Tag | XNA Posts

Iowa Code Camp was pretty terrific. Everything went without a hitch, all the sessions went well and a lot of folks went away with some good stuff. My XNA session went well and got some really good questions. The room was mostly full and there were even a few Magenic folks in there. After the Code Camp, we walked over to the dinner, which was nice. Excellent turnout for dinner and many MANY drinks were purchased and consumed. Played some pool and socialized for a few hours before the crowd starting ...
Happy Free Comic Book Day! I meant to write about this earlier but better let than never. I just can't let today go by without reminding everyone about Free Comic Book Today! Yep, that's right, today at participating comic books shops (which is basically all of them in my area) they will be handing out Free Comic Books. The kids and I have a blast on this day. It's becoming a holiday for us that's about as big as Easter (it's already bigger than Halloween for me since I don't really like candy, but ...
Today, in a few hours, a bunch of Magenic folks are piling into a couple of cars and driving down to Iowa City for the first Iowa Code Camp. Jason Bock is speaking on "Writing Better Code" and I am covering "What's this XNA Thing I Keep Hearing About?"

Tonight is also the opening night for Iron Man, which I hope to catch after the Code Camp tomorrow, with a bunch of my fellow geeks.

Check out this video on Channel 9 that talks about the soon-to-be-released CTP for XNA games on the Zune.

http://channel9.msdn.com/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=400948

