Saturday, July 14, 2018

Native development of mobile games

When I tell people that I'm developing mobile games in VisualWorks Smalltalk, they often look at me quizzically and ask why. It's hard to explain the advantages of using Smalltalk when the game needs to run on a mobile device with only a serial interface connected to my own low-level debugger.

I've now broken through that barrier. I can now run the code natively in a VisualWorks development environment.

This is my game running inside a VisualWorks window on a Windows 10 laptop. The Smalltalk code is virtually identical to the Smalltalk code that runs on the mobile device. The only differences are in the low-level interfaces to the file system, the FreeType library and OpenGL.

This is a game changer for me. I now have access to the full Smalltalk development environment including the inspectors, the debugger, condition breakpoints and the ability to change code while the game is running.

Now I feel like my decision to use Smalltalk will pay off in spades.


  1. Hi David, good stuff! And thanks for sharing your progress.
    I'm just starting out with Smalltalk (coming from Java). Being able to do things like you describe, combined with the pure OO possibilities of the language make for an exciting adventure :-)
    If you're willing to accept any help with this, please send me a message. I have requested a personal VisualWorks license so I can learn their environment.
    Kind regards, Jonathan

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