Glitchspace, currently in alpha, is a first person programming game that's centred around a visual programming mechanic. Set in a cyberspace world, you are trying to find a place known as Glitchspace - a by-product of cyberspace and its various glitches.
User reviews: Very Positive (111 reviews)
Release Date: Jan 31, 2014

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Early Access Game

Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.

Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more

What the developers have to say:

Why Early Access?

“Early access has given us the ability to make a game alongside a community that cares. The feedback is immeasurable, and of course sales help to pay for the development of the game, all of which we self funded through our bank overdrafts for the first few months.”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“The full game will be released in 2015.”

How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?

“The full version will feature fully polished content, at least 2 hours of main play through the story mode, and a sandbox allowing you to play around with the programming mechanic as you please.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“Currently the game offers up to an hour of main play, and some polish. We try our best to make sure the game is as bug free (outwith the obvious glitching) with every update.”

Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?

“Our pricing increases as we move through the updates.”

How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?

“The community is involved, and we discuss all of the points and suggestions raised on the steam community hub, emails, and even in the reviews.”
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Recommended By Curators

"Programming platformer. Unfortunately not much content yet, but highly recommended for the concept if you can grab it for cheap."

Recent updates View all (15)

March 30

Dev Blog 8 - The Music of Glitchspace

When you take a holistic snapshot of the game, Glitchspace is quite a difficult thing to characterize. We are taking what is an inherently "normal," (by that I mean it's nothing new) subject matter - visual programming - and encapsulating it into what is visually a very abstract world.

So what does this mean for the music? Well it's been a pretty challenging and interesting process to figure out how it should sound: do we go with something "normal," or try something abstract?  What instruments do we use? How does the musical contour change over the course of the game?

When I started this process, the team knew one thing: we weren't interested in making a score that was "epic," or just about dumping electronica Glitch beats everywhere: that's just way too obvious and derivative. We wanted something different and more restrained; where every instrument and nuance counted for something and mattered. After mulling around with a few ideas I think we're at a stage now where the music is in the right place and lives up to this ideal. Whilst I don't want to give too much away at this stage (for us the music and art is a very intrinsic part of the game's narrative experience) I'm here to report some of the many creative processes (and keyboard bashing) that I went through to get to this stage. These examples are unmixed "demos," at present but the final release of the game will see everything fully polished to super shiny detail.

So let's start at the beginning. Of the game that is. With version 2.0 that will be dropping soon, you'll be starting your musical journey with a soundtrack that is super simple: literally one layer. This was a creative decision on our part as we wanted the music of Glitchspace to be something that almost mimicked the actions of the player as they program: hearing simple ideas first, before proceeding into more complex ones:

https://soundcloud.com/ronanquigley/simple-layer

If you're interested, I designed that drone out of a Music Box I sampled to death for a library I worked on. I actually only needed one note though from the recorded set to make it. Here's what that sounded like before: from sample, to being processed in a multitude of ways to make the drone:

https://soundcloud.com/ronanquigley/simple-layer-design

From there, the soundtrack will of course evolve, adding more layers and becoming more complex as a result. Let's fast forward into the game to give you an example of what that's like:
 
https://soundcloud.com/ronanquigley/astral-projection-demo

What I particularly like about going down more of an abstract route is it allows for much more creative freedom in the styles you explore. Therefore we also wanted to try and bring in organic elements into not only the environmental geometry, but also the music as well. Check it out:

https://soundcloud.com/ronanquigley/void-demo
 
Interestingly I actually didn't write any of the music tracks I've done so far concurrently to how the game has been developed. It's in fact been quite the opposite for me: I found myself initially getting too hung up in figuring out how the start should sound. The problem with this that I discovered quite quickly was that with the art in a state of flux, each time I thought I had nailed down the starting music, it would become redundant with the art changes brought in. By doing a reverse engineering approach from complex to simple, I found that I was able to get that one layer sounding like it should be.

Overall, if you wanted to sum up what sort of feel we're going for I've found I've taken most inspiration so far from Brian Eno, particulary Music For Airports (such a good record and is one of my personal favourites):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5KGMo9yOaSU

Even though I've been involved with Glitchspace for two years now, I've never really felt like I've had the opportunity to properly get into the gritty stuff with Glitchspace's soundtrack. However the past few months of the project have changed that and I think players are going to not only like what they see for 2.0 onwards, but hear too!

Ronan

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March 23

Dev Blog 7 - Unforseen Consequences

Available here

This week’s blog is a sequel to Mus’s one last week. His blog set up dreams and ideals, and this one exists to show you everything that’s wrong with dreams and ideals, but also why that’s not a bad thing.

