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The Official GameSalad Guide to Game Development (Explore Our New Media Arts & Design 1st Eds.) Paperback – 22 Apr 2013


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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Delmar Cengage Learning (22 April 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1133605648
  • ISBN-13: 978-1133605645
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 20.3 x 25.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 31,648 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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PART I. 1. Gameplay. 2. Interface Design. 3. Prototyping. PART II. 4. Windows(R) Game Development. 5. Mac(R) Game Development. 6. Mobile Game Development (iOS/Android(TM)). 7. Online Game Development (HTML 5). PART III. 8. Social Game Development. 9. Serious Game Development.

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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By K. Cross on 5 July 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you want to know about different genres of games, devices, and the history of gaming then this is probably a decent book, but if you want it to learn how to develop a game in GameSalad I wouldn't bother! The book partly takes you through making one game, but the tutorials for this are spread randomly throughout the book (in no sensible order) and from what I can tell seems incomplete. The game itself is very basic and has very few features in it, so when it comes to working on your own game you're probably going to have to look elsewhere for a lot of the information.

For an "official guide" it's pretty disappointing!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 19 reviews
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Disappointed. Misleading title. 25 May 2013
By 12barunR - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
While I agree GameSalad itself is not entirely complicated, this book offers very, very little about developing with GS. I found the information it contains about game development good in general -- which is basically the whole book -- but I feel I wasted a good amount of money in hopes of learning the GS environment in more detail. The title is very misleading. I would not recommend this book to anyone looking to learn the application.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Covers the stuff you can't find on You Tube 1 May 2013
By Stephenl33t - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I started trying to build games with Game Salad for the Mac a couple of years ago because it doesn't need me to do any real programming. I mean, I have to think about how to make things go and in what order they go in, and there's some math involved, but most of the time I can just TELL the program "Move the box to THIS point" rather than having to write it all in a script (which is good because I only just started learning programming at school and we are still doing basic stuff, not game stuff).

There are a couple of other GameSalad books out there, but they either just give instructions on how to make just one kind of game (which doesn't help me so much because the games I want to make are different than the one kind they show) or they are just for mobile phones and stuff, but I want to put my games online like at Kongregate or BubbleBox or some place where my friends can play it.

I can find lots of stuff online already for GameSalad. Stuff like how to make a button or how to make a tree blow up when you shoot it with a laser (in a game of course, everybody knows trees don't "blow up" in real life). What I can't find out online is the "why" you do things this way or that way.

My teacher says that the "why" stuff is what you usually get from taking a class or working with a teacher. This book has helped me a lot with the "why" stuff for GameSalad and for making games. I'm giving it 5 stars because it's helping me learn to build a better game, and it covers the reasons designers choose to do things rather than just being a list of instructions.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Great for all types of gamemakers 30 April 2013
By GamerDad - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
We've had GameSalad on our Mac for over a year, and although I love games and consider myself pretty technical, I'm DEFINITELY not a game designer. My kids have spent a lot of time making various games and have taught me a lot about how to use the program and experiment with different behaviors. But they don't know a whole lot about what makes a game fun or interesting. They love making smaller games though but we didn't have a good way to elevate to the next level.

This book is exactly what they needed to learn about different types of games, styles and tricks in creating mechanics, and guided exercises in trying out what they're being taught. For me, the old gamer (Pong anyone?), I get the concepts immediately, and the exercises show me a step-by-step guide to putting together a real example of that concept.

This book is not a pure technical manual, and I can understand the need of that for some people. But for someone like me who loves games and has a lot of reference to what's been fun, it's perfect because I can understand how to convert those fun ideas into something real. And my kids, who 'get' GameSalad already, it's giving them a larger frame to play with and build on.

We're all talking now about what we could design and build together as a bigger game and maybe even release (everything they've done so far has been kept to our own computer). There's even sections on releasing and marketing. Even if we don't get that far, I think we're going to have some great new home built games to build and play with.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Emphasise Approaches to Maximising GameSalad 26 April 2013
By Luke Dicken - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
As with her other books such as Game Development Essentials, and many of the GDE series that I have made use of, Jeannie Novak has here created a really accessible book that explains a lot of the core concepts behind making games, whilst giving a specific perspective on adapting these concepts into practice in GameSalad Creator through tutorials explaining how to implement specific ideas and features.

Although I've not had previous experience with GameSalad, reading the book and playing around with the provided tutorial segments allowed me to get a good understanding of the GS approach to development and learn by example a couple of tricks that I've been able to use to generalise and start to understand some of the ways more complex systems could be put together.

Including separate chapters to tackle the concepts of social games and serious games, and the ways these techniques can be implemented with GameSalad is a nice touch that adds a depth many books don't explore to.

For those wanting a more step-by-step approach, the book comes with an appendix overview of the system, and it is worth noting that GameSalad themselves provide a fairly thorough "cookbook" online, which frees up the text of the book to talk about ways to make the most out of GameSalad, rather than the minutiae of which buttons to click.

My main criticism of the book is probably largely based on it's whole nature - it is "The Official GameSalad Guide to Game Development", and it has been written in close collaboration with GameSalad themselves. This relationship, in places, gives it a vague infomercial feel, like it is trying too hard to sell you on the tool itself, when as someone who has invested in the book, you've probably already made up your mind to use the tool already.

This is a pretty minor quibble though, and overall the book provides solid insight into the kinds of things you can do with GameSalad, boxouts from people who have done them already and a better of understanding of game development in general. This is a worthwhile read for anyone wanting to build up their development skills.

Disclosure - The review was written based on a review copy of the book provided by the author.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Fundemental Guide for Game Design and Development 11 May 2013
By David N Conover - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I teach STEM video game design to at-risk high school students and I use GameSalad as a primary teaching tool. This book is a great guide for students and teachers to use as they explore the more visual side of programming. I found the book to be a great reference for teachers, and professors that are eager to explore the global world of game design. Put this book next to the other books from Jeannie's Game Development Essentials series.
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