______In-Depth_Night______

Welcome to my in-depth presentation. Over the past few months, I have been learning about game design!

When I initially began my In-Depth learning, I did not expect that there are so many components to game design. Through this project, I learned various things from programming 2D games to creating game assets for 3D games. I still have a lot to learn.

Using Unity, a game engine, and Blender, a 3D graphics software, I have created multiple games over the past few months, starting with basic 2D games, to more complex 2D and 3D games. Here are 3 video games that I made that will demonstrate my learning and growth. Enjoy the games!

(Games are only available on the computer)

Game 1: Drift

This was a really basic 3D game that I created to learn programming and 3D physics in Unity. (I think I made the levels too hard!😅)

 

2. Wandering Spirit

I made this game about a month ago. I made this simple 2D game to practice the skills that I have learned so far, and I’m pretty satisfied with how it turned out!

 

3. Islandbound

This is the game that I have worked on for the last month. For this game, I had to learn more about 3D game design and many new components. I am still working on this game, and this is a preview! (Note: this game cannot run on Safari)

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I hope you had some fun playing the games that I developed! Over the course of In-Depth, I learned so much about game design. This is something that I’m truly passionate about, and I will keep on learning… The journey has just begun!

I want to give a huge thank you to Mr. Linburg, my mentor. Through this entire project, he has provided me with a lot of support and encouragement. Without his amazing guidance, I would not have been able to come this far. I would also like to thank you for checking out my in-depth project! Feel free to leave a comment or ask any questions!

 

-Mike

In-Depth Post #6

            It has been a few weeks since my last blog post. Over these few weeks, I have begun to work on a 3D adventure game in Unity. This project is quite different compared to the games that I had created in the past. The games that I created in the past had simpler graphics, and much required much less use of 3D physics. This game will utilize more complex visual elements, as well as more complex game mechanics.

So far, I have researched about the Terrain System in Unity and practiced using it. The Terrain System is a built-in tool in Unity and is extremely useful for creating interesting and realistic landscapes. I first began with creating a mountain landscape to practice using the various tools within the Terrain System. I really enjoyed this process and had plenty of fun practicing creating a landscape. Through sculpting these landscapes, I realized that I like to be creative and imaginative. In addition, I also watched some videos on YouTube on how to enhance the graphics of the scene by using Post-Processing.

Although it was slightly difficult at first to get a grasp at all the different tools in the Terrain System, I was able to overcome this challenge by staying determined. I watched a lot of videos online to learn more about using the tools and spent a lot of time practicing creating landscapes. In the end, I learned many tips and tricks and became much more familiar with using the Terrain System.

A screenshot of my first terrain made with Unity’s Terrain System.

 

I am currently working on creating an island in Unity. I will be using this island as the setting of my adventure game.

A screenshot of the island that I am currently working on.

 

My meetings with my mentor, Mr. Linburg, have gone well. We have stayed consistent with our communication, talking through email once every week. During the meetings, I updated my progress with my mentor, and we would discuss a plan for the next week. Mr. Linburg would also provide me with resources that I could look into, such as how to import Blender assets into Unity. Mr. Linburg has been an awesome mentor. Although he is very busy, he is always supporting my learning and passion.

On In-Depth night, to demonstrate what I have learned, I plan to have a playable game that guests can play. To do this, I will upload my adventure game online and insert it directly into the post. I will also have some notes on my post to explain briefly about the things that I have learned, and how I applied them to my game. Hopefully, the guests will have fun playing the game!

 

Overall, I have made a lot of progress during the past few weeks. Through this project, I have learned more about developing games and about myself. I have also discovered my creativity and imagination by creating various landscapes and other visuals such as a treasure chest. Over the next few weeks, I will continue to work on my adventure game. I will be working on the terrain, adding different game mechanics, as well as import some game assets that I have created in Blender. I am very excited to see how the game turns out!

 

-Mike

 

Posted in Uncategorized

Ecological Footprint

My ecological footprint was 9 Hecters. After comparing my ecological footprint with my peers, I realized that my ecological footprint was slightly higher than average.

