetings / events / consultations / awards, 10 points == grade difference:

Opportunity Points Event / Deadline
Signing-up to the mailing conference.
You are accredited with those points if you meet the deadline.
2 2019/Oct/11
Signing-up to for the experiment.
You are accredited with those points if you meet the deadline.
3 2019/Oct/11
Attending the experiment you have signed-up on
You are accredited with those points if you attend the experiment
5 The date
you chose
Registering a team
Team will send us an email with team registration information.
Every member is accredited with the points if you meet the deadline.
5 2019/Oct/25
Giving a pitch presentation
Whole team will show up and at least one member will give a presentation.
Every member is accredited with the points.
5 2019/Nov/01
Award: Best pitch
GameDev professionals will decide on the best pitch presentation.
Every member is accredited with the points if you meet the deadline.
5 2019/Nov/01
Submitting GDD
Team will send us an email with GDD.
Every member is accredited with the points if you meet the deadline.
5 2019/Nov/14
Award: Best GDD
Lecturers will decide on the best GDD.
Every member of awarded team is accredited with the points.
5 2019/Nov/15
Attending first round of consultations
Whole team will attend the first round of consultations.
Every member who shows up before the consultation with their teams starts is accredited with the points.
3 2019/Nov/15
Submitting Game Prototype Alpha version
Team will submit Game Prototype Alpha version to lecturers.
Every member is accredited with the points if you meet the deadline.
5 2019/Dec/11
Attending second round of consultations
Whole team will attend the second round of consultations.
Every member who shows up before the consultation with their teams starts is accredited with the points.
6 2019/Dec/13
Submitting Game Prototype Beta version
Team will submit Game Prototype Beta version to lecturers.
Every member is accredited with the points if you meet the deadline.
10 2020/Jan/08
Game Prototype Presentation
Whole team will attend a presentation day. You will present us your game, its gameplay
and every member will point out what they have been working on during a development. You will also appoint The Most Valuable Player of the team.
Lecturers will have a time to play your game as well as ask questions.Every member is accredited with the points if you meet the deadline and give a presentation. Lecturers may decide to award each member of a team differently if they found out delivered prototype or given presentation to be lacking.
Note that you do not have to present Game Prototype Beta version you submit on 2017/01/09. You can still work on and polish your Beta after that day. Just be sure not to drag new bugs in your game, which is known to be hard.
50 2020/01/10
Award: Best Game Prototype
Lecturers will decide on Best game prototype.
Every member of awarded team is accredited with the points.
10 2020/Jan/10
Award: The Most Valuable Player in the Team
Every team will vote on the best team member, who will be awarded with extra points.
5 2020/Jan/10
Sum (maximum number of points you can score) 124

Mini-grant Application Instructions

  1. Application text must be submitted (that is delivered!) together with design documents till 2019/Nov/15 midnight (i.e., 11:59.59 PM GMT+1) to: Jakub Gemrot (gemrot@gamedev.cuni.cz)
  2. There must be at least 1 CUNI MFF member within the team applying for a mini-grant.
  3. Application must include:
    1. Name of the team (together with names and affiliations of its members) and name of the project
    2. Concrete description what do you apply for.
    3. Concrete description how are you going to obtain it.
    4. Price including VAT (round up to 500 CZK).
    5. Reason, why do you want the “thing” and how are you going to use it within the scope of the project.
    6. How will your situation change, if you do not get the mini-grant.
  4. You can apply only for things that can be bought against a receipt (a bill for hardware or an invoice for services). If you cannot comply with this condition (you need real money), you might try to apply nevertheless, but it will lower your chances for getting the money.
  5. Everything you buy must “exist” and it will remain the property of Charles University. This applies to hardware as well as sounds, graphics, etc. (but that does not mean you will have to remove the graphics or sounds from your game at the end of the term). You must return the “thing” after you finish the project (subject for discussion, state your reason why you will need to keep the “thing”).
  6. Altogether, we can split up to 10.000 CZK. You may ask for any amount up to 10.000 CZK you consider appropriate, but in case of multiple high-quality applications we will split 10.000 CZK among the applicants.
  7. Evaluation criteria:
    1. Formal compliance of the application with the rules above
    2. Meaningfulness
    3. Game design document quality and quality of your project in general
  8. You have to buy the “thing” no later than 2019/Dec/06, bills must be handed to Jakub Gemrot no later than 2019/Dec/06. We will not refund bills after that date. Period.

ČVUT Students

Please note that if you are ČVUT student, you have to write to Cyril Brom (zc.inuc.ffm.ivsk reverse-it morb) that you wish to attend the course. Send the email no later than 2019/Oct/04.


ZČU Students

Please note that if your of age 15-26 you are eligible for getting a “Žákovské jízdné” discount from ČD on trips between Pilsen and Prague.

Step-by-step guide (kudos to Olga Tesliuk, who has punched this through!):

  1. Buy a Žákovské jízdné card for 2 CZK at train station (they should have it available both in ČD and Regiojet desks).
  2. Fill in your name, surname, birthdate and towns you going to commute between (Pilsen – Prague); of course write this in Czech 😉
  3. Go to your student affairs at ZČU and have it signed (let tem fill “date from-to” for you).
  4. Go back to the train station and have it signed by ČD (you will need that card, your identity card – občanka, and some money).
  5. PROFIT!

Another generic step-by-step guide available here (in Czech only).

 

https://gamedev.cuni.cz/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/logolink_OP_VVV_hor_barva_eng.jpg