Polish Conference On
Computer Games Development
Gdańsk 6 - 8 SEPTEMBER 2013

WGK 2012 - conference materials

Below you will find videos of lectures that were performed during the conference. Additional materials provided by speakers are also included below.

Official opening
Karol Gasiński

Friday 13:00 - 14:00

Karol Gasiński opens the conference.

I wanna make computer games!

Friday 14:00 - 14:30

Game developer it is not only the job - it is a lifestyle. If you like challenges, if you like working with people or if you are crazy, then Game Developer is the right job for you! This talk will guide you how to prepare for it.

Smooth Operator: Programming the little things that games can't do without
Leszek Godlewski

Friday 14:00 - 15:00

Looking at the big picture, video games appear to be a kind of immensely intricate machinery. However, when up close, they are clearly made of many small and simple things that only create a smooth experience when working in harmony. A gameplay programmer must exhibit tremendous attention to detail that never becomes a game's killer feature, but is still necessary to make the game - whether indie or AAA - believable and enjoyable. In this talk I will discuss the need for smooth colour blends and organic movement, and the elementary techniques and their mathematics that get the job done, such as interpolation and noise. All of this from a gameplay programmer's point of view, as a series of case studies from our upcoming FPS game: The Adventurer.

Why should players always win?!
Bartosz Biniecki

Friday 14:30 - 15:00

Latest mobile games aimed for players tend to put less and less emphasis on the comlpexity and advanced structure of modes, rules, or instructions. Players don't want to read the tutorials and they still need to win. Even if they lose they need to hear that it was "almost good". I will try to define what a "casual game" is - based on the character image of the contemporary mobile players.

Designing efficient AI
Łukasz Purcelewski

Friday 15:20 - 16:20

While writing algorithms for artificial intelligence on must keep in mind not only its functionality, but also its performance. This is particularly important when our target platform are mobile devices with limited computational power. Purpose of this presentation is to present a selection of AI design solution in an optimal way in areas such as search path, communication between AI, cover system.

Using Intel Thread Buliding Blocks in designing and implementation of efficient game engine
Szymon Jabłoński

Friday 15:20 - 16:20

In preparation

AI Architecture: Behavior Trees
Michał Słapa

Friday 16:40 - 17:40

We will delve into issue of AI system architecture design in general, and in particular into one of the most popular AI systems family. Behavior Trees are hierarchical, easy to understand (not only for programmers), AI architecture. They are scalable and handle quite well with modeling of both, the low level control logic and the high level decision making systems. Behavior Trees by themselves will also be our starting point to look at few aspects of AI system architecture design in open context. I promise little theory, lots of practical issues and examples from existing games.

Fast Order-Independent Soft-Intersecting Particles Using Exponential Weighting
Krzysztof Kluczek (Politechnika Gdańska)

Friday 16:40 - 17:10

The article describes a method that can be used for particle rendering on any API and hardware with support for floating-point render target blending. The method presented utilizes blending to compute depth-weighted average of particle attributes to obtain not only order-independent rendering algorithm, but also give particles ability to intersect smoothly with each other, a property desirable when approximating volumetric effects. Because additive floating-point blending currently widely used for HDR lighting, the method proves to be fast on today's hardware.

Design patterns in small games
Piotr Iwanicki

Friday 17:10 - 17:40

Idea of design patterns is well known to software engineers, but in this lecture I present patterns for game designers. Design patters are reusable solutions to common problems in design. Small games on flash portals and mobile hits have many common features and use similar strategies to fight for users’ attention. In recent years there has been a rapid evolution on those markets and many effective patterns have emerged. I will present those patterns and show how they can be used in making original products. I will focus on small games but many of them are also applicable to larger games. Presentation is based on my own experience as a flash game developer and examples from flash portals and mobile market. It is intended for designers and independent game developers working alone or in small teams.

Detailed look at new specifications of OpenGL 4.3 and OpenGL ES 3.0.
Karol Gasiński

Saturday 09:20 - 10:20

During the lecture, participants will have the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the details of the latest graphics API OpenGL 4.3 and OpenGL ES 3.0. They will obtain knowledge about new features and learn real benefits coming from using them.

