Last spring as I was developing the curriculum for my Digital Game Design course, I decided to adopt Jeremy Gibson’s “Introduction to Game Design, Prototyping, and Development using Unity and C#” as the textbook. I went through the prototypes in the book, coded them, and here are videos of the completed projects.
Boids is an exercise in the middle of the book and not a formal prototype. Every frame the “boids” check how far they are from their neighbors and from the cursor. The boids chase the cursor , but scatter once they get too close. This exercise simulates a flock of birds.
Apple Picker is the first prototype in the text. Apples fall from the tree and must be caught in the basket for points. If an apple is missed, a basket is destroyed and the scene resets. Once all baskets are destroyed, the game is over. The lateral speed of the tree, the rate at which apples drop, and the chance of the tree changing direction are all adjustable.
Mission Demolition is an Angry Birds clone prototype. One thing I have not coded is health for the castle walls, allowing them to be damaged and ultimately destroyed. Once a cannon ball hits the green square, the level is completed. With the walls simply piling up and never leaving the scene, this can make hitting the target troublesome.
Space SHMUP (shoot em’ up) is a familiar genre and the first big prototype in the text. When an enemy is killed, the enemy is supposed to drop 0 or 1 power-up. You can see in the video that sometimes an enemy will drop 2-4 power-ups. I believe this is a result of the enemies being composed of multiple 3D objects with multiple colliders. I tried only having the parent object having a collider, but this didn’t seem to help.
Prospector is a solitaire game that introduces using XML files in your coding. The art assets used were supplied by the publisher. The game works, but one thing you can notice is that the draw pile sits too high in the scene, and the discard pile sits too low. I have no idea why this is. The XML files used determine the location of the cards, and no changes I made altered the layout. There’s an artifact somewhere superseding my changes that I was unable to find. Other than that, the game works great.
There are 4 more prototypes in the book, but these are the ones I have completed thus far. I have my students build the Apple Picker, Mission Demolition, and Space SHMUP prototypes, plus another of their own choosing before they begin work on their own digital game.