CodeCombat Blog

News, features and tips for teachers, computer science advocates, and other heroes in education

We've Open-Sourced Everything

CodeCombat is a programming game for learning to code; a multiplayer coding challenge arena for sharpening your skills; a Y-Combinator-funded startup; and as of this weekend, the largest open source CoffeeScript project and a fantastic way to get into open source and game development. Whether you’re a novice programmer wanting to figure out this GitHub thing or an open source guru looking for something to sink your teeth into, check out our GitHub and join over two hundred CodeCombat Archmages in building the best programming game ever.

Yes, we just open-sourced the last year of our lives–all the code, art, and music for CodeCombat–under the MIT and Creative Commons licenses.

“Wait. You’re a for-profit startup, but you’re giving away all of your code? Are you crazy?”

Nope! Closed source may be the choice made by virtually every startup and every game studio, but we believe this is a convention that needs rethinking. CodeCombat is already a community project, with hundreds of players volunteering to create levels, write documentation, help beginners, playtest, and even translate the game into seventeen languages so far. Now the programmers can join the party, too.

Our mission is to teach you to code. Until we have over nine thousand levels taking you all the way from beginner to Bellard, why not jump into a novice-friendly open source project to keep learning? We aren’t just dumping the code out there and calling it a day–we’ve worked hard to make it simple to contribute. You don’t need to know git, you don’t need to have anything installed, and you don’t even need to know how to code to help with some of the issues on our GitHub.

Or, if you’re into compilers, programming languages, physics simulations, geometry, design, user experience, AI, performance tuning, audio processing, RTS games, RPGs, i18n / L10n, security, 2.5D vector graphics, TDD, databases, voice/video chat, IDEs, or debuggers, then you will love hacking on this project. With cool tech, detailed issues, extensive developer documentation, a friendly dev setup script, and the CodeCombat team ready to help you implement your ideas, this is the perfect open source game to get into. Don’t be shy!

We need your help. Just two months ago, we launched our beta. Two weeks ago, we posted about how 180,000 kids had just played CodeCombat that week. One week ago, we tried a hard developer challenge level, and nearly 10,000 seasoned programmers played–we still haven’t finished responding to everyone who trounced our own algorithm and wanted help finding a programming job. CodeCombat is growing into something bigger than just our game. If you want to write code that will show millions of players how cool programming can be, then click here to become an Archmage. We can’t wait to see what you build.

Want to help in other ways? Join as a level-building Artisan, a playtesting Adventurer, a documenting Scribe, a translating Diplomat, a helpful Ambassador, or an expert Counselor.