Game Club: Don’t Starve

Every month, participants pick a game to play, then get together and talk about their experiences! Think of this group as being a traditional book club, but with video games.

This month we’re diving into “Don’t Starve”, a wildly popular and eccentric survival game created by Klei Entertainment in 2013. Your goal is simple – guide the “gentleman scientist” Wilson through an eerie, dream-like world, and keep him alive by procuring resources, fighting fiendish foes, and safeguarding his precious sanity. Will you steer Wilson towards success, or an untimely extinction?

Game Club – Episode 25: Don’t Starve
Youtube version | MP3 download | OGG download
Audio Editing: Constant Hackney
Intro and Outro Music: Robbie Singley

Game Club: Firewatch (hosted by Patrick T.)

If you enjoy discussing games, come to the Tech Valley Game Space for Game Club!

Every month, participants pick a game to play, then get together and talk about their experiences! Think of this group as being a traditional book club, but with video games instead of books. People discuss various aspects of the game that they liked, disliked, or simply found notable; everything from music, character design, and storytelling, to the in-game physics, level creation, or graphics quality. Our host for this month is Patrick T., and their selection is Firewatch, developed by Campo Santo for PC, Mac, Linux, Playstation 4, and Xbox One.

Firewatch is a first-person adventure that takes place in the Shoshone National Forest, you are placed in the role of Henry, a fire lookout. As ominous things begin to happen, it’s up to you and your supervisor, Delilah, to communicate via walkie-talkie and work together to unravel the mystery.

As usual, this podcast is filled with spoilers!

Game Club – Episode 24: Firewatch
Youtube version | MP3 download | OGG download
Intro & Outro Music, “Prologue” composed by Chris Remo.

Social Night – Don’t Starve Together! (April 12, 6 – 9 pm)

Hey Space Cadets! Social Night will be occurring as per usual on the second Wednesday of the month, and this time around, we’re going to be playing “Don’t Starve Together”. It’s a fun, but challenging, multiplayer survival/adventure game for 2-6 people, and incorporates science, monsters, magic, and resource-gathering into its game-play. If you’re not afraid of losing your mind, being eaten by a giant spider, or wasting away in an eerie dream-land due to lack of food and shelter, then this game is for you! As always, we ask that folks rsvp by clicking one of the lovely little images below, and we hope to see you there!

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Game Club: Oddworld – New ‘n’ Tasty! (hosted by William)

If you enjoy discussing games, come to the Tech Valley Game Space for Game Club!

Every month, participants pick a game to play, then get together and talk about their experiences! Think of this group as being a traditional book club, but with video games instead of books. People discuss various aspects of the game that they liked, disliked, or simply found notable; everything from music, character design, and storytelling, to the in-game physics, level creation, or graphics quality.

This month’s host is William, and he’s selected Oddworld: New ‘n’ Tasty! This highly-rated and well-awarded game was developed by Oddworld Inhabitants Inc, and takes place on a giant planet in another dimension. There, a series of strange but gutsy protagonists fight against the nefarious spread of big businesses across their damaged world in an attempt to save the environment, their cultures, and their communities.

You can play Oddworld on Playstation, Xbox, Playstation 3, Windows, Wii U, and PC.

As usual, this podcast is filled with spoilers!

Game Club – Episode 22: Oddworld: New ‘n’ Tasty!
Youtube version | MP3 download | OGG download
Intro Music, “Rupture Farms Slig Action” & Outro Music, “Boardroom Timer” composed by Michael Bross.

Meet the TVGS Board of Directors!

As announced at our last meeting, our next weekly gathering will be a special reception to welcome the new TVGS Board of Directors and give the community a chance to meet them, ask questions and discuss the past, present and future of TVGS.

The Board of Directors will consist of many familiar faces, and a few new ones as well. We hope you’ll attend, and help provide a warm welcome for all of them. This meeting will also serve as an opportunity to express our gratitude to everyone that has generously contributed their time and effort to help TVGS continue to grow and thrive.

In addition to the meet and greet, we will also be playing some games and having our usual social fun times. As promised, we will also be giving everyone a second chance to pitch ideas for the NY State Game Dev Challenge, which begins next Monday and runs through most of April. Hope to see you there!

RSVP via the links below:

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Orbit: Construct 2 (March 27th, 6:30pm)

First time attending this event? Please sign-up using our short form at goo.gl/JwpJzx if you haven’t already done so.

If you’re interested in learning to make your own digital games using a simple and intuitive creative tool that doesn’t require any prior experience with computer programming, this is the group for you!

The Construct 2 group meets every Monday evening at Tech Valley Game Space and will provide a place to get feedback and advice on your game project. Join us and learn about how to create 2D games using Construct 2, one of the best tools available for first time game creators.

After learning the basics, you’ll apply your knowledge by working on your own game project alongside peers, with ongoing support from experienced mentors. Participants of all skill levels are welcome and encouraged to join in the fun!

About Orbit

Orbit is a community-driven mentorship program designed to provide greater opportunities for learning and collaboration at Tech Valley Game Space than ever before! The goal of Orbit is to bring local game makers (and aspiring game makers!) together based around mutual interests, and provide a consistent environment for sustained skill development, personal growth, and community building.

For more information about Orbit, including a list of all the currently active groups, please visit https://www.techvalleygamespace.com/orbit/

RSVP at the links below!

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Orbit: Virtual Reality (March 25th, 2pm)

First time attending this event? Please sign-up using our short form at goo.gl/JwpJzx if you haven’t already done so.

If you’re interested in VR, this is the group for you!

The Orbit VR group will meet every other Saturday at Tech Valley Game Space and will provide a place to share and get feedback on your VR experience and ask for advice. Occasional tutorials on VR subjects may be provided as well, based on group feedback.

