Introduction to Game Development

Audience level:
March 8th 9 a.m. – 12:20 p.m.


This tutorial will walk the attendees from some introductory game development theory (what makes a good game) and through development of a simple game (how to make a good game) with time left over for some experimentation and exploration of different types of games.


The tutorial will start with Katie Cunningham giving an introduction to video games, covering the basic components of a game, and some general game genres. Some basic tropes in modern games will be explored, as well as pitfalls to avoid in making a game for a today’s audience. Genres will be paired with inexpensive/free examples that can be explored by the tutorial attendees later.

The baton will then pass to Richard Jones who will walk through the practicalities of building a simple video game from scratch, starting with presenting one approach to structuring the game code to keep it sane. He will talk about what libraries are available and then focus on the facilities present in the library used in the tutorial.

We will then walk through the development of a simple game during which the attendees will code the game. Once the game is developed we will talk about potential further development that possibilities and use the remaining tutorial time to encourage and assist attendees in their efforts to do so.

The game developed will cover the key game-writing skills of controlling what appears on the screen (including animation), loading resources, handling user input and simulating the environment within the game.

Participants should be familiar with Python, and must have pygame version 1.9+ installed. We will not have time to deal with installation and compatibility issues so participants must check their laptops can run pygame applications.