How to Program Games: Tile Classics in JS for HTML5 Canvas
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How to Program Games: Tile Classics in JS for HTML5 Canvas

Learn to code tile-based worlds and related core gameplay for genres like arcade, overhead racing, and puzzle adventure.


By taking this new course you’ll program several classic game types that all incorporate 2D tile-based worlds. You’ll code in JavaScript for HTML5 Canvas, so a text editor and ordinary web browser are all you need (an art program can be handy for a few sections but is not required). I’ve attached my code for each step so you’ll never be stuck. At the end you’ll learn even more ways to apply what you’ve learned. Also by completing the course you’ll get a PDF of my complete 500-page textbook on game development: Hands-On Intro to Game Programming. The book contains over 100 exercises, a couple of more game types, and additional material with more detail about the projects you created in this course.

(HTML5 Logo in the course image is by W3C, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported. Background pattern for transition cards CC BY-SA 3.0 Subtle Patterns © Atle Mo. drawn by Paul Phönixweiß.)

Who is the target audience?
  • Anyone who wants to learn practical skills to program their own games at home
  • People who may aleady be familiar with programming concepts but are new to applying that knowledge to making real-time computer games
  • Creators who have only ever tried drag-and-drop tools but are interested in learning more about how to make games by programming for an deeper level of control over the details
  • Developers interested in getting practice with a more traditional “code only” approach to core gameplay programming before moving on to major engines and tools (which are not covered in this course) like Unity or Unreal
  • People looking for a technical game design foundation based in indie-style games or classic gameplay as a starting point
  • New developers who completed the free course “Code Your First Game: Arcade Classic in JavaScript on Canvas” and are looking to furthr build upon their game development skills in JavaScript on HTML5 Canvas
  • Please note that advanced topics like object-oriented programming are only very briefly touched upon - software engineering patterns are generally outside the scope of this course