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Game Development Dictionary


Games


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  Term Name Description

StarFox

Highly popular space combat game by Nintendo for their SNES platform. Recently converted into an RPG for the GameCube platform by Rare.

Street Fighter

Thought by many to be the greatest fighting game series on the planet, and is most likely the longest running. Street Fighter II set off the 2D fighting craze that has slightly died down in recent months. The Street Fighter series has an ever growing number of titles which include Street Fighter, Street Fighter II, Street Fighter II Turbo, Super Street Fighter III, Street Fighter Alpha (Zero), Street Fighter Alpha (Zero) II, Street Fighter Alpha (Zero) III, Street Fighter EX, and many more. Street Fighter characters are also used in many games such as Pocket Fighter, Marvel vs. Capcom I and II, and SNK vs. Capcom. Street Fighter also spawned a cartoon series and several animation movies, as well as a live action movie.

Super Mario Bros

Mario and his brother Luigi were invented by Shigeru Miyamoto in the late 80's. Known as the trademark of Nintendo he has become the star of many games. Probably the greatest Mario game ever would be Super Mario 64 on the N64 which invented the 3D platformer genre.

Tetris

A wonderfully innovative Puzzle game, designed by Alexy Pajitnov. Tetris was the original "falling blocks" game.

Tetris was a 2D puzzle game. The play area was an empty box. A number of different shaped, randomly selected pieces would fall one at a time from the top of the screen. The player would be able to rotate these blocks, and move then toward the left or right as they fell. Once the current block came to rest at the bottom of the screen or on another block, its place would be fixed, and another block would enter the playing field.

The blocks would continue to fall until they were piled to the top of the screen, at which point the game would end. But a player would put this off as long as possible by carefully stacking the blocks in a compact manner.

Whenever the blocks were stacked in such a way that an entire horizontal row of the play area was completely filled with blocks, that row would disappear, and the blocks above would fall down to take their place. Every time the player completed a row, he would be awarded points.

Through careful planning, is was also possible to complete several rows at once. When this happened. the player would be awarded more points in proportion to the number of rows completed simultaneously.

The game mechanics of Tetris were uncomplicated, and it was easy for people to learn to play in just a few moments. Yet the gameplay was addictive, and Tetris became very popular.

A whole host of Tetris clones have been created. And because this type of Puzzle game is relatively easy to program, it is common for new programmers to learn by creating their own versions of Tetris.

The Sims

An innovative simulation of suburban life. This game was designed by Will Wright, and published by Electronic Arts.

The gameplay in The Sims is open ended. The player is not given a definite set of goals, and so there is no distinct set of win or loss conditions. The player makes use of the game mechanics in whatever way he chooses.

The Sims was very popular, and a number of sequels have been made. A new MMORPG version is currently in development.

Trespasser

Released in 1998 by DreamWorks, Trespasser was very much overhyped to contain realistic physics, highly intelligent dinosaur AI, and hyper-realistic environments. Unfortunately, it didn't meet its expectations and was immediately shunned by the industry as a flop. Regardless, it was years ahead of most games in terms of physics, shadows, and simply realism.

Tyrant

A graphical roguelike/RPG game written in Java and released as open source GPL software.

Ultima

A popular series of games, from Akalabeth in 1979 (often referred to as Ultima 0) to Ultima IX in 1999. U-VII also had to extensions. Ultima Online was released 1995 and still (2001) has thousands of active players. The most of the Ultima games are played in a fantasy world called Britannia (except U-II and U-VIII). Britannia is ruled by Lord British which is the alias of Richard Garriot, the original creator of the Ultima world. All games in the Ultima series is tile-based except U-IX and Ultima Online 2 which is yet to be released.

Unreal

This was a 3-D first person shooter by Epic Megagames. It was very similar to Half-Life in that you had to explore a unknown world and fight the alien race in it. It featured Stunning graphics for the time of release (roughly 1997) The game featured huge worlds to explore and was one of the first game that used scripted events to increase the in-depth perspective. Unlike what many people think.... the coming sequel tot he game is NOT a sequel for Unreal Tournament it is a sequel for Unreal... unreal is more single-player based althought it does have multi-player support, Unreal Tournament is almost completly multi-player based but it does include very challenging bots as well as it's own built in server so it is easy to find other online games.

Unreal Tournament

A very popular First Person Shooter, developed by Epic Games. Many people have developed mods for this game. This support of the Unreal Tournament community helps to provide great replayability.

Warcraft

One of the first mass market successes in the Real Time Strategy genre, War Craft pitted Orcs versus Humans in battle and resource management. This title originally came out around the time Westwood Studios made Dune, and Warcraft 2 around the time of Command & Conquer. (WWW)

Wolfenstien 3D

Critically acclaimed and the game that brought real-time first person game play to the masses, Wolfenstein 3D was a raycasting based engine set in Nazi Germany. Created by id Software and published by Apogee (now 3D Realms). (WWW)

Xbox360

The successor to the Microsoft Xbox, this console uses new ATI graphics chips as well as multi-core IBM PowerPC CPUs capable of running six simultaneous threads in hardware.

Zelda

One of Nintendo's most popular game series. Zelda always centers around an action/adventure style of play in different fantasy worlds. The main characters in the series are Link, an elven heroe (the player), and Zelda, a princess who is, most often an intricale part of the plot. Zelda's appeal and history have made it a best-selling series throughout Japan and the United States.


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