As the last tutorial before we install a graphics library I thought a simple example that involves a game loop but no graphics would be worth while. Here’s a simple C++ tutorial for creating an adventure game where a prisoner escapes from a dungeon:

Setting up the game

To begin, create a new C++ project in your preferred development environment. Once you have created the project, create a new source file for your game. You can name it “main.cpp” or anything you like.

Defining game variables

Next, define the variables that will be used in the game. In this case, you will need variables to keep track of the player’s current location and the game’s state.

Creating the game loop

As we have learned before the game loop is the heart of your game. It will continuously run until the game is over. Inside the game loop, you will have to write code to handle the player’s input and update the game state accordingly.

Implementing the game logic

The game logic defines how the player can interact with the game world. In this case, the player will need to navigate through different rooms in the dungeon to find a way to escape. You will need to define a list of possible actions the player can take in each room and what happens when they take that action.

Here’s an example code snippet to get you started:

Adding game objects

To make the game more interesting, you can add objects that the player can interact with. For example, the player might find a key that can be used to unlock a door, or a weapon that can be used to fight enemies. You will need to define the objects and their properties, such as their name, description, and location.

You can then modify the game logic to handle the player interacting with objects:

This code defines a movePlayer function that takes a direction parameter and updates the location variable based on the player’s input. The while loop displays the room description and prompts the player for input. If the player inputs “move”, the code prompts the player for a direction and calls the movePlayer function. If the player inputs “quit”, the game ends.

To make the game more challenging, you can add multiple levels with increasing difficulty. Each level can have different puzzles and obstacles that the player must overcome to progress to the next level. For example, in the first level, the player might need to find a way to escape the dungeon, while in the second level, the player might have to navigate through a maze to reach the exit.

You can define each level as a separate function, and call them from the game loop based on the player’s progress, like this, perhaps:

Adding game over conditions

Finally, to make the game more engaging, you can add game over conditions, such as running out of health, or failing to complete a puzzle within a certain time limit. You can use these conditions to end the game and display a game over screen to the player.

Time for a real game now. To get started we will need to setup a Visual Studio project that uses SFML.