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Course Information

Item ITS would like your feedback on AH1112
The SDSU Instructional Technology Services (ITS) group would like to get your thoughts on how the resources of AH1112, the Learning Resource Survey, helped in our 3d Game Programming course this semester.

They would really appreciate you taking their survey, linked below. Student LRS survey link

We also now have a copy of Dr. Chris Harz slides from his class presentation on Serious Games - 12May2009. You will find the link under Course Documents.

Item Final Class Meeting - 12May2009

Item Nearing the End of the Semester - 07May2009

Our next to last class meeting today. Frenchies might present an update of their game and we have details to talk through.

  • Title/Splash screen on your final group game
  • Serious Games presentation Tuesday from Chris Harz
  • Opportunity for Graduate Research Programming position this summer
  • CS 583 3D Game Programming is in printed catalog
  • Software from MSDNAA that an XNA programmer could use
Item Animating Your Avatar in XNA - 30Apr2009
A student asked in class about some issues about taking a model creating in 3d Studio Max and including in the XNA game. The author of our textbook has a lot of information to share on this topic and a sample is linked from

The XNAnimation library that Bruno Evangelista has written has background information and full source code posted to Codeplex and a nice FAQ.

You may find his article on Ziggyware, "Playing Nice Animations on XNA" to be especially useful.

Item Tools We Can Use & XNA Roundup - 28 April 2009
Tools We Can Use & XNA Roundup
Item GMCS425 - PC/Xbox - 21April2009
Item User Input with XNA - 14 April 2009
Input Reporter (535.824 Kb)
Item Research Report - peer reviewed journals - 05 Feb 2009
Stewart's thoughts on Bottom-Up Design in writing
Our SDSU Library makes available several on-line resources to help you understand what research and peer-reviewed journal really mean.
Once you have found your reference articles and begin the process of writing your research report, you must use one of the standard formatting and style systems, such as APA or MLA. APA MLA
Item 09April 2009 - GMCS 425 with Networked Xbox 360s - help with set up please

User Acknowledgement Doc

I request students read and sign this document today.

Item Update ** Guest Speaker Tuesday 24 Mar 2009 - Sam Stokes
Sam has updated his blog with the details

and he asked me to pass along this message:
"Ask them to contact me, I would like to get a community of game designers going at SDSU."

Samuel Stokes
Cell: 949 6375736
Southern California Educational Region
Microsoft Corporation


Fax: 425.936.7329 attn: sstokes

Stewart especially likes his SoapBox session on "Build Pong in 5 minutes" using the XNA code snippets. That was new to me - have you been using code snippets? Where did you learn the technique?

Sam is our Microsoft Rep and he will be joining us to talk about some more opportunities from Microsoft.

Bring your cell phone with you to class Tuesday.

Take a look at Microsoft's Imagine Cup
Item Stewart's cs583 page

This page contains targetted handouts for our class this Spring 2009 semester.

Item Ch8 Rendering Pipeline, Shaders and Effects
"The rendering pineline is responsible for processing a 3d representation of a scene, which generates a 2d image as output. You can use shaders to program some stages of the rendering pipeline, and effects to encapsulate shaders and configurations for the fixed stages of the rendering pipeline." p. 227, text
Item Chapter 7: 3-D Game Programming Basics - Thur 19Mar 2009
Our text has a nice set up for the 3d model cube. Software available.
Item Update C#2005 Licenses in AH1112 and Overview 3d Graphics
10 March 2009
Item Tech Trends - 9a-11:30a High Tech High
An optional opportunity to meet with Sam Stokes, our campus Microsoft rep, and self-styled game-evangelist 2855 Farragut Rd, San Diego, atthe San Diego Science Festival.

Are you a high school or college student with a passion for the future of technology? Are you interested in learning about advancements in technology? Join Sam Stokes, Microsoft Academic Evangelist, for a Technology Seminar to learn what it takes to succeed in today's workforce; learn the importance of basic technology skills to jumpstart your career after college; get a firsthand look at the latest technology trends; and learn how you can become more invovled in the innovation process. Enjoy hands- on demonstrations of latest technology including Silverlight, CSI Photosynth, Xbox and Mobile phones and the opportunity to network with Microsoft employees with a focus on innovation.

Pre-Registration Required Space is limited. While this event is free of charge, you must pre-register online by March 3, 2009 to secure your seat. Click here to register. Walk-ins welcome if space is available.

I hope you registered when I sent the class email last weekend. The deadline was extended from Mar 1 to Mar 3 already, so I recommend you register if you plan to attend.

