Game Development Reference
developers familiar with the application and technology utilized? Less familiarity
generates more risk because now the developers have to conduct additional
research to build the final product and support it. How large is the project? Larger
projects also generate more risk, due to the extensive scope that must be managed
through development. What will be the development and operating costs? Do the
costs of managing this project outweigh the benefits of the expected outcome? All
of these factors must be addressed before development can continue to the next
If the project is evaluated and developers are given the go-ahead, the resultant
deliverable of this phase is a project plan that describes how the project team will
go about developing the product. The project plan is composed of a technical
brief, business rules, development requirements, milestones, deliverables, budget,
and quality assurance procedures. This deliverable is given to the development
team for design and implementation.
The second phase of the development life cycle answers the questions of what the
product will do, who will use the product, and when and where the product will
be used. During this phase, the project team develops a concept for the new prod-
uct. If a product already exists, then the project team identifies areas to improve
on the existing design.
The project team sets out on an information-gathering process, where the main
users of the product are interviewed or fill out a questionnaire. The analysis of this
information, in conjunction with input from the project sponsor and project team
managers, leads to a concept for the new product. The product concept is then
used as a guide to produce a set of business analysis models that identifies how the
product will be used within the company.
The analysis, product concept, and models are combined into a deliverable called
the product proposal, which contains a high-level initial design.
After the strategic decisions have been made in the previous two phases, the design
phase determines how the product will operate in terms of hardware, software,
and network infrastructure. Several specifications are created that detail the vari-
ous components of the product.