Monday, December 3, 2012


This week, we held our last meeting of the semester. Our next meeting will be sometime in January, and we'll send an email out on our mailing list about it as we get closer to that date.

During this week's meeting, Jordan Wallet showed us the game Blockland, which is a semi-popular game that tries to be Lego in video game form. Jordan originally got into programming because of this game's amazingly easy modding features.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012


Once again, the GameDev Club is teaming up with the IEEE club to hold a game night! There will be food, and everyone is encouraged to bring their own games, snacks, TVs, computers, etc.
  • When: Friday, November 30, starting at 5:30pm until midnight.
  • Where: Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) building, room 105 (map below)

Important Info

  1. Please RSVP using this form: http://bit.ly/uagamenight.
  2. You can park for free in the parking lot by the ECE building (lot #3039) after 5:00pm.
  3. To drive to the Parking lot, you'll most likely have to get to 2nd St from Mountain Ave, because Park Ave is closed due to construction (see map below).
  4. The doors for the building, as well as the elevator, close at around 6pm, so call the IEEE room at 520-626-7324 if you're locked out. It's best to add that number to your contacts, just in case.
  5. In order to get to the bottom floor of the ECE building, please only use the South stairwell door, which will be left open.
  6. While we've never had any incidents before, the clubs are not responsible for damaged, lost, or stolen valuables. It's generally good practice to label your things to make sure they don't get mixed up.
  7. In accordance to university policy, no alcohol, firearms, or weapons will be allowed.

University Map

Below is a map of where the ECE building is. To view the map in another window, click here.



View Larger Map

Questions

If you have any questions, send an email to Robbie, the chair of the IEEE, at laityr@email.arizona.edu, or to Livio, the president of the GameDev Club, at ldelac01@email.arizona.edu.

Remember that Livio won't be at the game night this Friday because he'll be in Seattle interviewing with Microsoft, so you should direct any urgent questions to Robbie.

Monday, November 26, 2012


This week, Livio and Zuoming gave a postmortem-style talk about Magnet Ball, the two player game that they've been working on this semester.

Some of the things that went right for the project include: a successful rapid prototyping phase early in the semester, a consistent reliance on playtesting to assess design decisions, and a very resilient and dedicated team that was able to keep working on this side project through all of the roadblocks they faced.

Some of the major challenges they faced included: managing a team that was too large for the project, the fact that the project was restarted about two-thirds of the way through, and difficulties with establishing a good preproduction phase.

Magnet Ball is a two player game, where each player uses their attraction/repulsion powers to redirect blocks into goals in order to score points. Click here to play Magnet Ball.

Game Credits:

Tyler May - Producer
Livio De La Cruz - Game Design, Programming
Zuoming Shi - Game Design, Programming
Ami Pribadi - Art, Animations
Pooria Rashidi - Stadium Art
Scott McGowan - Music, Sound Effects
Logan Barnes - Music, Sound Effects
Teresa Frazier - Programming, Java Prototyping

Monday, November 19, 2012


We didn't meet last week because of veterans day, but this week Dave Fei gave a really good presentation on cutscenes, quick time events, and similar devices. We didn't think the presentation would take more than 10-15 minutes, but we were able to maintain some pretty engaging discussions for a full hour about the design difficulties of balancing gameplay with story and other presentation-based elements.

Monday, November 5, 2012


During today's meeting, Dylan gave continued his talk from last week by talking about the strange design desicions behind Justine, the DLC for Amnesia. He then went on to talk about the place of story in game design.

The rest of our meeting was spent talking about the Games Developers Conference and sharing tips about applying for the CA position. Basically, Tyler's main advice was to remember that you're applying for a customer service position. In the application process, you only get 1500 characters to explain why you would make a CA, and talking about how great your game development skills are isn't going to be very relevant. What they want to see is that you're good with people and a dependable worker, but also why you really want to go to GDC in the first place.

We also talked about which passes are worth buying for the conference in case you don't win a CA position. For instance, the Student Pass ($75) is kinda a waste of money because that day is so crowded that you can't really make much use of it. The Expo Pass is what I got last year ($200) and it was pretty awesome and probably a really great choice for one's first trip to GDC.