 

The Plan

Data Sheet:

 

 

Actions that increased my ecological footprint significantly:

-Eating non-organic beef

-Spending time travelling with just my family

-Owning 1 car

-Spending a lot more time than 1 hour on the computer each day

-Producing enough trash each day to fill up a basket

-Showering for more than 10 minutes

-Owning clothes that were mostly brand new

-Eating dairy products

-Eating non-organic pork

-Spending 1/2 – 1 hour on a vehicle per day

 

Actions that I changed to reduce my ecological footprint:

-Eating non-organic beef: I made sure to limit my consumption of non-organic beef to 3 times a week. As an alternative to beef, I ate chicken.

-Producing enough trash each day to fill up a basket: I reduced my usage of kleenex and paper towels, and I made sure not to throw away items unless absolutely necessary.

-Showering for more than 10 minutes: This was a significant change for me. When I shower, I am usually tired and stay in the shower for a long time as a result. I set a timer of 5 minutes to prevent myself from taking too long. I also set an alarm at 4 minutes to remind myself of the time.

-Spending 1/2 – hour on a vehicle per day: Due to the current situation, I found it easy to avoid spending time on a vehicle, as I mostly stay home these days.

-Eating non-organic pork: I limited my pork consumption significantly. I had only one meal with pork over the past week.

 

The Reflection

 

Changes that were easy to make

The easiest change to make was limiting my vehicle usage. Due to the current situation, I am staying at home and avoiding travel outside. Another easy change to make was limiting my pork consumption; I do not eat pork often, and it is not my favourite type of meat. Thus, it was easy to remind myself and my parent to limit the consumption of pork. I also found limiting the production of garbage to be simple. Before I tried to reduce garbage production, I would usually use a kleenex or paper towel to wipe my hand after I washed them. I switched over to using a towel that can be reused to limit my trash production. This was a simple task, but it helped me prevent a lot of trash from being produced. More than I expected!

Changes that were difficult to make

The hardest change for me to make was limiting my shower time. I enjoy long, warm showers, especially when I am tired. To limit my shower usage, I had to implement several strategies and gradually reduce my shower time. One strategy that I used was to set a timer to go off when the limited time was up. I also set the alarm to go off one minute before the time was up to remind myself to finish up. In addition, I also tried to shower earlier than before. I shower at night; When I used to shower, I would be tired, which would cause me to spend more time showering. By showering earlier, I was more awake and that helped reduce my shower time. Another change that was difficult to make was reducing my beef consumption. Out of all the different types of meat, I consumed beef the most. I had to constantly remind myself and my parents to avoid using beef as the protein source for many lunches and dinners.

Obstacles

-Eating non-organic beef: I consumed beef frequently; It was challenging to remember to switch to other meats such as chicken for meals.

-Producing enough trash each day to fill up a basket: I struggled to find ways to reduce my trash production. I overcame this obstacle by thinking of all the different ways that I produced garbage, then determining the biggest factor of my garbage production. Once I figured out that using too much paper towels and kleenex were the biggest factors, I was able to effectively find a solution to reduce my garbage production; Using towels.

-Showering for more than 10 minutes: During the first few nights where I tried to limit my shower consumption, I still felt tired when I showered and found it difficult to follow the alarm that I set. Eventually, as I began to shower earlier to reduce my tiredness while showering, I was able to follow the alarm much more easily.

-Spending 1/2 – hour on a vehicle per day: There was not a notable obstacle for this change. My family has been limiting travel outside, so it was fairly easy to reduce my time on a vehicle.

-Eating non-organic pork: It found it slightly difficult to remember to limit the amount of pork that I consume. I would sometimes forget to remind my parents. I overcame this obstacle by talking about the next day’s meal plans with my parents to make sure that I limited the amount of non-organic pork that I consumed.

 

Next Steps

Overall, I believe this was a successful attempt to reduce my ecological footprint. In the future, I will definitely continue to implement these changes. I will also try to reduce my water consumption further by reducing how many times I flush and reduce my energy consumption by turning off the lights whenever I am not using them. I also want to reduce my screen time on the computer as well. Through this assignment, I learned much more about my impact on the environment and actions that I can take to reduce my ecological footprint!

 

Posted in Uncategorized

In-Depth Post #5

It’s been a few weeks since my last post, and I am continuing to make progress and a good rate. Over the past few weeks, I have taken two courses online about scripting in Unity. One of the courses focused on more technical aspects of scripting, explaining different concepts such as Vectors, DeltaTime, and Enumerations. I found these topics slightly challenging but very interesting to learn about. The other course that I took was more of hands-on experience. In this course, I downloaded a project file of a game and learned to modify the code to change how things functioned in the game. This was a very enjoyable experience and I got to review concepts that I had already learned, such as functions and variables. I also learned new concepts such as classes and inheritance. Overall, from these courses, I reviewed coding concepts that I already knew and learned about many new concepts that will definitely help my game development.

