Interactive Game Design is a rapidly developing field that exists in the intersection of physical components and computer programming, where designers shape and construct new methods of gaming. We've put together a collection of resources to help you get started programming basic game mechanics that integrate physical components.
The first step in Interactive Game Design is to understand the basics of Scratch, the visual programming framework developed by the MIT Media Lab.
Assets refer to everything that is loaded into the game. These activities introduce how to work with assets in Scratch.
Player input is the first step to interactivity. This article and project cover the basic motion and input relationship. Many of the mechanics that you’ll be working with in Scratch carry over into professional game design and programming.
These articles and project introduce code commenting and code management. Building solid habits in regard to commenting is a valuable skill that carries over into all avenues of programming, regardless of the language or intent.
After you build an understanding of basic player input and character motion, the next step is to include more advanced mechanics and programming concepts. This section introduces the concept of animating the character motion as well as logic. Logic is one of the most crucial foundations in programming, and building a solid understanding of logic concepts in Scratch will prepare for any future programming endeavours.
These next articles and projects build upon the previous sections by introducing more advanced game mechanics. You’ll begin to build out a physics engine for your game and include a collision detection system, and then you’ll begin integrating variables, another of the core concept of programming.
Arrays and functions are two core programming skills. These lessons introduce the basic concepts through Scratch.
These lessons cover some additional game mechanics that youth commonly want to include in their projects. Clones, scrollers, and an additional gravity lesson are included.
The MaKey MaKey is a project developed by Jay Silver and Eric Rosenbaum of the MIT Media Lab and Sparkfun Electronics. The MaKey MaKey “invention kit” is a great way to introduce interactivity by creating a bridge between the physical and the digital.