First off, an introduction: My name is Gaz and I’m the programmer here at Space Budgie, so all the mechanics of Glitchspace are analogous to what I do day-to-day, only way more exciting and aesthetically pleasing. This means it’s my job to provide the tools for the rest of the team to take their ideas and creations and put them in the game so that they one day might reach the eyes of the players!

So I thought it might be exciting if I talked about how that process can happen, and the sort of issues you can face when taking something from the idea and design stage into the implementation and eventually testing stages. If you haven’t already, I suggest reading at least the previous post so that you’re up to speed with the snazzy new designs.

The new expanding Tool menu, as described in Mus’s blog, worked great once I got it implemented in game. It was snappy to open, quick to navigate and really helped to keep the programming interface focussed. The only trouble was that if you opened the menu near the edges of the window, many of the buttons would appear off screen!



So, what to do? Mus and I (and eventually Ronan) sat down together (I mean, we were already sitting) and tried to work out a solution to this problem.

Solution 1:

If the player opens the menu near the edge of the window, and some of the buttons would be put off screen, then move the entire menu to fit correctly.



The trouble with this is that it means that the location of the buttons is never consistent, and it’s much harder to teach a player if you keep moving about the tools under seemingly arbitrary conditions. Also, when you expand a category does it move again? Does it move back when you close it? Confusing.

Solution 2:

If the player opens the menu near the edge of the window, move any buttons that would be off screen back onto the screen and arrange them neatly.



Again, the trouble here is that the button placement is inconsistent, possibly even more so than Solution 1. Not good.

Solution 3:

Only let the player open the menu near the center of the screen.

One of the difficult things about designing systems for a game is striking a balance between providing the freedom for players to explore the systems in their own way, but also restricting it just enough so that they doesn’t feel lost and confused. This solution really goes against player freedom and it can be confusing when the menu doesn't open where you expect it to.



This solution came from us trying to account for the worst case scenario of fitting every tool on screen neatly. Really though, most of the time the Tool Menu will contain only the tools needed to solve the puzzle at hand (along with a few red herrings and a couple of bits for experimentation). So this solution would create a very sparse programming interface with very limited player control.

Solution 4:

Let the player do what they want.

It’s not the Wild West, but if you give the player consistent rules, make everything clearly signposted and ensure that the interactions are quick and responsive, then you can trust that the player is able to learn for themselves.

The Tool Menu is quick to open and close, and it’s this strength that we’re building on. If the player opens the menu in a place that doesn’t work for them, they can easily open it in a better place without being punished for it (Did you play the PS port of Final Fantasy 6? 4 seconds to open a menu adds up when you’re constantly doing it).

So, in summary, design can be hard. Designing for every possible scenario is time consuming and you’ll probably end up missing something anyway, so get something that feels right in your gut and build on that. The most important thing is to get something tangible that you can play with, because all those little flaws bubble to the surface much faster when you actually get it out of your head and into your hands! Tiny flaws are a good thing though, they're how you learn and improve!

Right, I’ve inspired myself.

I'm out,

Gaz

 

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Reviews

“Glitchspace could become one of the more inventive puzzle games to arrive on the PC in some time.”
Gamespot

“Even with other programming-based puzzlers on the horizon Glitchspace still looks unique, bewildering and promising.”
Eurogamer

“As someone with the programming knowledge of a log this is immediately challenging stuff, even if at first you can only make very minor changes. But then, it’s all the more satisfying to make a platform bouncy when it wasn’t before.”
Rock, Paper, Shotgun

About This Game



Glitchspace (currently in early access), is a first person puzzle platformer that's centred around a visual programming mechanic. Stretch and scale objects to make a bridge, apply a force to objects, bouncing you up to high places, use your programming gun to fire code at objects, changing their physical properties in the game world!

Set in a VR cyberspace world, you are trying to find a place known as Glitchspace - a by-product of cyberspace and its various glitches. A world that would allow for infinite possibilities, and access across all systems in cyberspace through exploitation.

Through problem solving, it's up to you how you approach the in-game challenges; find glitches in the cyberspace world, and exploit them in various different ways, allowing for a emergent play experience.

Programming And Gameplay

We created a node-based programming system for Glitchspace, called Null. Null allows for chunks of functionality to be applied to objects with ease, and makes the programming a visual, dynamic, and instantaneous feature.

Objects in Glitchspace are either programmable, or non-programmable. You can make an object programmable through decryption using a decrypter, and similarly you can make it non-programmable through encryption using an encrypter.

