Crash!

12/17/2012

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Today was extremely different than any other ordinary day. The main highlight in my advanced language arts class was when two groups went outside and broke Goodwill plates to create a realistic sound for their video games. Both teams concluded that the task went extraordinarily well. Additional teams had success when they finally mastered their cover page design which included plenty of stars and a glistening moon. Many groups had additional time after completing the sound and cover page and, therefore, uploaded all of their sprites onto the computer.

            The class faced several challenges that hindered completion of the project. The most common difficulty amongst the groups was lack of communication skills. Deciding, and explaining to fellow teammates how big everything will appear in the games resonated in each conversation. The positive thing to take away today was that everybody was asking questions in order to ensure the project would be at its very best. Some people faced trials trying to receive their sound effects through email transmission. At first, the emailing process was cumbersome but ultimately triumphed. Lastly, the students had conflict when programming the characters to jump in the game. Other than these few identifiable problems the day was a major success.

            The main goal that our class hopes to complete tomorrow are making and uploading sprites to the computer so we may begin programming our primary games for the website. Another game making station would like to focus on programming so they can be completed with the project on the due date, January 9th. Almost all teams plan to center their time on the intellectual aspects of the game by deciding which thought provoking questions to display in order to maximize the learning experience about the book and language arts concepts.
- Kristen.
 
 
            We have accomplished many things today. One of them would be that we figured out how to program our character objects in the game, so they would actually move how we want them to, instead of moving all over the place and not stopping. Another thing we accomplished was finishing most of the sprites. Now we only have a couple more pictures to upload before we are completely done with drawing and creating sprites to use in the educational video game. Lastly, we have started finishing the programing for some of the objects and maps for the games.

            We had some good accomplishments today, but we also had a lot of challenges. It turns out the gaming program we are using doesn’t support the ideas our groups came up with, so they have to completely change their games. Whilst keeping it educational at the same time. A second challenge we today is that Inkscape wouldn’t work, therefore we couldn’t finish our sprites. Yet another challenge is that we had was that it was hard to figure out how to change the game without making it bad or not educational.

            We have lots of plan for tomorrow. One thing is to get our sprites completely finished, so we don’t have to worry about drawing anything or dealing with Inkscape anymore. Another plan for tomorrow is to get some of our songs and sounds uploaded off of garage band and on the computer program, so we can put them into the game. The last thing that needs to be done tomorrow is finishing the objects in the game so the move or do what they are supposed to do.
- Travis.
 
 
Today we made major progress toward finishing the game. One of the successes my group and I accomplished was uploading all the pictures. The pictures are now ready to be transformed into sprites.  Another success other groups found was that the software was easier to use. At first the software was confusing and seemed complex. After practice the software became easier to use, and less confusing. Lastly everyone worked hard towards their goal, and we achieved great progress toward finishing.

Although we had many successes, we also had many challenges. One challenge I encountered was that I had difficulties with Google docs. I kept receiving an error every time I tried to open a picture. Today was the first day I began using the software Inkscape. I had difficulties and was confused by the software. Lastly since my group is large, we had trouble figuring out which person would do which job. We overcame that challenge after our team ambassador told us what to do. The challenges only set us back a little from completing our goals.

Lastly, we have huge plans for tomorrow. One plan is to begin sounds during class. We will be creating our own sounds for the game. Tomorrow, we hope to finish making sprites. We are nearly halfway done. Lastly Mr. Crowson will show and assist us in writing background music. We hope to begin the music tomorrow. As you can see today was an interesting and successful day. We hope to continue the achievements tomorrow.
-Peter
 
 
            Today we were enlightened to have the news stop by our classroom.  They interviewed Mrs. Smoke, and other members of the class while we worked on our tutorial games.  Of course Mrs. Smoke was happy to have them there and hopes that she will win teacher of the year.  If she does win she will be seeing more cameras than she is used to.  Needless to say the press was stunned at the productivity of the class.  The camera man said “This is nothing like I did in high school!”
    Despite the news coming we still had some troubles.  Some people had trouble programming the smog to come from the factory.  Others would have troubles getting their person to stop instead of keep going.  Finally we had a little trouble with people going through the star where they are supposed to go to the next level.  Fortunately these problems were resolved and we can continue to program.
    We may have had some problems but there were lots of successes also.  We managed to make a multilevel game so that we can make our games more fun.  Also we managed to program our person to move around throughout the map and stop at the walls instead of running through them.  Finally we successfully made smog spawn out of a factory to make the game interesting.
-Evan
 
 
The most significant accomplishments of today were the facts that we got most of our sprites uploaded. Many groups have finished uploading sprites to their computers, while some have a few more to complete. There were also a few groups that have their hexadecimal color codes, the codes that assign specific colors to a sprite. The artists of the classroom have also received new software to better design backgrounds, sprites, and other such requirements. The software was a little tough to operate for first time users, however.