Well, my advanced programming students finally have a 2d shooter game that they have almost completed. It's been fun watching the development of their games. Some students are tweaking their sprite graphic, some are adding different sounds. Dan Waters from Microsoft will be coming to speak to my students on Tuesday about the new XNA framework that will allow you to create a game for a Zune. Dan has a great blog on XNA and I used his resources during the semester. I have been experiencing deploying ...
The MVP Summit has come and gone for 2008 and once again I was just blown away by the experience. This was my second summit and I came back extremely motivated and inspired to make sure I have a third. Just being around the other MVPs and the people at Microsoft makes you feel like you should be better at what you do. Just smart and inspiring guys all around. I personally want to say thanks to the entire XNA development team. You guys are doing a fantastic job and I really felt my time there the ...
I've really got nothing to blog but thought I should update. I had my interview on Fri and I think it went generally good, hopefully they feel the same. I want to redo my website and have it be like a tutorial site where you can go and log-in, grab tutorials, and take tests on the tutorials. Maybe even have your own like little 'homepage' where you can upload pictures of what you've built off the tutorials. I don't know, that last part could get very complex. Also, I'm hesitant on doing it because ...
What I'm doing, where I'm speaking... throughout the summer. MAY 08 Iowa Code Camp Iowa City, IA - 5/3/08 JUNE 08 BDNUG Bloomington, IL - 6/10/08 Day of Sharepoint Minneapolis, MN - 6/14/08 Magenic Technology Council Chicago, IL - 6/18/08 - 6/22/08 JULY 08 Iowa City .NET User Group Iowa City, IA - 7/2/08 TCXNAUG / IGDATC Cookout Golden Valley, MN - 7/19/08 AUGUST 08 nothing yet :( SEPTEMBER 08 HDC Minneapolis, MN - 9/28/08 - 9/30/08 (session submitted - awaiting confirmation) OCTOBER 08 Twin Cities ...
Nearly 400 U.S. colleges and universities, including MIT and Carnegie Mellon, now offer formal training in game development, ranging from elective courses to full degree programs. The increasing complexity of computers and game systems requires teams of dozens of artists, producers, and programmers to create a game. "Twenty years ago, a game was made by one guy, or two or three people," says International Game Developers Association executive director Jason Della Rocca. "The games you see now take ...
As a VB.NET programmer i only really use C# for XNA and other projects when i don't have a say on the matter. Recently i have begun to think about making a full blooded transition to C# after having some great success with it (specifically in XNA) and its not because VB.NET doesn't cut it. It is great but C# is also fantastic in my opinion, as it took features from some of the more distinguished languages avaliable, C++, Java and Object Pascal to name a few. Feature wise they are perfect for me no ...
Next month, on May 15th, the Twin Cities XNA User Group is hosting a very special guest. Shawn Hargreaves (Microsoft, XNA Team) has agreed to come present TWO sessions to the user group in one night: Session 1: Defeating the Network Game Gremlins The speed of light. Quantum uncertainty. Parallel universes. Bandwidth that for some reason never turns out to be good as the advert from your ISP claimed it would be. When you set out to write a networked game, you have to worry about these things. This ...
While at the MVP Summit, I interviewed for an INETA Board Position. Specifically, the VP of Membership. I have no idea if I'll get it, though I hope I do. If I do get it, there's going to be some ch-ch-ch-changes. If I don't get it, I hope whoever they do pick takes these suggestions to heart. #1 The membership committee needs some SERIOUS house cleaning. As a User Group leader, I can count on one hand (actually one finger, with room to spare) the number of unsolicited emails I have received from ...
The MVP Summit is over, and it rocked. Totally rocked. It was very cool seeing so many of my friends and colleagues again. Definitely way too many people to list here. I also made a bunch of new friends. I can't wait for the next event. I spent some time talking with Microsoft about VB Community, and even got to present some of the VB XNA stuff I had been working on at the Summit. It was very exciting to be addressing Microsoft and a room full of MVPs. I also spent some time with the INETA Board ...
Today was extremely busy and exhausting as well. The routine here is to wake up early, grab a boxed breakfast and coffee in the huge ballroom at the hotel and then run off to where the buses are parked to take you to the Redmond Microsoft campus. I scheduled meetings with some Microsoft personnel today along with poking my head into some of the sessions that were going on at the Conference Center. I continued to evangelize computer science education and spoke with interested people about the concerns ...
VB.NET peeps had a kewl thing to end their summit track: they let some of the MVP's do short presentations. Cory Smith Showing how to integrate Glass into your win-form applications...kewl tip! Chris Williams Chris is showing us that you can actually use Visual Basic with XNA. He's getting mad applause. OMG, Rob Windsor *just* threw a pair of underwear at Chris! He is a *rockstar*! Steele Price Very kewl demo...might be NDA (?) Not sure... Some guy from Europe Um...yeah I have no idea...OH...DasBlog? ...
Well the weather in April is quite different than the weather in Orlando, FL at this time of year. However, I did notice that there is more color in the trees and plants even though it's cold. I spent most of the morning at an XNA workshop. Even though I'm an ASP.NET MVP, there are certain events that we can go to outside our area. It was interesting to listen to the XNA concerns that the MVP folks had. The speaker who is a senior manager mentioned XNA being used in colleges and that opened up the ...
I haven't mentioned this but I've got some wonderfully awesome, tutorial greatness I've written! (end shameless promo number 1). Anyways, I'm still working on this series but I've had lots of amazing feedback from lots of people that have benefited from them. Here's the complete list: XNA Development Tutorial 1 Downloading and installing Microsoft Visual C# Express Edition, XNA Game Studio Express, and connecting Visual Studio with your Xbox 360 console. XNA Development Tutorial 2 Starting a new ...
I arrived early at the airport and met up with our Microsoft local leader Joe, Devfish, Healy. Joe was in high spirits banging away on his keyboard at 7 am! Joe drove from Tampa to Orlando to take the Alaskan Airlines direct flight to Seattle. Joe feels so committed to the MVP program that he makes sure he has money in his budget to go to this event and hook up with the user group leaders at this event. Shawn Weisfeld, a C# MVP and Onetug leader, was next to arrive at the gate. We all boarded the ...
I continue to mess around with XNA 2.0. I have been using George Clingerman's tutorial on selecting a sprite with a selection box. The tutorial is also on his XNADevelopment.com site here. Basically, there are two sprites that you can select by left clicking on them: or you can drag a selection box around them to select them: You can then select one sprite in this manner and right click somewhere on the screen to move it, similar to a RTS game. Very handy. But I want something more. I want to click ...
I've got the DirectX demo displaying the Dwarf mesh correctly and have all the code segregated into class files. Next, I want to make a class that easily supports adding and managing models, similar to the GameModel class I've written in my XNA tutorials. In order to implement this style of management, I need to build a ModelManager and a SceneManager. ModelManager Stores the physical model information such as the model's filename, and any other relevant information. SceneManager Manages the number ...