For each programmable object, a canvas can be brought up, and function nodes can be added to it upon the canvas. These function nodes have input and output connections, and can be connected to each other to create functional code that does something to the object, to another object it references, or to totally new objects it creates!

Here are some example programs you could make:
  • Apply a force to an object, moving it out of the way.
  • Scale an object down to make it the correct height for jumping on.
  • Duplicate and move an object to create stairs, or floating platforms.
  • Make an object have no collisions to pass through it.
  • Change the physical properties of an object.
  • Make an object move when you touch another object.
  • Replicate the functionality of the Portal, and Gravity gun.

Objects that are decrypted will have a default program applied, and a specific set of function nodes for you to edit the program. This will depend upon the decrypter used.

In the sandbox mode, all functions are available to you, allowing you to play around with all that is possible!

**Rift DK1 is supported, we're working on DK2 right now!

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP. Vista, 7, 8.
    • Processor: 1.0Ghz Dual Core
    • Memory: 250 MB RAM
    • Graphics: 512MB Video Card, Shader Model 3.0
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 150 MB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows XP. Vista, 7, 8.
    • Processor: 2.0Ghz Dual Core or greater
    • Memory: 500 MB RAM
    • Graphics: 512MB Video Card, Shader Model 3.0 or greater
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 150 MB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: An Intel-based Mac running Mac OS X 10.6
    • Processor: 1.0Ghz Dual Core
    • Memory: 250 MB RAM
    • Graphics: 512MB Video Card, Shader Model 3.0
    • Hard Drive: 150 MB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: An Intel-based Mac running Mac OS X 10.6
    • Processor: 2.0Ghz Dual Core or greater
    • Memory: 500 MB RAM
    • Graphics: 512MB Video Card, Shader Model 3.0 or greater
    • Hard Drive: 150 MB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: A Debian based Linux distro
    • Processor: 1.0Ghz Dual Core
    • Memory: 250 MB RAM
    • Graphics: 512MB Video Card, Shader Model 3.0
    • Hard Drive: 150 MB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: A Debian based Linux distro
    • Processor: 2.0Ghz Dual Core or greater
    • Memory: 500 MB RAM
    • Graphics: 512MB Video Card, Shader Model 3.0 or greater
    • Hard Drive: 150 MB available space
Helpful customer reviews
19 of 19 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
1.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 2, 2014
Early Access Review
The Good
Tired of button-mashing quicktime events? Sick of "Press (x) to hack"? Then Glitchspace is for you! This game is one of the few in gaming that gets "hacking" in video games right. Rather than dumb down the experience to the point where you don't have to be concious to play, Glitchspace takes hacking to a whole new level. With an intuitive Node-based system, you can connect constants to mathematic expressions, multiply vectors together, or transform an object, all with the ease of a mouse drag.

The Bad
There's just not enough of it! After one hour of playing, I had beaten the game, and was left yearning for more. Given the early-access state of the game, and the number of levels there are, I would suggest waiting until the game comes out with more levels and more functionality. If you just can't wait, I suggest buying it on sale.

The Ugly
The game is graphically simplistic, but very interesting none the less. The random "glitching" of the hackable blocks can be distracting at times, but otherwise the game is very pleasing, both visually and auditorily.

In conclusion, I do recommend this game, but would like either more levels, or Steam Workshop level editing capabilities.
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
1.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 16, 2014
Early Access Review
Fun, took like 50 minutes to finish story but I understand it's alpha and there are more features and levels coming.
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
6.0 hrs on record
Posted: February 6
Early Access Review
Well... This is a difficult game to review. I have very mixed feelings about it. The concept is very good, and the game was very well thought out and put together. The problem is, it's not finished. If they ever finish it it has the potential to be a very popular game, but as it is they haven't put out a new update in a LOOONG time. As it is it's still in beta. So if this game goes on sale for like 7 bucks or less, I'd say get it. But at the full price, it's not worth it.
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58 of 63 people (92%) found this review helpful
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: April 24, 2014
Early Access Review
I just finished playing the games short story mode/tutorial. It is a Alpha game so I did not expect something long and complex. I would say it is a very interesting puzzle platformer. If it had more content, which it will hopefully have upon its full release. I would also say that it might come close to Antichamber and Portal.

The gameplay and the puzzle solving is really intuitive (Okay maybe that is just because I do know how to programm). In the tutorial section you were pretty much just guided through the levels because you didn't have all the commands available so it was pretty easy but I can see it getting really interesting when you actually have all commands at your fingertips.

The soundtrack is okay. It is nothing special but it is not bad either. Just somewhere inbetween.

The Movement is okayish but I would say it needs a litle bit more work because jumping doesn't feel right. But I can't really put my finger on why it doesn't feel right.