Using computers games in real business
Arkadiusz Cybulski

Saturday 09:20 - 10:20

Agenda The market of computer games, advergaming and gamification Gamification in the sample applications The examples of implementation in the Gamfi platform

From business (web)applications to (web)game dev. Testing and meeting expectations.
Michał Trzaskowski

Saturday 12:00 - 13:00

Continuation of last year's presentation regarding comparison of development process in business web application and rich web games. This time presentation will focus on aspect of testing and meeting expectations of user / gamer. Once more presentation will refer to AGILE practices and their adaptation (or criticism) in game dev. How to test your application properly and how do user expectations influence this process ? What are most common mistakes made during application testing ? What tools may be helpful ? Those and many more practical, businesslike examples coming from business and game world combined ! Michał Trzaskowski - Team leader and software architect with web interface specialization. I have participated in or lead several projects for big and medium sized companies from telecommunication, e-commerce and security sector. For 6 years now, me and my wife work in development tandem for TouK company (www.touk.pl). For more than 2 years we are running our own web game project made in old-school, space strategy fashion. In the past I have created or designed solutions for commonly used automatics. Nowadays my "spare time job" is related to web games and game community in general. Of course that is true only if my daughter hasn't got different opinion about what young dad should do in his spare time :)

NOT for real men only - gaming outside the core market
Maciej Siwek

Saturday 12:00 - 13:00

A short lecture about how titles for less hardcore players flourished on the video game market, and how casual city-states started appearing in the male-dominated empire of digital entertainment. Additionally, about how women also like to play, and that there are game genres that not many people heard about. And to finish off, a few words about the biggest Polish company creating these kind of games.

BlackBerry 10 - if you are serious about gaming
Łukasz Dzierżak, Aaron Ardiri

Saturday 15:20 - 16:20

Introduction to the BlackBerry 10 platform, development environments, developer resources, core libraries/technology available and the market opportunity for game developers. A number of AAA titles will be demonstrated to highlight that it is a platform not to be overlooked.

Character Animation Methods
Dorian Apanel

Saturday 16:40 - 17:10

Realism perception of computer games characters is a compositions of several factors. Apart from model quality, animation realism is very important. In this article, I will try to depict most popular methods of character animation, especially humanoid walk cycle. I will show advantages and disadvantages of motion blending, motion transitions, use of inverse kinematics and solutions based on physics libraries and artificial intelligence, known from games like GTA IV or Max Payne 3.

Gamer research – how to test a game properly and cheaply?
Stan Just

Saturday 16:40 - 17:40

Application debugging is the only QA activity for many game studios, whereas a lot more information about the game’s quality is available within the reach thanks to today’s technology. How to name a game? How our target (e.g. from USA) will react to our gameplay idea? Is our tutorial intuitive for e.g. women in their forties? You can get those (and more!) answers relatively easy and cost-effectively. Several simple marketing, usability and quality research models will be presented during this lecture. All of which are easy to understand and worth conducting even for small applications. I will present how to prepare them, conduct them and how much it costs. This will not be about debugging but the measure of game's quality before its release! Before you’ll consider your app the greatest of all time ask what other people think about it! I’ll hint you on some good questions for this.

Hardware tessellation techniques for smoothing and detailing 3D models
Karol Sobiesiak

Saturday 17:10 - 17:40

DirectX 11 and OpenGL 4 have introduced new rendering pipeline with highly anticipated tessellation. As time passes, more and more graphics engines are adapt to support this technology, so one cannot remain indifferent to it. In the following article overall concept behind tessellation will be presented, both from theoretical and practical sides. It will also include description of new rendering pipeline, along with dedicated tessellation shaders. The main part of the article will contain a description of the various techniques used to achieve effects such as smooth surfaces or displacement mapping, which allow for effective detailing three-dimensional models.

Augmented reality – when imagination inspires technology
Dariusz Żołna

Sunday 09:20 - 10:20

Augmented reality – when imagination inspires technology

Protection of the audiovisual effects of the computer games
Ireneusz Matusiak

Sunday 10:40 - 11:40

Recent decision of the Court of Justice points to new possibilities for the protection of the computer games regardless of the computer program controlling the game. A computer game can not be treated as a computer program, because the player does not receive computer program but audiovisual effects of this program in the form of the presentations on the screen.

