Galway Games Development Workshop
Gaming is a huge industry worldwide and offers great employment potential as evidenced by the recent announcement by Galway-based gaming giant EA of 300 additional jobs. This project aims to inform and teach students, staff and the public about game design and how to code a game using the XNA framework. The workshop will cover all aspects of the design and development process of a 2D game for the XBOX 360 with the ultimate goal of encouraging participants with some IT experience to branch into gaming. The project will be comprised of two months of weekly tutorials and workshops and it is envisaged that a few groups who make their own games will be entered into the LIT Gamesfleadh XNA challenge. It is hoped that the workshops will result in the creation of a community of independent games developers in Galway, who may continue offering workshops and tutorials after the initial project is completed. The Galway Games Development Workshop is supported by the NUI Galway Computer Society
We had our first meeting on Friday the 23rd of November in IT125G at 7-9pm.
A great mix of students, postgrads, professionals and enthusiasts showed up to discuss game design and development in Galway. Talks were given by both professionals and students on previous game projects.
For a first meeting it was very productive with everyone backing the idea of setting up an online forum, regular meet ups and a development workshop and competition.
Since then we have managed to get a forum set up on gamesdevelopers.ie, courtsey of Alanna Kelly, where we will be fostering the Galway gaming Community online and organising more events to reach a wider community
We have our eyes set on having the development workshop running from the first week of next semester onwards, and preparations for this will continue after the exams.
This week (starting January 21st) saw our Game Development Workshop kick off. We will be meeting every Thursday for the rest of the Semester in the IT102 PC suite to continue our Game Development Workshop using C# and XNA 4.0.
Everyone is welcome to come along and join at any stage, but if possible please email GalwayGamesGroup@live.com first.
We will be going over a step by step game creation process, aiming to break into groups of 4-5 people and every group will have a fully working multilayer Xbox360/PC game by the end.
The Galway Gaming Group regular meetings are still going on, so far one per month but we will try to increase this to two. We are also aiming to move the regular meetings to outside the college, probably to the 091-Labs premises but this is yet to be finalised.
We will also host game art design, game music and sound effects workshops over the coming weeks to compliment the workshops.
The Workshop really kicked off over the second semester. We had 8 workshops (3+ hours long) where we taught between 10-40 students (first 40 then quickly fell off to around 7-18) how to build their own games using XNA and C#. Everyone really enjoyed the workshop and having started at the very basics by the end we had a multiplayer Xbox360 game for 4 players. We have since moved to 091 labs to ensure the project can continue over the summer. We held a meeting for the Gaming Group, holding a showcase for game-related final year projects, ranging from theatre to IT student projects. We held a design workshop at 091 labs and plan to continue bimonthly meet-ups there for most of the summer. Along with this a survey is planned to get feedback from all who attended. So far the main drawback was finding hours to meet to suit everyone as participants ranged from vaious post and undergrad students as well as outsiders to the college. Therefore one consideration is to change to a single event instead of a spread out workshop for next year.