Fergus O’Sullivan writes about a growing community of people who are creating new games for retro consoles like the NES, SNES, and Sega Genesis. These hobbyist game developers are passionate about creating games for consoles from the golden age of gaming. O’Sullivan highlights the challenges and rewards of making retro games, and it provides a glimpse into a fascinating and growing community:
Noll also points out that many games are made by people that have an idea for a game but may not have the graphical skills to make their dream a reality. Retro games, in this case, are a great solution as you don’t need the same skill set as you would if you tried to use a game development platform like Unity or Unreal Engine. There are some specialized platforms like NES Maker that will let you make games on older consoles—or you could, if you have the chops, program them yourself.
Noll showed us several games at his exhibit that were made by people with little to no programming experience who just wanted to try and put something together. Examples include a platformer game called Doodle World put together by a father and his toddler, or some simple shoot-em-ups. As basic as they are, they still drew interest from passersby.
Educators can teach computer coding and game design by having students create games for retro consoles. This is a great way to engage students who are interested in gaming, and it can help them learn valuable skills in both coding and game design. When students create games for retro consoles, they are often faced with challenges that require them to think critically and solve problems. This can help them develop these important skills, which are essential for success in school and in the workplace.