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Discussion on: Jan. 17, 2020: What did you learn this week?

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Practicing Developer

I learned that Pico-8 is a whole lot of fun! It lets you build retro style games using Lua within a (highly constrained) virtual console.

It has very basic tools built into it for creating animated sprites and sound effects, which at first seem far too simplistic but then become fun as a design exercise in minimalism.

It is also very kid-friendly tool as long as they have someone with some coding experience to guide them. Even kids that can't read yet or write code would enjoy playing with the sound effects and sprite editor while someone else writes the code.

Fair warning, documentation is limited and the API is tiny. But because Pico-8 makes it so easy to explore the source of any games shared in public and ships with a few examples of its own, it has a kind of enjoyable "Learn by copy-paste and see what happens" feel to it.