Brian K. Applegate

Pandamonium ~ From Anything Studios

About: Pandamonium is an exciting and humorous 4v4 multiplayer capture the flag game where zookeepers(the players) battle to see who can capture the most pandas. In this non-lethal FPS, players get to use tranq darts and explosive bean bags to suppress the opposing zookeepers. The game consists of two different game modes, featuring a vanilla CTF and a variant CTF mode, and two different maps. The variant builds upon the vanilla mode, and allows players to collect bamboo to trigger ‘Pandamonium’, an event that springs the game into a frenzy.

Development Info:
My Position: Producer
Development Length: 16 weeks | Shipped Oct. 2015
Team Size: 8 Developers
Weekly Work Hours Per Developer: 15 hours
Engine: Unreal Engine 4.8 | PC

My Role

Producer, Scrum Master

Responsibilities:

  • Created and maintained online wiki for most planning documents using Excel VBA
  • Planned, coordinated, and prioritized tasks with development team
  • Communicated details and dependencies of development for departments
  • Setup play-test sessions, both internally and externally
  • Generated level building tools in UE4 blueprint for level designers to build levels
  • Assisted all departments when needed; created all particle effects in UE4 particle editor, helped script menu system, HUD features and gameplay in UE4 blueprint

Documentation:

PandamoniumProductBacklogThis is the product backlog excel file I created and used for keeping track of tasks and features that needed to get worked on throughout development. This file connected to our online wiki to pull data from, which I then programmed to automatically fill cells in order to track development progress.

PandamoniumRiskPlanThis is the risk and resolution plan I created at the beginning of development and tracked/updated throughout development.

PandamoniumRiskPlanThis is the Asset Development Plan document that outlines our teams culture, goals, work flow, and other team information.

PandamoniumBuildReportsThis is a .zip file containing all build reports I authored for each of our milestones. Each build report included the milestone requirements, a release overview to show progress, and the top 5 risks in moving forward in development.

FAS_RetrospectivesThis is a .zip file containing sprint retrospectives performed after each milestone and our final post-mortem. I authored all retrospectives to include an overview of the development progress, the velocity of the team, reasons for variance in our estimations, what went well, what went wrong, and specific action items for the team to perform in the next sprint.

Mini Postmortem

What Went Right:

  • Kept the scope good, stuck to the plan during sprints, and made quick course adjustments after our sprint retrospectives
  • Worked as a team well by remaining professional, listening to each other, and trusting one another
  • Prioritized tasks appropriately throughout the project, adjusted to feedback quickly and efficiently, and adapted to iterations

What Went Wrong:

  • We did not playtest enough early on in development and many times when we did go to playtest the build, it was not in a play-testable state
  • LD and Art department had a hard time communicating the art style and the art asset list early in development
  • Code design for workflow was poor and caused many bottlenecks in trying to work

What We Learned:

  • Trusting each other and setting/managing expectations is what makes teams work really well together
  • Having confidence in the work each individual approaches is important
  • Wiki was good method for project tracking and keeping documentation

Gallery