McMaster University
Software Design IV - Capstone Computer Game Design Project

Sfwr Eng 4GP6, Term 3 2013/14


Term 3: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, 10:30-11:20 in HH/302 (or ITB/201)

Note: some lectures will be held jointly with Sfwr Eng 4G06, as the core 'project management' aspects of both project courses are the same. Project specific classes will be held in the same time slots, but in a different classroom.


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

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

Assignments will be handed in via a departemental svn account, one of which will be set up for every group.

Teaching Assistant

Sal D'Amore

Course Objectives

The calendar description says: Student teams prepare the requirements, design, documentation and implementation of a computer game taking economic, health, safety, cultural, legal and marketing factors into account. Students must demonstrate a working system and convincing test results. Software project management.

The project will be broken into pieces (requirements, design, prototype and final implementation), each of which will be graded separately, and may also themselves be sub-divided.

This year, sustainability aspects will also be added. [Not how to make games sustainable per se, but how gaming-related technology can help implement sustainability]

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).

Every group will be assigned a subversion repository (shared with the TAs and the professor) for all of their work.


As is to be expected, the main project for this course consists in making a full-fledged game. This year, we will be using the Unreal Engine (UDK) for game development.


The deliverable schedule:
Deliverable % of grade Date Due
Form teams0 %September 11
High-concept document5 %September 27
Scenarios0 %October 11
System requirements7.5%October 25
Test plan2 %November 8
Art (visuals and sound)5 %November 22
Requirements for each system component7.5 %December 20
Design for each system component5 %January 10
Implementation Rev 05 %February 3
V & V on Rev 05 %February 17
Final version (Rev 1)
 - Concept and all Requirements10 %February 28
 - Art and Design10%March 14
 - Implementation10 %March 28
 - V & V10 %April 11
 - DEMO20 %April 20



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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 some online components. 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.

September 2013