Research Track > Programming Education > SIMPLE

SIMPLE : SIMulated Programming Learning Environment

SIMPLE is a strategy-based game for programming learning. Write down your strategy in defined programming language, control your workers then compete with your friends. The programming languages supported by SIMPLE are Python and Java.


SIMPLE motivates students to practice programming skills via gaming. Players of SIMPLE write their strategies to control entities in the game. The specified actions of entities in strategies will gain or consume some scores. At the end of the game, players get the feedback in terms of scores of their strategies. To get higher scores, players could improve their strategies based on the observation of last playing. Over the years, we have developed verious strategic education games on SIMPLE. They are all attractive and effective in programming learning. We selected some of them in demonstration below.

ResourceCraft is a game about collecting resources in nature environment. There are different kinds of workers to collect different kinds of resources. More resources are collected, more scores players get. ResourceCraft itself evolved several minor revisions to add more resource and worker types for students to learn concept of type system and object-oriented programming.

CheeseChaser is inspired by classic Mouse and Maze game. In CheeseChaser, players have to control mice to seek for cheese with smell. Cheese element in CheeseChaser was added with “smell” attribute. To prevent mice from starving to death, students needed to control mouse movement according to detected cheese smell to find cheese more efficiently. With this enhancement, evolved CheeseChaser became a game to learn wireless signal search and optimization.

CityBus is a strategic game that simulates arrangement of buses and driving paths in a busy city. Players program strategies to adjust numbers and intervals of buses to transport the most passengers with the least gas cost.

Big2 is derived from the classic card game. We altered some rules to make it less complex for programming learners. Players have to write strategies dealing with various situations, such as pairs, full house... etc, and making decisions about what actions they would like to take in each turn. To make the competition fair, the game will enforce same card set played by evey player. Therefore, as you can see, there are four games in each game set.


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