Pixelles Week 1 Homework

adventures in gaming, indie, pixelles

Here is this week’s session summary and homework from Pixelles. I’m using the homework section towards the end of the post as a checklist and headers for discussion.

– Check out the games from our inspiration list – done, but not all 33 games. Some thoughts on the first three:

I wish I were the Moon: Was adorable. I loved the game mechanics and that “losing” was a valid ending also (for the sense of completion). I’m trying to find the last two endings!

I Can Hold My Breath Forever: I enjoyed the writing component to this game. The gameplay was relatively simple but fairly challenging – I had a lot of trouble navigating some of those tunnels. Somehow, there seemed to be a feeling of elegy to it – as if that friend were lost in some way, and the adorable little sprite in this game were chasing a memory. Very much enjoyed!

The Kingdom of Loathing: I knew going into KOL that I wouldn’t have time to play all of it for this week. Just the “What is KOL” section of the site had me in stitches. I enjoyed how the character descriptions changed when the gender of the character was changed. Earning the right to play using adventure points is interesting. Oh, and meat as money makes perfect sense. I’m a tabletop gamer, so this was fun. I’ll have to play this again.

– Have a look at the games girls have made in another incubator to get an idea of what level of game you can expect to make.

Done – I did this as soon as I heard about the Pixelles Incubator.

– Install GameMaker Studio (Windows only) or Stencyl (OSX/Windows)

I did this and better – I am also taking a tour of Unity, but I think that I’ll probably stay with Stencyl or GameMaker for the purpose of actually making my game for the Incubator.

– Do some of the tutorials in either Stencyl or GameMaker to get a better idea of how the tool works. You can find Stencyl’s tutorials here. Gamemaker’s tutorials are built right into the program.

I did Crash Course 1 in Stencyl and it is a fairly intuitive tool. I made a game with pits, of course, instead of a regular level. I’m excited to play with making sprites.
Crash Course 2, which I also did, is making a game using resources that already exist in the program. I used my own animations. The game logic is very time-consuming but manageable. I don’t know if I would have known what to do on my own, especially in terms of limiting the movement of a character.

– Modify a template in Stencyl or Gamemaker. Change the template to make it “your own”, whether this is by changing the game mechanics, modifying gravity, adding more objects, change the player’s goal completely. Use this assignment to really explore Stencyl/GameMaker. You can find GameMaker’s examples just by clicking File->Open — there should be one called “treasure” and one called “street racer”.

I made my own game with simple graphics instead, using Stencyl’s crash course 2 tutorial. It’s called “Jeka Needs To Study” and you can play it. It’s nothing fancy, and doesn’t have a title screen, but it’s a beginning!

– Start conceptualizing your game: what kind of game you’d like it to be, what player’s goal will be, doodles, sketches

More on this later, I’m still working it out! Right now, the world seems full of possibility!

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