Computer Graphics Laboratory ETH Zurich


Game Programming Laboratory - SS09 - Course Notes

The project structure document can be found here:
- project structure '09

Below are a handful of potential game ideas. Feel free to use, combine, modify, change, etc. any of these ideas in order to design your own style of game. Be creative, it's fun!! Remember, the game need not be a classic "shoot everything that moves" type of game. It should feature one to three advanced graphics techniques that will form the technical basis of your work in the class.

  • A Worms-style game that incorporates more accurate physical simulations of rigid bodies, fluids, etc.
  • Demolition car derby, with the focus on deformable objects, plasticity, object-object interaction...
  • A virtual fantasy instrument game where instruments can be designed and played through the controller. Visualize the instrument and also the generated sound with 3D graphics. Use the DirectMusic midi interface for sound synthesis.
  • A "game" to convert 3D shape, color, texture and others into music. Shapes, colors, and textures should be created through controller input or, more advanced, by camera based vision.
  • Focus on physically correct sound rendering: you design different objects and bat them around to make real simulated sound. Different operations (hitting a can, breaking glass, etc.) could be sequenced together to form a song. Playback would include both the 3D graphics and the sound simulation.
  • Design a game where fire plays a key role. For instance, you have to light a fire, transport it while keeping it burning etc.
  • Butterfly: Write a game to collect butterflies and use advanced anisotropic pixel shaders for the wings.
  • Rivers: Write a game that uses fluid simulation to direct, control and create flows and rivers. The player must meet some goal, such as direct the river to avoid obstacles.
  • "Fluid-Lemmings" (or Flummings?!) Have a 2D fluid simulation streaming in somewhere, and leaving at another place. Somewhere else small fish or other creatures enter and have to be brought to an exit region. Those can be treated as particles in the fluid, just swimming along. The user can place obstacles or direct the fish to make them reach the exit. Inbetween all kinds of dangerous traps/monsters could be placed.
  • Game based on procedural design of buildings, cities, plants, etc. For example, design a city, and then play Godzilla as he smashes it apart. For plants, the user could design a garden by creating L-system rules. Once the plants, trees, flowers, etc. have been placed, the user could play as godzilla and smash them apart.
  • Game based on painting, using a real-time paint simulation.
  • Game focusing on face or body models: combine different people, attributes, etc. from a statistical model of face or body shape to create new characters. The characters could then interact with each other, or form the avatars for a card game like Texas holdem.
  • Other ideas: voice-driven UI for a game, crowd simulation, motion capture playback / adaptation, non-photorealistic rendering, video-input for gameplay, teaching (teach calculus in 3D), etc.