ThinkTank Development Team

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The Robotics Resource Center at WPI is designed to provide support to on-campus and off-campus activities and groups for projects and competitive robotics. The RRC hosts a number of robotics events each year, provides guidance and materials for student projects, and supports the Robotics Engineering major. The staff consists of Ken Stafford, Brad Miller, and Colleen Shaver.

Robot Games: Using FRC Skills to Become a Video Game Maker

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Presented by Microsoft, at the 2012 FRC Kickoff Workshops.

The presentation with audio is available through the link(s) on the right. Due to internet connectivity issues during recording, it is possible that some videos may have low quality audio at times, cut in and out, or not show video at all times.

The video links on the right likely required the GoToMeeting codec to be downloaded in order to be viewed successfully. Due to this, some Apple machines and products may have difficulty viewing, although we are working on creating Mac-friendly copies. To download the codec, go to .

Microsoft Studios, the studio behind Halo, Forza, & Kinect Sports, will give a hands-on workshop that will introduce participants to the design of agent-based games using Kodu Gamelab, Microsoft’s low threshold game creation environment.

In Kodu, participants learn how to create interactive systems by designing and programming 3D worlds that they can populate with software robots. The robots’ behaviors can be programmed using abstractions of sensor inputs and actuator outputs that parallel in software those of real robotics systems. However, the focus of the systems created in Kodu, instead of being the interactions between components of a single robot, is to create game-based interactions (e.g. goals, rules, and game mechanics) that play out across multiple robots and the environment that surrounds them.

In the workshop, participants will be introduced to some of the fundamental ways to create functional game systems using Kodu, including its level design and terraforming tools, it’s asset and prop libraries, and the fundamentals of the Kodu programming language. They will also learn how Kodu can be used to create games that can help learners understand key concepts in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics, by collaboratively working in teams to create their own version of these systems with the guidance of workshop instructors.

We will include time for a Q&A for anyone who is seriously considering a career in video games or in hearing more about how videogames are reshaping learning. We would also like to hear your thoughts on creating a virtual FIRST competition.

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