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Chris G. Williams Beware: I mix tech and personal interests here. February 2017 Entries
7. MonoGame - Putting Text Onscreen With SpriteFonts
MonoGame – Putting Text Onscreen With SpriteFonts In MonoGame, text is displayed on the screen in much the same way as sprites, or 2D images. The difference is in how you prepare the font and how you work with it. To display text onscreen, you can create your own images of words, letters and numbers, and display them just like regular sprites, but this is incredibly time consuming and not very flexible, so instead we use a SpriteFont, which is a bitmap containing all the characters in a given font, ......

Posted On Wednesday, February 22, 2017 3:00 PM

Amazon Alexa Skills Article in Code Magazine
My Amazon Alexa Skills article in Code Magazine is out now, and it’s the cover article!!! Very exciting stuff. You can find it online, at: Or you can download the PDF of the entire issue, at: You can also get a print subscription, at: ......

Posted On Monday, February 20, 2017 10:22 AM

2017 Syntax Code & Craft Conference
Looks like I'll be speaking again this year at the Syntax Code & Craft Conference, in Charleston, SC. Date: May 18 & 19Topic: What's New in C# 7C# 7 introduces a number of great features, including (but not limited to) pattern matching, tuples, and local functions. Additionally, several existing features have also been improved, along with overall performance.In this talk, we’ll demo the new and improved language features and look at ways to take advantage of the performance improvements ......

Posted On Friday, February 17, 2017 9:53 AM

6. MonoGame - Putting a Sprite Onscreen
MonoGame - Putting a Sprite Onscreen If you aren’t familiar with the term “sprite”, it refers to a two-dimensional (2D) graphical image that you can display onscreen. Sometimes they are individual images, and sometimes you can find them on what is called a SpriteSheet. Here’s an example of a SpriteSheet: We’ll come back to using SpriteSheets later, since that’s a little more complex than just putting a single image onscreen. I’m going to use this image for now: You can just right-click it and “Save ......

Posted On Thursday, February 16, 2017 1:48 PM

5. MonoGame - The Game Loop
The MonoGame Game Loop (just like the XNA Game Loop) In the previous section, we talked about what you can find in the MonoGame project, so these methods should look familiar. Now I’ll explain a bit more about them, but first, a picture… The Initialize() method is called only once, when your game first starts up. The LoadContent() method is called from the Initialize() method, and is where any content assets (3D, 2D, spritefonts, music) would be loaded. The Update() and Draw() methods form the game ......

Posted On Monday, February 13, 2017 2:35 PM

Adventures in 3D Printing
Background: I have a Micro 3D Printer, which runs (usually headless) off an OctoPrint server, running on a Raspberry Pi 3. I moved a few months ago and the whole setup sat in a box until this weekend. I start setting everything up again. I'm not a Linux expert by any means, but this thing is relatively plug and play, when it works. Fire everything up... led lights come on, it’s running headless (no monitor or keyboard) but I think it’s booted ok. Off to a good start. The OctoPrint server presents ......

Posted On Monday, February 13, 2017 10:42 AM

4. MonoGame - What’s in the Starting Project?
MonoGame - What’s in the Starting Project? Now that you have MonoGame & Visual Studio installed, go ahead and create a MonoGame Windows Project. You can call it whatever you want. In the Solution Explorer, you’ll see a Content folder (more on this in a bit), an icon file (put your cursor on it), and finally two .cs files: Program.cs and Game1.cs Program.cs is our game launcher. Go ahead and click on it. There’s not much there, other than a call to your Game1() class, and you will rarely have ......

Posted On Tuesday, February 7, 2017 12:29 PM

1. MonoGame - Why MonoGame?
Why MonoGame? You’re thinking about getting into game development, and you’re trying to decide how to get started. There are a number of great reasons to go with MonoGame. Maybe you found Unity to be confusing and even a bit overwhelming. Maybe you prefer to “live in the code.” Maybe you’ve used XNA in the past, and want to work with something similar. Maybe you want to create a game that can run on Macs, Windows PCs, Android phones or tablets, iPhones and iPads, or even Xbox & Playstation… with ......

Posted On Monday, February 6, 2017 5:24 PM

Beginning MonoGame
I’ve had a few folks ask me for a good “Getting Started” tutorial for MonoGame over the last year and I’ve done a few talks on the subject, but hadn’t really had an opportunity to put anything together until now. Instead of writing some massive thing that I never finish, I’m going to keep these posts relatively short, and focus on individual aspects of getting up and running with MonoGame, dissecting the starter project, and then move into cool things you can do. As I create new pieces, I’ll update ......

Posted On Monday, February 6, 2017 5:02 PM

3. MonoGame - Project Types Explained
MonoGame Project Types Explained In this post, I’ll cover the various types of MonoGame projects you can create within Visual Studio. Assuming you’re running MonoGame 3.5.1 (from the installer) your New Project dialog should look something like the picture above. If you’re pulling down more recent (i.e. unreleased) builds, then you’ll likely notice some differences, such as OUYA being removed, and new projects possibly being added. MonoGame Windows Project This first project type is the one I’ll ......

Posted On Monday, February 6, 2017 2:08 PM

2. MonoGame - What do I need, and where do I get it?
MonoGame - What You Need, and Where To Get It… Development Environment You’re going to need an IDE. If you’ve been developing for a while, you probably already have one of your own, or at least a preference. If you’re completely new to all of this, then it comes down to your choice of operating system. If you’re running Windows, get Visual Studio 2015 Community. It’s free, and quite good. If you’re running MacOS, the process is a little more involved, so follow these steps. MonoGame You’re going ......

Posted On Monday, February 6, 2017 1:06 PM

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