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Member Since 27 Oct 2009
Online Last Active Today, 02:22 AM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Should I buy a console if teaching this stuff?

15 October 2016 - 02:20 PM

Of course (as I just wrote) I appreciate games as an art form (to the degree that some have good art. Most have bad art, just like in the art world proper). But playing games cannot be compared to the value of reading books (in general). That's absurd.


Im interested in the two parts of this statement. The first thing is you refer to games as an art form but then in brackets only refer to the "art". Are you referring to only art in this case or are you using the word art to refer to everything within a game? Your sentence sounds like the former but it would be quite bizarre if it was.


The second part then what value are you referring to. As entertainment, art form, learning, experience? There are a lot of arguments that could be made on both sides but it really depends what you mean.

In Topic: Best sequencing/format for a game development course?

24 April 2016 - 12:42 PM

I hear what you guys are saying, and believe me when I tell you I want to teach as much art and as little technical stuff as possible. But I'm confused.


Several of you keep saying that I am being too ambitious; that there will not be enough time for me to learn Game Maker and teach the students to make a video game with it. And yet, other teachers are doing it all the time. I suppose the main difference is that they are probably sitting their students down on day one and having them start learning software and making things with it. Perhaps they are spending two weeks max on table top games. But then they probably run their course in a vocational style, i.e. sitting in front of a screen everyday and working with a program to build something. That would bore me to tears, and I can tell you most of my students (other than the computer geeks) would also dislike it.


The difference with me is that I want to have multiple units rather than build up the components of a game to a final impressive product. I want to have a course where students get a little bit of exposure to various aspects of the industry, with an emphasis on aesthetics. I won't drop the first unit because it covers important principles, it will be fun and it will be relatively easy to teach. Plus its a good hook for the students. I have to do character design because I want them making art on paper. Several of you say 3d is too hard but the Ploor book covers making a character in Blender and I know teachers regularly incorporate 3d modeling and it doesn't take years to learn. I have to have them make a video game, though by all means I would prefer having them just get set up in Gamestar mechanic where the program does most of the work for you, but I want my course to be competitive with similar courses, so I don't want students shortchanged.


I definitely don't want to get in over my head, but it sounds like kseh is supporting my course outline.

Im interested in something. You keep mentioned these other teachers and was wondering could you provide links to either the the courses they are running or some of the work that the students are making as a result of these courses. Also what are the backgrounds of these other teachers. Are they maths/art/other teacher who decided to do this or do they come from the games/software industry to teach. Are they big gamers, programmers, artists or multi talented. How long did they spend preparing before starting their respective courses? 


I think the answer to some of those questions might give people here a better perspective on your side of things and how you think this course is run by the other teachers as you have mentioned them a number of times.

In Topic: Looking for ideas on how to teach Game Design in a high school

07 April 2016 - 10:08 AM

Sorry yes, she used her maiden name when it came out.

In Topic: Looking for ideas on how to teach Game Design in a high school

07 April 2016 - 04:50 AM

A fairly simple suggestion but it might help is the book "Challenges for Game Designers" by Brenda Romero. It teaches a lot of the basic concepts of game design in interesting ways and has a lot of challenges to try out these concepts. These are usually pen and paper/board games but the ideas can be easily applied to video games as well. I did a number of workshops with Brenda where she ran some of these challenges in groups and they were very fun and interesting and could translate well to a classroom environment. Certainly for some of the early weeks in your class anyway.

In Topic: Sports Simulation Noob

05 January 2016 - 05:08 AM

While learning to program you can also start planning out the formulas and probabilities used in the simulation. Just do it on paper or like Buster said in excel. When I was planning out my basketball manager game I made a simple board game version during the early planning phases. It was a turn based game using dice to decide actions. It was simple but helped a lot in figuring out what would be needed in the simulation later and what factored into the result of an action. For example shooting uses the shooting ability, near by defenders ability, distance to the basket, are they using catch and shoot or dribbling first etc.... These are all things you can look at now.