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Spiderweb Games: Now Officially Studied by Academia


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In the course of a random google, I just stumbled on the schedule for the "Introduction to Game Development" course given by Cornell University's Game Design Initiative:

 

http://www.cs.cornell.edu/Courses/cs3152/2016sp/index.php

 

Avernum series components appear three times in the reading list, way more than any other franchise. The lecture PDFs are also available and you can see Blades of Avernum and Avernum 6 being discussed alongside Braid, Dawn of War 2 and Super Mario Bros. I've only looked at a few, but it looks like Spiderweb properties actually show up in lectures where they aren't assigned reading, too -- Geneforge 5 popped up in one.

 

Also, one of the professors is Professor White -- no relation to Richard White, presumably.

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Considering that Spiderweb games are small group designed compared to AAA game company huge staff, it makes it easier to use as examples for small groups in a class on a limited creation time. Simple graphics, basic game engine, text files, and not that labor intensive so students can see how the parts fit together. I can see how they make examples of a game type that students can follow especially a game editor.

 

I wonder if they are required to buy Blades of Avernum since that was used instead of the freeware Exile version?

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The Avernum/Exile games provide the perfect "core sample" of its genre - essentially the same game made again and again with the same developer as time and the industry evolves. It's not just an approachable scale of game, it's a pertinent and interesting sample of gaming history with minimized variables.

 

A good entry point, both technically and academically.

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Um, one of their examples is Bahssikava. In lecture 14, where they mention the BoA editor, the BoA example slide in the pdf is a screenshot from Bahssikava, town 4.

 

I always wanted something that I made to be forced upon unwilling college students, and now it is!

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Um, one of their examples is Bahssikava. In lecture 14, where they mention the BoA editor, the BoA example slide in the pdf is a screenshot from Bahssikava, town 4.

 

I always wanted something that I made to be forced upon unwilling college students, and now it is!

 

Terror's Martyr would demand boycotts! :p

 

(sorry, couldn't resist)

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