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Terms used in the Game Industry

Name Description
Animatic An animatic is defined as a series of images played in sequence, often with a soundtrack. In essence, it's an animated storyboard
3D Animation, (bones/joints based) 3D Animation based on bones/joints is a methode to animate characters and object with bones/joints attached to the mesh to deform parts of it
Animation Loop, Animation Loops is a method of animation for gameplay animation where the animation should repeat itself. This technique require lots of testing ingame, in order to makes it blend but at the same time interesting
Animator (Unity) The Animator of unity is a system that choose what animation to play within a character based of variables send by the program
Assets/Props A 3d object to be placed in a scene
Baking Precalculating data into (most of the time) a texture to free CPU and GPU calculation time when the game is running in real time.
Blueprint (Unreal Engine) Visual scripting tool for Unreal Engine. Usually not really optimized and sometimes in critical situations require to be converted to code.
Boxart The image used for the physical copy of a game. Designed in collaboration with the marketing team.
Bugs Something that nobody wants in a game, QA and Tester needs to track them down
Bones Bones are the elements attached to a mesh on a character or object to deform the mesh and make sure it move. The process of making the bones deforming the mesh is called Skinning.
C# (C sharp) Main Language used in UNITY. standardized in 2002, The C# is the evolution of the C++. Easier to handle and usually developers prefer using it as it’s more permissive.
C++ (Cpp) Main Language used in UNREAL, standardized in 1998, the C++ is the evolution of the C (1973), This language is harder to handle as it’s less advanced. But is also faster to execute than more advanced languages
Code review Development methode. Where a different developer reviews the code done. This method should be coupled with Functional Testing from the QA.
Compile/Recompile While Unity doesn't really require this (it’s happening in the background for a few seconds), Unreal based on an older language (C++) needs to recompile every time the code is modified. The bigger the project is, the longer it will take, and can take minutes.
Crashes Games that unexpectedly close during gameplay.
Debugging Making sure the game runs without bugs. QA are testing the game, reporting bugs and asking developers to debug their code.
FBX Standard File format used to transfer 3d assets between softwares. originally developed by Autodesk
Functional testing Functional testing is a quality assurance (QA) process and a type of black-box testing that bases its test cases on the specifications of the software component under test.
Game Deck Presentation of the major features and budget of the game, usually used for presentation to publishers
Game Engine software-development environment designed for people to build video games. Developers use game engines to construct games for consoles, mobile devices, and personal computers. Some developers have their own Game engine, but most of developers uses engines like Unreal or Unity
Garbage Collection Garbage collection is a necessary evil, it collects unused memory during the gameplay. Garbage collection is often a source of bugs and creates Memory leaks if not done properly.
GD (Game Design) This term is used for two actions: A GD is a person that does game design. But it can also refer to the action of doing game design. (See Game designer job, for more info)
GDD (Game design Document) Game Design Document is a highly descriptive living software design document of the design for a video game. A GDD is created and edited by the development team and it is primarily used in the video game industry to organize efforts within a development team.
High Poly Produced by softwares such as Z-Brush. Highpoly can’t be directly used in game, but is required to produce high quality models in game. To make them game ready, artists need to retopologize the mesh.
HLSL Shader Language used to communicate with the GPU (Graphic card). Usually a set of instructions to define how the light will bounce on a polygon.
HUD Short for Head-up display, is the UI visible in game. Usually represents the Healt, compass or other useful game features.
Import/Export Action to transfer data between softwares, Usually using FBX files.
Key Art High Quality rendering of 3d characters or environments. used mainly for commercial purposes by the marketing team.
LD (Level Design) This term is used for two actions: A LD is a person that does Level design. But it can also refer to the action of doing Level design. (See Level designer job, for more info)
Lighting Lights in games are typically created by the many different built-in light tools found in the game engine. One of those tools is the ability to bake lights on to the materials in order to save render time. This gives the illusion that light is being cast, but it's actually just the light baked onto the texture.
Lipsync Action that syncs the spoken dialogs.
LOD (level of details) In computer graphics, level of detail refers to the complexity of a 3D model representation. LOD can be decreased as the model moves away from the viewer or according to other metrics such as object importance, viewpoint-relative speed or position.
Low Poly
Material (in Unity)
Material (in Unreal)
Material Creation, Texturing.
Memory leaks. Memory leaks are a source of crashes, In the worst cases, it fills-up the memory to the point the system doesn't work.
Normals The direction of a polygon to indicate how the light bounces. A “Normal” texture can be used to modify the direction of the polygon per pixel instead of per triangles.
Polygones 4 or more Vertices in a 3d space to create a face. The smallest unit of a polygon is a triangle (Tri). Each polygon contains more data, such as the normal direction or the vertex color.
Polycount Amount of Triangles or Vertices inside a mesh or a scene. This is used to benchmark a scene and how heavy it can be. Triangles to display are limited to a certain amount per platform.
Porting Converting a game from the main platform to another platform.
Pair-programming Pair programming is a development technique in which two programmers work together at one workstation. One, the driver, writes code while the other, the observer or navigator, reviews each line of code as it is typed in. This method is often used for complex cases for finding quicker solutions.
Prefabs Is a group of mesh or code to be re-used in different zones.
Retop, Retopology Create optimized mesh based form Highpoly. Usually that method requires baking the normals into a texture and lowering the polycount.
Rig, Rigging
Root motion
Rubber ducking In programming, rubber duck debugging is a method of debugging code. The name is a reference to a story in the book The Pragmatic Programmer in which a programmer would carry around a rubber duck and debug their code by forcing themselves to explain it, line-by-line, to the duck.
Skin, Skinning
Storyboard A storyboard is a graphic organizer that consists of illustrations or images displayed in sequence for the purpose of pre-visualising a motion picture, animation, motion graphic or interactive media sequence
Technical Debt Technical debt is a concept in software development that reflects the implied cost of additional rework caused by choosing an easy solution now instead of using a better approach that would take longer
Tri (Triangles) Smallest unit for a polygon, 3D softwares use Polygons to optimize data, but the Graphic card can only calculate triangles, so these datas are converted.
UI User interface is the 2d overlay on top of the game, UI is handled to the options menu and/or the HUD.
White Boxes
terms.txt · Last modified: 2022/01/25 19:56 by Bruno Duarte Da Silva Monteiro