Best games programming language for kids

My daughter who is training as a “Mediamatiker” has an assignment to write a small computer game. She has done a few games before using Scratch and is thinking about using it again. I’m just wondering if there is anything similar, but perhaps a bit more advanced.

Mediamatiker: This is a German word for which I have no English equivalent. Here in Switzerland they are employed by on line publishers, advertising agencies etc… They work mainly on the technical aspects of online publishing.

For what platform(s) does she want to develop?

Mac or Windows does not matter.

@Ulrich Bogun

Do you know what a Mediamatiker is in English???

I think that https://www.tynker.com or https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/research/project/kodu/ can be used to design more advanced games. And probably the upcoming https://www.apple.com/swift/playgrounds/ can be a good bridge between simplified games tools and “real” programming,
It’s a bit sad there is no SpriteView control in Xojo anymore …

I never heard of a Mediamatiker. This could be a unqiue Swiss description. We have a Medien-Informatiker here, but I don’t know if a computer scientist for media or something similar exists.

Maybe just Media Marketer? In Dutch I would guess we would say Media Marketeer.

Untiy with a WebGL export might be a little overkill for a little project from a non-coder.

However, for a list of web development tools check:

http://html5gameengine.com/

I’ve not personally used this but I just took a quick look over the list and https://www.scirra.com/ looks quite good. Plenty of tutorials there that she could get stuck into and probably come out with a working project for her assignment. There’s plenty of youtube tutorials on getting started with this too.

Or http://www.yoyogames.com/gamemaker for a bit more coding, again, plenty of tutorials on youtube

Have fun :slight_smile:

If you want to create a web game using Xojo, you may have a look at my WebGL canvas ABXPlay. It is a rather old project and I haven’t tested it with later versions of Xojo but it has a lot of advanced stuff for making games, even some multi-player support.

See this post for more info. It is worth scrolling through the post to see the advances I made to the framework. The download contains all demos displayed.

https://forum.xojo.com/16120-abxplay-webgl-html5-canvas-progress-update-6-spritesheets-and-s

Download link: https://alwaysbusycorner.com/abxplay/

EDIT: Whoops, just saw you meant for kids. ABXPlay may be a bit to advanced for that.

James the term “Mediamatiker” reminds me back in those times in the 90ies where Macromedia (today Adobe) Director was used for all kind of animated multimedia CD-ROMs. Even Installer and SETUP.EXEs fired an animated kind of intro before something could be installed… a plague for us but maybe today an easy-going stuff for kids to produce fast, animated, media-rich “programs” (it compiles EXE files).

As language it used Lingo a kind of Basic-like Scriptlanguage. Active X and DLLs could be accessed. Back in those times I’ve developed point-and-click adventure games and computer-based learning-programs in Macromedia Director and combined it with VB6 to access databases and making File I/O stuff…

I can’t find it anymore on Adobe’s Website - maybe I’ve missed the time they axed or rebranded it - but I am sure you’ll find an used version on eBay or somewhere else. In my opinion a good starting point for kids where they learn to deal with media content (pictures, videos, audio), visual arrangements (working with Sprites) and first development elements. Never saw another intuitive software since then for multimedia creation.

James, I would seriously look at

https://www.gamesalad.com

I have got a couple of games in the app store with it and it works well…

LVE has got a brilliantly simple api (Lua) which is great for beginners, e.g:

function love.load()
    whale = love.graphics.newImage("whale.png")
end

function love.draw()
    love.graphics.draw(whale, 300, 200)
end

Unfortunately a few of the third party libraries have rather dubious names.

[quote=282545:@Adrian Bailey]James, I would seriously look at
https://www.gamesalad.com
[/quote]

+1

[quote=282545:@Adrian Bailey]James, I would seriously look at

https://www.gamesalad.com

I have got a couple of games in the app store with it and it works well…[/quote]
How much can you code in this? The site describes it as code free and if the training assignment is expecting code to review then this could be an automatic fail.

I have to confess first time I read this thread I saw “best programming languages for kids” but didn’t take in that a Mediamatiker mainly worked in online publishing so LVE wouldn’t really fit the bill.

You could take a look at Monkey X, it can target HTML5 (as well as Android, iOS, Linux, Mac, Ouya, Windows and Windows Phone) and it’s currently available with a big discount. It has a basic style syntax so you should be able to pick it up very quickly and help your daughter master it.

Edit:
There’s a free version that can target HTML5.

I can’t recommend Monkey-X highly enough. Pretty simple syntax, tons of examples, and free if you only target HTML5.

That said, it does require coding, unlike scratch, and “for kids” means different things to different people. I was doing 8080 at 10 and 6502 at 12. Still can’t do Javascript :slight_smile:

Scirra Construct 2 is indeed a very good choice.

I use it to develop games for our 7 year daughter and it is easy to understand. Development is done by “events” and “behaviours”.

It is easy to get your game up and running in a few hours, a day or weeks depending on the complexity of your game.

Take a look at the Scirra Arcade where developers are showing their creations to have an idea what is possible with Construct 2. To give you an idea, I am much faster with Scirra than Xojo for developing games, because many things are already done for you in Construct 2 while in Xojo you have to do everything yourself. In Construct 2 you do not have to code anything.

It is also a very good tool to learn about Events and Behaviours and variables, layers, project management. So if you want to switch later to a real development tool like Xojo, you can use the knowledge from Construct 2 and apply it to Xojo. Both environments, Xojo and Construct 2 can easily be used along each other.

I am using the personal version of Construct2, but there is also a free version with some limitations as using a maximum of 4 layers. I would suggest try out the free version and see if you or your daughter like it.

Hope this helps.

Chris

Mediamatiker wiki to google translate:

Depending on the complexity of the game, we use Scratch (free) here at the Science Centre for our week long summer camps. The campers have been able to do pretty impressive things with it.

Note: We would love to use Xojo, but it is a bit too complex for a 1 week camp. :slight_smile:

RJL