Create your First Computer Game with Stencyl
- 6 hours on-demand video
- 2 downloadable resources
- Full lifetime access
- Access on mobile and TV
- Certificate of Completion
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- By the end of this course, you will be capable of creating your own 2D games
- You will learn to build logic in a visual interface, skills which are transferable to traditional programming if & when you choose to take that step
- You will learn to create your own sprites with Photoshop
- You will have acquired a skillset which, in the near future, will allow you to publish your creations to Windows Desktop, Windows 8, Mac OS, IOS & Android
Please remember: Always maximize the videos, to get the most out of them.
As explained in the lecture, Stencyl is descended from an MIT project known as Scratch, but has grown far beyond it's roots, into a game creation tool which enables anyone with a creative idea and enough determination (coupled with moxy) to create there own 2D games. It's also capable of targeting many of the popular platforms of the day, such as Flash, Mac, PC, Linux, Andriod & IOS.
In the following sessions, you will learn the core skills needed to successfully conceptualise, design & build games with Stencyl.
Our goal here is to hammer out the functional aspects of the game: we want to know how we'll handle movement, rotation, collision & conflict, health, measurement of success & progress, establishment of goals etc... Then we can start making the game.
Let's jump in! This lecture will familarise you with the layout of the Stencyl game tool. Don't rush through this. Take some time to get comfortable navigating around the different sections & screens. Then, when you're comfortable, move on to the next lesson, where we'll start building functionality using the blocks language! The resource pack you need is attached to this lesson as a .Zip file, under extras. Keep it somewhere safe for all future lessons.
Actor Type - A reference to an actor type, not a specific actor in a scene (game level).
Actor - A reference to a specific actor in a scene (game level).
Region - a reference to a specific region in a scene. Can be created in the scene editor, and assigned to the attribute, or in code.
Animation - A reference to a specific animation on the actor. Animations are edited in the appearance tab in the Actor editor.
Scene - A reference to a scene in the game.
Number - Can be any numeric value, a float, an integer etc. Some examples of acceptable values: 1, -5000, 40, -49.389, 12.497
Text - Can be any combination of characters on the keyboard - words, sentences, names, paragraphs.
Boolean - Can be either true or false. Use the true and false blocks in the conditional category to change the value of this attribute at various points in your code.
Color - a reference to a colour value.
Control - a reference to a control. Controls are set-up in the game settings window, under the controls tab.
Sound - a reference to an audio file, which can then be triggered in code when something happens.
List - a list is a special attribute which holds references to multiple things. Like a shopping list. Can be useful in accomplishing certain programming tasks. These can also be called Arrays.
Effect - a reference to a visual effect, which can be applied to an actor. Effects can be edited in the effects tab, in the actors category of the blocks palette.
Font - a reference to specific fonts. Any font you want to use in Stencyl must be imported as a resource first.
Actor Group - a reference to a collision group. Collision groups are set-up in the game settings window, through the groups tab.
Game Attribute - used to keep track of global values, such as player score, number of lives, current level etc... these can then be saved, and reloaded the next time the player starts the game.
In this lecture, you'll learn to take Input from the mouse, and utilise some basic trigonometry (don't panic, I'll explain it) to make the PC (Player Character) look at the mouse.
Trigonometry is the mathematical discipline which concerns itself with angles & triangles. Sin, Cos, Tan mean anything to you? Well don't worry, we only need to click together a few fundamental blocks to get the result we're looking for. Stencyl makes trigonometry pretty easy.
If you're curious about more advanced Trigonometry, I've included an external link, which provides additional information on the topic.
Some common events are: When updating (always), When Starting(Just once at the start), When drawing(used for HUD elements, such as a health bar, or radar), Do Every X Seconds, Do After X Seconds, Mouse Is down, Control Is Pressed etc... There are many others, which will use as well.
We can also create custom events, which can then be called at will. We will be doing this a little later on.
If Condition 1 = true, perform task 1, otherwise if condition 2 = true, perform task 2, otherwise...
In general, we'll be writing our own behaviours, because we need to learn how they work, and how to fix them if they stop working. You should be aware, however, that there is a built in behaviour library in Stencyl, which we can leverage once we've learned the basics of how they function internally. In this lesson, we'll take a quick look at where they are, and how to add them to a scene or actor, depending on the behaviour type.
If you can't get your hands on a copy of Photoshop in the long-term, don't panic. There are plenty of free & open source solutions out there. In fact, Stencyl ships with a default image editor, Pencyl, which isn't have bad. Other options are GIMP, Paint.NET etc...
Also, an older version of Photoshop, Photoshop CS2, is available for free download from the Adobe website!
We are going to switch to the walking animation when he is moving (movement keys are pressed) and switch to the idle animation when he is not (the movement keys are not pressed).
In this lesson we'll create explorable crates, the destruction of which allows access to certain areas etc...
Now, let's blow up the place in a slightly fancier, more sophisticated way. In this lesson, we'll create destructible barrels which generate shrapnel. In a later lesson, we'll create game rules which dictate that when this shrapnel hit's either the PC or an NPC, it causes damage, thus making the destructible object a game mechanic.
You've done it! Congratulations! If there is anything in the course that you are still unsure of, I advice you to go back and revise the relevant lectures, until you gain a more firm understanding of it. Beyond that, just start making games! & remember to plan first!
The advanced course is now available for internal, discounted progression for those of you who want to take your skill level from beginner/intermediate to expert/pro.
- A computer, either Windows or Mac, which can run Stencyl. Almost any computer should be capable of this
- Enthusiasm about the subject
Note: This course is officially endorsed by Stencyl.
No prior experience is required to take this course. Learning from the ground up, you will acquire all the skills necessary to Design and Create your very own computer games, which can then be shared with your friends, or even published to commercial markets such as flash portals, the App Store & Google play. Using the unique logic block system of Stencyl thought in this Stencyl Course, you will be able to create a game of any genre, quickly and effectively. Please follow through the lectures sequentially, and always maximize the videos to get the most out of them. Among many other things, by the end of the course you will have learned how to:
- Create a top-down perspective for your game
- Move characters with the keyboard
- Easily rotate actors to look at the mouse cursor
- Spawn and destroy actors in real-time, at will
- Write simple and advanced AI for non-player characters
- Design levels using tile-sets and actors
- Create health bars
- Implement game rules to determine between success or failure
For the most effective learning experience, it is essential that you pay close attention to each lecture in order, and then complete the task yourself. If you struggle, watch the video again until you get the full sense of the lesson. Get excited, this is a learning experience you'll never forget. Prepare to start making your own games with Stencyl.
- Complete Beginners
- Hobbyists who wish to create their first production quality, cross-platform title in less time
- Indie Developers, Looking For a Faster Way To Build Multi-Platform Games