Posts Tagged ‘Hack ‘N’ Slash’

Can Videogames Teach You Programming?

if(desire_to_program > 10)

When I tell people I’m a programmer, I get that look. The glazed eyes, the polite smile, the clear desire to change topic. If I’m lucky, I’ll get pitched on an idea for the next killer mobile app that my conversation partner insists will make us rich; if I’m less lucky, I’ll get wrangled into providing free tech support for the rest of my life. The thing is, though, as impossible as it might sound, programming can be more fun than people realise. Fun enough to warrant its own video game genre, even.

Just how educational are these games, though? Is it really possible to become a programmer by playing games? I dug through Steam and came away with three promising candidates. Let’s take a look at them, and see whether they can really teach you skills to pay the bills.

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Sad Space Party: Spacebase DF-9 Leaves Early Access

Hitting the space bar.

A game’s launch is usually such a happy affair, all streamers and balloons and fruit punch and jelly and ice cream and cartwheeling clowns, but it’s a little bittersweet for Spacebase DF-9. It’s not the game Double Fine wanted it to be, nor the game advertised to Early Access purchasers. DF scaled plans down last month as announced they couldn’t afford to keep making the sim space station, and would simply get it to a stable, finished-ish state then release the source code.

Spacebase DF-9 version 1.0 launched this week, also bringing players a virtual party bag containing the source and a free copy of Hack ‘n’ Slash. HnS owners were given a copy of Spacebase too.

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Hack ‘N’ Slash: Wot I Think

Double Fine’s devious hacking/programming action puzzler Hack ‘N’ Slash is now out of Early Access and into Version 1.0. I’ve run around jabbing USB sticks into ports all over the place, until I hit a wall of complexity I couldn’t find the will to pass. Here’s wot I think:

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Hack ‘n’ Slash Leaves Early Access, Brings Source Code

One of the best ideas in videogames today, Hack ‘n’ Slash, has broken out of Early Access and is running amok on Steam proper. It’s a Zelda-like 2D adventure with the ability to modify the code of many of the objects in the world. This is used for, in equal measure, puzzle solving and comedy, able to unlock doors or make NPCs endlessly rotate on the spot. This release version also brings the last chapter of the game, filled with new puzzles and mechanics, as well as updating previous areas with more content. Naturally, a game so meta also shipped with the source code and now has Steam Workshop support, letting us dig deeper into its innards.

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Impressions: Hack ‘N’ Slash

The first thing that happens in Hack ‘N’ Slash is the player is given a weapon, a sword, and then it breaks. Beneath the sword’s external stabby part is a USB interface. A smarter person would point out how this is a microcosm of the game, because you solve puzzles by peeling away the game’s outer layer to manipulate the code beneath the surface. Me? I’ll just lazily use it as a way of introducing the concept and then hop into the game proper. Oh, and I’ll also say it’s great.

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Hack The Planet: Early Access Granted To Hack ‘N’ Slash

Hack that bird!

As a Zelda-y action-adventure game, Double Fine’s Hack ‘n’ Slash is impossible to complete. Obstacles are impassable, enemies are unkillable, and puzzles are unsolvable. That’s fine though because oh ho ho, Hack ‘n’ Slash is really a code-hacking puzzle game which happens to be wearing Zelda-green jimjams. Almost a month after its oddly premature launch trailer, Hack ‘n’ is now on Steam Early Access at £14.99.

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Hack ‘N’ Slash’s Early Access Trailer Is Just The Greatest

Just watch.

Double Fine’s Hack ‘N’ Slash piqued my curiosity when I saw (and video-ed) its ultra-clever hacking antics last month, and soon it will give you the keys to its sparkling kingdom of 1s and 0s. Since it’s a videogame, that of course means a trailer is in order, lest people just stand in place, slack-jawed, like racers who’ve yet to hear a starting gun. In the modern gaming world, we are lost without trailers. They tell us where to go, what to buy, how to live. It’s a chilling thought, but look! A funny video on the Internet and huh what was I even talking about again?

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