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I would say no!

The constraints are chosen to help you avoid being paralyzed with choices: easier to pick a green colour for example when you can only choose from two! Same with the screen size, buttons available, music channels, etc, everything is limited so that you pick something and continue making your game.

The editors are quite nice too! Very easy to make your first sprite and map. The code editor has just enough features to be convenient but not overwhelming.

The programming language used by pico8, called lua, is one of the most common and easiest to pick up. It can take time to go through tutorials and write your own code until you understand what every part of every line does, but tons of people have tried and succeeded.

The difficulty that you’ll find is the difficulty inherent to game dev with any engine: you have to know what you want to do and work to get there!

P#89755 2021-03-30 14:41

that was helpful.thanks!

P#89760 2021-03-30 17:33

I would have to say probably not, I've been coding in it for less than a year and as long as you have the wiki (https://pico-8.fandom.com/wiki/Pico-8_Wikia) it's not that hard to learn.

P#89831 2021-04-01 21:51

Between the wiki, the official manual, and the Lua 5.2 reference manual, I've been able to figure out most things that I wanted to figure out how to do.

P#89849 2021-04-02 03:34

Not for me either. The author's point of having all API's fit in the palm of your hand is a good move. You don't feel lost or overwhelmed. The command set is nice and limited.

The cheat sheet is a handy little thing too.
I do feel there are a few basic key missing features such as sprite rotation and pixel collision detection.

The only other thing I would add is that programming can be a little frustrating due to the very small IDE area, making navigating around the code a somewhat painful. A bit like trying to view the outside world through front door spy hole.
It sure helps to split your code into the tabs though.

P#89851 2021-04-02 06:26 ( Edited 2021-04-02 06:29)

It can also help to edit in some other program when you're doing something complicated - PICO-8 .p8 files are just text, so opening them in Notepad++ and setting the code highlighter to Lua works for me as a way to write code on a larger screen.

P#89862 2021-04-02 15:52

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