Game Development

Playing video games is fun, but developing games is epic! Not only that, but learning game development unlocks amazing career opportunities.

This is course teaches the basic principles of computer game development along with game coding skills. The course is practical and easy to follow; learners do not need to have previous coding knowledge – all they need to know is how to play video games!

 

What do I need to know before I start?

There are no special prerequisites for this course., but at the very least you should understand how to load and save files on the hard disk, and how to use the built-in operating system applications like Windows Explorer or Mac OS Finder to navigate a file system and directory structures and copy or move files and folders.
You should have some practice using text editors such as Notepad or TextEdit.
You should know how to use your web browser to find information on the Internet.

 

What will I learn?

 

The course covers the following modules:

Note: each module runs for a month at schools, and one lesson is completed in a single session.

[Bonus Games] These games are for our ‘bright spark” learners at our after-school classes who complete the lessons early. Bonus games are available to all elearning students.

 

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Module 1: Introduction

The games in this module will introduce the learner to the Scratch program and some basic principles of Game Development.

This is a simple game that teaches how to control game characters using the keyboard.

 

Module 2: Ghost Hunt

This game teaches how to use the mouse to control game characters. It also introduces computer-controlled movement; that is, characters that are controlled by the computer, and not by a human.

 

Module 3: Traffic

This game combines the concepts learned in the sections above to create an exciting and engaging video game that is similar to the old arcade classic, Frogger. The object of the game is for a cat to cross the road, avoid speeding vehicles.

 

Module 4: Cheese Puffs

Having created simple games, learners will now create games that involve a little more complex motion which require more specialized algorithms.

This game introduces the topic of restricted movement; that is, where a character is not allowed to access certain parts of the screen. It also introduces other important concepts like a countdown timer and generating random numbers. The object of the game is for a mouse (user controlled) to navigate through a maze, eat all the cheese puffs in the maze, and then exit the maze within 1 minute.

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Module 5: Duck Hunt

This game introduces the concept of parabolic movement (think: upside-down U). Ducks fly across the screen in a curving motion, and the object of the game is to shoot down as many ducks as possible within a specific amount of time. No ducks will be harmed in the making of this game!

 

Module 6: Space Invaders

No game is complete without sound! From background music to awesome sound effects, sound adds a new dimension to any game. We introduce sound in the games created during this module.

This is a simplified remake of the arcade classic! All the fun and excitement of the original will be recreated by kids during this module. The game is very complex, and introduces many new concepts, such as synchronised movement (all the invaders move together), projectiles (bullets fly!) and sound effects.

 

Module 7: Light Cycle

This is a 2-player game that is based on the Light Cycle game from the movie Tron. Learners will be taught how to build a 2-player game and compete with one another on the vicious Light Cycle track.

 

Module 8: Bouncer

What goes up, must come down. In the real world we are bound by the laws of physics, like gravity. In the game universe, we can make things more engaging and realistic by mimicking these laws. The games in this module introduce the concept of gravity to the learner, as well as algorithms that enable us to mimic gravity.

This game introduces the concept of multiple movements; that is, a character does multiple different movements at the same time. Think of a ball rolling: it moves forward, but is also spinning on its axis as it does so. We also introduce the concept of gravity – a character jumps up, slows down, stops and then accelerates towards the ground. The object of the game is for a cat to avoid approaching footballs by jumping over them.

 

Module 9: Arkanoid

Things aren’t always what they seem! What seems like a simple ball bouncing all over the screen, is actually a very complex movement, driven by fairly complex algorithms. In this module we introduce the concept of Bounce Motion by recreating two arcade classics.

This game takes the concept of bounce motion and applies it to create a fun and engaging remake of the arcade classic.

 

Module 10: Space Nemesis

Side-scroller games defined gaming in the 80’s and 90’s, until 3D gaming came on the scene. In this module learners will build games that will require them to add backgrounds that are not static, but continuously and endlessly moving from one side of the screen to another.

This game uses the concept of side scrolling to create a space adventure game where the user controls a space ship that flies continuously across the screen, collecting rewards and shooting down alien crafts in the process. At the end of the game, the user encounters an intimidating “boss” alien.

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