G4/G5: Playtesting Builds

You will publish two builds of your game during the project, and have others playtest them in class.  For the CS4455 students, the builds must be published to the blog, with appropriate documentation of what the game is, how to play, and so on.  For each build, you should also discuss how you deviated from your target milestone for that build (for better or worse).


The Alpha should be an initial playable demo, designed to give you feedback on the core fun of your game.  By this point, a player should be able to experience the core feel of your game. For example, you should focus more on the interaction of the player with the main enemies or game element, and with the game world (and the interactions between the enemies themselves and the enemies and the world), and added the scoring, finish the enemies and polish the environmental effects later.  Do not create an alpha that is the “structural shell” of your game, with all the various bits implemented but nothing implemented well, and nothing to “play” and give feedback on.

You will post these to the blog, and bring your laptops to class.  We will use two class rooms  as before, and will assign the teams to one of the two rooms.  Within each room, teams will play each others games and give feedback.  We will post the room assignments on the wiki once we have the groups set.  Each group will bring at least 2 laptops, preferably one per team member, to allow others to play their game.  Half of the teams in a room will demo at once (as with the prototypes playtesting): the students not demoing will go around and play ALL of the games being demoed in their room (i.e., half of the games assigned to their room, since half will be demoing at once), and give the team feedback.  The instructor and TAs will try to play every game between them (either in class, or on the web).

Final Playtesting Build

During dead week, you will be expected to have your game 99% complete, and we will play-test in class, just as with the alpha.  We will use the same room assignments and setup as the alpha (although the instructor will attend the “other” class for the final playtesting, and play the other games on the web).

After the playtesting, you may update the game to fix minor bugs or fix some balance issues based on what you learned, but adding new features after the playtesting build, rather than tweaking/refining features that were there, will NOT count toward your final grade.

You will have until the end of the weekend  after the final play-testing (11:55pm Sunday night) to post your final game on the class blog (with the unity3d file in t-square).  You will then do your final presentation during final exam week.