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Feature: 'The Process'

In today's main Gamasutra feature, game programmer Ola Olsson, who has worked on major console titles including Ty The Tasmanian Tiger, goes into detail about "The...
In today's main Gamasutra feature, game programmer Ola Olsson, who has worked on major console titles including Ty The Tasmanian Tiger, goes into detail about "The Process", his methodology to better improve efficiencies in the development pipeline within a large team environment, specifically to better coordinate between programmers and artists. In the introduction to his feature, Olsson explains: "Since the programmers have to build the source before checking it in, they have to prevent anyone else from checking source in while they are building. This means they have to lock out all other programmers who then will have to queue for their turn to lock everything. Building and checking that it all works can take some time, having to wait an entire day just to check in some files has been reported. In the meantime, of course, the programmer waiting won't just sit idle; he'll work on something else. Thus when it is finally his turn to check in he might be in the middle of something that isn't ready to check in… and so on. Meanwhile, the art department is subjected to whatever code was last checked in, and any mistake can spread in a matter of minutes. Needless to say these problems usually are the worst at the most inconvenient time possible: near milestones. Fortunately this is not a necessary evil, and a little bit of care and thought can take care of most of the bad effects." You can now read the full Gamasutra feature on the subject (no registration required, please feel free to link to the article from external websites).

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