Item XBOX 360 and GMCS 425 - 05 March 2009
Bob Hilchey feels he will complete the setup of 7 PCs in GMCS 425 for our class use (and only our class use). They are the back 2 rows near the windows and one isolated PC across the aisle. 05Mar2009

Item XNA Team Blog - 26 February 2009
Latest update on GMCS 426 - we have 1.5 systems almost set up for our class use. At the moment, they have no access off campus, but this is being worked on.

In lecture today, I would like to have us view what I hope will be our setup in the next couple of weeks. We have purchased 7 XBOX live memberships, which I hope each team can share.

Another resources available to the class are the book chapters from the Apress Publishers textbooks, linked under "Course Documents".

Item Teams for Game Development 19 Feb 2009
A document, built on the previously discussed
will be distributed in class today, asking the teams to start the formal process of identifying the team members, the Point of Contact (POC) and the game decription. The POC will be the individual who sends email to the instructor on behalf of the group and it is required that all team members be cc:'d on any such messages.

You must have your preliminary game description by 03 March 2009.

A more though document from Tzvi Freeman is
Item Remote Desktop Connection (RDC) GMCS<-> Anywhere 19Feb2009
Be sure to select [x] Files (123.019 Kb)
Use Win Explorer to Move files (49.251 Kb)
Accounts for the Windows Systems in GMCS 425 CS Computer lab were distributed and everyone, who attended class Tuesday 17 FEb 2009, was successful in logging in from AH1112. Yahoo!

When I tried moving files from my home system to the H: drive of the GMCS class account (cs596a2##), I used drag and drop and that did not work. Our good friend, Bob Hilchey who joined us Tuesday, helped me discover that the way to move files from one system to another is:

1) RDC to your class account (be sure [x] Files is selected)

2) Windows Explorer running on our gateway system ( will display your files in your local directories as well as you directories for your class account (on the H: drive "cathouse").

3) Using Win Explorer, you can move files around successfully.

(fyi - I have Win Explorer on my local machine running on one monitor and Win Explorer on the RDC monitor and this should have worked! but did not. So Bob found our work-around.)
Item Distribute Class Accounts & Establish Teams
17 February 2009

Last Thursday we began the process to establish the teams that students will work together on their Final Game project for the class. Today we will finish this process based on your own preferences in finding students with similar game creation goals.

We will distribute the GMCS 425 accounts and test out the access to our gateway server ( which provides sharing of files between AH1112 (or anywhere) with your class account in GMCS 425.

The software installation of XNA 2.0 in GMCS 425 will be completed by the end of this week.
Item Individual Demo 2d Games - 10Feb2009
While we continue to anticipate the GMCS 425 lab being available for our class use to develop your own game with XNA 2.0, we will start to invite students with their own notebook computers who have worked through the examples from our textbook or from the XNA Creators Club Online.

Your goal will be to find students to team with you to develop a 3d game by the end of the semester. You will want to design the game and a good reference is from features. Tim Huntsman Primer for Design.

design document. The Template

Any volunteers?

Item Classroom Programming Demo - 03 Feb 2009
Update from lecture: 2d Creators Club tutorial
Microsoft is making a wide array of software available to students who wish to learning about game programming. You should obtain your own MSDN Academic Alliance login, as a CS major at SDSU, or when enrolled in the 3d Game Programming course. select the Developer Academic Alliance (Developer AA).

Good background article on C# is available from Harness the Features of C# to Power your Scientific Computing Projects by Fahad Gilani

Our lesson for today is

Our task for tody:

  1. distribute notebook computers
  2. start and find Game Studio XNA - C# 2005 Exprss
  3. File/New Project - find Console Application (under VisC#)
  4. Give meaningful name
  5. Examine the programming structure set up for you
  6. Add code fragment (in Main) Console.WriteLine("Hello World"); and notice how Vis C# anticipates your program.
  7. Continue at your own pace and help those at your table who need help.
Item Harnessing power of video games for learning - 03Feb2009
Exhibit C (43.174 Kb)
Under Course Documents, you will find the link to the study by the Federation of American Scientists that provides a broad, authoritative look at video games. This could be a model for your research report for this class. Of particular interest is Exhibit C: Sample Ed Games Development Team (p. 39), which might be a future opportunity for students in this course who wish to pursue research at SDSU in Game Development with this instructor. Kris Stewart GMCS 535

Item Game History - brief overview - 29Jan2009

We also check out the notebook computers in AH1112.

Item CS 596/583 Game Programming Info - 27 Jan 2009

Non-Software Background and Software Setup
27 Jan 2009