Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Walkthrough Meetings

I participate in what’s called a  “walkthrough meeting” each week and from a development perspective it is extremely important during the planning process for a game.


Designers use a walkthrough sheet to "map out" the scenes for the game. I would compare the walkthrough sheet as being most similar to a storyboard for a movie; each “scene” is designed and planned out in relation to others, creating a linear storyline.


 DSCN2951


Every couple of weeks there is a different “player” (Ian from marketing is “playing” right now), and the group (full of artists, testers, producers, designers, scripters…Intern) follows as the player verbally moves through the game with the developer (ex. “Ok, I found the map, now I go and sleuth to find it’s owner…I open the door…. I go do some chores, etc.)


At this point, the developer and the scriptwriter can hash out a players experience before the game is even built, adding the ability to find plot holes and introduce new scenes even before the physical development (art, voiceovers, etc.) begins. Along with puzzle creation and scriptwriting, it functions to develop the overall arching story for a title.


Hmm, I wonder what this walkthrough is for….

 


11 comments:

Pina Colada said...

They're making us do those charts in class for our VB.net programs, too. It's really neat to see what I'm learning in practice, especially when it's on something I enjoy so much.

Anonymous said...

Aaaaaa! A refrence to ND21 is found. That un-solved blog post that is driving us crazy. I wish that we had a hint on how to solve the blog post. The walkthrough meetings sure sound interesting. It's a cool idea.

AS said...

@ Pina Colada, Anonymous -

The charts work well, don't they? Make sure you study hard, sometimes the things you learn in school do have real world usage... lol

ND21? What are you talking about? :P

And keep working at it, a hint would be too easy... (if there is an "answer".. hmm, not sure...)

Katharine Yuan said...

It's easy to see why it's so important. It's much more cost effective to lay it all out on paper than discover a mistake after you've put already put a lot of time and money into development!

giftedgothic said...

That's so cool. It's almost like a board game, but much more involved. I really like these posts and look forward to them. :)

alice-1005 said...

Chores! I love chores. SHA is my favourite game and I love the chores in that.

NDfan17 said...

@AS,

About ND21: It is a blog post from May 22nd of last year nobody has been able to figure out.
Here it is: http://www.herinteractive.com/blog/web/prod/blog/2008_05_01_archive.html

Maybe you could do some sleuthing and give us a hint. :)

Coralie said...

I was just wondering if there was a reason why I could not click on the first picture, but I could the second?

Thanks! : )

AS said...

@ giftedgothic, Coralie

Thanks :) I'm glad that you fans enjoy my posts!

And the second picture is for you sleuths to look at super-closely to understand how a walkthrough sheet is setup, as for the first picture, I just can't give you an upclose image of the prototype for a whole ND game can I? I don't want to spoil anything :)

AS said...

@ NDfan17 -

I'm looking into it, I'll see what I can do but NO guarantees ;)

From what I've heard from the designers, it is solvable....

Anonymous said...

A hint would be great! About how many walkthrough meetings are there per game?