Leadership Project 2020

Leadership Project

I decided to read the Scrum book for my leadership project and chapter seven, Happiness, really stuck to me.

One of the main points that this chapter makes is that humans are happiest when they’re in their moments of trial.

“But if you ask them when they were happiest, they’ll tell you it was in those moments of trial–of pushing their bodies, minds, and spirits to the limit.”

Another main point is that happiness is success, or that happiness leads to success in everything.

“The research is startlingly clear. Happy people simply do better–at home, at work, in life. They make more money, they have better jobs, they graduate from college, and they live longer.”

The last main point is that people need to make a retrospective meeting to look at their process.

“After the team has shown what they’ve accomplished during the last Sprint–that thing that is ‘done’ and can potentially be shipped to customers for feedback–they sit down and think about what went right, what could have gone better, and what can be made better in the next Sprint.”

My Stretch Goal for May 2020

Role

Coder

Goal

My goal, by the end of May, is to produce a working game by myself to use the skills I learned in SoloLearn.

Why

To reinforce the skills I learned in SoloLearn.

How

By working on a piece of the game everyday until it is complete or I hit my deadline at the end of the month.

When

By working on a piece of the game everyday until it is complete or I hit my deadline at the end of the month.

Resources

The only resource I need is Unity to finish the game.

Milestones

The milestones will be when I finish a prime part of the coding like movement and such.

Heroes/Heroines

My hero hasn’t changed from the last time I did a stretch goal, I admire Sid Meier as I have played his games like Civilization and Civilization: Beyond Earth and the randomly generated worlds that you play on is what makes me constantly come back to his games, they continue to amaze me.

Documentation

I have been continuing my stretch goal of completing the game by starting to code and laying out the game setting this week.

I have been continuing my stretch goal of completing the game by finishing the movement code and play testing to tweak out anything that doesn’t quite work.

By the end of my last work week for May, I had completed my goal of making a functioning game by myself.

My Stretch Goal for April 2020

Role

Coder

Goal

My goal is to, by the end of April, finish my lessons in SoloLearn to complete my skills as a coder.

Why

To complete games that are more developed and compelling to play.

How

By doing a piece of SoloLearn everyday until I complete it and receive my certificate.

When

By doing a piece of SoloLearn everyday until I complete it and receive my certificate.

Resources

The only thing I will need to complete this is SoloLearn itself which I still have access to.

Milestones

The milestones will be each of the categories of coding that needs to get done in SoloLearn.

Heroines/Heroes

Although my heroines/heroes didn’t really inspire this goal as I just want to understand how to code in a fluent manner, I admire Sid Meier as I have played his games like Civilization and Civilization: Beyond Earth and the randomly generated worlds that you play on is what makes me constantly come back to his games, they continue to amaze me.

Documentation

I have been continuing my stretch goal of completing SoloLearn by doing a category everyday until the completion of it and I am well on my way as I only have two categories left to do.

More Documentation

I have finished SoloLearn and earned my certification to show for my completion of it.

Session 6 Production Project

Summary

Role

Lead Programmer

SMART Goal

In this project, my plan is to learn how to use the Unity debugger by March 18th and I will complete Unity debugger tutorials to meet this goal by the end of session six to make sure the game doesn’t run into any bugs.

Pre-Production

Leader(s) in the Field/Exemplary Work(s)

Doom creator John Romero: https://www.theguardian.com/games/2019/nov/12/doom-creator-john-romero-shooter-games-id-software 

The specific skills that are needed as a lead programmer is to know when to make the player feel more gratitude towards the weapons that are given and putting detail into them rather than showering the players with countless weapons they don’t sympathize with.

John Romero talks about this as he says that “the more weapons you throw in there, the more you’re playing an inventory game.” He also talked about how most companies will cut out stuff such as secret rooms in the production of the game because of how many people that might not see it anyways. But the secret rooms that are put in are appreciated by fans everywhere.