Sunday, November 4, 2012


The local IEEE chapter is currently working on a project for the Electrical and Computer Engineering department. They're building two game cabinets to put around the ECE building that will feature projects created by students. The project is being led by Max Roth and other IEEE members, but we also have some GameDev members, such as Alex Burney, contributing to the project as well.

The goal of the project is to create a more visible representation of the ECE community in order to help attract new students. The first game to be featured on the cabinets will be Course Kombat, a version of M.U.G.E.N. that features a character for each professor at the ECE department.

Monday, October 29, 2012


Since Halloween is in just a few days, today Dylan gave a presentation on horror game design. He even dressed up a bit with something that made it look like he had a zombie-like wound on his neck, which was creepily partially hidden by his hair.

Next week, Dylan will be finishing the second half of his presentation, which focused more on story design rather than horror games. Dave has also volunteered to give a talk on cut scenes in games after Dylan's presentation is done.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012


Once again, the GameDev Club is teaming up with the IEEE club to hold a game night! There will be food, and everyone is encouraged to bring their own games, snacks, TVs, computers, etc.
  • When: Friday, October 26, starting at 5:30pm until midnight.
  • Where: Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) building, room 105 (map below)
In addition to all of the awesome games that we usually bring, we'll also be holding a playtesting session for one of the games that we've been developing in the club, Magnet Ball, which we intend to submit to the Independent Games Festival next week. Also, if you stick around until around 11pm, we'll likely start watching the latest Doctor Who episodes.

Important Info

  1. Please RSVP using this form: http://bit.ly/UAGameNight.
  2. You can park for free in the parking lot by the ECE building (lot #3039) after 5:00pm.
  3. To drive to the Parking lot, you'll most likely have to get to 2nd St from Park Ave, because the intersection of 2nd St with Mountain Ave is closed due to construction (see map below).
  4. The doors for the building, as well as the elevator, close at around 6pm, so call the IEEE room at 520-626-7324 if you're locked out. It's best to add that number to your contacts, just in case.
  5. In order to get to the bottom floor of the ECE building, please only use the South stairwell door, which will be left open.
  6. While we've never had any incidents before, the clubs are not responsible for damaged, lost, or stolen valuables. It's generally good practice to label your things to make sure they don't get mixed up.
  7. In accordance to university policy, no alcohol, firearms, or weapons will be allowed.

University Map

Below is a map of where the ECE building is. To view the map in another window, click here.



View Larger Map

Questions

If you have any questions, send an email to Robbie, the chair of the IEEE, at laityr@email.arizona.edu, or to Livio, the president of the GameDev Club, at ldelac01@email.arizona.edu.

Monday, October 22, 2012


During today's meeting, Patrick gave a talk introducing us to the XNA framework, which is a popular game development API that can be used with the C# programming language.

Next week will be our Halloween meeting, and Dylan will be giving a presentation about horror games.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Our video recording of this meeting will be uploaded soon!

Today, Livio gave two short talks. The first was an introduction into making your own sound effects. We talked about the sound effects generator bfxr, which is a Flash port of the Windows program called sfxr (and there's also a Mac port called cfxr). We also used Audacity to record sounds from a mic and manipulate them until they sounded professional.


The second talk was an introduction into programming for Flash. We talked about the display list and some basic ideas about how Flash works.

Next week, Patrick will be giving a talk about making games with XNA.

Monday, October 8, 2012

The video recording of this meeting will be posted soon!

This week, Livio gave an overview of game development tools, starting with the most accessible and simple tools, such as rapid prototyping and educational software, and then moving up towards more advanced topics, such as coding libraries and IDE's. Below are the slides used during the presentation, and they include links to everything mentioned:


Monday, October 1, 2012

The video recording of this meeting will be posted soon!

This week, Tyler Wallace gave a demonstration of how to use Unreal 3, the popular 3D game engine by Epic Games. Tyler has been working with Unreal for the past few months for his job, and this demo was an attempt to teach us what he had learned.

During the talk, we managed to run into a hilariously large amount of problems, and nothing seemed to go as smoothly as originally planned. We still had a good amount of fun though, and we still got a pretty good look at the engine.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The video recording of this meeting will be posted soon!

