Today I'll be taking you through a step-by-step guide for developing a simple Java program that plays the classic Hangman game. This post is meant to be accessible to all levels of programming, so I'll be breaking down each step of the way and offering some tips and tricks along the way.
As with all programming projects, we start by planning. Hangman is a game with several easy to identify elements: It has a word, it has guessed letters, it has a limited number of guesses, and there is an end condition when the player either correctly guessing the whole word or when their limit of guesses runs out. By knowing what elements are within the game, we can begin planning out the flow of our Hangman program.
Next we begin with the code. We'll first create a class that will contain all out variables, functions, and code snippets we'll need for the actual game of Hangman. This class is called the Hangman class. Within this class, we'll define all the variables we need to control the flow of our game and store data regarding our puzzle word. We'll also add in a series of methods that continually loop our game and handle all of our game logic. These methods will take in input from the player (i.e. – choosing letters to guess) and send out output to the console (i.e. – how many correct guesses exist).
Now, from within the context of the hangman class, we'll begin creating functions to add in the game logic. These functions will be responsible for actually running the game of Hangman. We'll create a drawWord function that will draw a puzzle of underscores that correspond to the length of our hidden word, and we'll create a guessingWord function that will determine whether the player's guess is right or wrong. We'll also create a function that will track the number of guesses the player has left and compare it to the original limit and note when the game is over.
Lastly, we make sure our functions are all interacting with one another and are all performing the appropriate resulting tasks. We test the game for any general errors, and if all is functioning properly, the game is now playable.
Hangman is a great game to start learning about coding with because it's simple and engaging. With this step-by-step guide, you can now confidently create your own Hangman game in Java and have an awesome game to work with. As always, you can expand on this example and create even cooler game experiences with your amazing coding skills. Thanks for giving me the opportunity to share my passion with you all, and happy coding!