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One of the first “technical” things I remember doing on a computer was making games in GameMaker 8 while watching old-school youtube tutorials. Playing and making video games was largely how I got into programming in the first place. The first “real” website I ever made was an Assassins Creed fansite I built for my grade 7 computers class; It was written in PHP and was hosted on a windows server our teacher set up.

That said, I pretty much write ETL jobs, integrations, web services, and internal tooling at work these days. While that’s all a farcry (😉) from game development, my want to make games never really went away. I’ve dabbled in gamedev over the years and recently I’ve been messing around with PICO-8 and threw together this little snake clone.

What is PICO-8?

Their site says it better than I probably could!

PICO-8 is a fantasy console for making, sharing and playing tiny games and other computer programs. It feels like a regular console, but runs on Windows / Mac / Linux. When you turn it on, the machine greets you with a commandline, a suite of cartridge creation tools, and an online cartridge browser called SPLORE.

I’d recommend checking their site out if you’re interested. You can play a bunch of games other’s have made on the site and there’s a bunch more information.

I’ll also probably write a bit more about PICO-8 and why I find it so engaging in the future. I think it comes down to constraints. You get such a paired-down environment to work in that you learn lots and have to keep your scope small which, for me, means I can actually complete my little game ideas without running out of steam.