As I prepare for my yearly pilgrimage to Microsoft (also known as the MVP Summit), I also happen to be wrapping up my current gig through Magenic. When I get back from Redmond, I'll have a day left here and then the weekend. After that, I'm off to whereever Magenic sends me next. I also got some good news via email today. I've been appointed to the Magenic Technology Council. From the email: The purpose of the MTC is to recognize Magenic consultants/associates who are evangelizing Microsoft technologies ...
In my previous post I talked about making my first RPG tutorial in XNA 2.0. One of the challenges was finding a sprite with all the animation movements in different directions. I came across Charas RPG Maker site. Once you register, you can create sprites in all their cheesy, 8-bit glory. The sprite options are very comprehensive, and include hundreds of options for body, face, hair, dress. Each animation cell is 72 x 97. To get the background to be blank in dotnet, I changed the background to magenta ...
After long last, I have started to mess around with XNA 2.0. I really like George Clingerman's tutorials here on GWB, as well as George's XNADevelopment.com site. If I make a game, what kind of game would I like to make? As I have said before, I spend more time playing old Nintendo games downloaded on the Virtual Console on my Wii - old Zelda and Metroid. So I think I will try to make an RPG. I have messed around with RPG's before, using Microsoft's Crusader RPG starter kit, on the Coding4Fun part ...
I've been writing a lot of stuff lately, it's surprising I'm a math/computer science major and not a writing major. I've written my slew of XNA tutorials (of which I have 3 left to write), I wrote a 15 page paper on the artificial pancreas for a class, and then I wrote the script for the video filmed on that same subject for that same class. Speaking of the script, we filmed the video for it last night, and wow.... It's quite the oddity. We've got someone dressed up as a pancreas, the diabetes gang, ...
I'm currently working on a bunch of projects that I'm hoping to get one or two done in a few months. They are: F# Multi-File Text Editor Learn DirectX (Write a DirectX 9.0 Demo) Pong XNA Game All these projects are currently in development with some being further than others. From my first post I realized posting code on here is ugly so I won't be doing that anymore unless it's only a few short lines. At this moment I'm working through some DirectX tutorials which is going nicely and I'm actually ...
My students have learned enough XNA for them to be able to create their own 2d game. They are ready and anxious. One of the requirements was for them to give me an idea of what the game will be and what will be the game play. So, as we start to develop these games, here's a list of what they will be doing: Helicopter Frenzy- The object of this game is for the player to make it pass all the enemies with a certain score. The players will need to be able to move and fire the helicopter at the same time. ...
Hi GWB readers, I have been away from geekswithblogs.net for the past month, infact from all of my projects as well i have been extremely busy with my degree and had quite a number of large assignments to complete before the end of this semester. Anyway with my new found interest in the XNA framework and 3D modelling i will be turning my interests to XNA ! I have one project underway which is a 2D multiplayer tank game with a short and sweet single player mode version! Anyway just to note i would ...
Twin Cities Code Camp 4 is almost over, and it's been awesome. Red Bull just showed up with the cool Red Bull car, cute Red Bull girls, and a couple hundred cans of ice cold Red Bull. (My legacy as a geek god is forever intact.) As usual, I didn't catch many sessions since I spent most of the day working on my own demos... what I did catch was very good though. My session went well (VB.NET, XNA, AI) with plenty of good questions. It was a small session, with about 10-11 people. No time to relax though. ...
In our previous tutorial we have seen how we can use XML axis properties to consume XML returned from a web service in Silverlight applications, in this example however we will look at how XML Literals and Embedded Expressions can be used to easily write fast and efficient Web Services. *Note XML Literals and Embedded Expression are Visual Basic 9 Exclusive features you might need Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5 installed. XML Literals and Embedded Expression are not limited to Silverlight/WPF ...
Well, we are in the home stretch of our learning of XNA. We have used the excellent tutorial by Charles Cook that is located on the XNA creators club site. Beginner's Guide to XNA Game Studio Express This all-in-one tutorial is everything you need to get started with XNA Game Studio Express. Follow along with in-depth video tutorials with source code examples to learn how to create 2D and 3D games from scratch. I'm hoping this tutorial can get updated to XNA version 2. My students concentrated on ...
The first meeting of the Portland Area XNA User Group was a complete success! We had a great turnout for our first meeting with just over ten people showing up (for as inexperience we are at running a user group, we were THRILLED with this turnout). I apparently love the sound of my own voice and managed to talk about XNA for over an hour. I wasn't really planning on talking that long, it kind of just happened. I didn't see anyone sleeping and I got some great feedback afterwards so hopefully I wasn't ...
The first meeting of PAXNAUG is tonight! If you need directions or more information about the time, look at the PAXNAUG meeting post. Looks like it's going to be a small turnout, but for as new as we are to running a user group, that's probably a good thing. We have the pizza ordered and we're making a run for the few other remaining supplies we need right now. We didn't get sponsorship for the first one, so this meeting is on us. We figured we'd aggressively hunt sponsors for the higher number meetings. ...
I did my first Magenic Webinar (webcast) today, and I think it went really well. Andy Schwarz (my co-presenter) does a great job of covering all the non-demo parts and definitely kept the pace right where it needed to be. The topic was Visual Studio 2008 in general, and LINQ / AJAX specifically. It was a lot of fun building the 3 demos and I'll probably do something similar again soon. We got some really good questions as well, including a couple I need to go research. I also saw at least one familiar ...
There might be a few samples of working with web services in Silverlight but I promise I'll keep you interested with VB.NET exclusive feature VB Literals. This is going to open a whole new way of looking and working with XML and Web Services. *Note: Don't attempt to do everything I do in this tutorial in C# (espcially consuming WebService in Silverlight 2) because you simply can't, C# or any other language doesn't have this feature, so stick to VB.NET for consuming you can use C# for the rest, I'll ...
Hey everyone, I've got some an agenda change today along with info about upcoming meetings. Also, if you haven't RSVP'd for this week's (3/20/08) meeting, please do so ASAP so we can order enough pizza, etc. Unfortunately, Nick Landry is unable to join us this week, due to work demands. The good news is that INETA has managed to line up another speaker on very short notice (as of this morning.) The new speaker is Martin Shoemaker and the topic is "Voice-Enable Your Vista Games with MSAPI" and I realize ...
Tonight's the Twin Cities XNA User Group meeting.  Unfortunately, INETA speaker Nick Landry couldn't make it, but we were lucky enough that INETA was on the ball and quickly found a replacement.  Martin Shoemaker is doing a talk on "Speech Enabling Your Games On Vista."

