Hello Scratch!: Learn to program by making arcade games cover
welcome to this free extract from
an online version of the Manning book.
to read more

About this book


Before you dive into learning how to make your own games, we need to tell you a little about the site you’ll be using—Scratch.

What is Scratch?

Scratch is a drag-and-drop programming language. Drag-and-drop means that there are blocks that are assigned pieces of code, and you stick them together like LEGOs to create a program. It’s visual, so you don’t have to type lots of brackets and semicolons and weird coding words like “bool.” Instead you snap together a brown Events block to a blue Motion block to make things happen.

Although that may sound odd right now, it will make total sense after you read chapter 1 and get familiar with the Scratch workspace.

Scratch is a friendly community with millions of users, and the biggest issue you’ll have is to not be distracted by playing other people’s projects when you should be making your own. People upload their finished games to the Scratch website where they can be viewed and played by other Scratchers. We’ll teach you how to upload your creations, too.

Joining Scratch is free, and you should go over right now (to scratch.mit.edu) and make an account so you’ll be ready to make your first project. But wait—first grab a parent so they know the information you’re entering online as you sign up.

And what are retro games?

What types of games will you learn how to make?

How to use this book

The offline editor

Words you need to know

Online help

Are you ready to start programming?