Archive for the ‘Video Game’ Category

Math for Video Game Developer Tutorial

Monday, August 12th, 2013

Cogswell students in physics class learning important math concepts

For those thinking about becoming a video game programmer, here’s a weekly instructional YouTube series that shows you how to use math to make your games. Every Thursday you’ll learn how to implement one game design, starting from the underlying mathematical concept and ending with its C++ implementation.

As part of Cogswell College’s Game Design & Development degree program, you have the opportunity to gain in-depth, hands-on experience learning and using both the math and physics you will need to enter the video game industry. Our curriculum focuses on giving you the fundamental skills and then applying them in a project-based educational environment.

Whether you are more interested in the art side or the engineering side of game, our degree program gives you the tools you need to be successful.

Small Game Developers Can Take on Goliath

Thursday, August 8th, 2013

Yes, small developers can take on Goliath but don’t expect to beat them if you play by Goliath’s rules. In an article by Chris Gray for Gamasutra, the author talks about his experience as a small developer and what you can learn from for four small developers (Supercell, Mojang, Imangi and Plague Inc.) who managed to out-maneuver the big guys each in their own way.

One interesting fact from the article – a political scientist named Ivan Arreguín-Toft looked at every war fought in the past two hundred years between strong and weak combatants. He found that when the underdogs acknowledged their weakness and chose an unconventional strategy, the “David’s” won in 63.6 percent of the cases. So, when underdogs choose not to play by Goliath’s rules, they win, even when everything we think we know about power says they shouldn’t.

Which strategy do you think will work best for you?

The Hidden Meaning Behind Doors in Video Games

Wednesday, August 7th, 2013

As a game designer, you’ve probably figured out that humans are pretty interesting creatures but we have a few idiosyncrasies both individually and collectively. Lots of these behavioral tendencies were ingrained in us back when we carried clubs and were still waiting for the magic of fire to warm our little toes.

In this fascinating article in Gamasutra by Dale Dobson, it turns out that the human mind has a reset button when it comes to walking through doorways or other portals. The piece goes on to examine how doors were used in several games (Zork I, Venture, Mystery Fun House, The Legend of Zelda, Resident Evil, Super Mario 64, Grand Theft Auto III, Shenmue, The Walking Dead episode 104, and the aptly named, Portal) and how our brains respond to each situation.

Dobson concludes the article, “Buried deep in our evolutionary history is a belief that opening a door moves us forward into new places and experiences, but our brains also tend to get a little bit lost when we do so. Game designs that recognize and accommodate these basic human needs and tendencies are more likely to provide rich and rewarding human experiences.”

How does a door or barrier in a game make you behave?

Game Studio Class Works with Prairie Rainbow Company

Wednesday, July 31st, 2013

This fall the Game Studio Class will roll up its collective sleeves, put on their thinking caps and create a ‘Rainbow Squares’ mobile and pc game for the Prairie Rainbow Company to help elementary school children learn math.

This Oakland California company is operated by George Gagnon, Pre-Engineering Partnerships Director at UC Berkeley and Michelle Collay, Director of the Urban Teacher Leadership program at Cal State East Bay. Prairie Rainbow develops board games and teacher and parent guides to help students learn math. The Rainbow Math Models are designed to engage tactile learners who need to build a physical model, image learners who need to create a representation of  a mental model, and language learners who need to hear, read, or write a number model. Rainbow Math Models are made of wood that is hand cut and painted by home crafts people in the Bay Area of California.

“We are looking forward to the opportunity to work with Rainbow Prairie Company to help them move in a new direction by designing a video game that suits the learning needs of their customers,” said Jerome Solomon, head of the Game Design & Development program at Cogswell. “One goal of our Game program is to offer students real-world learning opportunities. This partnership gives students the chance to not only design a math learning game but to test the prototype in local schools.”

This is a big step for Prairie Rainbow Company as it ventures into the realm of using video games to help children master important math and conceptualization skills. Cogswell College is pleased they chose to partner with us to develop this additional learning pathway for its customers.

You can enroll for the class now. Fall 2013 semester starts August 26.

From Zombies to Loving with Brendon Chung of Blendo Games

Friday, July 19th, 2013

Brendon Chung of Blendo Games, thinks that variety is the spice of life. Since each of his games are quite different in approach and focus, he lives this philosophy constantly in his professional life.

In this short video, Brendon discusses his game design creative process, how he learned to speed up the design work and also shares what software helped him get started.

What tools did you use when you were just starting to learn game design?

Reflections From a Level Designer on SimCity’s Edgewater Bay

Wednesday, July 17th, 2013

Cogswell alumnus, Kyle Brown, is a Level Designer on SimCity and was responsible for building the recently released map for Edgewater Bay. Kyle wrote a blog post for the company blog describing the process he used to create the world and some of the issues he encountered along the way.

Congratulations Kyle on a job well done!

Let us know if you have built something in Edgewater Bay.

What is 3D Modeling and What Does a 3D Modeler Do?

Wednesday, July 10th, 2013

Student artwork by Joe Giambrone

We think of these individuals as the work-horses of the industry. Every building, environment and character has first been touched by a 3D Modeler. Basically they create three-dimensional computer models and provide the ability to view the object or character from all angles.

While the general public tends to think of these jobs being mostly in the entertainment or creative industries – these skill sets are in demand in many fields including military, architecture, medical research and even chemical research scientist.

To learn more about the tools a 3D Modeler uses, check out the article in Wise Geek or to learn how to become a 3D Modeler, read through the learning opportunities on the Cogswell College website.

I Am A Gamer Event This Weekend

Monday, July 8th, 2013

Calling all gaming enthusiasts to join Cogswell alumnus, Tobiah Marks and Kenny Spade of Microsoft for a 48 hour “I Am A Gamer” Game Jam at the Microsoft BizSpark Lab.

I Am A Gamer is working to change the image of female protagonists in video games. Too often women characters in games are portrayed as weak and helpless or as the object of desire for the male characters.

The theme of this Game Jam is to, “make a game featuring awesome female protagonists.”

Since space is limited to 50 people, Game Jammers need to register through Eventbrite for the event that runs from 5:30PM on Friday, July 12 and ends at 9:00PM on Sunday July 14.

For more information about the event and some video suggestions to watch that help explain the issue, visit Facebook.

Where Did ET Go?

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

Following the popular Steven Spielberg movie, “ET,” Atari made a video game about the adventures of the lost, little alien. According to this report in Marketplace.org, it was among the worst video games ever and Atari purportedly buried its mistake in the New Mexico dessert.

Now a Canadian video game company, Fuel Entertainment, is attempting to locate it and dig it up. Watch this short video of the Marketplace report and a short gameplay video of the original Atari game.

Do you agree that the ET video game is one of the worst ever made?

Gamespot Reveals its Top Video Game Picks From E3 2013

Friday, June 21st, 2013

Now that the show is over, Gamespot staff put together their list of the 12 best-of-show games. The list includes Battlefield 4, Mario Kart 8, Forza Motorsport 5 and Watch Dogs.

Check out their reviews and let us know if you agree with their choices? Did your favorite make the list?