Sunday, November 6, 2011

I'm back from my gaming hiatus...

I've been away enjoying my personal time. I have not done anything related to coding other than my standard JavaEE stuff at work. I've kept studying all the Scala blogs and have been following the Scala tag on StackOverflow and CodeReview sites. I've continued to want to dive right in and just start coding. It is so obvious to me that I would find designing and writing code very enjoyable in Scala. And I am slowly finding it more and more laborious to produce all the boilerplate necessary when I coding in Java, even with the assistance of code completion and code generation tools in Eclipse.

As I am returning to creating time to play directly with Scala again, I am not finding myself all that motivated to continue on the Life project. I don't want to code a little and then blog alot. It just feels too much like doing Java boilerplate; a huge amount of writing with a very small portion that actually does the interesting work. So, for now I am postponing my Scala Life project. I will very likely return to it.

I am finding myself interested in playing around with Scala and creating a simple retro style video game (from the early 80s); Asteroids, Space Invaders, PacMan Missile Command, Defender, etc. These are the games I initially reproduced when I started learning to program on the TI99/4a 30 years ago. And I don't care that there are hundreds of variations of these games. I am not writing it to be consumed by anyone else. I am writing it to feel the delight of achievement, the thrill of viceral learning, the joy of being playful yet inquisitive while minimize the occurrences of and duration of breakdowns, frustrations (configuration challenges, deployment errors, etc.) and technical challenges.

I have spent about 8 hours researching how to go about writing an OpenGL game using Scala. I looked at a number of possible game engines. And it turns out there is an interesting project called LWJGL (LightWeight Java Game Library) which ties together all sorts of C++/C libraries and APIs such that Java programs can utilize them. And anything Java can utilize, Scala can also. So, I am going to do a Scala + LWJGL project. And for now, I am planning to write a very simple version of Space Invaders. Whoohoo!

1 comment:

  1. Sweet! Throw your game up on GitHub and I'll contribute ;). We need to do some pair programming sometime soon!