I had a chance to watch a great video tutorial series over my vacation on Unity game development. While my knowledge of Unity game development is already pretty substantial, I’m always on the lookout for new tricks and educational materials that I can share with my readers to help them get better at it. The tutorial, available at http://bit.ly/1dqzpEO from Packt Publishing, was created by Adam Maxwell, a developer with an extensive triple-A development background including work at Blizzard, Microsoft, Trion Worlds and several other major studios.
The two and a half hour long tutorial covers everything from basic Unity theory to setting up projects, building a scene, writing gameplay scripts, creating the user interface and menu system, as well as adding sound to provide valuable player feedback. By the end of the video series, you’ll have a completed game. While the game built is admittedly quite simple – a nicely themed version of whack-a-mole – all the most important concepts for creating a game in Unity are covered with clarity. To be perfectly honest, I think many aspiring game developers try to start too big anyway. Starting with simple games like the one in this course is the best choice. Once you can prove to yourself that you are able to build a simple, and most importantly fun game, then and only then should you move on to bigger and harder to make challenges.
Adam’s detailed and easy to follow explanations are enhanced by his warm and friendly demeanor. The series includes 38 videos, broken up into 8 primary sections. All the assets are included with the course so it was quite easy to follow along. While Adam did not go into much detail when explaining the C# scripts, they are included in the course materials, and are mostly quite simple to follow if you have even a basic coding or scripting background. Even if you don’t, I think the scripting included is still fairly beginner level, and Adam spends a modest amount of time explaining Unity’s scripting environment, MonoDevelop. Maxwell even includes a section toward the end on porting to Android devices, a very useful and important thing to know how to do.
While you won’t find any info on creating artificial intelligence or any on animated characters using Unity’s Mechanim or NavMesh systems, that is not a failing of this course. That stuff simply isn’t necessary to create the kind of puzzle-based game that Adam’s course teaches. And judging by the shear number of puzzle based games for mobile devices, not to mention the ridiculously successful puzzlers like Angry Birds (though perhaps it would be more accurate to call this a physics puzzler), I think it is safe to say that knowing how to build this type of game is a good place to start. Adam’s course does a good job of putting you on the path to completing your very own puzzler.