We were recently given the opportunity to review quite an amazing program. A program I would HIGHLY recommend to ANY parent with children interested in learning to make their own games, animation, or game designs.
Cody has always wanted to learn how to make games. Now there are a lot of coding things I know about as far as coding for websites, the only problem was that coding to make a game is different! I know NOTHING about it, so teaching him how to make them was just something I struggled to do.
Youth Digital is an amazing company that takes that struggle off of my shoulders. They offer online computer courses that teach kids 8-14 how to create Mods (Minecraft), Apps, 3D Game Design, or their own game. In May, they will be offering animation and 3D Models as well.
Youth Digital offers all of the programs needed to work through the courses, live support almost regularly (if not just submit a ticket), and the program teaches kids using hands on activities so they really learn and understand the concepts. Cody sent a support ticket into the support a couple times, and they responded back within hours, that it wonderful!!
The program is set up into 12 modules, in each of the modules there is 2-3 lessons for the students to complete that teach them about each of the given topics. In the lessons students will watch a video on the website with an instructor who explains the lessons. While working on the lessons they will pause the lesson to go and do those steps on their own game.
The video lessons were so in depth that Cody did not struggle with what to do in any of the lessons he has done so far. The instructor made the lesson fun and exciting for the kids, I often heard Cody laughing at how funny the lesson or instructor was. At the end of each of the lessons students will go through and complete a quiz with 5 questions about the lesson, students will earn points for each correctly answered question.
Once they have gone through all the lessons in the module they move onto a troubleshooting mod this is a way for students to practice fixing code that is not done correctly regarding whatever topic the Module was about. Following the troubleshooting mod, they will move onto the module quiz, which are questions about things learned through the entire module. Students will earn points for the questions they answer during the quiz as well.
The points that students earn during the lesson and module quizzes can be used in the points store to purchase bonus items for their own game.
By the end of the 3D Game Design program students will have created a complete 3D game world, from start to finish. Students will make this game by using the software provided by Youth Digital. The software they provide is very similar to big programs that they will use if they decide to continue to learn about the 3D Game Design process in higher levels. That makes it so much easier for them to have an introduction to the programs while they are still young so using the programs will be so much easier for them!
Requirements to use Youth Digital programs
You will need to have a Windows computer to run the programs required to follow along in the class. What we did because we are a big Mac family is put the program on the Virtual Machine on our I-Mac computer and it worked wonderfully. The website can give you specific requirements for running the programs.
What’s included with your purchase
When you purchase any of the you will get all of the programs and necessary items to get you through the entire program. You also receive customer service that is available on a regular basis and most times will answer questions within hours. You will have access to the online classes for 1 year after your purchase date.
What Did We Think Of 3D Game Design?
We had a few issues due to the fact that our virtual machine crashed and we are waiting for Jake to fix it, so Cody hasn’t been able to get on there the last couple weeks. He is not so patiently waiting for the computer to be up and running agin so that he can continue working through the program. He did however get through quite a few modules before the crash, and is loving the program more than I can express.
Cody was able to start creating his own game within the first week of lessons, he has not had any problems understanding any of the materials taught to him. He loves the program so much that one day he wrote a ticket to his teacher just to tell him how much he loved the 3D programing and the instructor. I get emails when there is a ticket answered, and this is what I got in my email one day. I think this says is all!!
Cody did hope to be able to share his game with other players as well as play their games. So he submitted a ticket to ask about it. Their response was that they are in the process of making that possible. Yes the only thing he wished he would be able to do on the game will be available soon!!
I have been very pleased with the 3D Game Design program!! The program does an amazing job at teaching the kids in a way that they understand, I do not have to try and figure out the answers to any of his questions because they have a customer service team that is amazing and is available to help them almost all of the time.
I have been amazed at how within a week Cody was showing me a game he was already creating. It was pretty amazing, he was able to create his own world, surroundings and everything. It might have something to do with the fact that the game is so inviting for kids that they just want to keep going and not only do just 1 lesson a day 😀 !
I was glad to see that the videos for the lessons are upbeat, the instructors are having a great time and making it a fun and exciting experience for the students. I think that really makes a big difference in the attitude of the students and their work to!
I was also very glad to see how fast questions are answered by the instructors. Most of the questions are answered within hours, which means students are not stuck wondering how to fix something for long. Youth Digital offers very in depth videos for each of the lessons that walk the students through every step of the coding/game making process and do it so that they really understand. Because they do this by using hands on lessons, it makes it easy even for students who struggle following instructions or even special needs kids to be able to follow along.
Stop over to the Youth Digital website to see more information about the courses, watch some introductory videos, or to purchase any of the amazing programs they offer. I’m sure you won’t be disappointed!!
Coming May 2014
You can also find Youth Digital on Facebook and Twitter for updates on New Programs coming out, customers testimonials, to see all the fun they are having creating the new programs that are coming out, and more! They are continually adding new courses, as well as updating the current courses so following them on Facebook and/or Twitter is your best way to keep up to date on their new endeavors.
Disclaimer: We were provided with 3D Game design to facilitate this review, no other compensation was provided. All opinions are those of my children or myself. Please read my full disclosure policy for more details.