Super easy labyrinth game with Scratch

  1. First, you’ll need a maze. You can use your own or download this:

To make things simple, make sure that whichever maze you use, it has no openings. This is how we avoid player form coming out of the maze and just bypass it from outside.

2. Download your maze of choice as a backdrop:

3. Delete the cat

4. Pick new sprite (character)

Double click the one you want. In this example, I choose Ladybug1.

5. Edit sprite’s costume

6. Draw a box around your sprite with mouse. (Click and drag the box over to opposite corner.)

Now, click on one corner and drag the sprite smaller. Good size with this maze is somewhere around 20×20, I use in this example 18×19. You can check the size here:

It’s not a problem if it’s not perfect square, for example 17×19. Just make sure that both numbers are small enough for your sprite to walk in the maze without touching the walls.

Now the code:

Make sure that your starting coordinates are right. 

To get the touching color right, first click the box that has the color in it, then click at black part of the labyrinth. 

This is now very basic, we could add some goal to the end:

There are several ways you can make this game better if you want to. Here are some ideas:

  • Time to complete the labyrinth
  • Some collectables
  • Player moving all the time, only the speed is altered when player uses keyboard
  • More levels

Find more free and paid Scratch materials at my Teachers Pay Teachers shop.

Games are good for kids (except brain dead ones)

Computer and mobile games can be devided into three main categories: Strategic, reactive and braindead.

Strategic games

Success is based on planning your actions. Sometimes you have unlimited time to think, sometimes game goes on at some speed. In simple cases, the ultimate strategy is to gather and build everything (as fast as possible.) As simple as that is, it teaches planning ahead for children and older players.

If the basic concept of planning is clear, it’s time to move to more complex games that have plurar strategies but not one above all solution. For example Civilization series aims to that but there are plenty of others.

From educational point of view it would be best if the “right” solution would be different every time you play certain game, that leads to really think what is worth doing and what is not. If, anyway, the variations are only distractions like random disasters, that often results player just starting over.

Reactive

Reactive games are somehow based on player’s quick reactions. Most first person games are like this. These are good for reaction time but too much playing can lead player being on the alert all the time even when not playing. Violence can be involved, too. Age rating system gives some clue, but is not equivalent to violence only. In UK, ratings are legally enforceable (12, 16 and 18 years.) In addition to that, it is always advisable for parent to stay in touch what game really contains and talk about it with their kids.

Brain dead

Last and very least, the brain dead. I’m referring to those games that require no strategy or right time movement what so ever. The simpliest for of this is when you tap mobile screen to get points. And that tapping goes on and on and on … It’s hard to belive how much time can be consumed to this kind of game. There is others, bit less obvious forms of the same idea (or lack of idea.)

If your kid plays brain dead games, it’s advisable to lead him/her to some other activities.

To sum up, nothing is good in too heavy dose, but strategic or reactive games in proper age and proper amount do more good than harm teaching to plan, solve problems, react and be part of a social group. For braind dead tapping games, there is no excuse.