Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Demo at GameStart!

Today I demoed the Ultimate Unicorn Mod at the GameStart game programming school in Ann Arbor.  I've taken the kids to events GameStart has held in the past, and even enrolled my oldest in one of their Minecraft programming classes. It was a ton of fun for him, and a great learning experience.

After mentioning the mod to one of the teachers at GameStart, he invited me to give a demo, which seemed like a fun idea to me.  He even invited my son along, as well.

The Demo

I showed off the big features of the Ultimate Unicorn Mod, including all four horse types, and cross-breeding them to get even cooler magical horses.  One student asked, "Are there alicorns?" and I was happy to be able to say, "Yes there are," and bred one to show her.

Showing off the Pegasus flying was really well received, and the students also enjoyed seeing the Destrier bust down trees and pieces of the landscape.  My son, acting as my assistant, introduced the horses and their abilities, and I could tell he was getting a kick out of his first presentation.

The students also liked seeing the Wand of Call Lightning, especially when I equipped my unicorn with a slotted horse helm, stuck the wand in the horn slot, and commanded the horse to start blasting away.

One big highlight was when a knowledgeable student informed me that he had already seen my mod!  The main mod showcase that I've seen was by ManuCraft, and it's in Spanish, so I really didn't think US people (especially the small sampling of kids in this class!) had had a chance to find out about my mod.  Well, he told me he'd seen it in a YouTube video by a guy named Think Noodles.  I went searching later, and sure enough, the YouTube video exists!

I even received a programming question, which is always awesome.  A student asked me how I made the Pegasus wings look so great.  I answered honestly, and told her I'd copied some of the existing Ender Dragon wing animation code, and then modified it to suit my purposes.  I used my own textures for the wings.

Finally, near the end of the demo, a student asked me what my favorite magical horse was.  That's a tough question.  I could have gone with one of the custom horses, but I decided that I had to choose Rainbow Smash (you can see a picture of him here).  So many of the custom horses look great (and have cool powers to boot), and I like all of the Ultimate Unicorn mutant breeds, but I knew when I was designing Rainbow Smash that he just had something extra special over the other Ultimate Unicorns (sorry guys!).

Giving the demo was a wonderful experience.  Thank you, GameStart (and Jake, Connor, and Nate!), for giving me (and my son) the opportunity!  And thank you to all the GameStart students - I couldn't have asked for a better audience! 

Future Demos Welcome

I'm always happy to give a demo of any software I've worked on, and I'm especially proud of Wings, Horns, and Hooves: the Ultimate Unicorn Mod.  If you have an event you'd like me to talk about the mod, or some of the code that goes into it, contact me here in a comment, through the project site at CurseForge, or through Google Plus. 

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