Exploratory Workshops Raise Awareness and Instill Confidence
Depending on information presented, our workshops range from 4 – 18 hours (up to 3-weeks) long on Saturdays. The amount of hours is determined by what will be presented during that time. To keep content up-to-date, no two workshops are ever alike. Students install and are introduced to a software program during all training sessions.
Introduction to Video Game Design and Development
Students are introduced to types of careers, different roles, job outlook and how video games and interactive media are used in the entertainment, education, marketing and training industry. We discuss the game document, play mechanics, game engines, scriptwriting, programming languages, what makes a good game, types of game genres and introduce the class to a game making software. All students create a basic fully-playable game (including graphics, animation, music and sound effects) during the second week of the workshop.
Animation and Graphics
Students use software to create 2D graphics and animation to be imported into the game engine or IDE. They will also create animations that include the walk cycle, facial expression and bouncing ball. An extended workshop for 3D modeling and visual effects is also offered.
Music and Sound Effects
Students will be given a presentation on the use of music and sound effects and they will learn software to create a music track. They will also be shown how to edit and add sound effects to their music, and be given a list of resources to locate free software, music and sound effects for their projects.
Screenwriting, Character Development and Storyboarding
Students are given an overview and presentation on scriptwriting, types of characters and flowcharts for video game scripts. After the overview, they will be given small assignments on each topic to make sure they understand how it works. The workshops are interactive. Some exercises require teamwork.
Storyboarding and Storyboard Art
Students will be given an overview and presentation on the importance of a story board and how it works by providing a flow and rhythm for video games. The game player’s journey is discussed as well as the art work that visually illustrates where the story is going. Students will learn a software product for creating storyboards (includes motion comics and animatics) and graphics. Prior to using the software, they will sketch out their ideas on paper.
Conceptual Art and Drawing
Students will get a presentation and overview on how conceptual art is used to give a visual idea of what the world, characters and journey will look like to the video game or interactive media designer to get an idea of what the final project should look like. Students will learn graphics software, how to locate and manipulate free to use clip art on the web and draw by hand. They will share examples of what they’ve learned with the class for feedback. They will also get a demonstration on how to use a graphics tablet and scanner to speed up the work process.
Game Engine and Programming
Students will get an overview and presentation on different types of video game programming languages and which technologies they are normally used for and why math skills are important. They will create and run a simple program using a code compiling software.
Introduction to Mobile Applications Development
Students will be given a presentation and overview on Android, iOS and Windows. They will also install a development kit and an Integrated development environment. After that, they will run a small program to make sure their install is working properly, and be given a list of beginner tutorials to continue working on their own after the workshop.
Students will get an overview and presentation on using the game engine to create animated stories, simulations and interactive media. A demonstration will be given to students on how the technology is used.
Project Management: Pipeline/Workflow and the Game Design Document
There will be a presentation on planning a project from concept to completion. Students will also be introduced to a software package for keeping track of projects and will do a group exercise to plan a project out and present it to the class. Emphasis will also be placed on team-building and leadership skills.
Virtual Reality and Mixed Reality (VR/XR)
Students will be introduced to the metaverse and world building for virtual reality. As with all PETAL projects, the tools will be chosen according to the project at hand by the individual or team. They will setup and create a virtual world that can be explored with or without headsets. After the workshop, they will be given small assignments to do on their own with coaching and troubleshooting assistance.
Students will learn how AI works, how to plan and create an AI program.