I think a great addition would be workshop support and a level editor because if a game like this has these features it will never get old because there is always new stuff to download or to creat. I also think maybe creating your own more complex commands would be great but so far I think the game has all necessary commands you need to have fun with it.

I suggest you buy it now to support the devs so we can get more features. I will also EDIT this review when the final Product is released.

Edit 1: Jumping now feels good and not clunky anymore.
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37 of 48 people (77%) found this review helpful
2.2 hrs on record
Posted: April 14, 2014
Early Access Review
As a programmer this was pretty basic, but for a teaching tool, this is very good. I know that it's currently in alpha, and i hope to see where this idea will go.
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24 of 30 people (80%) found this review helpful
1.2 hrs on record
Posted: April 14, 2014
Early Access Review
In its early stages, but a really interesting and surprisingly fun concept. The programing is introduced in stages that make it easy to learn and is designed really well for teaching new concepts. The music is also very relaxing and the whole game has a contemplative leasurely tone to it that I really enjoyed.
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19 of 26 people (73%) found this review helpful
0.9 hrs on record
Posted: April 28, 2014
Early Access Review
The idea is great and the concept is easy to grasp, at least for me as a programmer.

Here is me playing the first few levels.
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14 of 21 people (67%) found this review helpful
4.3 hrs on record
Posted: April 20, 2014
Early Access Review
This game is still in alpha but there are two problems I've noticed. 1) The Story Mode is too short, took 40 minutes to complete. 2) The sandbox mode wasn't really customisable. This game is still fun and rewarding when you solve your puzzle and again, it's still in alpha. Overall right now, I'd give Glitchspace a 7/10.
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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
4.5 hrs on record
Posted: May 25, 2014
Early Access Review
I played this with my 8 year old son, and it inadvertently turned into a great trial and error programming/math lesson for my son. Near the end, I was even able to teach him about vector operations, object translation, scaling, rotation and other cool stuff. The story mode is really short though...maybe to be expected for $7, but I love the teaching potential of this game. Like SpaceChem it's one of the few games out there that has successfully gamified programming.
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6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
3.7 hrs on record
Posted: June 28, 2014
Early Access Review
Looking forward to the finished game! I had much fun playing both story and sandbox mode.
If you don't mind it's alpha state, you should definitely consider buying this game (+ it's currently on sale)!
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: August 28, 2014
Early Access Review
For an alpha, it's not bad at all. Quite enjoy it. Teaches the basics of programming in a simple, fairly straight foward manner. Would definately recommend!
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: May 9, 2014
Early Access Review
I got this game form the Indiegamestand deal page at https://indiegamestand.com/deal/ and I bought it just because I was intrigued. and what a surprise.

OK, if you are the kind of person who only plays FPS multiplayer, stop reading this and go play COD, BF or Titanfall, it won`t be a game for you.

But if you like games to make you think logically then grab this game immediately.

The objective of the game is to control your environment and go through levels that becomes more difficult with each new puzzle.

If you are a programmer, you will find this game easy I think but since I stopped programming with Quick Basic, I found it fun and challenging and I think, it even managed to teach me a little how coding works now

Pros:
Fun, challenging, easy to get used to the algorythm, early access so this means more content will be added

Cons:
Could use a little tutorial on the first puzzle to get new players into the game, I had to look up a dev`s post to explain how the game worked

Final thoughts
If you like a thinking game, grab this game, if you are not sure, get it on sale on in the IGS deal atm, it is worth it
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.9 hrs on record
Posted: May 15, 2014
Early Access Review
This is a fun, short game that introduces one to the basic fundamentals of programming. The entire game takes less than an hour (unless you get stuck), but there is a sandbox mode (and this review is being written while the game is at Alpha 1.5 stage). Regardless of price, I think this is definitely worth devoting an hour or so to if you're interested in learning any sort of programming language.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.1 hrs on record
Posted: May 16, 2014
Early Access Review
Truly a remarkable concept and WONDERFUL exhibition of it! I imagine that the sandbox mode will be just ridiculously fun, not sure if it is not implemented yet, or if I have to beat the story mode first, but at any rate, for an ALPHA game, I am having LOADS of fun with this.

I also find it very cool that it could actually be applied as a basic programming learning tool, obviously all of the subroutines are the "nodes" that the developer mentions, but I can see how an un-knowing learner could piece it all together as the architecture of programs.

I think anyone who enjoys logic puzzles and/or has or wants to learn programming knowledge would deeply enjoy this game.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.5 hrs on record
Posted: May 20, 2014
Early Access Review
Great idea, and the implementation keeps getting better.

