My advanced Java community college class did not have a final exam. Instead we needed to submit a final project. The instructor came up with a couple ideas for projects we could do. He also said he was open to other ideas upon his approvel.
Initially I thought I might develop an electronic football game. Nothing like Madden. This would be a clone of the old Mattel hand held electronic football games from the 70's and 80's. Then I saw the idea of writing the arcade game Breakout and I knew I had to do it.
The funny thing about the final is that most students opted to do the mortgage calculator. That has the advantage of being easy to do. The instructor provides the GUI and the equations to figure out mortgage payments. The student just needs to implement the equation and hook it up. Boring.
The basic breakout game was pretty easy to implement. I had already coded some exercises with balls bouncing around the screen. I concentrated on my intro and game over screens. I alsmot used this game as a place for some demo graphics on those auxiliary screens. I also concentrated on game play. Another student was excited to play my game and give me UI feedback. In the end I spent a lot of time developing this game. My instructor called is amazing and outstanding.
The real win from this game is the stuff I learned from doing it. It is now a part of my JAva portfolio. Yeah I could have done the mortgage calculator. But where's the glory in taking the easy way out and cheating myself?
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