Thesis: Defended!

New Menu for RM.

On Monday, I successfully defended my Master’s thesis “Playing at History: Resurrection Man and Historiographic Game Design.” I feel especially accomplished considering that I prepared the power point just an hour before my presentation… which, you might think would lead to disastrous consequences. On the contrary, my words flowed very naturally and the overall structure was smooth– to the extent that I almost feel like I’ve become a “natural” at public speaking. In any case, I think that the lack of “hiccups” reinforced my familiarity with the research and design goals (as I should be, I’ve only been working on it all semester!) and made a positive impression on my committee and audience.

I’m quite proud of how the thesis defense version of Resurrection Man looks and plays. There’s still a few “kinks” but I hope to smooth them out with time and experience. I’ve definitely learned a lot and gained valuable skills– as well as a new appreciation for game designers and coders. Speaking of which, I owe many thanks to USC Computer Science & Engineering Ph.D. candidate J.J. Shepherd for his contributions to this project. The latest version will be available soon for download.

Tomorrow, I’m re-mixing my thesis defense presentation for USC’s Graduate Student Day–  only, I’ll have to be much more concise because I’m allotted 12 minutes to speak AND demo the prototype. I spent 18 minutes for my thesis defense. So there’s some trimming to be done that I’ll work on later tonight.

Overall, I’m pleased with how the semester is shaping up. I have a few reasons to feel pretty darn good about my academic accomplishments:

  • Resurrection Man is to be showcased at IndieBits, Columbia, SC’s independent game festival on April 15th.
  • I’ve defended my thesis; final version to be submitted to the graduate school by April 18th. From there, it’s all down hill…
  • I’m due to receive a Media Arts Award for Research on April 17th for contributions to USC’s Ghosts of the Horseshoe mobile application.
  • Last but not least: I’ve accepted a fully-funded offer to study in the graduate program in the Department of Telecommunications at Indiana University– a top tier school and program with impressive faculty and research.