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      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.
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Prepping for alpha release

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evanofsky

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I am getting ready for an alpha release soon, very basic, with one tutorial level and a level editor. So looking at installer options for XNA games, this WiX XNA installer appears to be the best choice. It's designed for SharpDevelop, and it creates an installer that checks for all the required libraries and even the required shader model. Unfortunately it's kind of a pain to set up. There's a massive XML file that needs a reference to every single file in your release.

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The good news is, SharpDevelop has a design utility that can generate all that for you, but it's still a little messed up. It creates one component per file, which then must be referenced by the main installation "feature". Features map to check boxes in the installer, allowing the user to install the game but not the level editor for example. With the help of Notepad++ and a few regular expressions, I can take the generated XML and turn it into component references, so the process is fairly quick. Now I just need to polish up the alpha. On a side note, I've learned that SharpDevelop is actually kinda slick.

Here's a video of me performing a speed run on a test level that demonstrates all of the moves in neat sequential order. Notice the nifty vaulting, wall-running, and swinging. It took me like 20 tries to nail this perfectly. I feel like that somehow validates this project's status as a video game at this point. rolleyes.gif

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Mirrored on my blog

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It looks really cool.

Just curious about the mechanic - how do you know when the game is going to create blocks under you or not? Like when you run across that hole towards the end rather than jumping?
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[offtop]What the song on the end of the clip?[/offtop]
Nice sounds in game!
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You hold down a button to create the blocks; you can only do that when there's a solid object (i.e. not player created) to build off of, within ten cells and lined up on one of the three axes. I'm trying to keep the game down to three buttons plus arrow keys: so far it's space for jump, vault, and swing, X for skill rolling and wall running, and Z for creating blocks underneath you.

The music is [url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zj-d4rvuRk8"]Red - Death of Me[/url]. They're coming out with a new album pretty soon here. :)
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