We started the meeting with project updates, where we displayed some really fun and creative prototypes that some of our members have made. The rest of the meeting was taken up by Livio's talk on Rapid Prototyping, which was also a surprisingly good explanation of design perspective and prototyping in general.

Monday, September 24, 2012


Once again, the GameDev Club is teaming up with the IEEE club to hold a game night! There will be food, and everyone is encouraged to bring their own games, snacks, TVs, computers, etc.
  • When: Friday, September 28th, starting at 5:30pm until midnight.
  • Where: Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) building, room 105 (map below)

Important Info

  1. Please RSVP using the form below (after the jump), or by clicking here.
  2. You can park for free in the parking lot by the ECE building (lot #3039) after 5:00pm.
  3. To drive to the Parking lot, you'll most likely have to get to 2nd St from Park Ave, because the intersection of 2nd St with Mountain Ave is closed due to construction (see map below).
  4. The doors for the building, as well as the elevator, close at around 6pm, so call the IEEE room at 520-626-7324 if you're locked out. It's best to add that number to your contacts, just in case.
  5. In order to get to the bottom floor of the ECE building, please only use the South stairwell door, which will be left open.
  6. While we've never had any incidents before, the clubs are not responsible for damaged, lost, or stolen valuables. It's generally good practice to label your things to make sure they don't get mixed up.
  7. In accordance to university policy, no alcohol, firearms, or weapons will be allowed.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Here's the recording of last week's meeting. I'm still surprised we managed to spend half the meeting discussing all of the news and upcoming events that were going on. The second half of the meeting is Tyler's talk giving a brief introduction to game development, for those of us who haven't made a game yet:

Friday, September 21, 2012

This is technically our second meeting of the 2012-2013 school year, but this is the first meeting that we were able to record. We decided to structure this meeting as if it was our first, because many people weren't able to attend the first meeting, and we received many new members since the previous meeting.

Christian Greyeyes did a great job with filming and editing this video. It's thanks to him that these recordings are much more watchable and enjoyable than last year's. But a side effect of this is that it took two weeks to upload this video. I personally think the extra effort is worth it.

This year, we'll be uploading our videos to the GameDev Club's YouTube Channel, which you can subscribe to. All of last year's videos are currently still uploaded to my personal YouTube account.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

In order to cut down on the number of emails we send out, we decided to try making a weekly digest email that should summarize everything that's happened with the club during the past week. I spent a good amount of time designing these emails to have really nice formatting and an easy-to-follow structure, but then I realized that we really should be posting these summaries onto the website so that incoming members can get a better picture of what's going on in the club as well. Coincidentally, the formatting of this message is also way better now that it's on a website as opposed to in an email.

Table of Contents

  1. Club News
    1. Next Meeting on Monday
    2. Next Game Night on Sept 28
    3. What Talks would you Like to See?
    4. Are you on the Club's New Mailing List?
    5. New Resources Page
    6. We Might Become an Official ECE Club
  2. Project News and Opportunities
    1. IEEE Mortal Kombat Arcade Cabinets
    2. New Club Gaming Server,  Admins Wanted
    3. Microsoft Windows 8 App Challenge
    4. ACM-ICPC, Next Saturday
  3. Facebook Summary
    1. To the Moon, now on Steam
    2. Game Studies - Research Journal
    3. Tough times on the road to Starcraft
    4. Avoiding game crashes related to linked lists
    5. The Six Most Infamous Puzzles In Adventure Game History
    6. Steam Big Picture
    7. 5 Graphic Adventure Game Goofs (and How To Fix Them)
    8. A Call to Arms for Decent Men
    9. Escape From Mount Stupid: Point and Click Adventures
    10. Super Crate Box
    11. Wii U Release Information
    12. Game Development Bibliography
    13. 35 Years of Console Launch Prices
    14. Zynga counters EA's copyright suit with a claim of its own
    15. Learning Games Initiative Research Archive (LGIRA)
    16. Tales from the Video Game Archive
    17. Closure, now on Steam
    18. Microsoft's UofA Page

Tuesday, September 4, 2012


Here's the schedule for the upcoming week:

Monday - Labor Day, no club meeting
Wednesday - Fall Club Fair
Friday - Game Night!

