I’m someone who’s always fetishised about making a game. I think that’s a common dream among gamers. Making that game that you’ve always wanted to play, but when probed about it the dream is usually a vague idea along the lines of “an MMO version of whatever game I’m into at the time.”
Well I always wanted to make a platformer, and after playing WormHunter and a few other of the Ludum Dare games I noticed the Unity logo popping up an awful lot. So I figured I’d look into it.
Then I decided to throw caution to the wind and dive in. Unity is only about a gig anyway. One of my friends tried convincing me to get UE4. But I was turned off by the subscription fee, the lack of things it easily exports to, and the fact that I don’t particularly need the 3D rendering prowess of Unreal Engine. It’s squandered on me. I just want to drift pixels around the screen.
First up I did Brackeys pong tutorial. Im not going to lie. When i first heard his voice I thought it was a piss take video and he was about to smear spaghetti on the screen. But it turns out he’s pretty cool! I followed along, although only barely comprehending the coding wizardry. I was instantly impressed with how simple it was to get a paddle on the screen moving. Adding gravity was also a sinch. Last time I encountered gravity was when my friend Matt was wrestling with Actionscript, building gravity from scratch and smashing his head against a wall because slopes are so much harder than they sound. In unity I got slopes going within seconds by just tilting the boxes or drawing my own hit lines.
After I endured making pong I stepped into the real meat and potatoes of what I wanted to do. I was blown away by how crazy fast it was to create levels and have the character running around, literally done in minutes. Within another half hour I had Parallax scrolling going as well. This is seriously awesome. As a relative noob I managed to trail along and get things working.
If you’re a noob, I recommend you check out Unity. It’s not gonna scan your brain and instantly shit out the game you want, but it’s definitely fun to give a good crack. Also if you’re already a pro it can cut corners for you so instead of trying to figure out character controls you can get straight into developing new concepts.
Now I’m off to do some character concepts.