Every year, Rob Miles puts on two Three Thing Game events which fall in October before Halloween, and in March for one of Hull’s biggest gaming events, Platform Expos. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to attend last years Platform Event but hopefully I will be able to this year despite work.
Here is our team from last October (in our 2nd year):
And the team from Platforms event 2011 (in our 1st year):
Both times we did it, I absolutely loved it. The one thing that stopped us doing Three Thing Game in October of 2010 (in our 1st year) was our ability to program. Now, if there are first years who are reading this post, TAKE PART! There are plenty of resources out there for you to start learning XNA and come along to have fun with your friends! The experience is something that you won’t ever feel until you do it. The quality in the code isn’t what matters, it’s how the game works and how tied into the three things it is. If you’re considering doing it then get a friend who can do graphics, then build up the rest of your team with programming buddies and have a good time. Don’t let the idea of “we are [insert year group]’s, so the older years will obviously win because they are better programmers” get into your head.
I would also suggest targeting a platform that you will end up releasing for. Three Thing Game is a bit like a journey to starting your own independent team of developers while at university. Go for Windows Phone or Windows 8 where you know there is a market for apps/games and set up a team account (one thing that our team never got round to doing… whoops). You can set up accounts for free as a student using Dreamspark 🙂
Another good thing to do during the 24 hour dev sessions is set up UStream or an equal and let people watch you while you work! Even get twittering with a relevant hash tag which I’m sure Rob may have used, possibly #threethinggame. Even blog about it!
Three Thing Game is a great experience so just take part and have fun!
You can print off your sign up sheet from here!
Here are some XNA resources too. I didn’t want to be that jerk who uses “Let Me Google That For You”.
Also for preparation, maybe take a look through Rob Miles’ XNA 4.0 book. I have a copy and it was great, although it’s now become a point of reference with not doing much game dev!