I see much potential in using this for HA!  (more on that later.)
I really like it when students discover things on their own and get excited about their own learning. This week, my students have been modifying an existing XNA Pong game. They have just learned the concepts of putting sprites on the screen, moving sprites, and sprite collision. There were two games they could select and some selected the game Dan Waters put together on his blog and the other was from Bill Reiss. Basically, they had to change game play in the pong game. Some added more paddles, changed ...
I just finished up the fourth and final part to the Wizard and posted it to my site at XNADevelopment.com. This final installment in the series covers adding the ability to have the Wizard shoot magic fireballs. So creating projectiles and maintaining them it covered in the tutorial. This has been a fun (but LONG) set of tutorials to write. Let me know what you think of them so I can either continue doing tutorials in this style or adjust them. I'm always happy to hear feedback. Several things I've ...
Part 3 of the Wizard has just been posted to XNADevelopment.com. This part in the Wizard series covering sprite movement and actions shows how to add the ability for your Wizard sprite to "duck". This introduces you to the concepts of using a sprite sheet and learning to change "frames" for your sprite in game. I'm making a serious effort to deliver the re-write of the original Wizard code in smaller, cleaner and more digestible chunks. While the original tutorial "worked", I knew the code wasn't ...
I have just posted part two in the Wizard series. This series is covering adding movement and actions to a sprite. You can head on over to XNADevelopment.com to check out The Wizard: Part 2- Making A Sprite Jump. Part two covers adding the code needed to the project to get your sprite jumping around the screen. After working through the tutorial, don't be afraid to modify and play with the code. That's one of the best ways to learn. If you get things messed up too badly, you can always delete the ...
First, I just want to say thanks for all the great feedback I've gotten in comments and email. I don't make any money from doing these tutorials, I don't want donations and I'm not a fan of ads so your comments are what keep me going. Silly I know, but just a little "Thanks!" really does make all the work that goes into the site and these tutorials worth it. So "Thanks!" for the comments and emails. Keep them coming! I love hearing back from people using the tutorials and benefiting from them. I ...
I added a calendar to the Twin Cities XNA User Group website.  Check it out, here:  www.twincitiesxnausergroup.com

