Coding Pirates Game

Category: Computer Science

Ages: 5-7 7-11 11-14
Price: Android - Free iPhone/iPad - Free

Coding Pirates takes players on a pirate's adventure to find treasure by building and using the same skills as computer programmers use.   The app is great fun and soon gets players to think like a coder.

  • Coding Pirates Game-1

User Reviews

Share your thoughts with other app users and get your free app of the month

Teacher Review

Programming, or to use a more in-vogue term, coding, is not only about learning a computer language, it is about learning to think in a certain way.  There are surprisingly few types of basic building blocks to make a program:

Do this (statements).

If this happens, do that (conditions) . 

Do this for this many times (loops).

From simple instructions, complex programs can be made, but only by those who know how to break down a problem into steps that can be solved by the different parts of a computer program.  This is where Coding Pirates comes in.  

The theme in which the player's programming adventures take place is sea-going piracy.  A popular theme with children, but one that does not immediately link itself with the hi-tech connotations of coding.  Despite this, it is so well realised that it comes together as a whole perfectly.

The graphics are beautiful and full of little touches.  The music matches the theme and the sound effects add to the already well-developed character of the app.

The different parts of a programming language have been turned into icons that represent actions your on-screen pirate can take, such as:

Walk straight ahead or turn.

If your pirate is in front of this object do this.

Jump back to an earlier point in your instructions and run through them again.

You can see how they link to the building blocks of a program.   Jumping back to a previous instruction works like a loop as the same instructions are run multiple times.  There's absolutely no problem in telling your pirate what to do.  Telling him or her how to solve the mission is another thing entirely...

The first levels introduce the actions you can take one or two at a time.  These allow the player to learn how they can be used in certain circumstances.  Your pirate needs to reach the treasure.  Obstacles and monkeys can get in the way.  As the game progresses, players will need to build more complex sequences of instructions and the empty bank of slots shows just how complex these can get and how far ahead players need to think.

Complexity isn't the goal of programming, however. Simplicity and efficiency are.  For this reason, players get a higher star rating for reaching the treasure in under a certain amount of actions.  A long chain of actions may earn one star so a process of making the sequence more efficient begins so that three stars can be earned.  In coding, this is known as optimisation.

The developers of this app know that teachers and parents want to be able to help their children to learn but might not necessarily have the skills themselves.  To assist them, there is some helpful support available from the developer's website.  

The app has excellent longevity.  The existing levels are numerous and challenging.  Players can also create their own islands as challenges for their friends to solve.

Making learning as fun as playing a game is a claim made by many apps.  Coding Pirates feels and plays like a game.  It teaches coding concepts very well.  It actually does make learning fun.  

From the Developer

Navigate the crystal waters of the Southern hemisphere, code your treasure maps and discover the riches that lie on the golden shores. Outsmart the wretched rivals that dare stand in your way and escape the island one treasure chest heavier.

When playing Coding Pirates you learn to use symbols to program a path on a map for Captain Hack to reach the treasure. The game naturally progresses, and more skills are learned as you play through the campaigns. From moving forward, to navigating by if-statements and utilizing goto-sequences.

The game features
Two exciting campaigns: Gramps Treasure Map (beginner) and The Fortified Islands (novice)
A Level Editor for you to make your own Islands
Custom levels which let you try your luck at other peoples creations

Full access accounts also gets:
An expert campaign: The Infinite Sea, that really challenges your Coding Pirate skill level
Full access to all level editor content
Full access to all custom maps
Multiplayer (in development)

Read More Less