It's important that before you join the web event, you go through all of the steps below to get the most out of your time. Each step has many options to help you get your individual machines working, but if you get stuck, sign up for office hours at: usdpe.ohours.org, or e-mail Chrissy.
1. Get a Windows Store developer account
To put an app in the Windows Store (and start making money!!), you need to get a Windows Store developer account. The account costs money on an annual basis, but if you qualify for one of the programs I'm about to mention, you could get it for free.
If you're a student, you can get a Windows Store developer account for free! To expedite the process, email Sam Stokes (firstname.lastname@example.org) from your school email account. He'll send you a code and a link to a video that shows you exactly what to do.
If you are a new business with a BizSpark account or if you have an MSDN subscription, you too can get your Windows Store developer account for free. If you have questions about this, again please email e-mail email@example.com
If you don't qualify for any of these programs, then you'll need to pay for your developer account. They are $49 for private parties or $99 for companies. You can go here to get started.
For more in-depth information about the developer account visit Registering for a Windows Store developer account in the Dev Center.
2. Get Windows 8
To develop a Windows 8 app, you need to get Windows 8 and install it.
You can buy Windows 8 online or at any computer retailer. If you qualify for one of the programs in Step 1 (DreamSpark, BizSpark, or MSDN) then you can get a free license. If you want to try Windows 8 out for a while, you can always download a 90-day evaluation copy.
If you have a PC, you can install Windows 8 natively (recommended), you can boot to a VHD drive, or you can install it in a virtual machine. Install it natively if you can or boot to a VHD drive as a second choice. If you run it in a virtual machine, you might not get the same performance.
If you have a Mac, you can install Windows 8 using BootCamp (recommended) or virtually using Parallels (also good). There are other vitualization options, but these two are recommended.
3. Get the developer tools
Besides Windows 8, you also need to install the tools. In the ZERO260 program, you'll be creating games using Scirra Construct2. Download Construct2 from Scirra.
Additionally, Visual Studio will be necessary to get your app ready to publish to the Windows Store. There is a professional version of Visual Studio 2012 that costs money, but there's also a free version call Visual Studio Express 2012 for Windows 8. You can download it here.
4. Get a graphics program
Finally, we're going to be creating a game with very basic images which you willl need to generate some unique graphics for. To do so, you can use the vector-based graphics package of your choice. While, you are welcome to use any program (such as the Free InkScape, download here)...as an attendee of ZERO260, you will recieve a FREE license for CorelDRAW Essentials, which is a top-notch program, at a $99 value. We will provide instructions for downloading your copy after you attend, but we recommend that in advance you download the free 60-day trial, here.
Stuck?! Set up some office hours with a Microsoft Developer Evangelist by visiting usdpe.ohours.org.