adventuron
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Dec 31, 2017 8:14 pm

Adventuron useful as learning language?

Sun Dec 31, 2017 8:36 pm

Hello,

I just announced a web based programming language called "Adventuron" which is intended to be used to create 8 or 16 bit style text adventure games, but with optional graphics, and sound effects. Basic animations are also supported

Image

The interesting thing about this project is that it has a low barrier to entry (navigate to a web page), and it features pretty advanced validation and editor features (context sensitive code completion with control + space).

I know this is (mostly) a dead genre, but I wonder if there is merit in resurrecting it for educational purposes?

I'm wondering if there is any merit in teaching this as a first-language?

Here is my idea for how to structure use of Adventuron across lessons.
  • Lesson 1 : Simply creating locations, which might involve kids using their imaginations to create fun environments.
  • Lesson 2 : Create navigation paths, which involves entering data to link together locations. Adventuron's web editor features autocompletion and realtime validation, so frustration level is reduced.
  • Lesson 3 : Create images to go alongside the location. Some kids might prefer being responsible for art, some for sound effects, some for room descriptions.
  • Lesson 4 : Design puzzles featuring objects and characters, and to drop them into the world.
  • Lesson 5 : Enter these puzzles into the system. This is actually the meat and potatoes of the task.
  • Lesson 6 : Debug the game via playtesting.
  • Lesson 7 : Sharing and discussing strengths and weaknesses of the design with classmates, constructively.
It's just an idea at this point in time, and maybe it's not suitable at all for the modern sensibilities of children that have grown up with iPads?

I welcome feedback.

Link to article

Chris

hippy
Posts: 3181
Joined: Fri Sep 09, 2011 10:34 pm
Location: UK

Re: Adventuron useful as learning language?

Sun Dec 31, 2017 11:19 pm

Looks interesting. One day I am going to convert my text adventure into something which runs on a Pi.

I am not so sure about the '8-bit look and feel'. I am not convinced that will appeal to your educational target audience or have any meaning or attraction for them. Likewise forcing 4:3 aspect ratios on them. I think you need to reflect on who you are targeting and what they would want.

I don't know if it's an ideal first language or not. I also know there are going to be those who will say text adventures 'are dead', are not what kids are into these days. It still looks like it would be fun to use to me so I think there's merit in it.

My belief is if you can get kids into wanting to use it they will, will jump over any hurdles to get there as long as they aren't too high. The best way to motivate IMO is to make it something they want to do.

I'm not an educator, so please take these comments in that light.

EricRaspy
Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Jan 07, 2018 12:10 pm

Re: Adventuron useful as learning language?

Sun Jan 07, 2018 12:17 pm

Yeah I agree with hippy. These days, even simple games like angry birds come with awesome graphics. That said, if someone is really interested in building games, they wouldn't mind starting from 8 bit and moving up.

adventuron
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Dec 31, 2017 8:14 pm

Re: Adventuron useful as learning language?

Tue Jan 09, 2018 2:14 pm

hippy wrote:
Sun Dec 31, 2017 11:19 pm
I am not so sure about the '8-bit look and feel'. I am not convinced that will appeal to your educational target audience or have any meaning or attraction for them. Likewise forcing 4:3 aspect ratios on them. I think you need to reflect on who you are targeting and what they would want.

The 8-bit style is the default style and it is trivial to remove it on a per adventure basis. The borders around the edge of content on a widescreen monitor is pretty much standard.

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