Navigating your learning journey | Ben Tristem | TEDxTUBerlin

Navigating your learning journey | Ben Tristem | TEDxTUBerlin

We teach best when we’re beginners, but many people are stuck in the mindset that they need to be a ‘professional’ in something to teach it. In this TEDx event talk, Ben Tristem will take you through the four stages of your learning journey; explaining how you go from being unconsciously incompetent to unconsciously competent*. (*While also teaching Alex to ride an electric unicycle, see 5 minutes in for when they literally tear up the stage!) “A lot of people can’t find the learning resources they need, and have the perfect perspective to teach – the beginner’s perspective. However, we believe that we must be accomplished, educated, or decorated in order to teach a topic. I’m here to challenge that with my personal story. I maintain that, with the right approach, teaching can be the highest form of learning. In these changing times the world needs more outstanding teachers than ever. Teaching as a way of learning may be your route to mastery, whilst simultaneously helping 1000s of other people along the way.” Ben has studied mathematics, physics, business, marketing and software development at post-graduate level before he turned his passion in learning into a vehicle to create value for others. He […]

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Paying it forward- Passing on free coupon codes

A number of us on the community form have been discussing a problem. Ben Tristem has an awesome looking Kickstarter for a new RPG course. Many of us want to help with that, but are either lifetime members, and thus will automatically get the course, or are already enrolled in his courses and want to do a bit more than the lowest level, but in essence would have a coupon code that would never be redeemed. The question then occurs, what do we do with that coupon code? The son of my cousin did the following in Minecraft, and I thought, hey, he would be a great person to give the Blender course to, and allow him to do something that has more real-world use, but I don’t know anyone personally that I would want to give the RPG course to. What then was I to do? I noticed that another user on the form had a similar desire, Rob Meade. Knowing there was someone else out there with the same desire, I set out to see if there was anyone else interested. It turns out that with the relatively limited exposure of the forum, we were able to come […]

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Introduction to the Extrude Tool: One of Blender’s Coolest Tools!

Introduction to the Extrude Tool: One of Blender’s Coolest Tools!

In the Complete Blender Creator Course video, Extruding in Blender, our instructor Michael Bridges teaches us how to use the Extrude Tool! This is an awesome tool, and you can use it to extrude faces, edges, and vertices. When you extrude you make new geometry, which you can move around, shape, etc. This tool is very versatile, because it allows you to change the shape of the objects you are working with. For example, you can take a primitive, such as a cylinder, cube, sphere, or plane, and add new geometry to make a complex object. So, let’s get creative and learn how to use this cool tool! Let’s go over some basic geometry definitions, which we will be using in Blender. What is a Face? A face is the surface of an object. For instance, a cube has 6 sides, so it has 6 flat surfaces called faces. In geometry, we call faces planes. Please see picture below: What is an edge? Edges are the lines, which form where faces join. In geometry edges are called lines. Please see picture below: What is a vertex? A vertex forms where the ends of two or more edges converge. In geometry […]

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Ludum Dare- Making a Game in 48 Hours

Ludum Dare- Making a Game in 48 Hours

One of the interesting ideas in trying out a new game concept is known as a game jam. These have a fixed period of time, from a day to a month, to make a game. These games are usually pretty primitive, but try out some new concept. I recently entered a competition known as Ludum Dare, which is the largest and most well known game jam there is. I entered with my game, Jewel Defender, which I won’t talk much about here, but you can see my thoughts and process to making the game at my main blog. I have been studying Ludum Dare for a few years, seeing one of the more well known developers, Quill18, make a game, but haven’t actually entered myself, for a number of reasons. But I decided that this time I was going to try it out. Most game jams present a theme, and this one was “One Room”. I decided I was either going to do a prototype of a game I have had on my backburner list for a long time, or else prototype something that could be used for my Sea Trading game that I’ve mentioned frequently. I ultimately decided to […]

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Loading Resources by Name in Runtime in Unity Resources Folder.

Loading Resources by Name in Runtime in Unity Resources Folder.

By default, Unity will strip all files that aren’t required to make a build smaller. But what happens if you want to load resources by name in runtime? Enter the Resources Folder. My first use of this folder was in creating icons to show the wind in my upcoming ship trading game. I wanted to load these by name, as the wind patterns are quite random, and they each know their wind. The objects that store the state of the wind don’t have access to resources, and in any case, I didn’t want to drag a large number of resources into the game object. The key to this is to put all of your resources into a folder named “Resources”. I suggest you further group them. As you can see, these are the “Wind” objects. These are prefabs, used to ensure the size and direction is correct for each object. There are a number of ways to load them. I like to use the “Resources.LoadAll”, which will load all of the items in a folder, but you could manually specify. This is the code I used to load these resources

Note that I stored them in a dictionary, so […]

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Helping You Understand Licensing Requirements for Unreal 4, Visual Studio 2015 Community, and Xcode for C++ Development

