Friday, December 18, 2009

TOS Crew Review: Tektoma

Tektoma is a tutorial service that provides the information and directions on how to use GameMaker which is a software program for kids to make their own video games. Once you purchase a subscription to Tektoma, you can watch tutorials on how to make lots of games.

Tutorials include:
  • How to Make a Racing Game
  • How to Make an Arcade Game
  • How to Make a Memory Game
  • How to Make a Platform Game
  • How to Make a Fantasy/Adventure Game
Shorter Tutotorials include:
  • Using Tiles Build a Racetrack
  • Using Tiles to Impove the Looks of a Platform Game
  • How to Create and Use Custom Icons
  • How to Create a Stand Alone Version of the Game
  • How to Make Your Game in Full Screen Mode
  • Adding an Inventory System for Your Game
Each tutorial is in a video format and shows the screen so it's easily followed. You can pause the video during its run and build your game as you go.

E11 made an arcade style game. It challenged him in a fun way and was a bit different from the programming he's done before. He's still working on finding backgrounds and sounds for his game.

Cost: $14.95 a month or $140 a year gets you full access to all the tutorials in Tektoma.

In the spirit of full disclosure, Tektoma is a tutorial service for a free basic download of the software called Game Maker 7.0. In other words, you can access and play with GameMaker regardless of using Tektoma's tutorial service. However, if you are inexperienced with programming, then Tektoma's service is a great way to learn the basics of making a game. They have a tutorial on making games of all kinds depending on what your child is most interested in. I think Tektoma would be an excellent choice for kids who would love to fiddle with programming games and for kids who have no programming experience to get a little taste of it. It's not the only way out there, but it's certainly a compelling way to get kids interested in elements of computer programming!

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