Will it Blender?

Using Blender is pretty difficult! I feel like I have to rewire my brain to properly use it. I should probably avoid game designs that would require a lot of 3D modeling.

I’m currently attempting to make a spaceship in Blender to load up into my XNA demo. This is my first model created.

First Blender Model
I tried to make it resemble the Swordfish II from the anime Cowboy Bebop. You’ll see that beyond the shape outline, I wasn’t very close. I’ll add in some subsurfacing which will smooth out the model and hopefully make it a little nicer. I just need to export it to a .FBX file and it should be flying in my XNA demo in no time!

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Game Plan

I decided to delve straight into 3D game development on the XNA. So far I really like what I see. XNA uses High Level Shader Language (HLSL) to draw all the 3D effects. As long as you have a good background of 3D programming you should be able to pick it up quickly. XNA also comes with Vector and Matrix classes which is nice.

My current plan is to spend the next few working days playing around with 3D game development on the XNA. It’ll be fun and a good way to test the waters. I’ll then start work on a game design document and go from there. I’ve already been kicking around some ideas, but have yet to formalize any of them into a document.

So far I’ve done some really basic stuff, draw a triangle, perform translations and rotations, apply a texture to a quad and create a camera game component. XNA can load 3D models such as .X and .FBX files. The great thing about this is that I’m taking an animation course this semester that will require the use Blender (of which I currently have no experience with). Thus learning Blender will be twofold, to do well in my course and to create models for use in XNA games. Sweeet.

Day 1

I’ve officially started work on my XNA game today. I’m still not sure how much work I plan on doing each day, but I’d like to to consider this a part-time job and treat it as such. I’ll be working on it Monday-Tuesday and Thursday-Friday (trying for 9am-5pm). Wednesday’s I have class at Simon Fraser University and will be at school for most of the day.

Work Environment

This is my work environment. It’s a small desk, but I have a pretty decent sized monitor (24 inches). I’m using Windows 7 RC, Visual Studio 2008 and of course XNA Game Studio 3.0. Everything is running on my laptop which is a Dell XPS 1210. I think the most important part of my work environment is having a good chair. It has tons of adjustment options and great back support. You’ll definitely need one, or likely suffer back problems later on. Mine was bought used at an office furniture store for $120. It sort of looks like Ergonomic Task Chair 5101 from Yaletown Office Furniture, but my arm handles have more adjustment features.

My bed is to the left, so I’ll have to fight the urge to go back to sleep every morning if I want to get stuff done.

Hello World!

My name is Daniel Truong, welcome to my game development log. I’m trying not to think of this so much as a blog, but more of a space to track my progress on a game that I’ll be working on during the next 4 months. The problem with blogs is that I have a hard time putting down my thoughts into words, let alone words for all the internets to see.

Setting this up to have a clear focus should help me when figuring out what I should post. There are a couple of goals I have with this space. One of which is to share my experience on getting a game released on Xbox Live Community Games. I’ll be starting from scratch, so I’ll be posting about everything from initial conception of the game to the final gritty details of polishing it up. Additionally, my personal reason for creating this log is to help me follow through on a personal commitment I made to myself a month ago.

caught me thinking