Building your own custom Unity Cloud Builds

Are you manually making builds for your Unity project? It may not seem like a lot of time, but those minutes add up. Especially if you’re working with others, or have to deploy to many different test machines. A non-standardized process can lead to confusion from the rest of the team when determining which build is the latest, and almost impossible to find the latest previous known good build.

Did you know you can create an automated build and release pipeline using Azure? This article will show you how!

Continue reading Building your own custom Unity Cloud Builds

Just learning how to make games?

I talk a lot to developers who have made games before. But what if you are just starting out?

Do you know the difference between a game designer and a game developer? If you don’t, don’t worry! On November 6th, Microsoft Visual Academy will be running a Jump Start training to explain game development roles and take a look at some of my favorite game development tools. Continue reading Just learning how to make games?

Unity Microsoft Virtual Academy now Available!

Unity MVA Crew
From left to right: Jason, Carl, Matt, Tobiah, Adam, Dave V., David C.

The Microsoft Virtual Academy for Developing 2D & 3D Games with Unity is now online!

Fellow Microsoft Evangelists Adam Tuliper, David Crook, Dave Voyles, and Jason Fox, Indie Game Designer/Artist Matt Newman, Lead Unity Evangelist Carl Callewaert, and of course myself got together and recorded this live about two weeks ago.

If you weren’t able to catch it then, it’s now available for everybody to check out!

I appeared on modules 2 and 8. Module 2 is about 2D Game Development using Unity, and Module 8 is about Marketing and Monetizing your game.

If you would like the scripts/assets Carl and I used in module 2, as I posted earlier the files are up on my GitHub page.

When I wasn’t in a module, I was in the chat room answering questions. If you’re interested, you can download the public chat logs on the jump start page.

I would highly recommend anybody into Unity game development check this out. Especially some of the more advanced topics like Optimizing Your Games, Application Lifecycle Management (ALM), and Azure Mobile Services (using Prime[31]). Those subjects not often covered in other tutorials, and they contain a lot of useful information for Unity developers for all platforms.

I think we put together a great resource here for learning Unity. I hope you enjoy it!

If you do, please share it! Microsoft Virtual Academy (MVA) also has other great game development trainings, you may want to check them out as well.


Sample Unity assets from Microsoft Virtual Academy

Guy Jump Sample Unity AssetsToday was the first day of the Microsoft Virtual Academy: Developing 2d and 3d games with Unity for Windows jump start.

Lead Unity Evangelist Carl Callewaert and myself gave a demo of Unity 2D during module 2. One of the most asked questions was, “where can I get those art assets and scripts?”

Well, I have your answer! I’ve uploaded them onto my GitHub page.

You can download them directly by clicking here, or go to my new Sample Unity Assets GitHub repo.

If you have any questions about these, feel free to send a tweet to myself or Carl.

We have another day of awesome modules tomorrow, so it’s not too late to join in if you’re interested! If you can’t make it, that’s ok, it will be available later on the MVA site.



Updated Resources Page

I updated my resources page with some new links, and I thought I’d take a moment and point it out if you haven’t seen it before.

You can get to it by clicking the on the top bar of the page, or by clicking here.

My goal is to make it a nice go-to list of basic links for indie game developers. I have tools, places to get assets, and some guides/sample code.

It’s by no means a comprehensive list. If you know a link you think might be good to include, please let me know!

“Gem Run” live in Windows store

Gem Run Screenshot 01
The open source GameMaker: Studio game I made, Gem Run, is now live in the Windows Store if you’d like to download and play it.

I made Gem Run as an example project for a Windows 8 application in GameMaker. You can read my original explanation/list of features here.

Are there any features you’d like to see me add to the game? Let me know about it.

In the mean time, you can download the game now and play it.

Have fun!


Open Source Windows 8 GameMaker Game – Gem Run

I decided to take the time and write an open source Windows 8 GameMaker game for those who like to learn by example projects.

It’s called “Gem Run”

Windows 8 GameMaker Template - Gem Run Screenshot 01

Where can I get it?

You can visit the project website, or get the code directly off from GitHub here. The link is also on my resources page. Feel free to add features and contribute to it, if you’d like! If people are interesting, it would be cool to start a collection of ready to go Windows 8 GameMaker templates.

About The Game

The game is a simple “Temple Run“-like endless runner. You move your character left or right by the keyboard or by tapping on the left/right half of the screen. The goal is to collect as many gems as possible before dying from hitting the rocks. As your score goes up, the game gets faster.

I made the game to showcase the following aspects of GameMaker:

  • Buttons and menus
  • Keyboard, mouse and touch controls
  • Real time re-scalable game world (try putting it in a snap view!)
  • Basic collision/point collection
  • Infinite world scroller/runner game mechanic

Creative Commons Assets used:

In order to create this, I used some Creative Commons assets.

What is the Creative Commons? In shorts, if a type of copyright you can put onto assets you create that allows others (like myself) to use them within their works. They may or may not allow you to use the assets in commercial code for profit, and usually they require attribution.

I do not own these assets, and while they are included in the example code for demonstration, they are not included as part of my MIT License open source code.

Here are the free assets I used:

I have questions!

You should ask them! I would love to hear from you on any questions you have about the code, game maker, or game development in general.

Also, if you’re interested in seeing more templates (or would like to request I make a tutorial on a specific part), let me know!


Three Hundred Mechanics – Game Design Resource

Three Hundred Mechanics

I found a link the other day to an interesting site for game mechanics. It’s called “Three Hundred Mechanics“, created by Sean Howard.

The page is a collection of game mechanics/game design ideas. His original goal was to make one mechanic idea a day until he reached 300. He failed his goal, so despite the name at the time of this writing there is only 169 different mechanics.

Still, that’s 169 different game ideas that you can freely use and be inspired by for your next game idea! If you’re stuck in the “I don’t know what to make” rut, click through a few of the entries and see if anything sticks out as particularly interesting to you.

His ideas are public domain and you’re free to use them, just not copy any of his artwork.

Sean’s also make some prototypes of some of the ideas to play, and has his own free art resource for you to use in your non-commercial games.

I added the link to my own resources page for future reference.

I hope it’s useful to some of you!


Resources for Game and App Developers

I’ve added a new page to the blog that has links to various resources that game and app developers might find useful.

Developer Resources

I will grow the list over time with more links, but for now I just wanted to make sure I put up all the links I mentioned during my lectures at ASU this week.

Hopefully some of you find it useful!