Towards A Darker Tomorrow [Work In Progress: Dystopia City]

My next Scratch project is underway - a dystopia simulator inspired by EVERY YOUNG ADULT SCI-FI NOVEL EVER.

I don't want to reveal too much about the plot but I will say that if you are a fan of post-apocalyptic underground bunker-based cities, semi-fascist societies, factions, factions and factions then you may come to like this game.

But first I have to complete it. Programming challenges so far have included creating a scrolling map that can be changed as new tunnels are built, and having large numbers of dystopian citizens exploring it. One of the best features of Scratch is, it's surprisingly fast at parallel processing: so you can have large numbers of active sprites and still keep everything moving quickly, as long as each object has a fairly short routine.

Scratch is a browser-based programming language a little like BASIC, but with an easy to learn object-orientated structure and commands that click together LEGO-style. It's provided free by MIT here in order to encourage the younglings to take up programming.

When I started programming as a child (I was raised in BASIC IV) I learned by experimentation and mistake-making. Over the years I've learned a little of other languages: 6502 Assembler, Basic V, C, Inform, DarkBASIC, COFFEE, HTML and Python. Scratch is the first language I've tried that brings back that feeling of experimentation.

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