The kids are always drawing characters and writing, and I was wondering – could we use this to make a game together?
It turns out, we can.
I’d guess in about 30 hours, we’ve put together a small world where:
The player can wander around our world
The kids have both drawn characters that appear in the game
My 7 year old has designed a couple of maps
Together with my 7 year old, we have written some dialogue
I figured out how to build out some simple logic, connecting scenes
First, I looked into various game making tools. I ended up using Stencyl, the first one I tried. I checked it out first because the free version is limited only in that it only allows you to publish your game to the web (as opposed to desktop or mobile versions), and, for me, a big bonus was that it runs in Linux.
I was really impressed, and would recommend it to anyone thinking of doing something similar. There is a small library of assets you can use in your game, adding logic is similar to logic blocks in Scratch.
Other small things – usually when I create something, with a little searching, I can usually find answers pretty easily on Stack Exchange. I found it harder to find answers my issues with Stencyl, and spent more time trying different things – I think, largely due to a smaller development community
It wasn’t until we started that I realized how much effort is required to put together the artwork for a game. It is one thing to scan in a drawing of a character, but another to create drawings of the character from every perspective, such that it is animated as it walks across the screen.
My 7 year old recently acquired a fish bowl with a betta fish.
Apparently, the PLA plastic used in 3D printers doesn’t degrade significantly in a fish tank, so I started looking for aquarium decorations we could print. And I came across a design for a fish feeder: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1257953
I started modifying it to accommodate our fish bowls. She asked to help out, so I suggested she do a sketch of her design.
Her design has a timer, and uses a suction cup to attach the feeder to the bowl. I was skeptical, but she found a suction cup and demonstrated it would stick to the curved wall of the bowl.
I then set her up with Tinkercad. Here’s the 3D model she made of her design:
Our fish feeder is still a work in progress, we’ll post pictures of our project when it is complete.
My personal brain dump, Opinions, Projects, Toronto