As usual, the game night will be held in the IEEE room (which is in the ECE building, room 105), and it'll start at around 5:00pm. If you have any trouble finding the room or getting in, please call the room directly at 520-626-7324. You may want to put that number into your contacts, just in case.

Monday, September 3, 2012


Detonator is a puzzle game where the player tries to detonate all of the explosives in a level using only three matches. Zuoming Shi created this rapid prototype over the Labor Day weekend using GameMaker.

Click here to download the executable for Windows computers.

If the executable doesn't work for you, click here to download the original GameMaker project. You will also have to download GameMaker in order to run these files (the lite versions are free).

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Pogo Octo is a surreal action shooter about "two unlikely vigilante octopuses." The game's action is contrasted with relaxing music in order to create a hypnotic experience.

This game was made over the course of a year by Scott Wilson, and it features music by Tyler Griffin (also known as Okat). Scott made the game using GameSalad.

Pogo Octo was recently released on Apple's AppStore for $0.99.

Most members don't know much about Scott, since he's mostly been following the club from the background. But stay tuned for future meetings, because Scott plans to give a talk or two about the things he learned while making this game!

Friday, August 31, 2012


This Wednesday, September 5th, there's going to be a Club Fair on the grassy area in front of the Student Union Memorial Center, and it lasts from 10am to 2pm.

If you have nothing else to do, come find our table and hang out with us! We usually play video game music, and last time I brought a bunch of recent issues of Game Developer Magazine. It's usually a lot of fun, and if you're a new member, it's a good chance to learn more about the club, especially if you missed our first meeting.

Even though the club fair starts at 10am, it seems like none of the officers will be able to make it until 11am. So would anyone like to volunteer to claim us a good table at the fair, to advertise the club to people, take their emails, and give them handouts? You kinda have to get there half an hour early if you want a good spot, which means that you'll probably be there from 9:30am to 11am (1.5 hrs) before any of the clubs show up.

If you want to volunteer, you can post a comment on this post, or send out an email to the listserv, or post on our facebook group, or just email an officer directly.

I'm hoping more than one person will volunteer, and that many of you choose to stay (or come) after 11am, because it's just more fun to have more people there, and it makes us look better to those who've never heard of the club yet.

[Photo source: http://dianeagain.blogspot.com/2012/06/arizona-adventures-heart-of-campus.html]

Wednesday, August 29, 2012



Fighting Blind is a two-player game prototype about fighting in the dark. Both players are hidden in complete darkness, but almost every movement they make is noisy enough to visually give away their locations.

This game was designed and built by Livio De La Cruz last weekend, and the purpose was to practice rapid prototyping strategies. Livio came up with the idea for this game a couple days before starting to build it, and it only took about three days to make (less than 15 hours total).

Click here to play Fighting Blind.
Click here to view the project on Github.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012


The first meeting went great! Unfortunately, we couldn't film it, because OSCR is making us go through some two-day process before we can rent one of their cameras again.

After introductions and general information about the club, we spent most of the meeting talking about the different game projects that we're working on right now, the mistakes and horror stories of some of our past projects, and general advice for those wishing to start a new project. It was a really great discussion.

There were about 15 people there, but I imagine we probably would've had more if ACM hadn't stolen some of our members, if we had decided on a room early enough to have advertise in some of the weekly emails, and if the club fair wasn't cancelled. And maybe if we had pizza.

Announcements


We won't have a meeting next week because of Labor Day. But we will have a Game Night on the Friday after Labor Day. It's going to be in the same room as today's meeting, and we'll post more information about it as the date approaches.

We'll have our next regular meeting on Monday, September 10th, and I might give a talk about prototyping and the iterative development process. Dylan will also give a talk, but I'm not sure if he's decided on what exactly it'll be about yet.

Because today's meeting went so well, we decided to start holding our regular meetings in the IEEE room from now on. The room is great for holding club meetings, because unlike a classroom, it feels much more natural to have group discussions in there. It's also large enough that we don't feel crowded in there, as with our previous room.

Sunday, August 26, 2012


It's time for this year's first meeting!!

