It has been a bit quite here lately, but that is going to change in the near future. I'm going to be moving this site to a new home at robmiles.com, so that I can keep an eye on things and give better response to questions.
Rob Miles has been producing XNA screencasts for a while now for Thirteen 1 magazine. In fact he has now finished the first set. If you want to take a lok at these. along with the lab content, you can find them here:
If you want to hear Rob’s dulcet tones telling you all about getting started with C# and XNA then this is the place to go.
And there's more. Rob Miles (who seems to be on a creative high at the moment) has also posted some videocasts about getting starting programming on the Thirteen 1 webzine site. Find out more by turning the page from here.
Rob Miles has also produced some curriculum materials that you can download here. They are to teach programming from first principles, based on a suitably silly starting point.
If the system sems to be asking you to become a Faculty member, don't worry about this, just keep going through the download pages and you can find a way to get the content without registering for anything.
Rob Miles has now made the Famous Yellow Book available for download from his blog. This is the book that is used at the University of Hull to teach C# to the first year. It is given to students (and Open Day visitors) in printed form, but you can now get a PDF version for free.
Rob Miles in the Very Silly Team is presently working on some curriculum materials so that anyone teaching programming can use XNA, C# and a bit of silliness to get the message across. The content is presently in production but will be available for limited review in a few weeks. It will be based on the book and will take the form of Powerpoint presentations and some structured practical work to go alongside.
We are starting a mailing list for anyone who wants to register an interest in the content to keep you informed of progress (note that this will be strictly used for this purpose and no other).
If you want to be kept informed of curriculum developments, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will add you to the list.
The first patient has been received in the Very Silly Games surgery, patched up and sent back to a waiting developer. If you are learning XNA and hit a nasty problem, feel free to check in your source files at the silly surgery for our trained medics to take a look at.
The XNA Creators Club (where you can publish your XNA games) is now open for business. You can post your games for other Xbox owners to play with and there are even moves to allow you to get cash for your creations. Find out more here.
I've set up another area of the site. The Silly Surgery provides a place where you can drop broken programs for a crack team of software surgeons to take a look and get back to you.
The kind of problems that we are looking to solve are the ones that begnining programmers have when trying to learn to create code. Not ones with multi-threaded synchronisation across processor cores when trying to perform rendering using direct shader code injection (whatever that means).
We are not promising to fix everything, but we can try.
The second part of the Simple Simon game development is now available for download. This version of the game is not yet complete, but it does have the main game state machine present, along with the code that will produce the sequence that the player needs to copy.
There are also some questions that you can have a go at in the Simple Simon discussion forum. Take a look here.
I've responded to the posts in the Simple Simon discussion. I'll be putting the next stage of the game up in the next few days.
In the meantime, you might like to take a look at XNA 3.0. This is a sneak preview of the next version of XNA. It looks especially interesting because it lets you write games to run on your Zune. Expect to see a Zunified version of Bread and Cheese on these hallowed pages real soon....
Find out more here.
I'm trying something new. It will either work or it won't. Shaun is working on a Simon game in XNA. I've made a kind of start, and now I want everyone to chip in with comments and answers to questions that I've posed. (and ideas for other questions too). If I get a good response I'll make the next section of the game, and so on.
One good way to learn is to look at existing code and try to figure out how to make it do new stuff. So, with that in mind take a look at what I've done and move things on. There will be prizes too. Just not very big ones......
You can find the questions to aswer at: http://verysillygames.com/simple-simon-discussion/
I've been a bit busy lately on the latest silly program that I seem to have been spending quite a lot of time on of late. It is actually in use in our department at the moment, displaying messages on our "Big Plasma Display". Everyone seems to like it, although apparently the jokes get a bit tiresome after you have read them a few times. Or even just once.
Anyhoo, feel free to download and play with it (the link is on the left). If you like it let me know. I'm working on a better version with a clock and maybe even picture rendering and a different backdrop.
Whilst I was at GDC I picked up a free Creators Club membership at the XNA sessions. I think it is for four months, but you may be lucky. Anyhoo, I'll give it to the the person who comes up with the silliest game idea in the next couple of days. My decision is final (I consider myself an expert in silliness).
Remember that if you are a student on a course of study you can get a Creators Club membership for free via DreamSpark, but for anyone else out there, this might save a bit of cash. Put your idea as a comment on this post.
Not content with providing mugs and T shirts, the Very Silly Game franchise is now moving into game developer resources. Every now and the we will be posting items that you might want to include in your games.
Today you can download the only sound effect you will ever need. Created by accident in the Very Silly Games labs, this sound can be used for any purpose, from a stylish ring tone to game over, and just about everything in between. Simply grab the bit that you want from this symphony of sound...
Rob Miles, one of the movers and shakers behind the Silly Games enterprise, is on the road at the moment giving XNA sessions. You can find out how things are going, and what happened when he told his first joke to the audience, here.
You can now get Very Silly Games T shirts and mugs. These are decorated with stylish (perhaps) and unique (definitely) logos, all of which were generated by an XNA program. With very little help from me.
Follow the link at the side of the page, or go here.
I now have a new hero, Jerry V (Gamertag: Xyjar). He has only gone and produced a stunning video of a Gamepad racer session, complete with rocking soundtrack.
For those of you who have no idea of what I'm talking about, Gamepad racer is a very silly Xbox 360 game where you just make the gamepads vibrate down a slope. You can find the source for the game here. You can find Jerry's video here. Thanks for that, you've really made my day.