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Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Year 2 Group Presentations:

I really enjoyed the 2nd year group presentations. I wanted to see what the finished levels were going to be like. Especially since I have been here I kept seeing little parts of the projects every now and then whenever the second years were working in the labs at the same time as us.  I had seen several assets they were going to be using, and I saw a some people from the groups play through their levels briefly.
I also wanted to get a feel for what we will be doing in the next year.  I am really looking forward to the group project.  We were given some advice from the second years, and one of the best ones were that we should start learning UDK right now. One group said that they decided to book a room in the library and figure out how to use UDK all together. The program does look quite complicated. And I remember when Mark, when he was our guru, was showing us some basics of UDK, he seemed to go through it extremely fast, and I was very lost from the start!
One thing that I thought was quite interesting from one of the levels I saw was the use of particles. They had turned their version of the Queens building into a science lab where test subjects were kept. In one room, there was all this radioactive kind of dust floating around.  I moved very slowly and glowed bright blue, and it looked fantastic in the darkened room.
I thought that all of the projects had the Queens Building uniquely represented. I thought it was interested how they modified the building to suit their levels’ design. The train animation I saw in one group was really awesome. And they told explained to us why they used a lot of influences from Half Life 2. And it was because Michael had seen their level and told them it was boring! Which was funny.  I could see how the teams had all worked together to make assets and light the level in interesting ways. Each group was very unique in their designs, and they all took different approaches to the project. Some spent a lot of time concepting, and others wanted to get straight into making the level basics.
One thing I learned from one group was that they had difficulties because they didn’t have a leader. What they found was that because there wasn’t one person in charge in particular, they all seemed to do things in their own time and not particularly organised or scheduled.  So basically they said that it would be better to have a leader. But on the contrary, another group said they worked fine without a leader and preferred it that way.
When it gets to the group project, I hope that everyone gets along. I saw a couple of arguments and noticed a bit of tension between a few people. Obviously there had been a few fall outs and disagreements, but this is something kind of expected within a group project. There will be differences in opinions, but hopefully things like that can be resolved quickly enough.
Overall, I was really glad I went to the presentations; it really helped me to get some idea of what’s coming up in the second year. And it also was very entertaining and educational!

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