Video Gaming Academy


Announcements and Info

Video Gaming Design

This new and exciting academy focuses not on playing video games but making them!  Combine your creativity with the technical know-how it takes to turn your ideas into reality.  This is one elective that can’t be beat!  Learn how to:

  • Design and animate your video game using Autodesk and Solid Works CAD Design tool
  • Explore gaming platforms using multimedia fusion applications
  • Program your creation!

Classes offered in this academy include:

  • Exploration Career and Technical occupations
  • Orientation to Career and Technical Occupations

Software used in class:

SolidWorks is a 3D mechanical CAD (computer-aided design) program currently used by over 2 million engineers and designers at more than 165,000 companies worldwide. Through Solidworks the students learn the drafting and animation skills along with technical terminology used in the field of engineering. Solidworks prepares the students for the high school engineering program and they have the opportunity to get certified through this the program in the 8th grade.

Autodesk Media and Entertainment solutions are designed for digital media creation, management, and delivery across all disciplines, from film and television visual effects, color grading, and editing to animation, game development, and design visualization. Through the video game design class offered at Southwest Middle, students have this power right at their fingertips, with full access to the complete suite of tools offered by Autodesk, these include: Maya, Softimage, 3ds Max, Mudbox, Matchmover, Motionbuilder, Backburner, Composite and Sketchbook Designer. These products have won the Academy Award for Best Visual Effects for 16 consecutive years.

GameStar Mechanic is a game and community designed to teach kids the principles of game design and systems thinking in a highly engaging environment. It is designed with the middle school in mind but is open to everyone. Gamestar offers the students a simple way to learn 2D game design and simple coding. Beginning in the 6th grade students use creativity thorough this program to create and program their own games.

Alice, developed by Carnegie Mellon University, is an innovative 3D programming environment that makes it easy to create an animation for telling a story, playing an interactive game, or a video to share on the web. Alice is a freely available teaching tool designed to be a student’s first exposure to object-oriented programming. It allows students to learn fundamental programming concepts in the context of creating animated movies and simple video games. In Alice, 3-D objects (e.g., people, animals, and vehicles) populate a virtual world and students create a program to animate the objects.

In Alice’s interactive interface, students drag and drop graphic tiles to create a program, where the instructions correspond to standard statements in a production oriented programming language, such as Java, C++, and C#. Alice allows students to immediately see how their animation programs run, enabling them to easily understand the relationship between the programming statements and the behavior of objects in their animation. By manipulating the objects in their virtual world, students gain experience with all the programming constructs typically taught in an introductory programming course.