Lesson Plan

Game Design and Development with GameMaker: Studio

Students will engage in the iterative design process to develop an original game.
Steve I.
Classroom teacher
William Annin Middle School
Basking Ridge, NJ
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My Grades 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
My Subjects Arts
Objectives

Students will be able to design their own games using GameMaker:Stuio

  • learn through a series of video tutorials
  • write a comprehensive design document to plan the game
  • create an original game
  • engage in peer testing / feedback loop
  • revise game based on peer feedback
Subjects
English Language Arts
Arts
Grades 8
All Notes
Teacher Notes
Student Notes

1 Introduction to GameMaker: Studio

The tutorials from the yoyogames learn site include a youtube playlist and the associated project files to teach users how to create a sample maze / adventure game called "Escape from Alcatraz".  This will teach the basic skills and syntax used when creating games with the GameMaker: Studio drag n' drop environment.  

Student Instructions

The tutorials from the yoyogames learn site include a youtube playlist and the associated project files to teach users how to create a sample maze / adventure game called "Escape from Alcatraz".  This will teach the basic skills and syntax used when creating games with the GameMaker: Studio drag n' drop environment.  

2 Planning Your Game: Creating the Design Document

Prior to creating the game, the game designer must create a design document.  This is an industry standard and serves as a road map / planning document for the entire game.  In our case we will utilize a modified design document that features on the important elements to be considered including:

  • storyline / backstory
  • chracter descriptions
  • level descriptions
  • items / power ups
  • scoring mechanisms
  • wining / losing scenario

Other items to consider would be art assets, music, and a sketch of the world map / level design.

Student Instructions

Prior to creating the game, the game designer must create a design document.  This is an industry standard and serves as a road map / planning document for the entire game.  In our case we will utilize a modified design document that features on the important elements to be considered including:

  • storyline / backstory
  • chracter descriptions
  • level descriptions
  • items / power ups
  • scoring mechanisms
  • wining / losing scenario

Other items to consider would be art assets, music, and a sketch of the world map / level design.

3 Create Your Game!!!

Now it's time for your students to create their games.  Students may need to extend their learning beyond the basics taught as there are so many variants they will encounter in terms of creating the game based on the features they would like.  There are many resources online including the official yoyogames learn site which has a number of skill based and project based tutorials.  Students can also find assistance through the gamemaker community, youtube, etc.  

Student Instructions

Now it's time to create your game! You may need to extend your learning beyond the basics taught as there are so many variants you will encounter in terms of creating the game based on the features you would like.  There are many resources online including the official yoyogames learn site which has a number of skill based and project based tutorials.  Students can also find assistance through the gamemaker community, youtube, etc.  GOOD LUCK!

4 Playtest and Provide Feedback

Activity: Assessing

Playtesting is a crucial part of the game design process.  I try to conduct several phases of playtesting (alpha - early in the process, beta - closer to the completion of the game).  Playtesters provide feedback to the game developer.  Feedback can be written or verbal in the form of a conference.  

It is quite valuable for the designer to watch the tester play the game without the developer giving any feedback.  This puts the developer in a position to see how others play their game which provides great insight as to how others play the game.  

Student Instructions

Playtesting is a crucial part of the game design process.  I try to conduct several phases of playtesting (alpha - early in the process, beta - closer to the completion of the game).  Playtesters provide feedback to the game developer.  Feedback can be written or verbal in the form of a conference.  

It is quite valuable for the designer to watch the tester play the game without the developer giving any feedback.  This puts the developer in a position to see how others play their game which