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Tools September 9, 2008

Posted by Jesse in : Being,Game Development , trackback

In this post, I’d like to talk about some of the tools that I’ve used to make Being.

As I wrote before, it’s written in C# using Microsoft’s XNA Game Studio. I’ve experimented with a number of other game development frameworks in the past, and I’m just blown away by what Microsoft is giving away here. It prevents me from deploying on Mac or Linux, but adding Xbox 360 deployment more than makes up for that to me. Everything necessary to work with XNA Game Studio is available for free from the Creator’s Club download page.

For graphics, I’ve been using Paint.NET. While my wife (an artist) keeps telling me that she prefers more beefy art packages like Photoshop or the stuff from Corel, this has done everything I’ve needed, and it cost me absolutely nothing.

For audio, I’m using Audacity. It’s another free program. It doesn’t have all the bells and whistles that I’m used to from some of the software I’ve used at my day job, but it’s been great for trimming files and tweaking volume levels. I recently read a little about the included nyquist sound generation tools, and I’m going to have to play with that a bit more. It seems pretty cool.

The other big tool in use is my level editor. The WinForms integration into XNA 2.0 is much nicer than before, and so I was able to combine everything into one window, unlike the stuff I wrote about in the past. I should mention here that I picked up quite a bit of how to do this from the tile engine video series Nick Gravelyn put together, using great software for this, like a video transcoding which is perfect to prepare the videos.

And here’s a screen of my editor in action:
(Click for larger version.)

I think my next post will be about where I got my graphics and audio. I’ve posted two screenshots now and definitely need to get up credits for those great artists asap.


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