McMaster University

SFWR ENG 3GB3, Term II 2013/14

Assignments    Midterm/Final info     Tutorial material class material (presentations)

Lectures and Tutorials

Monday, Thursday 9:30-10:20, Tuesday 10:30-11:20, all in JHE/329



Dr. J. Carette, ITB-168 , ext 26869, email: carette at mcmaster dot ca.

Office hours: by appointment (or catch me after class).

For all course related questions, a class forum has been set up on Avenue so that questions and their answers can be posted centrally. The instructor will generally not answer emails sent to him directly, but will answer questions posted on the discussion forum(s) very frequently. [Questions of a personal nature can still be emailed to the instructor]

Teaching Assistant

Alex Zaranek (


Required: Fundamentals of Game Design by Ernest Adams.

Course Objectives

The calendar description for this year says: Design of time-evolution of/in three dimensional spaces. Dynamical systems (discrete and continuous). Physical and artificial systems. Design patterns of 4D modelling. This basically means the mathematical and physical foundations of moving three dimensional objects, and their implementation methods.

Many of the above topics will be covered implicitly through programming exercises which will require the implementation of parts of a game. In other words, a lot of the above will be done through problem-based learning rather than through straight lecturing.

The lectures will concentrate on ``Game Design'', as covered in the textbook. Some of the classes will use problem-based learning techniques. We will cover more of what the calendar description for next year will be: Game concepts. Creative and expressive play. Storytelling and narratives. User Interfaces for games. Gameplay. Core mechanics. Game Balancing. Software architecture of games. Level design. Genres. Physics Engines.

Course Information on Web, and Slides

The latest version of this outline and the most "up-to date" information as well as hand-outs can be found on the course web page.
(Or go to my home page and then to the course page). The assignments can be found there as well.

Mid-terms, Exams, and Grading



"The Faculty of Engineering is concerned with ensuring an environment that is free of all adverse discrimination. If there is a problem that cannot be resolved by discussion among the persons concerned individuals are reminded that they should contact their Chair, the Sexual Harassment Office or the Human Rights Consultant, as soon as possible."

Course modifications

The instructor and university reserve the right to modify elements of the course during the term. The university may change the dates and deadlines for any or all courses in extreme circumstances. If either type of modification becomes necessary, reasonable notice and communication with the students will be given with explanation and the opportunity to comment on changes. It is the responsibility of the student to check their McMaster email and course websites weekly during the term and to note any changes.

Academic Dishonesty

You are expected to exhibit honesty and use ethical behaviour in all aspects of the learning process. Academic credentials you earn are rooted in principles of honesty and academic integrity.

Academic dishonesty is to knowingly act or fail to act in a way that results or could result in unearned academic credit or advantage. This behaviour can result in serious consequences, e.g. the grade of zero on an assignment, loss of credit with a notation on the transcript (notation reads: “Grade of F assigned for academic dishonesty”), and/or suspension or expulsion from the university.

It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic dishonesty. For information on the various types of academic dishonesty please refer to the Academic Integrity Policy [].

The following illustrates only three forms of academic dishonesty:

  1. Plagiarism, e.g. the submission of work that is not one’s own or for which other credit has been obtained.
  2. Improper collaboration in group work.
  3. Copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations.

Individual assignments have to be solved by one person only, any outside source, this includes asking other people, or using any books or information found on the web has to be documented. In complience with the senate regulations on academic integrity I remind you that: People who let other people copy are as guilty as the ones who copy. You are allowed to consult outside sources, meaning textbooks or the web, but any use of an outside source must be documented. Similarly, group assignments must be solved by members of that group only, and the above policies apply as well.

In the case the instructor or a TA has the impression that an assignment is copied, the instructor can ask the corresponding students to explain exactly how the assignment was prepared and take appropriate actions.

Online Component

In this course we will be using Avenue. Students should be aware that, when they access the electronic components of this course, private information such as first and last names, user names for McMaster e-mail accounts, and program affiliation may become apparent to all other students in the same course. The available information is dependent on the technology used. Continuation in this course will be deemed consent to this disclosure. If you have any questions or concerns about such disclosure please discuss this with the course instructor.

November 2013