One of my loves in life is clean and efficient documentation. Unfortunately, much of the documentation I wrote in a professional capacity are the confidential property of my employer. Here are some examples of technical writing I created for school and side projects.

Table of Contents

Game Design Document

This is the game design document for Son of Ithaca, created early April 2007. As the game designer for this project, I was the primary author of this document, writing chapters 1 (game design, controls, camera, HUD, etc.), 2 (game world, pacing, mood), and 3 (game entities, npcs, enemies). One thing I have become increasingly conscientious of is inconsistent formatting for documents. When writing this, I was particularly diligent when merging documents from the other disciplines to ensure that the final document used the same styles from the title page all the way to the last appendix.

Miscelaneous Documentation

This is a collection of other documentation I created in the process of working on Son of Ithaca. Most of this was so created so a programmer has a reference to look at while coding functionality. This file contains:

  • Full script of game dialog for cut scenes
  • List of particle effects needed with descriptions
  • List of sound effects needed with descriptions
  • Chart of enemy hit points and attack damage
  • Chart listing player attacks, along with various parameters
  • Graph of player attack chains
Concept Document

Before the game project started, the idea of the game was pitched in this concept document. The original concept, titled "Telemachus Rising," pretty much evolved directly into the current game. I authored the entirety of this document during December of 2006.

Game Design Document

I worked as a chief drafter of the game design sections of this document. Through team brain storming, I came up with the concept to bridge the gameplay hooks of steam punk theme with onslaught-style team deathmatch. The document as a whole was a group project, but most of the text in chapters 1-4 were under my care.

Westmines Level Design Document

My primary role during the course of the Steam Warfare project was that of level designer, so I had an entire level to create for the duration of the porject. This document describes the level I created, The Westmines, which was designed to be the "first" level in terms of complexity and progression. Part of this also revolved around scoping the scale of the level very small and creating very specific multiplayer gameplay scenarios.

Concept Document

Flight of Twilight is a project that I started to create a visual novel game that I am serving as the primary author and game designer for. Currently the game is being developed with the amateur game creation circle Mystery Parfait. The concept document gives a pretty quick glance at what the game aims to be, its setting and general plot overview without revealing any spoilers about the plot.

Clannad Deconstruction

As part of the Flight of Twilight project, I created a deconstruction of the Japanese visual novel game Clannad to provide a detailed and graphical explanation of what a visual novel game looks and plays like. Because of the simplistic nature of visual novel games, this is a relatively short document, yet very thorough. Clannad is copyright 2004, Key/VisualArt's.

The Brawler class

The Brawler is a base class I created for use with the Dungeons and Dragons 3.5 role playing system. This class was created specifically to address the idea of representing several unarmed, unarmored primary fighters that don't thematically fit under the blanket of "monks." This includes such characters as street fighters and grapplers. The class also attempted to provide mechanics to make grappling an opponent a viable method of combat, which wasn't the case in 3.5 core rules. Unfortunately, this didn't serve to make grappling any less complicated.

The Shipyard Level Design Document

This document was prepared for my single player level The Shipyard. The document shows how I tried specifically to fit the level thematically within the Quake 4 universe and used maps on areas that overlap each other in the vertical dimension.

Copyright 2007 Zach Francks and the Guildhall at SMU. All rights reserved.