Now you can see brief details for previous events as well as upcoming events.

And of course, if you're in the Twin Cities area, there's a meeting next week. Be sure to RSVP via the site.



This is part one of a multi-part post where I will show some of the techniques we've been using to parse NIEM XML documents using LINQ. Microsoft has definitely put a lot of time into thinking out the System.Xml.Linq features. When working with NIEM XML the essential thing to remember is that the only thing that ever really changes is the name of the tag and sometimes the namespace. This makes NIEM very easy to parse with LINQ because LINQ does not look at an XML document like the DOM - a hierarchical ...
I have completely re-written and posted the tutorial covering scrolling a 2D background on my site . This tutorial has been upgraded with improved code and art assets and is now completely re-written for the XNA 2.0 framework. I have also take the time to create a more advanced version of the source code. I tend to target beginners with my site so I don't always make my code as "robust" as it could be. Often, it teaches a concept, but it's not easy to reuse in another project. The advanced version ...
I have completely re-written the tutorial covering creating a 2D sprite and posted it to my site at XNADevelopment.com. I'm much happier with it this time around. This tutorial covers displaying your first sprite on the screen and then positioning the sprite. The tutorial then takes you a step further and helps you get accustomed to object oriented development and walks you through creating a "Sprite" class for creating and drawing your sprites on the screen. Teaching you a fundamental step you will ...
I have re-written the tutorial covering Adding an Image to the game project for the XNA 2.0 framework and posted it to XNADevelopment.com. This tutorial covers adding images to the new "Content" folder available in 2.0 projects. Head on over and check out the tutorial, Adding an Image to the Game Project. As always, comments are appreciated. Technorati Tags: XNA ...
Creating a new XNA Windows Game Project has been re-written for the XNA 2.0 framework and posted to my site at XNADevelopment.com. I created this tutorial to make it easier to write future tutorials since I can just point people to this tutorial when I'm talking about creating a new Windows game. The tutorial covers creating your first Windows game and getting that beautiful cornflower blue to show. Head on over and check out the tutorial, Creating a new XNA Windows Game Project. Please feel free ...
The complete re-write for this tutorial for the XNA 2.0 framework has been posted to my site at XNADevelopment.com. In this tutorial I cover all that you need to know to get started with the XNA framework and on your way to making your game. I know I get a bit wordy, so I added a short little bulleted list to the tutorial, just for people that hate to read. (you know who you are!) So head on over and check out the tutorial, Getting Started with XNA development. As always, feel free to leave me any ...
Twin Cities XNA User Group - March 20, 2008 3D Game Development March Guest Speaker: Nick Landry This session quickly skims over the basics and takes you through an iterative approach towards building your first 3D game: a remake of the Space Invaders classic! Using live demos we’ll discuss the structure of a game, including the game loop, game time, initialization and workflow, explore the managed code libraries that form the XNA Framework, work with the XNA Framework Content Pipeline that allows ...
For the past several weeks, my students have learned C# and started to learn XNA by reviewing the tutorial that Microsoft MVP Bill Reiss put together on his site. Today, we reviewed how to put sound into the game. The XNA Creators Club has a good video on this topic. I would highly recommend using the Sound.cs file that Bill uses in his tutorial for you to create your own sounds using XACT. You just need to change the namespace to the project you are working on and then initialize the sound under ...