Leaning scripting from a hands-on course.

 

Even though Mr. Linburg is very busy right now, I have been staying in touch with him over the past few weeks. We initially tried to communicate via Microsoft Teams, but we discovered that we didn’t have permission to start one-to-one meetings. Since then, we have used email to communicate with each other. Although we couldn’t talk to each other face-to-face, we communicated often and stayed on track. I have updated Mr. Linburg on my progress about once a week and contacted him if I had any questions. Yesterday, we had a discussion and we decided that I would soon be ready to create a larger game using Unity. We decided that I am going to take one more course on scripting in Unity, then I will use all the skills I have learned to create a full game in Unity.

 

Questions:

1. What kinds of learning opportunities does the mentor provide to expose you to new learning?

Mr. Linburg provides me with many helpful and interesting online resources to help me learn how to use Unity. He has a variety of resources on his website and recommends courses to me when we have discussions.

 

2. What kinds of learning opportunities exist to reinforce new learning?

Online resources are incredibly useful for me to continue learning. There are so many courses and tutorials on the internet on game design, scripting, 3d modelling, and many other topics related to game development. In addition to the courses that Mr. Linburg has provided to me, I also watch videos on YouTube on various game development tricks, such as using the trail system in Unity.

 

3. What kinds of opportunities exist that might accelerate learning?

To accelerate my learning, I have made many small video games in Unity. These small games only take about a week at most to complete and use very basic game mechanics. Although these games are simple, I have learned so much from making them. For each new small game that I make, I would need to find resources online to help me add certain features to the game. Through this, I have gained extra knowledge of various features in Unity such as 2d Lighting and practiced my programming skills. Here is one of the small games that I made: Wandering Spirit

 

4. When you get together what do you talk about?

When Mr. Linburg and I get together, we talk about my progress so far and the steps moving forwards. I would update Mr. Linburg on my progress since the last meeting and ask questions if I was wondering about something. We would then set a goal for the next week and talk about the resources I can use to help my learning. If I have any questions or concerns, I will talk about it with Mr. Linburg.

 

5. What is going particularly well in your mentoring relationship right now?

During this uncertain and difficult time, Mr. Linburg is doing his best to continue to support my learning. He has been providing me with tons of resources to make sure I can continue to learn about something that I am passionate about. I have been committed, learning more about Unity by looking online for additional resources. Mr. Liburg and I are communicating often so he always is aware of my progress.

 

6. What are you learning about one another?

I have learned that Mr. Linburg is a mentor who is supportive and caring. Even during this difficult time, when he is busy with work and teaching, he continues to make sure I am equipped properly with resources so that I can continue to learn about something that I am passionate about.

 

I am continuing to learn more about using Unity and fueling my passion for game development. I am super excited to get started on creating a full-sized game in Unity and to see how the game turns out!

Hope everybody is well,

Mike

TALONS Digital Literacy Post #5 – PTI presentations

In Social Studies, we learned about First Nation history in Canada. We learned about the impacts of what happened in the past and how it affects First Nations people today. Working in groups, we created PowerPoint presentations reflecting on specific topics such as reconciliation, the Indian Act, and indigenous woman’s rights. My group’s topic was Indigenous Cultural Appropriation. In addition, we had to research about two recent stories in the news relating to our topic, as well as come up with a discussion question for the class.

Cultural Appropriation of Canadian First Nations Presentation

 

Criteria:

I tailor my work to appeal to my intended audience and use language and visual design elements appropriate for them. (2)

I understood that effective PowerPoint presentations use minimal text and simple images that capture attention. To achieve this, I made sure to limit my slides to contain less than 20 words (excluding the image sources). I also chose images that would represent what I would be speaking about. For example, I used an image of a Canadian flag with a traditional indigenous art style patterns. This is a simple image that enhances the meaning and aesthetic of the presentation and doesn’t distract the audience.

 

I look at controversial issues or topics from opposed perspectives to gain a more complete understanding (12).

