Game Development Reference
In-Depth Information
Pre-Game Operating Region
The Pre-Game region represents the period that precedes the use of the game. For
consoles, this would be the time prior to inserting the game disk. On PCs and mobile
phones this is the period in time before you start the game app. Cartridge-based hand-
helds may also have an operational mode prior to inserting the game cartridge. In
each of these cases, the user can change settings and do things with the device that
potentially impact the subsequent operation of your game.
Game Start Operating Region
The Game Start region accounts for operations that are performed from the time the
player starts the game until the time the game is actually ready to be played. Some
activities that take place during this time can be interrupted, such as cinematic
sequences that provide an introduction or highlights of the game's features. Other
activities, such as a screen displaying the “loading�? progress, cannot be accelerated or
interrupted. The game software also performs activities that are essential to the proper
operation of the game but are not visible to the player. At the very end of this process
the game may be in a “ready�? state, during which it is waiting for the player to hit a
button or key in order to enter the game.
In-Game Operating Region
The In-Game region covers all of things you could possibly do when playing the game.
Some functions can only be performed once during the course of the game, whereas
others can be repeated throughout the game. There are also functions that depend on
the player meeting some condition before they can occur. Games that incorporate
non-player characters (NPCs) also manage and control these resources during this
operating period.
Post-Game Operating Region
The player can end the game or a gaming session a number of ways. Quitting without
saving requires less processing than when saving. The player is often given the oppor-
tunity to save character data and progress before the game terminates itself. Games
played on portable devices can be ended by turning off the device. If the device's Off
switch is under software control, the game software can perform save and shutdown
operations prior to killing power.
Story-based games treat the user to a final cinematic sequence and roll credits when
users reach the end of the story. Some games unlock new experiences for the player
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