Day 7- Learning The Technology


This morning I thought I would tell you about the software programs which the Skins Aboriginal Video Game Workshop is using to create the game that is currently in the design and creation phase.

Adobe Photoshop, Plastic Gluon, Unity, Blender 3Dsoftware, and Reaper 64 are in themselves challenges to learn. In this video game workshop, they are presented by specialists comfortable working in each software. Everyone is given shortcut sheets for each software that has been prepared for them. In less than 35 hours, participants are introduced to all five software programs that will be used to design, build and organize their game. This is an amazing feat given the short amount of instruction time.

Developing video games is a personal choice with a serious learning experience learning new programs. When you do decide to challenge yourselves with this level of learning you will have to build in regular break times to just relax. Another trick is to do some paper prototyping for a change of technique to stretch your imagination, prototype and to explore game play options.

Adobe Photoshop, Plastic Gluon, Unity, Blender 3-D software, and Reaper 64 are programs which have a free 30-day trial download and can be used to create a games at home if you want to give them a try.

So what do these do? Photoshop is not only used to manipulate and restore photographs, it is also used in design, web creation and both 2-D and 3-D projects. Having an organized workflow is vital to keep everything in a file system that is very user friendly, and will store code, branches and huge binaries seamlessly.

Plastic Gluon is great for game design which is definitely a team sport where artists, programmers and sound engineers have different roles, different skills with programming code and art created in different interfaces, but with a common goal. Blender is a fantastic 3-D program that allows the artists/ programmers to create virtual three dimensional objects and characters, “skin” them, and rig them for movement.

Unity can be used to create any environments imaginable which can be realistic or imaginary with levels, sound, and atmosphere. It is the mecca for creating the game play arena. Of course a great game has to have sound, Reaper 64 is powerful and is used to create multi-leveled engineered soundscapes only limited by the imagination.

Even with this monumental learning experience, here at the workshop, it is extremely impressive to hear real laughter, and a growing camaraderie among the work teams and staff. Well done everyone.