About Orbit

Orbit is a community-driven mentorship program designed to provide greater opportunities for learning and collaboration at Tech Valley Game Space than ever before! The goal of Orbit is to bring local game makers (and aspiring game makers!) together based around mutual interests, and provide a consistent environment for sustained skill development, personal growth, and community building.

For more information about Orbit, including a list of all the currently active groups, please visit https://www.techvalleygamespace.com/orbit/

RSVP at the links below!

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Lesson Night: Can Games Really Solve Real-World Problems? (March 15th, 6:30pm)

People often talk about how games cause tons of problems — such as violence, obesity, addiction, aggression, or loneliness — but perhaps we should also talk about how games can solve real-world problems, too. In this talk, Dr. Karen Schrier of Marist College will take you on a tour of problem-solving games–from Foldit to the Beanstalk game. These games use crowdsourcing and collective intelligence techniques to encourage players to participate in real-world problem solving, data analysis, and more. Maybe a game will help us cure cancer or find world peace!

Instructor Bio:

Karen Schrier, now in her sixth year at Marist College, teaches courses in games and interactive media and directs the Games & Emerging Media program. She also directs the Play Innovation Lab, where she works with students to create and research games/media. Dr. Schrier’s scholarship is interdisciplinary, and is focused on the intersection of games with education, ethics, empathy, civic engagement, and citizen science. Prior to Marist College, she spent over a decade producing websites, apps, and games at organizations such as Scholastic, Nickelodeon, BrainPOP, and PBS/Channel 13. She is the editor of the book series, Learning, Education & Games, published by ETC Press (Carnegie Mellon), and co-editor of two books on games and ethics. She has written over 30 publications, including single-authored articles published in journals such as Educational Technology Research & Development and the Journal of Moral Education. Her latest book, Knowledge Games: How Playing Games Can Help Solve Problems, Create Insight, and Make Change, was published in 2016 by Johns Hopkins University Press, and has been covered by Forbes, New Scientist, and Times Higher Education, Radio NZ and SiriusXM. She holds a doctorate from Columbia University/Teachers College, master’s degree from MIT, and a bachelor’s degree from Amherst College.

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Social Night – 007: Agent Under Fire! (March 1st, 6-9 pm)

Hey there Space Cadets! Due to some scheduling conflicts that have arisen in the wake of GDC 2017, we’ve moved Social Night to this upcoming Wednesday. We’re sorry for the short notice, and hope you can still attend!

The featured game this week is “007: Agent Under Fire”, a first-person shooter packed with weird powerups, cool guns, labyrithine maps, and slick spy gadgets to help you hunt down your friends and/or enemies. But be warned – this is a game from the ancient year of 2002, so don’t be surprised if some stuff seems outdated. Just try the game out, and most importantly, have fun! And don’t forget, we have plenty of other games for people to play besides our monthly Social Night pick.

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Black History Game Jam

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To participate in this event, please reserve a free ticket on Eventbrite: Black History Game Jam tickets

In celebration of Black History Month, the next event in our #include series will be the Black History Game Jam, a day long “hackathon” dedicated to creating games, interactive artwork and stories inspired by African American history and culture. Come join us in recognizing and celebrating African American contributions to history and culture while creating your own game!

Everyone is welcome to take part in this public game making event, and first time creators are highly encouraged to participate. The atmosphere at #include events is fun and collaborative, and a team of experienced mentors will be on hand to help out any newcomers and provide guidance on how you can bring your game ideas to life.

The jam will take place on Sunday, February 26th starting at 10am and ending at 4pm. Participants are invited to gather at The Arts Center (located at 265 River Street in Troy) at 10am on Sunday in order to join in the event kickoff, which will feature a brief word of welcome from the organizers, an introduction to our team of volunteer mentors and a chance for you to meet the other participants.

The Black History Game Jam is open to participants of all ages, backgrounds and skill levels. Tickets are free, but spaces are limited, so please book your ticket early to avoid missing out on your chance to participate in the game jam. Please read all of the event info below before booking your place in the jam.

WHEN:

Sunday, February 26th 10am-4pm

WHERE:

The Arts Center of the Capital Region (265 River Street, Troy)

 

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About the Jam:

The game jam will take place at The Arts Center of The Capital Region, located at 265 River Street in Troy. The kickoff event will take place at 10am on Sunday, February 26th and the event will run until 4pm. The jam will be centered around the theme of African American history, and participants will be encouraged to create games and digital artwork inspired by this theme.

The Arts Center is located in close proximity to a variety of dining options, but there is no eating or drinking allowed inside the venue itself, so please take this into consideration when planning for meals and snack breaks.

Games created by the participants will also be featured at an upcoming showcase event, which will take place at The Arts Center during the next monthly Troy Night Out celebration to occur after the jam. The showcase will be held from 5-9pm on Friday, March 31st in the same room where the jam is taking place.

 

Mentors Wanted!
If you are a local game developer or someone with experience in a related field (programmer, artist, designer, musician, etc.) and you have a few hours that you’d be willing to contribute toward volunteering as a mentor during a future #include event, please volunteer using the mentor sign up sheet in order to let us know you’re interested. Once you have signed up using the online form, we will get in contact with you to provide further details on how you can get involved with our upcoming diversity events.

 

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About #include:

#include is a series of diversity-focused, creative events hosted by Tech Valley Game Space that are intended to support aspiring game makers in the Capital Region. The goal of the #include initiative is to provide recurring, local classes and game jams targeted toward groups that continue to be underrepresented within the game development community, in order to demystify the process of digital game creation and make it more accessible and welcoming for everyone.

For more information, please visit https://techvalleygamespace.com/include