Our first meeting is going to be tomorrow (Monday) from 5-6pm in the IEEE room (ECE building, room 105). Normally, we hold our meetings in the Gould-Simpson building, but it's taking much longer to reserve a room than I expected.

This meeting will introduce new members to the club and all of the events that we're going to do this year. We'll also spend some time talking about projects, both the ongoing ones and the future projects that many members will inevitably want to start.

Below is a map, in case you need help finding the Electrical and Computer Engineering building:


View Larger Map

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


It's time to pick our meeting times for next semester! Everyone needs to fill out this Doodle Poll by checking every time slot in which you'll probably be available for a meeting. We'll then use the final results to pick the time that works best for the most number of people, and if you can't make it to the meetings, then you'll at least be able to watch them on YouTube.

Even though the time slots in this poll are only half-hours, remember that we'll need a full hour for the meetings. If you plan to attend ACM meetings next semester, I think they're planning to continue their "Mondays from 6-7" schedule that they had last year.

Thursday, July 26, 2012


Last April, a few of us started a game project with the goal of making a game for the Independent Games Festival. The project ran into several problems [which we discussed during this meeting], but one of the biggest problems was that we were prototyping at an insanely slow pace. This prototype stood out as one of the more exceptional ones, because it was completely playable and it was made rapidly over the course of a few days.

This prototype was designed and programmed by Zuoming Shi using GameMaker, and it features artwork by Amy Pribadi and Pooria Rashidi.

Click here to download the executable for Windows computers.

Click here to download the original GameMaker file. You will need the full version of GameMaker to run it, but you can access the program for free from the McClelland Park 102 Computer Lab (make sure you use the Mac side of the computers, not Windows).

Monday, July 9, 2012


This short platformer was built by Livio De La Cruz as a sample game for SISTA's Game Design Workshop. It was built using Stencyl, which is a relatively new but very well designed game-making tool.

The tile-based artwork of the game was drawn by members of the the web community Interguild.org.

Click here to play the game.
Click here to download the original Stencyl files. You will have to download Stencyl to use these files.

Thursday, May 10, 2012


Captain Pogostick is a wacky platformer about a police officer who fights crime while riding a pogo stick. Your character is constantly bouncing up and down, and you can build up vertical momentum by jumping off high ledges.

This game was made by Livio De La Cruz and Joseph Thibodeau for the final project in the game design class ISTA 251.

Click here to download the executable for Windows.
Click here to download the original GameMaker files.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012


Gladius is a fast-paced, bullet-hell, shoot-'em-up game created by Zuoming Shi and Joshua Miller for the final project of the game design class ISTA 251.

The game started out as a simple one-week prototype for the first project of the class, but this version has much more polish, additional levels, and more enemy types.

Click here to download the executable for Windows.
Click here to download the original GameMaker files.

Saturday, March 10, 2012


Scrambled Ed is a super-wacky platformer, where you play as an insane man with a freakishly large nose and C-4 explosives strapped to his head. You can use your nose to hang onto the edges of platforms, almost as if you were a Tetris piece. The explosives on your head will detonate if you become too happy, either from collecting too many presents, or from thinking too many happy thoughts (by pressing the down-arrow key).

This game was made by Alex Brown, Dylan Clavell, and Zuoming Shi for one of the projects in the game design class ISTA 251.

Click here to download the executable for Windows.
Click here to download the original GameMaker files.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


Project Nightlight is single-player shooter where you use light as ammo. The more bullets you shoot, the less light you have to see where enemies are.

This game was made by Livio De La Cruz and Carlos Gallego for the game design class ISTA 251.

Click here to download the executable for Mac.

Click here to download the original GameMaker files. You will need the full version of GameMaker to run it, but you can access the program for free from the McClelland Park 102 Computer Lab (make sure you use the Mac side of the computers, not Windows).

Wednesday, January 11, 2012


Aeon is a tile-based platformer designed around user-created levels. The project was started by Livio De La Cruz as an attempt to build a game for the web community interguild.org, but the project suffered from a never-ending development cycle and a ridiculously huge scope.

Click here to play Aeon.
Click here to view the source code on Github.

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