If I Can Do it, So Can You

Hold your arrow keys to move and Space to jump!



Screenshot of bouncing planets

Screenshot of bouncing planets

I will admit that at first I did have a few trepidations about attending GMU meetings. They mainly revolved around the facts that I didn’t think I had enough time to commit to it weekly, wasn’t sure it was something  I was even interested in, and I am a fashion design student that actually knows nothing about video games much less making them. But the boys were such a welcoming and patient crowd that the club quickly became a highlight of my week – Matthew’s terrible puns and all. They made me feel like I belonged there and were all more than happy to teach me the basics. Over the past few months I would say that I’ve learned a lot.

Thanks to Jordan I now know how to make a 3D Romulan spaceship a la Star Trek movie reboot using Maya (though I will also admit that it was an accident that I may or may not be able to duplicate). He also taught me some basic Photoshop, and the basics of Unity. Thanks to Ian, Zack, and Dante I know how to make an if statement in C#. And thanks to Matthew and his terrible puns and extensive knowledge of old video games I was entertained.

I originally signed on as an artist but over the past couple months have begun to branch out into coding. I’ve also begun coming up with ideas and plans for game projects of my own. The first one being Bouncing Planets, a game inspired by the Bounce physics material that Unity 3D comes with. Ian helped me start coding it over Easter and since then we’ve been working off and on until last night when we finally got it to a point where I’m happy to call it finished.

The thing I love about designing games is that I can make up the rules. Sure there are a lot of things that I have no idea how to do, and quite a few that are just so far over my head, but as Ryan Henson Creighton pointed out at this year’s Checkpoint, I have a magic box that I can type anything into and it will tell me exactly how to write a few lines of code that will do exactly what I want. And I’m confident in the fact that as I keep experimenting and playing around with it, I will begin to remember more and it will come easier to me.

Now that Bouncing Planets is finished, I will be moving on to my next game which is currently

Concept art of dragon in flight.

Concept art of dragon in flight.

codenamed Dragons until I can come up with something better. Dragons is another 2-D platformer because I’ve discovered that platformers are actually my favourite type of game to play. This one is a bigger project though. In it you play a young dragon who spends its time going around collecting princes and princesses from the different kingdoms as well as gold coins. Each noble child is worth 1000 points and the gold coins are 100 points each. The dragon also has to battle the knights and archers that it comes across in its travels as they are not too keen on the kidnapping of the heirs to their kingdoms. Currently I’m most amused by the drunken way I’ve designed the dragon flight. Most of the game the dragon spends walking around because it doesn’t know how to fly. With the help of a power up though I intend on making it so the dragon can fly but spends the whole time in flight hanging from its wings, tail swinging, looking down confusedly as if it can’t understand why the ground is no longer under its feet.

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