You are previewing Kodu for Kids: The Official Guide to Creating Your Own Video Games.

Kodu for Kids: The Official Guide to Creating Your Own Video Games

  1. About This eBook
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright Page
  4. Contents at a Glance
  5. Table of Contents
  6. Forewords
  7. About the Author
  8. Dedication
  9. Acknowledgments
  10. We Want to Hear from You!
  11. Reader Services
  12. Introduction
    1. Yes, You Can Be a Game Designer
    2. Kodu Is Way Fun!
    3. Kodu Offers So Much
    4. Walk Before You Run
    5. How to Use This Book
    6. Introducing Two New Friends: Kodu and Rover
    7. Get in Touch
  13. 1. Get Kodu: Download and Installation
    1. Downloading Kodu
    2. Installing Kodu
    3. Checking Whether Kodu Installed Properly
    4. Adding a Game Controller
    5. Moving On
  14. 2. Explore Kodu Game Lab: Basic User Controls and Tools
    1. Opening the Kodu Game Lab
    2. Navigating a New World
    3. Objects
    4. Moving On
  15. 3. Take a Test Drive: Controlling Objects and Terrain
    1. Programming an Object to Move and Jump
    2. Taking Rover for a Spin
    3. Adding More Terrain
    4. Save Your Progress
    5. Moving On
  16. 4. Missiles Locked and Loaded: Adding Targets and Firing Controls
    1. Adding Nonmoving Obstacles
    2. Making Objects Disappear
    3. Here Come the Missiles
    4. Changing a Game Setting
    5. Having Fun with Settings
    6. Save Your Progress
    7. Moving On
  17. 5. Player 1 Versus Player 2: Adding Players and Awarding Points
    1. Basic Game Elements
    2. Keeping Score
    3. Creating Different Point Awards
    4. Adding a Second Player
    5. Moving On
  18. 6. Build Your Own World: Moving Mountains and Painting Terrain
    1. It’s Not All About the Objects
    2. The Ground Brush
    3. Mountains and Molehills
    4. Much More World Building to Come
    5. Moving On
  19. 7. Difficult Targets to Hit: Increasing Game Difficulty and Path Following
    1. Increasing the Difficulty Level
    2. Where Did That Target Go?
    3. Score Programming
    4. Moving On
  20. 8. Dangerous Targets: Programming Enemies That Fire Back
    1. Targets That Fight Back
    2. Saucers Go Boom
    3. Game Over?
    4. Return Fire
    5. Moving On
  21. 9. Grab That Power Up: Using Pages for More Complex Programs
    1. Changing the Game Conditions
    2. Game Changer 1: Put Time Back on Clock
    3. Turn the Page
    4. Game Changer 2: Decrease Smart Saucer Speed
    5. Game Changer 3: Heal with Health Trees
    6. Moving On
  22. 10. The Cameras Are Rolling: Camera Controls for Solo and Multiplayer Games
    1. It’s All About Your Point of View
    2. Strange World
    3. Camera Modes
    4. In-Game Camera Changes
    5. Moving On
  23. 11. Good Game Design, Part 1: Tips and Tricks for Better Game Programming
    1. World Design: Tips and Tricks
    2. Game Management: Tips and Tricks
    3. Object Programming: Tips and Tricks
    4. Moving On
  24. 12. Adding Conversations and In-Game Instructions
    1. Add Fun Sounds to an Object
    2. Chit-Chat Between Objects
    3. Nontimed Conversations
    4. Adding In-Game Instructions
    5. Moving On
  25. 13. World Design: Creating Environmental Special Effects
    1. Your World’s Terrain and Sky Color Effects
    2. Do You Need a Breeze or a Hurricane?
    3. Lakes and Rivers
    4. Objects and Water
    5. Moving On
  26. 14. Games Should Be Heard: Programming Music and Sound Effects
    1. Adding a Game Music Soundtrack
    2. Programming Background Noise for Your World
    3. Adding Sound Effects
    4. Using Sound Effects for Player Conditions
    5. Moving On
  27. 15. Good Game Design, Part 2: More Tips and Tricks for Great Games
    1. Better Game Programming
    2. More World Design Tips and Tricks
    3. The Maze
    4. More Game Management Tips and Tricks
    5. More Object Programming Tips and Tricks
    6. Moving On
  28. 16. The Role of the Storyteller: Scripting Cut-Scenes Between Game Action
    1. Scripting a Cut-Scene
    2. Adding a Camera
    3. Scripted Conversation
    4. Scripted Movement
    5. The Second Conversation
    6. Game Cleanup
    7. Moving On
  29. 17. The Big Bag of Tricks
    1. Programming Features You Might Not Have Discovered
    2. Modifying Terrain Edit Speed
    3. Controlling Score Visibility
    4. The Great and Powerful Rock
    5. Using Description to Hold Comments
    6. Using Say Tiles to Hold Comments
    7. Using the Inline Tile to Save Time
    8. Using Multiple Game Controllers
    9. Configuring Missile Control
    10. Moving On
  30. 18. Join the Community: Online Help and Sharing Games
    1. The Kodu Game Lab Website
    2. The Kodu Community Forum
    3. Sharing Your Games
    4. Moving On
  31. 19. Good Game Design, Part 3: Giving Players a Great Experience
    1. Giving Players a Great Experience
    2. Game Design
    3. Game World Planning
    4. Game Rules and Objectives
    5. Balancing Fun and Difficulty
    6. Moving On
  32. 20. Sample Game 1: A One-Player Shooter
    1. Game 1 Overview
    2. Creating The Amazing Maze Chase
    3. Programming the Game
    4. Improving the Game
    5. Moving On
  33. 21. Sample Game 2: Two-Player Competition
    1. Game 2 Overview
    2. Creating Blip Bam Boom
    3. Programming the Game
    4. Improving the Game
    5. Moving On
  34. 22. Sample Game 3: On a Mission
    1. Game 3 Overview
    2. Creating The Dune Treasure
    3. Programming the Game
    4. Improving the Game
    5. Moving On
  35. 23. Sample Game 4: The Side-Scroller Experience
    1. Sample Game 4 Overview
    2. Creating Octo’s Aquarium
    3. Programming the Game
    4. Improving the Game
    5. Moving On
  36. 24. Closing Thoughts and Challenges
    1. Consider All You’ve Learned
    2. Where to Go from Here
    3. A Challenge for You
    4. Moving On
  37. A. The Kodu Developers
    1. Stephen Coy
    2. Matt MacLaurin
    3. Mark Finch
    4. Michael Miller
  38. Index
  39. Where Are the Companion Content Files?
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A. The Kodu Developers

Stephen Coy

When we first began the Kodu project, we were looking for a fun project that would do some good for people. We had just finished working on Windows Vista and were brainstorming ideas for a research project. One of the issues we discussed was the declining rate of enrollment in computer science degree programs. At the time, enrollment had been in decline for almost a decade. Working for Microsoft, this is a concern. Our business depends on being able to hire talented programmers. So we thought back to the experiences that had led each of us to a career in programming.

I did my first programming in the late 1970s and early 1980s. At the time, when you turned on a computer, it generally went “beep” and displayed ...

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