Training Source(s)

  • 1:16 – Start by making a new canvas
  • 1:20 – Set it to scale to screen size
  • 1:34 – Create a panel underneath of the canvas for the transition
  • 1:41 – Go to window, then animation to bring up the animation screen
  • 2:00 – Remember to hit record to start animating the panel
  • 2:11 – You can tell it how to animate by changing the color and transparency at different points of the animation
  • 2:26 – You can make more animations by pressing start, then new clip
  • 3:02 – Make sure that the first frame of the transition is the same as the last frame
  • 3:20 – Make a new game object to manage the scenes
  • 3:25 – Make a new C# script to code the game manager object

Project Timeline

Step 1 – Get together with teammates

Step 2 – Introduce yourselves

Step 3 – Brainstorm a game idea

Step 4 – Propose a game idea

Step 5 – Figure out any kinks in the game idea

Step 6 – Figure out what we need

Step 7 – Make a Unity project for the game

Step 8 – Make sure everyone has access to it

Step 9 – Begin coding in needed prefabs

Step 10 – Make a character that is significant for the player to see

Production

The Game

Post-Production

21st Century Skills

 

Reactions to the Final Version

 

Self-Evaluation of Final Version

 

What I Learned

 

Grammar and Spelling

 

Editor

 

Session 5 Production Project

Summary

Role

My role in this project is a coder, writer, and producer.

Intention (SMART Goal)

I plan to learn how to make an effective and interactive menu screen that includes the credits with all of my teammates’ work over the duration of the project by the time we need to present the game.

PRE-PRODUCTION – INQUIRY

Leader(s) in the Field / Exemplary Work(s)

Specific skills that leaders in game production need are: being able to be aware of what the team is working on, producers need to be able to keep other members working and meet deadlines, and producers need to be able to code and work on other jobs in case another member is unable to solve a problem with that job.

https://www.gamasutra.com/blogs/ErnstTenBosch/20130912/200168/What_Makes_a_Good_Game_Producer_Part_1.php – A producer of World of Warcraft

Bosch talks about how producers need to be aware of what their team is working on because they are quite literally shepherding the developers throughout the project. Producers not only have to be aware of what is going on, but they need to be able to keep their team on task and get them to meet deadlines. Bosch also talks about how they need to be able to take over for other workers if needed or at least be able to find someone who can take over. This includes coding, art, and sound. This skill is important for keeping the development of the game on the schedule.

Training Source(s)

0:09 – Using prefabs can make the creation of a game easier by hand and is also easier to fine-tune.

0:35 – Making a procedural game can reduce the amount of customization you can put into its world and requires more coding than making a game from scratch.

1:01 – Updating a prefab will change all the objects that were copied from that prefab according to the updates made to the prefab.

1:09 – Clicking apply above a selected object’s settings will update all of the objects that are the same as that object.

2:11 – Two things that can make the creation of a game easier are the right view and the scene view.

2:24 – Clicking the cube on the view direction in the scene turns the perspective into isometric or flattens everything.

2:47 – You can add layers to the game scene by pressing layers in the upper right corner of the unity screen.

2:56 – By assigning an object to a specific layer and locking that layer, you can’t select it in the game screen anymore, making it easier to select other objects.

3:23 – You can select an object and go to edit and then snap settings to help control where you want an object to go instead of free-handing it, remember to use the control key to use the feature when moving objects.

3:39 – You can press command and d to duplicate the selected object you want.

(From unit 1 page 56 of the packet):
Formal systems are closed systems.
Experiential systems can be open or closed systems.
Cultural systems are open systems.

Project Timeline

Step 1 – Figure out what role I want

Step 2 – Find a group to join

Step 3 – Introduce myself to my partner

Step 4 – Divide work equally among each other

Step 5 – Find training source

Step 6 – Watch training source

Step 7 – Take notes while watching video

Step 8 – Share notes with partner

Step 9 – Get leader(s) in the field notes from partner

Step 10 – Write out role and SMART goal

PRODUCTION – ACTION

The Game

POST-PRODUCTION – REFLECTION

21st Century Skills

Ways of Thinking (Creativity, Innovation, Critical Thinking, Problem Solving)

I showed ways of thinking through the creativity of the font I made for the menu of our game which was made in Piskel to have a cubic look to the menu and fit the style of the game.

Ways of Working (Communication & Collaboration)

I showed ways of working through communication and collaboration with my team such as daily collaboration synchronization in Unity and constantly asking for their feedback on my work.

Tools for Working (Info & Media Literacy)

I showed tools of working through info and media literacy with my work on Piskel and the way I presented my evidence in a slide show to the panel alongside our game.

