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November 08, 2005

Comments

Aaron

Because I wasn't on the team mailing list until today and my manager didn't send it until about half an hour before I left. I was busy for that half hour! Honestly! And I didn't read the hardcopy version he gave me on monday because I was also too busy... too busy reading your blog! :)

Fert

We actually got four projects to finish, so four documents:
1) No - Did read it half-way through, realised that there's no useful infomation in it and dropped it
2) No - Saw that there's no structure in it and dropped it
3) Yes - And realised there's only marketing-blabla in it afterwards...
4) No - Wrote it myself...

teamonkey

Yes, and if I don't read it and stick to it the producer uses sentences like "why does it do that?" when playing through my stuff.

roger

I dont have a design at all.

Greggman

Our design docs are stored a item or two at a time in a Lotus Notes datebase. Anyone on the team can edit any item and the item will show up as Unread for anyone that hasn't read it since it was updated. Each item is generally one *thing* in the game like

* one level map
* one character and his behaviors
* one screen (title sdreen for example) and how it is supposed to function
* instructions for using particular items in the level editor

etc. It's all up to date, the parts that need updating, parts that don't need updating are of course not updated but then they won't show up as unread either.

Japanese design is SUPER visual meaning, at least in the past, what I'm used to from my stateside work is design documents being mostly words, sometimes 200 pages of works. Japanese design documents are mostly pictures and diagrams. I hope to create a book or at least a website from our design documents after we ship.

PS: I hate Lotus Notes, I prefer Exchange but either will do the job.

Jeremy Parker

Yep, writing one right now actually. On the whole, I think GDD's are pretty useless. My experience with them as been that they're always out of date. This means that a programmer who is actually writing a system described in the GDD must talk to a designer anyway.

HOWEVER, they're great for getting new hires up to speed quickly.

Christian Mogensen

A variation on the notes database with one-item per design chunk is to use a requirements tracking tool like CaliberRM from Borland.

It does the same sort of thing, but with versioning and dependency tracking (i.e. changing this item means you should update the following items).

The cool thing is that the design notes can contain bitmaps and flowcharts, not just text.

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Jamie's Bragging Rights

  • Spider-Man 2
    The best superhero games of all time Game Informer
    Top five games of all time Yahtzee Croshaw
    Top five superhero games of all time MSNBC
    Top 100 PS2 games of all time Official Playstation 2 Magazine
    1001 Games You Must Play Before You Die Nomination for Excellence in Gameplay Engineering Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences
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    Nominated for XBLA Best Co-Op Game