Programmable Rendering Pipeline – Shader Development
Paweł Łapiński

Sunday 12:00 - 13:00

Real-time 3D computer graphics – especially games – from many years try to achieve visual appearance that is presented by movies and computer generated animations. One of the most important events of the last decade, that helped improve this visual quality, was introduction of hardware accelerated programmable rendering pipeline and possibility to use shader programs. When trying to develop 3D applications, using shaders not only allows us to easily achieve intended visual effects but can also improve graphics cards’ rendering process. In this presentation differences between traditional and programmable graphics pipeline will be discussed. Requirements, that need to be fulfilled by every type of shader, will also be presented. Some examples of different shader programs will be shown and - their development process and intended results will be discussed.

Emotion recognition based on facial expressions of gamers
Marcin Pilecki, Michael Suchacz, Karol Draszawka

Sunday 14:00 - 15:00

This article presents an approach to emotion recognition based on facial expressions of gamers. With application of certain methods crucial features of an analyzed face like eyebrows' shape, eyes and mouth width, height were extracted. Afterwards a group of artificial intelligence methods was applied to classify a given feature set as one of the following emotions: happiness, sadness, anger and fear. The approach presented in this paper was verified using specialized databases and real-life situations. The obtained results are vastly promising, thus further work on the subject should be continued.

Rotten like a Zombie - code quality in games
Michał Nowak, Techland

Sunday 14:00 - 14:30

Game developers are passionate people, who create brilliant things. So why the bad reputation that the code they write is bad? What is so interesting in making games that so many developers will be buried in the mud, rather than work in other industries. If you are concerned, why this is happening and where you should start to create good code, you will find the answer during this talk.

Generating irregular terrain mesh using tectonics processes.
Krzysztof Mieloszyk

Sunday 14:30 - 15:00

Game As A Culture's Text – A Humanistic Approach
Marta Tymińska

Sunday 15:20 - 16:20

Article summaries a humanistic approach in game studies. Starting from the concepts of Michail Bachtin, Roger Callois and Johan Huiziga, the basics for the theory of game studies are being analyzed. Two separate paradigms (narratological and ludological) and their consequences in research's outcome are being described. Terms such as: interactivity, ergodic character of games, immersion and avatar-gamer relation are defined and discussed. Finally, three concepts of video game analyzis are being explained (Jull's, Aerseth's and Konzack's). The article is an attempt to share, often considered as hermetic, a humianistic approach towards games and gaming.

Presentation of the Capabilities of the GRACE2 Engine Case Study: Porting “Rune Twister”
Łukasz Łukasik, Filip Pierściński

Sunday 15:20 - 16:20

We are going to demonstrate the capabilities of our engine in the process of porting video games which were originally created using different frameworks. For the purposes of the presentation, we have selected “Rune Twister” as our case study. We will be discussing various aspects of the process, such as rendering, audio support, network support, input, and file system. We are also going to show you the subsequent stages of the porting process, and conclude that part of the presentation by launching the game both from a desktop environment and on a mobile platform. Additionally, we will discuss the methods and rules to be observed when designing multi-platform projects. Further, we are going to introduce a selection of games created using the GRACE2 engine.

Development of cooperative adventure games using HTML 5
Mariusz Szwoch, Andrzej Fałkowski, Paweł Pieniążek

Sunday 16:40 - 17:40

In this paper an original concept of cooperative adventure games is presented. This concept assumes possibility of playing the game on personal computer and mobile platforms by one or several players controlling the main characters of game. Finishing of each game’s episode is possible only in case of cooperation of these characters, each of them having individual skills. The proposed concept allows for playing particular levels, or adventures, using different characters and also by different players. In order to practically verify this concept, prototype engine for adventure games has been created based on HTML 5 and Java Script. This engine allows for managing and visualization of scene consisting of several planes that contain static object, dynamic actors and other control elements such as triggers, movement paths etc. A special scene editor allows for effective, visual creation of game levels. Basing on game engine several playable levels of “Treasures of Veneta” adventure game has been created. The action is located in ThreeCity, and the story concerns searching of a treasure hidden for almost one thousand years.

The use of graphs algorithms in the analysis of game designs
Damian Kobiałka

Sunday 16:40 - 17:10

Article introduces the general concept of the use of of graphs algorithms in the analysis game designs. In the introduction is presented the idea of design patterns in this process. Described in details the algorithm gSpan. At the end is presented of the practical results are presented the application of these processes on the example of a particular game and the consequent conclusions.

Level Design for beginners
Patryk Polewiak

Sunday 17:10 - 17:40

Fundamentals of Level Design. Who can become a Level Designer? What is the process of preparing the map? What in general is the Level Design and how changed under the influence of time?