Ways of Living in the World (Life & Career)

I showed ways of living in the world through life and career by the way I constantly try to learn the material, whether it be coding, art, or teamwork.

Reactions to the Final Version

One of the advisors, Tim Rants, said “I really like your game title font.” However, he did say that I needed to “show evidence of custom menu events.” Caydance, a peer in my class, said “I really enjoyed the art and the way it worked in the game.”

Self-Evaluation of Final Version

I think our game showed simplicity, unexpected mechanics, concrete, and credibility. It showed simplicity through the straight-forward gameplay of the design. It showed unexpected mechanics through the randomly-generated world in our game. It showed concrete details through how the code consistently worked several play throughs of the game. It showed credibility through the new mechanics of the game like the randomly-generation coding.

What I Learned and Problems I Solved

I learned how to make an effective and interactive menu in Unity and how to incorporate fonts outside of Unity like the sprites I made in Piskel. I hadn’t run into any problems in this session, but I continue to keep learning no matter what.

Grammar and Spelling

Google Docs

Editor

Brandt

Session 4 Game Production – Snowball Fight

Snowball Fight Game Production

CC image snow by barnyz on Flickr

Summary

In this project, I was the sound designer in charge of making sound effects and music for our game. I also helped the scrum master get the tally of what we got done and held the stand-up meetings to plan what do to. I had made sound effects and music for the game but was unable to put it in as there were several errors in our code for the game.

21st Century Skills

For ways of thinking, I showed problem-solving and critical thinking by looking at the Unity manual for tips on how to code in sound. For ways of working, I showed collaboration as we had a stand-up meeting everyday which I lead everyone to what tasks need to be done for that day. For tools of working, I showed media literacy as I helped make the presentation look good and understandable at a fast pace for the panel and our peers. For ways of living in the world, I showed leadership as I lead the stand-up meetings that we had everyday and helped lead the project in the right direction.

The Game

Reactions to the Final Version

When we presented to the panel, one of the advisors, Favorite, said that there were “great presentations” and that it was a “huge improvement” from the last time we presented. Favorite really wanted “to see the game but [was] glad you didn’t make excuses.” One of our peers, Dylan, said that I “had a good collection of music and sound effects for the game.”

Evaluation of Final Version

The first principle our game demonstrated was simplicity as the game was simply where you moved from left to right on a flat 2-dimensional plane. The second principle our game demonstrated was unexpected as the audience and the panel didn’t expect to be able to fall off the ground if going too far left or right. The third principle that our game demonstrated was concrete as it had only movement and physics where the coding was solid which was important to demonstrate the game. The fourth principle was credible as our game showed that we were improving as game designers in the fact that we had music in our game when presenting.

What I Learned and Problems I Solved

In this project, I learned how to make effective sounds, voice lines, and music in an app called GarageBand. The main problem I ran into was getting the sounds and music into the game as it was getting a lot of errors from the coding we already put in there. I tried to fix this problem by looking at the Unity manual for tips on how to code in sound and music.

Session 3 Game Production – Snowball Fight

Snowball Fight Game Production

CC image snow by barnyz on Flickr

Summary

In this project, I was the graphics designer in charge of making the character sprites and the backgrounds inside of the game. I was also the scrum master for our team and was in charge of the stand-up meetings and the burn-down chart. In the end, I was able to make the character sprites and some backgrounds but was unable to put them in the game due to time constraints.

21st Century Skills Demonstrated

For ways of thinking, I showed problem-solving and critical thinking by drawing art and learning how to do shading on the go. For ways of working, I showed collaboration as we had a stand-up meeting everyday which I lead everyone to what tasks need to be done for that day. For tools of working, I showed media literacy as I helped make the presentation look good and understandable at a fast pace for the panel and our peers. For ways of living in the world, I showed leadership as I lead the stand-up meetings that we had everyday and helped lead the project in the right direction.

The Game

Reactions to the Final Version

When we presented in front of the panel, one of the advisors, Favorite, told me that I had “really fun character graphics” but that I needed “more background detail.” Favorite wanted my backgrounds to look more 3-dimensional even though they are 2-dimensional, basically they needed more detail. One my peers, Ryan, said that our game’s “music was interesting.”

