Get Started with BabylonJS

At Philly Game Works, Dave Voyles introduced BabylonJS, an open source game development library for the web. You can view the slides here:

Learning Resources

If you’re getting started with BabylonJS and want to see some samples and walkthroughs, check out their wiki on GitHub:

BabylonJS Wiki on GitHub

There is even a playground, with a built in code editor for you to experiment with the samples right in the browser!

BabylonJS Playground with built in code editor

But I missed the presentation!

That’s okay. You can see the slides Dave presented and watch a video introducing BabylonJS at JSConf by David Catuhe.

Join us at Philly Game Works

So join us on October 30th and bring your laptop to get started making games for the web with your development skills!

RSVP at Philly Game Works Meetup


Coming up at Philly GameWorks

This post lays out our agenda for the rest of the year.  To finish the month of September, we’ll finish exploring platformer games at the meeting on September 25th.  Bring your laptops with Unity installed, because this is a Hands-On lab!

In October, we will shift focus to games in the browser.  This is great for beginners to web development and if you’re an experienced web developer you may be surprised as to how powerful the browser platform has become to support web based games.  The meetings for October are October 9th and 23rd.

The 9th is a presentation on BabylonJS, a game engine for modern browsers that lets you use your JavaScript skills to build games.

The 23rd will be a Hands On Lab where we can all build our first Web based game together.

In November and December, there will only be one meeting each so we can all enjoy our holiday time.  But the group will spend the 2nd Thursday of each working on our first 3D games.  There will be Hands-On time to go along with 3D development basics.

It’ll be an exciting end of the year at Philly GameWorks.  Be sure to watch this space, and follow @phillygameworks on Twitter for short announcements and updates.

Platformer Part 1 Finished Project Posted

On August 14, we began working together to explore what it takes to make a 2D platformer in Unity.

[Here’s how far we got last time: Platformer Unity Project – Week 1 (ZIP)]

I am still working on the Hands-On Lab writeup, which will allow you to walk through the document and create this from scratch.  I have been working to get the format right for future labs.  So at the risk on falling behind (ugh), I am going to have a couple to do this weekend. But that’s okay.  I think it’s really important we try to make this content work for people who can’t come to every meeting or are new to the group.  We never want Philly Game Works to feel like it’s closed to newcomers or that you have to put your life on hold to come by!

So for now, here is the completed Platformer project showing how far we got in Week 1.  It has:

  • The main character asset cut into a spritesheet.
  • Platforms that use Box Colliders so Unity knows where things collide with them
  • We added the RigidBody and BoxCollider components to the main character so that Unity would automatically start applying gravity and then collide with the platforms.
  • We animated the main character by using the Animator tool “dope sheet” to declare the frames of animation
  • We set up a walking and an idle animation so he wouldn’t stand still while moving and wouldn’t look like he was walking in place while standing still.
  • We added two scripts.  One script fired events based on what controls the player was using.  It would fire events that the player was moving, trying to jump, etc.  This let us discuss the “cross input” methods Unity has to let you control mouse, keyboard, and gamepad from one method.
  • We added a sound effect when the player jumps.

So the plan is to complete the pdf so you can follow along.  But for now you can download the current state after week 1 here:

Platformer Unity Project – Week 1 (ZIP)


August 14 – Build a platformer in Unity

For the next few months we’re going to try to move a little beyond the basic “Intro To…” talk and towards building games.

In the month of August, we’ll have two meetings. At the first one on August 14th, we’ll begin building a platformer in Unity.

See the meetup and RSVP here:

Lab Content:

Bring your laptops and have the following installed to follow along:

Unity 3D engine

Visual Studio 2013 (Express Edition works too! But note that you want Express Edition for Windows Store to publish to Windows 8 and Express Edition for Desktop to publish a more traditional .exe)

The VSUnity plug in (unfortunately, this requires Visual Studio Professional or above) will be demonstrated, too. This isn’t strictly required.

See you there!

July 10 – GameMaker Studio, presented at Penn State Great Valley

Our next meeting is July 10th and please note the special location!  We normally meet at Microsoft Malvern but for this meeting our good friends at Penn State Great Valley is hosting!

RSVP at the Meetup site:

Amanda Lange will guide us through GameMaker Studio by YoYo Games.  This is a popular tool for building games that target HTML5/JavaScript platforms.  However, the tool exports to all major platforms including iOS, Android, Windows 8 and Windows Phone because all major platforms now support browser based games!

May 22 – Philly GameWorks meetup – Showcase and Workshop

Register for the meetup here:  Philly GameWorks Workshop Night

We’ve spent the first few meetings learning about the Unity game creation tools.  Philly GameWorks will definitely have more teaching and learning, but we also want to be a hands-on group where you can come get help or find others eager to try your games.

So on May 22nd, our meetup is a Game Development Showcase and Workshop.  We will invite anyone who wants to share their games or have others try them out to join us and present their work and work-in-progress.

But we also are a place for you to learn and grow.  The recent presentations and labs for Unity will be transformed into complete hands-on tutorials you can work on with the full support of others who are there to join us.

This is a more informal night than what we’ve done so far, so we hope that encourages everyone to come out and bring their laptops and projects.  It’s okay if you’ve never built games before.  We are here to help.

The labs we’ll have for you do use the Unity game engine so make sure you have that downloaded and installed (  Everything we do at Philly GameWorks aims at low and no-cost options so just get the free version.

Next month, we’ll start taking a look at another popular cross-platform framework, so there will always be new learning to enjoy.  See you there!