If you were one of the pupils who made their own Caesar cipher apps last term, you maybe interested to see this post from the Science Museum. Can you crack it? If you can solve it, then take what you’ve learnt and try and make your cipher more robust. Good luck!
Three new coding clubs kick off this week. The pupils will be learning how to code their own text adventure games in Python. These games were a huge part of most people’s childhood and if you would like to learn more about them then I would recommend books by Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone. Here are my only surviving copies from the 80s and 90s.
Use handy game design guides to build your own games.
Help your child bring their ideas to life.
First Coding resources deliver creative and fun coding activities for ages 8 and above plus helpful guides and podcasts including game design tips, hacking Minecraft and making money from your creations.
The summer workshops may not be over yet but I’m already so impressed with the standard of work being produced. Whether it’s the young coders who are giving Scratch a go for the first time or teens who are wanting to develop their Python more, along with building their own apps, your ideas and projects have been a great deal of fun. Keep up the great work.
Here are the titles from one of the games to come out of the app building workshop.
Weekly game jams such as the one held over at WeeklyGameJam are a great way of getting inspired and experimenting with new game design ideas. It’s also a great way to meet and interact with a community of people who share the same passion for games and coding as you do.
I decided to take my own advice this time and took part in the Can’t Touch It! theme where you have to build a game within a week that fits with the week’s chosen topic. After brainstorming a couple of ideas I got to work building a prototype in Scratch, then I worked on polishing it once I was happy the game mechanics were working. I’ve seen the most fantastic games that were built within a day, mine titled Circles was built in two days. I’ve detailed the process I followed over on my personal blog here.
The idea of the game is to continuously contain the smaller moving circle with the ever decreasing perimeter.
I have been so impressed over the last few months at the standard of work coming out of the various clubs and courses I run, I’ve always wanted to give the students further direction with regards to their creativity and coding. So I hit the ground running this year and after a great deal of hard work have produced this 24 page booklet on game design and distribution.
I used to make zines all time years ago and could see the layout of the booklets in my mind easily. It appears I’ve lost that skill these days but I managed to nail it with help from an old zine-making friend. Thank you!
Here are a couple of winners from the Christmas Python coding competition I ran this month in one of the schools here in Salisbury. Each pupil had a couple of sessions with me as we covered the basics and got them building a basic personal assistant bot. They were then encouraged to run with the project in their own time which they did in their own brilliant way. With over 60 pupils signing up, judging was a really difficult task. Below are a couple of winners, just hit the play button to run the code and have a play.
This week saw the launch of another computer club at Leehurst Swan school. This half term focuses on game making, paying close attention to character animation, level design and scoring systems with the aim of providing pupils with enough knowledge to make their own games over Christmas.
As our game designing courses progress, there have been a number of really good points that have emerged from discussions and the projects we’re making.
The most important one so far has been to concentrate on what you’re good at when it comes to game design. If you’re more of an artist than a coder then focus on the art, there is a huge resource out there to help with the coding side of things. Likewise, if you’re a good coder but poor at art then why not consider purchasing some assets. This is we’ve done in this case and the best thing is, we’ve found a character that almost matches exactly our concept drawing!
As our game is going to be a vertical scrolling ninja game, we’ve been working on a suitable name for it all weekend and we’ve hit upon “Night Fall”.