Welcome to the first part of FPS Microgame: My Journey. Like many of you that are just starting their game making journey I was very unfamiliar with the process and always found it daunting on how to get started. Too many complex tutorials or none based on what I wanted made it very difficult to get the ball rolling.
Now with the incredible new In Editor Tutorials Unity has become a lot more easier to get into for those that have not (or did previously and found it challenging) tried it. I will be going on my own journey with this starting with the base tutorial for the FPS Microgame. We will then move on to each of the mods that are available, we will talk about the journey which will include the fun things I like about the changes, mistakes and where we want it to take us.
The thing that I love the most about the new tutorials is that they are included directly in the editor itself and it means that I do keep having to jump back and forth between a webpage and what I am supposed to be working on. Having all the information right there and easily accessible makes it so much easier to understand what exactly I am supposed to be doing.
What is also nice is that you can jump straight into any of these lessons right away, you do not need to do them in order. So if you want to learn how to “Edit Colors” first then you can do that and go back to the others when you are ready to learn.
So here we go, the first step of our FPS Microgame journey. We will actually do these steps in order just to keep things organised and that means we will start with the Playtest lesson.
This step is straightforward to begin with, it is basically letting you know HOW you can play your game to test the changes that you have made to the game. This is really important because I want to know how exactly the changes might affect the game. Even something as simple as changing a color might affect how the game (for example if a wall is white and an enemy is white, might be difficult to see) and you always want to make sure everything looks and works great.
One of the things I was always worried about in Unity was all the panels!! What is the inspector, what is the hierarchy, what am I looking at?!? I really like how the new tutorial makes it easy to understand these things both by the descriptions they provide but also by the highlighting option that shows exactly what you should be looking at.
Add a Room
So far I know how to test a game and make some slight adjustments to the player but now in the second step it is time to modify the level itself.
The first part of this tutorial step ties in with what I mentioned earlier about testing your game to make sure everything looks right. At the beginning of step 2 we learn how to look around the level in the scene view which allows us to check every visual aspect of the game that we are adding or changing. Being able to pan, rotate and zoom in on the level will help us keep an eye on what we are doing before we test the level.
Another scary part of Unity that I previously worried about was…. Assets, specifically how to bring these into my level and make them work and look right. With this tutorial it actually shows how easy it is, drag and drop! Knowing how to position these Assets is key and it is very straightforward as I soon discovered.
Now I am going to learn to bake… no not cookies or cakes but how to bake a level. Before this tutorial I had no idea what baking even meant in Unity and how important it actually was. The idea is that when you add new rooms or parts of a level the enemies need to know where they can walk. This means you need to “Bake” the new floor into the original one, sounds challenging but fortunately this tutorial step shows that it is a lot easier than expected… push the bake button and the job is done.
Part One - What we learned
So much information but so easy to understand at the start of our journey. After completing just two steps of the tutorial we now know how to
View our game properly in scene mode so that we can inspect our changes
Play our game so that we can test everything looks right and works
How to make some basic modifications to the player
How to import assets into our game
Baking new rooms and floor plans for our level
At no point did I feel overwhelmed with all this information like I had been in the past when trying to learn game development 'the coding way’. In the next part of our Journey we will do Edit Colors, Add Enemy Bot and how to Build and Share your game. Until next time, happy creating!