Cultural appropriation is a very controversial topic. When I researched, I found various news articles with different opinions on cultural appropriation. I read articles that were written by Indigenous people and other people learned that everybody defines cultural appropriation differently. I came to the conclusion that everyone has a different idea of what is offensive and what is acceptable.

 

I ethically use content that is not created by me by using creative commons licensed audio, video, or images and by properly citing these resources within my work (14).

For this project, I used simplistic images to create visual interest and impact. I made sure to give credit to the original creators of the images by providing the link to the image source below the images I used.

TALONS Digital Literacy #4 – ZIP Inquiry Project

In English, we had a week-long project called ZIP. We had to ask an inquiry question and conduct research to try to answer it. We also had to create a learning artifact, something that represents what you have learned over the entire project. My inquiry question was “What are the essential components of an addictive video game?”. I chose this topic because I was interested in and passionate about game design. My final learning artifact was an original video game that I made that incorporated engaging game components that I had researched.

Below is my learning artifact, an original video game that I made.

Criteria:

I constructively build upon or synthesize the ideas of my peers. (4)

As I developed my game, I asked my peers to playtest the game and provide me any feedback or suggestions. I synthesized the feedback and suggestions that I received and improved my game. One example is when somebody suggested that I add more levels. I built upon there suggestion and added addition levels, as well as new game mechanics.

 

I determine and use the most effective medium for my work. (6)

Since my topic was about game design, I couldn’t think of a more appropriate medium for my learning artifact than a video game. When I designed my game, I incorporated elements that would engage the player that I learned about from my research. Some of these elements include scoring, levels, and music.

 

I design my work with consideration given to aesthetics and design, such as consistent color schemes, symmetry or organization of visual elements, and overall layout. (7)

I decided to create a game with simple graphics as an aesthetic. My game’s graphics are simple, but also effective. The simplicity of the graphics doesn’t distract the player from the core mechanics of the game. I also used consistent color schemes in my game: red, grey, and white. I also made sure that the overall layout of my game was organized by designing a menu, settings, and level select screen.

TALONS Digital Literacy Post #3 – Eminent Speech

In English, we had a big project called eminent. We had to research one influential figure that benefited the world positively. The person I chose for this project was Terry Fox. In addition to our research, we also had to present a speech from the perspective of an inanimate object or another person. I chose to create a speech from the perspective of Terry Fox’s artificial leg. Here is a copy of my speech: Eminent Speech

 

Criteria:

I critically assess research sources for Currency, Reliability, Authority, and Purpose. (9)

For this assignment, I used my research skills to find various sources for my research and to create a bibliography. I assessed each source that I found critically by checking for the date published, reading about the author’s background, as well as looking into the purpose of the source. I used reliable, purposeful sources such as the official terry fox foundation website.

 

I attribute credit to ideas that are not my own by preparing a Bibliography/Works Cited and by using in-text citations. (13)

For this project, I properly cited all of the sources that I used in MLA format. All of the sources are alphabetized. Eminent Grade 9 Works Cited

 

My work demonstrates a positive, productive, and empathetic worldview. (15)

While I worked on this project, I was inspired by Terry Fox’s determination. My final speech emphasizes Terry Fox’s Determination and demonstrates the power of perseverance. My speech was inspiring, encouraging others to never give up and highlighting the power of teamwork. These ideas represented in my speech demonstrate a positive and empathetic worldview.

 

TALONS Digital Literacy Post #2 – Midsummer Night’s Dream Character Analysis

In English, we had a unit focusing on William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. After completing the book, we worked on a written analysis of one character from the play. We had to work together in groups of four. The character from the play that we analyzed was Oberon. We had to write literary paragraphs about his wants, fears, defining characteristics, and conflicts.

Midsummer Night’s Dream Character Analysis

An illustration of Oberon from William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream that I created digitally.

 

Criteria:

I used digital spaces to plan and execute collaborative projects with my peers. (1)

For this group project, my group and I did the majority of our work on a shared word document. We communicated online to discuss and set timelines, as well as provide feedback to each other.

 

I enhance the impact of my research or presentation through the creative use of technology. (5)

I decided to create the illustration of Oberon digitally. I wanted to create a unique illustration that represents Oberon’s character. I used computer software to add meaning depth to my drawing.

 

I challenged myself to increase my technological literacy by working with apps, software, and mediums that I was not familiar with in the past. (8)

I created the illustration for the project using PaintToolSAI and Photoshop CS6. I was unfamiliar with digital art and using PaintToolSAI, but I challenged myself to learn something new and I learned a lot through this experience. Click here for the illustration(PSD document).

