My obsession with Snake

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I adore Snake. It is extremely minimal yet very enjoyable. It needs practically no explanation and the logic required to create it is beautifully compact.

A few years ago I had the simple concept of being able to play Snake but rather than on a single surface it would be played on the six faces of a cube. I did a quick browse and found a creation, Snake 3D, which accomplished exactly what I had imagined with utter finesses. The camera tracking, the movement, the interface. So I decided to be content and wait for another idea to come about.

In early January 2015, in the week prior to my 20th birthday I decided to revisit the idea of 3D snake but this time have the player navigate around a sphere. I had another browse and although there were a few similar concepts none were executed in the way I desired.

I quickly prototyped Snake Ball in a game jam type process for iOS. I also used it as an opportunity to learn the new Apple language: Swift, which I found hugely intuitive and leaps and bounds away from Unity’s C-Sharp implementation (What I generally use for rapid prototyping).

After having people play test the game I made some adjustments and released Snake Ball to every mobile market. It is what I would deem a “micro” game like the original Snake. It does not try to be more than an arcade-y highscore challenge.

I recently added a cross-platform leaderboard and it is fantastic to see people’s scores pop up, albeit mostly friends, every now and then. I have a Desktop version working but would like to implement more control styles and try and port it to run in HTML5.

Snake Ball is also a project I have been searching for, for a long time. One which I can revisit every now and then and add content to, maybe one day releasing a paid version akin to Vlambeer’s approach to releases.

Snake is a concept that I believe will never become outdated no matter where technology takes us. I’m still trying to imagine how to implement a new twist on the game, maybe by my 21st birthday I will have released Snake4D or Taurus Snake.

Snake Ball can be downloaded via my website: http://www.jctwood.uk/snakeball

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