09 October 2016
Chapter 1 introduces you to Scratch and how you build projects, and includes the Magic Mirror project. This is a humorous twist on the 'cat goes for a walk' project idea, where the cat walks in front of a Magic Mirror that distorts its reflection. This chapter also explains some of the key ideas that are used in later chapters, including 3D Maze Explorer.
If you want a quick overview of what to expect from the whole book, take a look at this 3-minute video that includes clips from all the projects, including the ScratchJr projects and the Raspberry Pi Camera Module project. Let me know what you think in the comments below.
You can also check out my previous blogs about some of the projects in the book:
- Making 3D anaglyph games in Scratch
- Making games in ScratchJr
- Making stop motion videos on the Raspberry Pi
- Discover some a-maze-ing Scratch projects!
- Making music and art in Scratch
Cool Scratch Projects in Easy Steps is available now from shops including these. It has a companion title in my previous book, Scratch Programming in Easy Steps. That book goes into greater depth on how Scratch works and shows you how to build a number of games and projects. The new "Cool" book dives straight into the project instructions, so there is more room to cover more of the fun things you can do with Scratch. I think they work well together, and you can read them in any order.
If you get either book (thank you!) and enjoy it, please consider writing a review on Amazon. It really helps others to find the book. Thank you!
For more information on the book, visit the book's web page here.
04 October 2016
The print edition of my new book Cool Scratch Projects in Easy Steps comes with a free pair of 3D red/cyan glasses and shows you how to make 3D games with them. The glasses make it possible to show a different image to each eye, so you can create real 3D effects, where things appear to pop out of the screen, or sink back into it.
There are three 3D projects in the book:
- 12 Angry Aliens, in which aliens surge towards you from the distance, and you have to click them with your sights to shoot them.
- 3D Artist, which enables you to position shapes in three dimensions so you can create images with depth. There's a random option too, which you can use to watch abstract designs appear before you.
- Space Mine 3D, where you have to catch energy balls that fly out of a tunnel towards your ship.
The book also includes a simple demo that you can use to experiment with depth, and work out the comfortable distances for viewing.
For best results, you should face the screen flat-on. The effect can be reduced if you tilt your head, or view the screen from an angle.
Extra pairs of glasses are easily available online from a wide range of vendors on Amazon and eBay (search for anaglyph glasses and make sure you get the red/cyan ones). You can even upgrade to plastic-framed ones if you want for a couple of pounds or dollars.
If you don't already have a pair of the glasses around, you won't be able to see the 3D effect in these, but below is a taster of what the projects look like. Note that there has been some colour distortion in the video screengrabbing.