 

 

TALONS Digital Literacy #1 – Electrical Appliance Project

In Science, we learned about different types of electrical circuits. To expand our learning, we did a research-based project on a common household electrical appliance. We had to take notes, write a summary, provide illustrations and diagrams, and write a conclusion to summarize our learning. We would then present our research in small groups. I chose to do my research on the washing machine. From this project, I expanded my scientific thinking into our everyday lives and learned that common appliances such as washing machines are much more complex than they appear.

 

Washing Machine Research Project

 

Criteria:

I respond to the work or ideas of my peers in a way that is compassionate and productive. (3)

When my peers asked questions about my topic in my group, I tried to answer the questions to the best of my possibility. I also increased productivity by asking my peers when they were presenting. In addition, I also gave my peers encouraging feedback on their presentations.

 

I go beyond google and use databases to find scholarly research sources. (11)

Instead of just googling, I used databases provided by the Gleneagle Library Website to find resources. In addition, I also used reliable videos on Youtube to gain additional information about how washing machines function.

 

In-Depth Post #4

It has been a while since my last In-Depth Post. Over the past month, I have worked on 3 different projects in Unity and I am continuing to make very good progress with my learning.

 

Before spring break, I made my first 3D game with Unity. I created a simple 3D roll-a-ball game in Unity by following a tutorial series on Youtube. This project gave me a better understanding of the Unity 3D physics system, as well as helped me become more familiar with the Unity interface. This game implements many basic concepts such as RigidBody and UI. I also practiced my programming skills and learned new concepts such as GetComponent(). Although I had some difficulty understanding some concepts such as UI, I overcame the struggle by doing some research on the topic. This was a simple and interesting project to work on. Below is the game:

I also created another game in 3D that I named Drift. While working on this game, I learned about saving mechanisms as well as managing audio. In addition, I also got more practice with working in 3D and programming various scripts. Below is the game:

After showing my game to Mr. Linburg, the game design teacher, we made a detailed plan for my learning during spring break and beyond. We decided that I would add more components to my roll-a-ball game, as well as work on more projects to practice my coding and to become more familiar with using Unity.

 

Over the break, I added a few new components to the roll-a-ball game and began to work on a 2D dungeon gunner game.

Applying what I learned, I added a few ramps, a second level, and a door that lets the player through after completing the first level. As I gain more knowledge about working in 3D in Unity, I will add more components to this game.

A screenshot from the project that I am currently working on.

 

I also expanded my Unity skills by working on a 2D game. Following a tutorial series, I created a simple dungeon-gunner game with 2 levels. I learned to manipulate cameras to create a mini-map, use prefabs and randomness to create random level generation, and other important skills. I am currently still working on this game and implementing new components such as boss fights, and character selection. I learned that working with 2D is very different compared to 3D. However, there are still a lot of similarities between them.

Questions:

1. What has been my most difficult mentoring challenge so far? Why?

The most difficult challenge so far is communicating frequently with my mentor. I have not contacted Mr. Linburg for 2 weeks. Communicating has been for me as I have not found a good opportunity to talk with my mentor. From our last meeting, we created a plan for my learning for the next month. I am working on many projects, and I could not find a good time to communicate with my mentor.

2. What is working well? Why?

One thing that is working really well is my learning speed. All of my learning is done online, through watching videos or reading articles. This is very convenient for me, as I have had a lot of time to learn at home over the past few weeks. My progress has never been quicker before.

3. What could be working better? How can you make sure this happens?

Something that could be working better is communicating more frequently with my mentor. Over the break, I have not contacted Mr. Linburg. I felt that there was no good opportunity, as I was not finished with my projects. I can communicate with him more often so he can keep track of my progress and provide support as I work on a project. I will make sure this happens by setting a meeting scheduled with Mr. Linburg, so we can keep the meetings consistent. I will communicate via email and I will be updating him with my progress this week.

 

Overall, over the past month, I made a lot of progress. I am proud of the games that I have created so far, and am driven to continue learning about game development. Over the next month, I plan on taking a course about scripting and learning how to implement assets that I have created in Blender into my final large game in Unity and I am excited to see how the game turns out!

It is a difficult time right now, and I hope everybody else is doing well.

-Mike