Estimated reading time: 3 minutes, 2 seconds
CryptoZombies is a game that teaches you the programming language behind Ethereum dApps. The game was created by Loom Network, whom are building a platform for running applications on Ethereum sidechains.
If you want more decentralized applications to exist, why not gameify teaching others how to build them? And it seems to be working! Over 150,000 people from 199 countries (as of April 2018) have started to learn Solidity with CryptoZombies.
For those that are unfamiliar, Solidity is a high-level programing language used to write smart contracts and interact with the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM). Smart contracts are programs that execute when specific set of conditions are met. They essentially operate off of a series of if/then statements in order to execute actions autonomously.
Now with CryptoZombies, is a game about building a game. Meta, I know… But it’s a great way to approach learning coding — which is complex and can be intimidating to most people.
The first lesson teaches you the basics of Solidity. It does so by having you create code that generates a unique CryptoZombie — based on what you name it. Currently there are six lessons you can work through, with a seventh one to come.
Lessons are broken up into chapters that introduce you to a concept. Each chapter asks you to apply it by writing some code. Luckily for us beginners, it builds up concepts slowly by having you only write one or two lines of code before moving on the the next chapter.
As someone that has not attempted to code anything since I took a class on BASIC in high school, I definitely struggled to figure out what goes where. The experience was never frustrating though, thanks to the game’s option to check your answers. If your answer is not correct it highlights where you went wrong, therefore letting you focus on the problem without wanting to pull out your hair.
If you are completely lost you can always have the dApp show you the correct answer and reverse engineer it from there. I’m not too proud to admit that I had to do that a few times to make it through.
Each correct answer rewards you with a nice victory animation. Plus, the chunks it teaches in are small, and directly build upon each other. It kept me motivated to continue on until the end of lesson one, where I was able to use code *I* wrote to generate my own CryptoZombie.
CryptoZombies is a fun and educational game but will be a struggle if you are completely new to coding. Each lesson is easy to understand but gives you enough to work with that you feel accomplished when you see the victory screen.
This game is a great way to show people what is possible with dApps while giving users a basic understanding of Solidity. I’ve already dove into the next lesson. I highly recommend you check the game out — even if you don’t think coding is your thing.
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