Good for teaching about variables and their uses, but might not be intuitive to some players. Overall I really like it. It is easy enough for a noob to fiddle their way through it, yet still offers some challenge to the nerds. Speaking of nerds, this game will appeal to them. If you consider yourself a nerd (as in, technically minded, not as in; you watch the big bang theory, have no friends, and are generally cluimsy and out-of-shape. Thats not being a nerd, that is just sad, Go outside.) you WILL enjoy this game.

Be warened casual gamer, this is not an FPS in the usual sense even though it does technically have a gun and take place in first-person. Consider it more of a 3D logic puzzle game with some cool game-bending physics.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: May 2, 2014
Early Access Review
As someone who is interested in programming and has some basic knowledge of it already - this is a fantastic idea!
The atmosphere is lovely, the puzzles gradually teach you the logic of coding and the overall aesthetic of the title feels pleasant - especially due to the ambience and the soundtrack.
The game is however in alpha and will only take around 40 minutes/1 hour to complete. The game will naturally be updated and worked on as all Early Access titles and I can't wait to see what comes out of this in the end!
For right now, it's a fun short little walkthrough in aiding the player to understand the logistics and basics of coding and programming.
One can hope for the inclusion of Steam Workshop as one of the features which would make this game brilliant.

If you have any interest in coding/programming - give Glitschspace a try! Keep in mind however that it is fairly basic, and won't be challenging for proficient programmers.

EDIT: I just realised I met one of the creators of this game at the open day at Abertay University, as he was giving a presentation on the company and their games... What a small world we live in :')
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.7 hrs on record
Posted: June 26, 2014
Early Access Review
This game is wonderfully inventive. And considering this is an early release it has been flawless gameplay for me so far.

As a fan of puzzle games and a programmer I love blend of elements that have gone into this game. It is a whole new way of viewing your environment as a playground and really lets you go through the trial and error that takes place when learning logic.

I absolutely cannot wait to get more gametime in and for the full release.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
0.5 hrs on record
Posted: September 4, 2014
Early Access Review
Very good! Thank you for doing this guys.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.7 hrs on record
Posted: May 9, 2014
Early Access Review
This game is incredibly fun. Non-linear, cerebral, and challenging are three of the things that accurately describe the gameplay. The minimalistic feel to the graphics really allows you to focus on the actually 'programming' aspect of the game. This game is worth having in your library.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.8 hrs on record
Posted: June 1, 2014
Early Access Review
I’m going to be frank with you, when it comes to programming I haven’t got a ♥♥♥♥ing clue. It’s all about maths or something, you have to make sure numbers add up or whatever, I don’t know. I’ve never needed programming before in my life, so I leave it alone.
But then this game comes along, it calls itself Glitchspace and it’s all about programming, so normally I’d just ignore it, especially since it isn’t even finished yet. But I don’t ignore it, why? Because it’s made by the developers of (the rather brilliant) 9.03m, because it’s different, hell, I don’t know, but for whatever reason I buy this game. This programming game, Glitchspace.
Oh man, you really have to play it. Maybe you’re intrigued by this whole ‘programming’ malarkey, maybe you don’t really care, you just have to play it. See, this isn’t the boring kind of programming, the kind where you have to make sure everything adds up and doesn’t explode or whatever (although the exploding sounds quite exciting), this is programming as a puzzle. A ♥♥♥♥ing puzzle man, I can tell you’re going to love it.
You like puzzles, right? Sure you do, everyone likes puzzles. Puzzles are hard, you have to think, have to use your BRAIN. Sometimes you get stuck and it’s a pain in the ♥♥♥, I know the feeling. But then it just clicks, and it’s insanely satisfying. Puzzles are the most advanced form of ego massage, and I love them for it.
So programming becomes this puzzle, this giant ♥♥♥♥ing puzzle you have to solve. You’re in this 3D world, it’s like a 3D platformer you see. But anyway, to go on you have to programme the walls and floor and ♥♥♥♥ to make you jump super high or not get in your way or move forward and stuff. The point is you do this through programming, that’s right – the boring friendless programming that I kept my distance from all this time. But it isn’t boring, that’s the point. It’s challenging, it’s complicated, it’s satisfying. It really, really is.
Oh man, this game. This ♥♥♥♥ing game. It made me renew my relationship (or lack thereof) with programming. It made me think. It made me feel clever. That’s it, this is a game that makes you feel clever, in my case by making me clever (or more so than before). Oh man, this game. I really can’t wait for the full game to release. I’m going to do so much ♥♥♥♥ing programming, and I can’t wait.
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