University of Oulu

Coordination and communication inside game engine

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Author: Kukkamaa, Tuomas1
Organizations: 1University of Oulu, Faculty of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering, Department of Information Processing Science, Information Processing Science
Format: ebook
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 3.6 MB)
Pages: 76
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Language: English
Published: Oulu : T. Kukkamaa, 2014
Publish Date: 2015-02-09
Thesis type: Master's thesis
Tutor: Lappalainen, Jouni
Reviewer: Rajanen, Mikko
Lappalainen, Jouni


This study examines the communication and coordination among different parts of game engine. As games contain multiple co-operating processes, each of which handles a small part of whole game experience, game engines must handle the management of co-operation efficiently. The issue is that while the competitive and demanding game industry has hastened the development of game engines, the academic research has been lagging behind.

This study aims to bridge the gap between industrial know-how and academic research by studying how game engines handle managing the processes and data that they require. The study uses coordination paradigm as the research viewpoint and focuses on finding the coordination model used in game engines. The target of the study is to understand how the coordination model is implemented in game engines.

The study was conducted by following design science research, whereby both industrial know-how and academic literature are used in finding the coordination model and implementation method of it. The coordination model was first searched by studying existing models, but as those were proven inefficient in describing the overall theory, a new architectural theory was built. This new theory, called “Communication-oriented game engine architecture”, was then analysed against communication mechanisms used in open source game engines for verification.

The result of the analysis indicates that the theory proposed in this thesis explains the common features among analysed game engines. Since the proposed architecture is based on existing and well-known event-based communication mechanism, the theory behind proposed architecture can be used to understand the design of game engines in respect to the design of other software.

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Copyright information: © Tuomas Kukkamaa, 2014. This publication is copyrighted. You may download, display and print it for your own personal use. Commercial use is prohibited.