A stealth introduction to coding.

GridLight is designed as a delightful, approachable gateway to developing a passion for coding and design. Players will learn by playing, but the learning will happen without them noticing it.

The game won’t be about typing in lines of code or drilling syntax. This is a game, not homework. There’ll be no “chocolate-covered broccoli.”

GridLight primes players on computer science concepts by seamlessly integrating them into its gameplay, world, systems, and tools. These concepts will be a natural part of what makes the game experience fun, time and time again.

You’re not just learning to code. You’re discovering the magic of wielding it.


A sneak peek at the GridLight universe


Currently playable — GridLight: Hello World

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GridLight: Hello World is a small slice of the full GridLight game that is currently in early development.

The Bot School team built this hour-long, self-led game activity to support the 2018 Hour of Code, and to get early feedback.

Hello World incorporates computer science principles.

If you’re setting up an Hour of Code or a similar event, check out this handy Game Guide!

We’re all about iterative development and hearing feedback straight from players — if you’ve played, please help us out with feedback! You can also see what players are saying about the game.


GridLight: Hello World introduces coding concepts

SEQUENCING

In coding, every line of code is run in order. Imagine a robot that will bake a cake by following the instructions exactly as written from top to bottom. If the instructions are wrong, the cake won't turn out!   Running code in order is called sequencing, and it's the foundation of all coding!

In coding, every line of code is run in order. Imagine a robot that will bake a cake by following the instructions exactly as written from top to bottom. If the instructions are wrong, the cake won't turn out!

Running code in order is called sequencing, and it's the foundation of all coding!

LOOPS

Imagine 30 lines of code, one for each student in a class to list their name and favorite book. To list their favorite animal instead, you have to update all 30 lines. Lame! Loops let you process each student the same way with just one line of code, which saves time and avoids mistakes.   Loops are a powerful way to avoid bugs and process lots of information with few lines of code!

Imagine 30 lines of code, one for each student in a class to list their name and favorite book. To list their favorite animal instead, you have to update all 30 lines. Lame! Loops let you process each student the same way with just one line of code, which saves time and avoids mistakes.

Loops are a powerful way to avoid bugs and process lots of information with few lines of code!

We integrated these coding principles directly into the gameplay, so those completely new to computer science can experience that it’s fun, creative, and accessible.

Hello World also covers basic computer science concepts from the K-12 Computer Science Framework:

  • Algorithms and Programming — learn this every turn by structuring your Command Line sequence

  • Computing Systems — shown by the relationship between software (the Command Line) and hardware (your Bot Friend)

  • Impacts of Computing — use programming to solve a challenge (restoring the Lighthouse for the Festival)


 
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GridLight: Hello World — The Story

You're preparing for the Lighthouse Festival with the help of your mentor, Root.

At first, the mission seems simple -- gather up Light Sprites! They are powerful, magical critters that can restore the Lighthouse Orb with GridLight, an energy source. Root introduces you to the magic of coding, by showing you how to program Nab, the Bot Friend you’ll rely on to complete the mission.

Then Wild Bots start to appear on the map. Wild Bots aren’t uncommon, but it’s strange to see so many of them either broken (Null Bots) or grumpy and trying to attack (Bugged Bots). Not only are they cluttering things up, they’re scaring away the Light Sprites!

You and Root eventually discover the source of Null Bots and Bugged Bots. A fellow programmer had written code to automate the gathering of Light Sprites, but in his hurry to ship it out, he didn’t test the code nor did he have it reviewed by a peer. His code produced a bug that made the Wild Bots treat everything with a different protocol as an enemy.

You disable the device broadcasting the code to Wild Bots. Root says she will bring the bug report back to the other programmer. Both of you make plans to return for the Lighthouse Festival that night -- where you see the Light Sprites restore the Lighthouse Orb.


We love player feedback!

Here are player quotes we’ve received through our online form or gathered through classroom playtests.

i like this game because it help with your brain to get stronger and it will kind of make you smart i guess. But the point is every one have fun.
— 9-12 year old who plays games every day, not familiar with coding
Please add a volcano level with lava-bots so players feel like there on some sort of secret mission and also please can you add desert, moon, village, Christmas, and ocean levels with new characters such as cacti, lava, villager, Santa, a fish-man, and a space-man?
— 9-12 year old who plays games every day, very familiar with coding
i love that we can choose cute little bots and having fun doing missions.
— 9-12 year old who plays games often, not familiar with coding
Can you PLEASE make more characters? The rest is AWESOME!!
— 9-12 year old who plays games some times, somewhat familiar with coding
This game was very fun i recommend to keep developing it!
— 9-12 year old who plays games every day, somewhat familiar with coding
I really like this because you get to pick what directions the bot goes and thank you so much!!!!!!!!!!!!!
— 9-12 year old who plays games often, not familiar with coding
hope you guys make more of theses games for me to play at school and at home. this game was fun and funny for me to play the game
— 9-12 year old who plays games every day, very familiar with coding
i want a full game :)
— 9-12 year old who plays games every day, somewhat familiar with coding
this game was a exciting challenging game i strongly like the game its just u need to make it a little easier
— 9-12 year old who plays games often, not familiar with coding
plz make a pastel yellow character
— 13-17 year old who plays games every day, very familiar with coding