Build a Python Turtle Game: Space Invaders Clone :

Build a Python Turtle Game: Space Invaders Clone
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In this tutorial, you’ll use Python’s turtle module to build a Space Invaders clone. The game Space Invaders doesn’t need any introduction. The original game was released in 1978 and is one of the most recognized video games of all time. It undeniably defined its own video game genre. In this tutorial, you’ll create a basic clone of this game.

The turtle module you’ll use to build the game is part of Python’s standard library, and it enables you to draw and move sprites on the screen. The turtle module is not a game-development package, but it gives instructions about creating a turtle game, which will help you understand how video games are built.

In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to:

  • Design and build a classic video game
  • Use the turtle module to create animated sprites
  • Add user interaction in a graphics-based program
  • Create a game loop to control each frame of the game
  • Use functions to represent key actions in the game

This tutorial is ideal for anyone who is familiar with the core Python topics and wants to use them to build a classic video game from scratch. You don’t need to be familiar with the turtle module to work through this tutorial. You can download the code for each step by clicking on the link below:

In the next section, you can have a look at the version of the game you’ll build as you follow the steps outlined in this tutorial.

Demo: A Python Turtle Space Invaders Game

You’ll build a simplified version of the classic Space Invaders game and control the laser cannon with the keys on your keyboard. You’ll shoot lasers from the cannon by pressing the spacebar, and aliens will appear at regular intervals at the top of the screen and move downwards. Your task is to shoot the aliens before they reach the bottom of the screen. The game ends when one alien reaches the bottom.

This is what your turtle game will look like when you complete this tutorial:

Here you can see the main game play for this game, as the laser cannon moves back and forth and shoots the falling aliens. The game also displays the elapsed time and the number of aliens shot down on the screen.

Project Overview

In this project, you’ll start by creating the screen that will contain the game. In each step, you’ll create game components such as the laser cannon, lasers, and aliens, and you’ll add the features required to make a functioning game.

To create this turtle game, you’ll work through the following steps:

  1. Create the game screen and the laser cannon
  2. Move the cannon left and right using keys
  3. Shoot lasers with the spacebar
  4. Create aliens and move them towards the bottom of the screen
  5. Determine when a laser hits an alien
  6. End the game when an alien reaches the bottom
  7. Add a timer and a score
  8. Improve the cannon’s movement to make the game smoother
  9. Set the game’s frame rate

You’ll start with a blank screen, and then see the game come to life one feature at a time as you work through each step in this tutorial.


To complete this tutorial, you should be comfortable with the following concepts:

You don’t need to be familiar with Python’s turtle to start this tutorial. However, you can read an overview of the turtle module to find out more about the basics.

If you don’t have all of the prerequisite knowledge before you start, that’s okay! In fact, you might learn more by going ahead and getting started! You can always stop and review the resources linked here if you get stuck.

Step 1: Set Up the Turtle Game With a Screen and a Laser Cannon

You can’t have a game without a screen where all the action happens. So, the first step is to create a blank screen. Then, you can add sprites to represent the items in the game. In this project, you can run your code at any point to see the game in its current state.

You can download the code as it’ll look at the end of this step from the folder named source_code_step_1/ in the link below:

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March 20, 2024 at 07:30PM
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