The objective of this guide is to author an interactive DVD game typically found
as one of the bonus features on commercial DVD titles. The DVD game is designed
to show a player a random list of multiple-choice questions so that he or she can
choose the answer and pressing Enter from the remote control. The player may choose
any question displayed on the screen with the arrow keys on the remote control,
not just the one being highlighted. There is a timeout limit for each question
asked. If the player is not able to choose an answer within the specified time
limit or if an incorrect answer is given, some sort of penalties will be given.
The DVD game keeps track of the number of correct and incorrect answers from the
player. It usually shows some short video or audio clips with the appropriate
display messages to inform the player whether a correct choice has been made.
Depending upon the number of correct answers, the DVD game may advance to a
different level with more difficult choices or the player is announced as the
winner of the game. The winner is rewarded with a final score or is given access
to a hidden feature on the DVD disc. This type of game format is also used as
multiple choice quizzes for interactive training material.
Even though the requirements for such interactive game sound simple and
straightforward, the implementation of an interactive DVD game is not so simple
in the DVD environment due to many reasons, some of which are not so obvious:
The DVD specifications provide a specialized set of commands or instructions.
These commands are designed to navigate from one video title to another. The
commands are severely restricted for any other purposes. In other words, they are
not as flexible as those found on a typical general-purpose computer. The use of
these commands is tedious and foreign to most DVD authors without the programming
background and knowledge of the DVD environment.
To design an interactive commercial grade DVD game successfully, the DVD
author must have access to all features allowed by the DVD specifications.
Currently, Scenarist is the only commercial DVD authoring software package, which
supports this requirement, making it a very complex product. All other DVD
authoring packages are either template-driven or provide limited access to a
subset of features of the DVD specifications.
Even though Scenarist provides access to all features defined by the DVD
specifications with usage of virtual commands, its graphics user interface is not
intuitive to show the DVD author how to put all pieces of the game together.
Each multiple-choice question should be designed as a menu page in the title
domain. If the menu is designed as a typical menu in the title menu domain (VTSM),
the total size of all display menus is limited to 1GB (gigabytes). If the DVD game
has many menus with motion video background and multiple audio tracks, this limit
severely impacts the design of the project.
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