In our latest Udemy course ‘Introducing C++ for Unreal Engine 4 Game Development’ we’re teaching people of all abilities how to create and modify video games using Unreal Engine 4. Alongside Unreal 4, students will also be required to run Visual Studio 2016 Community (for PC) and Xcode for C++ Development (for Mac). This has led to many discussions and questions around when you need to report any earnings from games made on this platform, and other licensing requirements. Below we hope to answer these questions, please be aware that this is merely our interpretation and for full information you should review the licensing terms directly on their websites (links provided below). Unreal Engine 4 Back in March 2015, at the annual Game Developers Conference held in San Francisco, Epic games announced it was opening up its Unreal Engine 4 game engine technology to everyone for free.  Tim Sweeney, Epic’s founder and CEO, said the move came after they saw the user base grow 10 times larger when it changed to a $19 monthly subscription model in 2014. “We were blown away by the amount of amazing work that the community was doing with the engine, so this year we […]

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C/C++ and Unreal Engine FAQ’s from our Kickstarter Campaign

C/C++ and Unreal Engine FAQ’s from our Kickstarter Campaign

Our successful Kickstarter campaign funded the creation of a C++ and Unreal Engine 4 (UE4) online video course. This is a Q&A based on the C++ questions asked during the campaign. What version of the Unreal Engine are you going to use? We are starting the course with version 4.10 and we’ll keep an eye on major releases and changes for newer projects in the course. However, one of the beauties of Object Orientation in C/C++ programming is that you can change the internals of the Engine and the Editor without affecting the developer/designer interfaces. Indeed, these parts of the Engine’s scripting system and the Editor, at least at the beginner level, tend to remain unchanged. I’m impatient. Can you recommend any good C++ tutorials to get a jump start? There are a lot of books out there and it can be very confusing which to pick. For the impatient beginner I really like “C++ programming in easy steps”. Note that strictly speaking C++ programming is a very different job compared with C programming, even though C++ build up on concepts from C and the two can be and are always intermixed.So the sister book “C programming in easy steps” would also give a […]

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How to Call C++ Functions from Blueprint in Unreal

How to Call C++ Functions from Blueprint in Unreal

Blueprint is a wonderful tool, letting you visually assemble code. However there is a point at which its beauty turns into spaghetti, and you’re better-off coding the behaviour in the more powerful and more flexible C++ environment. Here I briefly show how you can call a C++ function from a Blueprint in Unreal Engine. You start off by using the UFUNCTION macro directly above the declaration of the function you want to call from Blueprint, as seen below. In this case the type we are taking in is UChildActorComponent*, a pointer to a child actor component type. We call this variableTurretFromBP. Once you have compiled your code, head over into blueprint. Find something of the same type that you specified in the code, in my case the turret of my tank is a child actor for flexibly. We drag a pin from Tank Turret BT, and in the menu that pops-up there will now be a function called “SetTurretChildActor”. Remember to trigger this set event by using the white execution lines, in this case I’m setting the reference on BeginPlay. So now the reference to the asset has been “soft coded” as opposed to “hard coded”. This means we can rename parts Blueprint […]

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How to Add a Background Image to the UI Canvas of Your Unity Game

How to Add a Background Image to the UI Canvas of Your Unity Game

In my last article, I promised that I would cover inserting a background image. Start your game engines! Let’s go! In the Complete Unity Developer course lecture “Adding 2D User Interface Text”, our instructor, Ben Tristem, shows us how to add a background image to the UI (User Interface). Let’s learn how to do this, step by step. Create the Background Image Element 1). Click on the Game Object Menu, which is located at the top of Unity’s interface. 2). Scroll over UI. 3). Click on the Image option, in the side menu that slides out. (Please refer to picture below). Linking Your Image to Source Image & Re-sizing the Image A thumbnail (small picture of your image) will appear in the Assets section of the Project Tab, at the bottom of your Unity interface. A white blank box will also appear in the canvas, which is in the middle of your screen. We want the image to take the place of that white blank box, and for that to happen we must do the following steps: 1). Go to the Project Tab, which is located on the Bottom-Left. Make sure you have selected Assets, which is located on the […]

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Resources for Learning Unity and Game Design

Learning how to learn something as complex as the Game Engine Unity can be quite overwhelming. I personally wanted to learn Unity for a year before I actually was able to. I’m still continuing to learn about it to this day. The following is a list of courses, videos, and other resources that I personally used to learn Unity and related topics. Note that while this is posted on a website for The Complete Unity Developer, they aren’t giving me anything for what I write below. Every one of the courses that I mentioned I have paid for at my own expense. For my bio, see the end. My first real attempt in to the world of Game Development was the Complete Unity Developer Course. I found it to be an excellent introduction to Unity. I, being already a reasonably good programmer, found the introduction quite slow, but I managed to avoid this mainly by skipping through the first introduction sections to the parts that focused more on using the UI elements with minimal pain. It will get you started with basics like 2-D game development, physics, C# programming, building for mobile devices, etc. It has a good project approach, […]

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