There were some difficulties that occurred when we were working today. Some backgrounds, such as Aunt Polly’s kitchen, were especially hard to conjure because of the descriptive detail needed to paint the picture of what her house really looked like. One tough nut to crack though, was recording sounds. In the bustling throng of busy workers in a classroom, it got just too noisy at times. In order to record sounds, we would have to transfer to another room. Noises such as wind and a breaking vase were especially hard to create.

What we hope to see tomorrow is to learn some new programming tips from Stacey Scholfield. It seems the class has been putting great effort into making the best sounds they can and hope to get all sounds done tomorrow, I’m sure we’ll finish though. We are also excited for a visit from KSN News tomorrow for an interview about our project. Overall, tomorrow will have will have just as much hustle and bustle as it did today.
-William
 
 
Today during language, arts we finished a bunch of tasks, but also had a few struggles. One of the many things my group and I accomplished today was completing our game design document. For the last two days we have been working on a document that explains everything needed to create our game. We were also able to experiment with a new design software called Inkscape, and figure out how to work it. Lastly, our group finished all the drawings needed to create sprites in the game. These are required to help us create the final graphics in Inkscape.

            With success also comes failure, and although we achieved quite a bit today, we also had a few challenges. My table mates and I were concerned we would not be able to finish all that we needed to do, but we eventually got it all done. Another struggle we faced was figuring out how to use inkscape. I have worked with Inkscape some before but we still had a hard time finding some of the features. Finally, the last problem we faced was trying to figure out what to type on some portions of the game design document. Some of the sections on the document we weren’t sure exactly what to write so we had to research other examples.

Tomorrow we hope to begin the art, design, and audio part of creating our game. Today a few of us were able to play around a bit with Inkscape, but tomorrow everyone will get to learn how to use the program. Many groups are also planning to start the audio portion of the game using garage band. I personally am looking forward to begin drawing the sprites and creating the art.

 
 

 
 
Today a multitude of beneficial events occurred that helped the class in getting finished with the Tom Sawyer video game. A few things that worked out today was that every group got most, if not the entire checklist done. Another successful event was that Abby and Abree drew all but a couple sprites for the cave game. The last successful event that occurred was that the Google Doc for the school yard is completely done. Along with the good events that took place today, there were also some challenges along the way.

The first challenge was the Inkscape program. Connor and Will tried to figure out how it worked, but for the life of them, could not figure it out. Towards the end of trying to figuring it out, Delaney decided to try to lend a hand, but also got substantially confused. Another challenge was trying to tie learning into the game. Jack, Kaitlyn, Blake, and Audrey’s group had difficulty with trying to incorporate teaching throughout their game.

What we hope to do tomorrow is finish the art, and start plugging it into the game. We also want to start making the sounds with garage band and other methods of making sound. Lastly, we want to start programming the actual game and figure out how Inkscape works.
-Connor

 
 
Today in Mrs. Smokes' 3-4 hour, we used a color pallet website to choose colors to use in our mini-games for the Adventures of Tom Sawyer website that we are creating. Something that went well today was most of the websites we used worked efficiently and cooperatively. Some other successful things we accomplished are finding all of the colors and locating some sounds that will be used in our game and sharing them with the rest of the group in Google Docs.
Not everything went perfectly, though. Some difficulties we faced included computer problems, focus issues, and photography troubles. The computer problems we had were difficulty locating some of the websites to use and then trying to transition information between them. The color pallet website we used had many neat effects and features which made it easy to get distracted and off topic at times. The last dilemma we faced was the phone we were going to originally use to take photos could not upload them to the computer so we could not use it and had to make other arrangements.
Tomorrow, we wish to complete the game design sheets on our Google Docs, which is almost finished. We also hope to finish the sounds and colors and start programming them to use in our game. Lastly, we would like to begin creating sprites so we can start the game design process.
-Carly