Evaluation of the Final Version

The first principle our game demonstrated was simplicity as the game was simply where you moved from left to right on a flat 2-dimensional plane. The second principle our game demonstrated was unexpected as the audience and the panel didn’t expect to be able to fall off the ground if going too far left or right. The third principle that our game demonstrated was concrete as it had only movement and physics where the coding was solid which was important to demonstrate the game. The fourth principle was credible as our game showed that we were improving as game designers in the fact that we had music in our game when presenting.

What I Learned and Problems I Solved

In this project, I learned how to make 2-dimensional backgrounds and character sprites in a free site called Piskel. The main problem I ran into was putting too much time into the character sprites and putting too little time into the backgrounds which ended up making the backgrounds look less detailed. I remedied this problem by asking an experienced artist how I should make a background before trying it out.

Midnight Stroll Game Production

CC image Scary by waldopepper on Flickr

Summary

In this project, I was the coder in charge of making a working game with physics and movement for all the characters. I also helped direct the team in which way we were going with the game. In the end, I was able to make the game that I had set out to do in the first place with physics and movement.

21st Century Skills Demonstrated

For ways of thinking, I showed critical thinking and problem-solving by making code for our game while also learning it on the go to fix any issues that shows up. For ways of working, I showed collaboration by bouncing ideas off of my teammates and talking to them about what we could possibly do for our project. For tools of working, I showed media literacy by help making the presentation as possible for the panel and also making the game function without any errors. For ways of living in the world, I showed leadership by coming up with the idea for our game and also making sure that everyone knew what they were supposed to be doing.

The Game

Reactions to the Final Version

When we presented in front of the panel, one of the advisors, Sam George, gave me two pieces of advise for future presentations and games. The first one was for presenting which he said to “avoid discussing unimplemented features.” Sam advised me this to probably make my presentation seem more professional and so that the panel wouldn’t judge me for what I used my time for. The second one was for coding in Unity which he said to “try using Unity’s input system in the future, as opposed to GetKey().” Sam advised me this since the GetKey() command in Unity can be a little fidgety and possibly break with too many inputs at once.

Evaluation of the Final Version

The first principle that our game demonstrated was simple as the game just had you move from the left of the platform to the right of the platform. The second principle that our game demonstrated was unexpected as the game’s platform ran out so the characters just fell into the void which caused some laughter. The third principle that our game demonstrated was concrete as the game had texture and the background was solid (metaphorically) so that the player knows exactly where he is at any given time. The fourth principle that our game demonstrated was story-telling in the way that you are a guy trying to get home and you are chased by someone trying to kill you.

What I Learned and Problems I Solved

In this project, I learned how to make a game with physics and movement for all the characters. I also learned how to put certain objects under each other to make them connected. The main problem I ran into was my own knowledge of coding, which going into it was terrible. I remedied this problem by looking a step by step guide on how to code a game on Youtube.

Jump, Robot Production Project

Summary

In this project, I was the sound designer in charge of finding sounds that would suit our game and the character that we were going to create. I also helped direct the team in which direction that we should take our game.

21st Century Skills

In this project, I showed innovation by getting sound from something simple as drumming a mouse pad to recording a photo copier for the character’s walk cycle. I also communicated well with my teammates as I constantly asked them for their opinion on the sounds that I recommended for the game and I helped direct the team as well. The tools that I had used to gather sound for the game was the Zoom H4N Deck and shotgun mic and I also used Garageband to edit these sound effects to make infinite loops of them. The position that I had in this project was being the sound designer, in which I gathered the sound effects that we would need for the game and I also created the soundtracks that we would put over the game to give it more life.

The Game Creation

Reactions to the Final Version

The main critique that we had received from the panel is how we should not try to cross our arms during the presentation as it gives off the feeling that we are “closed off” in a way. Other than that, the panel enjoyed the work that we had put into the art and sound of the game even though the game was never able to get coded.

Evaluation of Final Version

I think the main aspect that our game would’ve resonated with is simplicity as the message that the game was going to tell was “where are all the humans? Where did they go?” The player might not ask this at first, but when they reach civilization, they’ll notice the absence of the human race yet see the places they built left to rust.

What I learned and Problems I Solved

I learned that working with teammates could be frustrating at times but I also learned that I needed patience when working with my teammates. The problems I faced was Unity as it was extremely hard to work on it together with my teammates and I solved this by trying to learn how Unity works.