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Arhan Bakan

trying to find a good subject for graduation project

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Hello there. I'm new to gamedev.net. My name is Arhan. I'm a senior student in Computer Science and I want to take a graduation project that would help me get better at any subject that is related to game development.

I'm doing some research on the internet to come up with a few ideas before my winter break ends. The possibilities are endless, but I need more opinion on what subject to choose, and more importantly, how to fill the subject in order to finish a satisfying project at the end of my two-semester, 9-month timetable.

I have one idea that might be appropriate for a graduation project and I'm explaining it below. Feel free to offer and explain more features for it.

  • A pathfinding program that supports multiple algorithms, multiple tile variations (tiles, hexagons, etc.), dynamic changes in the puzzle (sudden changes in obstacles) and reporting capabilities that can compare the algorithms by giving out statistics. All within a fine looking GUI.

    I'm listening to all the ideas I can get. Ideas different than the example above are welcome. I'm also thinking that I can try subjects like collision detection, procedural generation, subjects different than path-finding on artificial intelligence etc. Maybe something completely different.

    Thanks for your answers and suggestions.

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What topics interest you? Which ones would you prefer to work on? What do you have the most confidence in?

My advice is to make a list of ideas and then briefly break each of those ideas down. Figure out roughly how long you feel each idea would take to accomplish, double that, add a bit more time, and then see which ideas fit inside of your schedule.

In my personal experience and observation, people (including myself) tend to be far too optimistic when it comes to their abilities with regards to a fixed amount of time. Staying within a schedule and meeting a deadline is one of the most challenging things to learn how to do.

The key is you MUST maintain REALISTIC expectations. I would recommend starting with the most trivial sounding idea and then refine and improve that idea. Do not aim to do something super complicated or you will experience horrid failure or extreme stress.

So if your time frame is 9 months, I would recommend that you select a project that you would feel comfortable finishing (not developing) in 3-4 months. That way you have a large margin for error. This of course means that within the first 2 months you would be half way done. Within the first month you would be a quarter of the way done, ect. The reasoning is that the project is likely to balloon in scale when you start working on it. You are likely to uncover that things are a lot harder than you bargained for, and you will simply need the extra time. If you pick a project that you feel starting out will take nine months, you will surely find yourself far less than half way done at the 4.5 month mark!

NOTE: Finishing != Developing. You need to allocate time for the reports, presentation, code cleanup, documentation, ect. At a certain point (a month or two before the deadline) you really should be preparing your presentations, reports, documentation, ect and make sure everything has been wrapped up. Ideally you should work on these things as you go, but allocate time to make sure that everything is finished, working, and WELL TESTED before you go to present your work.

NOTE 2: Also if you are doing something truly "unique" keep in mind that no one will be able to really assist you if you get stuck. That means you are likely to run into significant and challanging problems that will require a lot of work to overcome. Plan on at least a few of those during your project and make sure you budget time accordingly. Definitely plan for the worst and hope for the best. Do not plan for the best, and think the worst can not happen because you are the best! Edited by shadowisadog

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Thank you, shadowisadog. This was a good read. I will have time to discuss the things you mentioned with my advisor, and will surely do so.

Still looking for more suggestions on ideas for a subject, and more advice. smile.png

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