What are the prerequisites?
CS/INFO 3152 is primarily divided into two tracks, each of which has its own prerequisites.
All programmers must have taken CS 2110. Programmers need to understand Java and how to use an IDE. In addition, game programming involves the creation of a lot of custom data structures. We recommend that your team’s Lead Architect be chosen from someone who has taken CS 3110.
Designers should have some ability with UX wire frames, graphic design or drawing, and (preferably) experience with Photoshop or Illustrator. We are primarily interested in technical ability; the requirements for artistic ability may vary wildly. INFO 2450 is also highly recommended.
In previous semesters, we allowed musicians to take the class. While you are still welcome to work on original music for your game, everyone must still sign up for one of the two tracks above. In particular, the track determines the labs that you must take.
Students enrolled in the CS course must take the programming track. INFO students are allowed to choose either track.
Is ENGRC 3152 Required?
All students enrolled in either CS or INFO 3152 must take the companion course ENGRC 3152. Those in teams 1-6 should sign up for section 101. Those in teams 7-12 should sign up for section 102. There is no extra meeting time for this course. It is part of the discussion sections for this class. Students who do not enroll in this course will be dropped from the main course.
This course will have its own grade, but it will not have any additional assignments aside from team assessment surveys (which impact participation grades in CS/INFO/ENGRC) and some quick quiz content. With the exception of team assessment surveys and ENGRC quizzes, all CS/INFO/ENGRC grades will be posted via the 3152 CMS. By passing ENGRC 3152, you earn credit for the College of Engineering’s Engineering Communications Requirement.
Who owns the games made in this class?
Your group retains all ownership of any game that you make in this class. It is Cornell policy (and NYS law) that students own their own work. You are free to make derivative works and commercialize any project that you create.
However, to get a grade for this course, you agree to give Cornell a non-exclusive license for the game as it is submitted at Showcase. Cornell has the right to archive, exhibit, and distribute that version of the game (and only that version) for promotional and non-commercial purposes. In particular, this license allows us to make your game available to the public at Showcase.
When and where does the class meet?
Our original intention was for this to be a normal semester. For the most part, we meet in our special design classroom: Upson 142. This room was specifically built for our course and others like our course. This is the location of our lectures and critiques MWF 10:10-11:00.
The labs are held in either Phillips 203. This is another design-based classrooms that is ideal for working on documents or playtesting. And playtesting is going to be a very important part of this semester.
How do project teams work?
This semester, students will work in teams of 8, which has become the standard since 2020 (increased from teams of 6). We increased the size of the student teams by admitting more designers. As a general rule, each team should have 4 programmers, two character artists (though one of those artists may also be a programmer), a UX designer, and a final designer that can either contribute art or music. At least one of the programmers will have taken 3110, as we find that this is a necessary pre-requisite to be a lead programmer.
The course staff picks the teams by matching people according to the interests they indicate. The staff also tries to accommodate “pre-made” teams, but we cannot guarantee that you will always be able to work with a particular person. Experienced artists, in particular, are a precious commodity and often need to be reassigned to balance out teams.
What does CS/INFO 3152 count for?
This course satisfies a lot of requirements, which is one of the things that makes it so popular (well, that and games). You should be sure to sign up for the version of the course that best meets your needs.
Both the CS and INFO courses count towards the primary course in the game-design minor. at Cornell. The companion course ENGRC 3152 satisfies the Engineering Communications Requirement. requirement in the School of Engineering.
The INFO course may count as an elective in either the Information Systems track or the Human-Centered Systems track. You may chose either track regardless of your role on your team (e.g. designers who do no programming may still get Information Systems credit).
Can I be a TA?
We employ undergraduates TA as staff to help us deal with the course. Each year we look for 6 programming TAs and 3-4 designer TAs. We will take students that have completed CS/INFO 3152, but give priority to students that have finished CS/INFO 4152 as well. To become a TA, fill out the online application in the Fall semester. Applications for Spring courses close at the end of November.