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Review of ‘Invent Your Own Computer Games with Python’ by Al Sweigart

Today, few books fulfill the function of teaching programming, as well as providing fun, especially for children. Al’s book works for both.

Basically, this book is about creating games with python, but it also serves as a basic ‘icebreaker’ for those who think programming is only for ‘PC geeks’. According to Al, ‘Programming is not difficult. But it’s hard to find learning materials that teach you how to do interesting things with programming. Other computer science books cover many topics that most novice programmers don’t need. This book will teach you how to program your own computer games. You’ll learn a useful skill and have fun games to prove it!’

It allows readers to create an interactive game using python and change the skill later using pygame to create animation and sound, a very important aspect of game creation.

Who is this book for?

Programming is not difficult. But it’s hard to find learning materials that teach you how to do interesting things with programming. Other computer science books cover many topics that most novice programmers don’t need. This book will teach you how to program your own computer games. You’ll learn a useful skill and have fun games to prove it! This book is for:

Complete beginners who want to learn programming on their own, even if they have no previous programming experience.

Children and young people who want to learn computer programming by creating games. 9 or 10 year olds should be able to follow it.

Adults and teachers who want to teach programming to others.

Anyone, young or old, who wants to learn programming by learning a professional programming language.

There are 20 chapters in the book.

A very remarkable aspect of this book is that, instead of normal programming books, which provide the principles first and then the application, Al’s book shows the source code of the games from the beginning and explains the programming principles to from the examples.

This book is not for making games with high-tech graphics, but for games good enough to attract gamers online or as a mobile phone game, as Al said,

“The first games we’ll create together in this book will probably seem simple compared to games you’ve played on Xbox, Playstation or Wii. They don’t have fancy graphics or music, but that’s because they’re meant to teach you the basics. They are deliberately simple so that we can focus on learning to program. Games don’t have to be complicated to be fun. Hangman, Tic Tac Toe and making secret codes are easy to program but also fun. It explains all aspects of python, from installing it to using pygame for sound and animation. Overall a good, solid, interactive method used throughout. Recommended for all ages and programming levels.’

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