Hey everyone! Today we’re joined by Troy Martin, who decided to take on the #100DaysOfCode challenge, and is currently smashing through his goals.
Hi Troy, thanks so much for joining us! Can you begin by telling us a little about yourself, and how you got in coding?
I used to work for Comcast back when I was able to work. I have a progressive mental illness called agoraphobia, which eventually led me to being on disability. I’ve always loved video games and decided to use the time I now have to teach myself programming so that I can make a living off this sometime.
You decided to take the #100DaysOfCode challenge, and so far you’ve really been powering through it! What inspired you to take this challenge?
I actually discovered this by accident! One of my twitter friends had joined it and I decided to try it out myself. I figured that would be a great way to keep me on track and motivate me to continue to learn more.
It’s great to hear that our courses have helped you with your #100DaysOfCode – could you tell us a little about what you’ve created so far, and about the Zenva courses that have helped you?
They have helped me immensely! While I haven’t made anything outside of the course material in Unity, I’ve used several engines in the past for simple mini-games. Evil Clutches, for example, was my first attempt at making a “complete” game. I didn’t really know what I was doing at the time (I was using GameMaker Studio at this point), but it gave me a good general idea of how the development process works. The game is a simple shooter with a high score system. Part of this game came from a tutorial, and I added several features into it to flesh it out a little more.
After the release of Evil Clutches, I started to find the limitations of GameMaker’s sandbox nature. I decided to program my own engine with the intended use of including the rulesets of 3.5e D&D and Pathfinder. The Dungeons and Dragons / Pathfinder Engine will allow for easy campaign creation, character tweaking, adding in custom classes, races and more. Upon making the framework for this, I started to learn of the benefits of Unity vs. making my own engine (time vs. effort). Thankfully, my engine was written in C# using the monogame framework, so the majority of it will transfer over. I plan on resuming work on this in Unity once I feel confident that I know enough about the engine.
Now I’m taking Zenva’s Unity courses, and these have taught me everything I need to know for several different types of games. I’m greatly looking forward to putting those skill to the test when I finish the courses!
Once you’ve finished this coding challenge, what’s next in store for you? Do you have any new projects lined up?
In fact I do! I’ve been working on several ideas for shorter games. At the moment I’m working on Cage Troids – my own take on the classic Asteroids. This has been more of a mental-test than anything as there is a lot of trigonometry involved in the making of this. (I have an insane amount of respect for the original authors of Asteroids now. Doing what they did on the resources they had available blows my mind.)
Because I really like the Create a City Building Game with Unity course that I’m working on right now, I will likely expand on this by creating my own take on it, and adding in more functionality!
There’s several other ideas in notebooks everywhere around me *laughs*. Too many ideas, not enough time!
Thanks again for joining us! Just finally, do you have any words of advice to help inspire other developers?
Never give up. If you find yourself frustrated, walk away, take a break, get some water, listen to music. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve solved an issue I’ve had while not sitting here actively working on it. Also, don’t be afraid to reach out! Many developers are more than happy to help and offer their advice/criticism; I’ve met many great friends out of this!
A massive thanks to Troy for some great advice, and for giving us a glimpse into his life as a developer!
Follow Troy’s progress on the #100DaysOfCode challenge on Twitter @Beef_Studios
Check out more of Troy’s work at Beef Erikson Studios