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Version Management for Games Developers. Practical considerations and Codeline Management


Sven Erik Knop (Perforce Software UK Ltd)
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Version control is an essential tool for any kind of software development and increasingly hardware development as well. But video game development is different compared to most other software projects. The majority of files involved are binary files that cannot be merged - and these files tend to be very large as well. Many game development projects grow to Terabytes, and the upcoming 4K games for consoles and PC will quadruple the amount of assets again. On the other hand there is a strong tendency by the technical leads and QA team to demand a single repository for all files that go into a game - a Single Source of Truth. A Single Source of Truth avoids the pitfalls of mismatched check-ins from different silos of data. Such a repository also simplifies the inevitable search for the one check-in that broke the latest build. Ideally such a repository should also be distributed to allow multiple development sites to work on the same project if required - according to large games developers like EA it is not possible anymore to find all the talent required in a single place. This presentation introduces same basic concepts of version management, some specific requirements for game development and some techniques taken from real development on how these requirements are met.
Audience adressed: 
Developers Artists Team leads Build masters

Increased awareness of what problem version management addresses
Different techniques on how to address some common issues
The importance of milestone branches

Why Perforce Helix is the standard versioning tool in the video games industry.

Session Type: 
Experience level adressed: 

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