Get Updates By E-mail 

Article Written By:
Johann Dowa

Game Programming Tutorial – Beginners Action Game


Welcome to my game programming tutorial on how to create a beginners action game for the iOS. This is a step by step tutorial for creating an iPhone action game. The principles taught also apply to the iPad.

You can see the result of a game running the code in the video below:

The graphics are a bit different with the tutorial (as some of those in the video are being used in an actual project) but that is the result of running the actual code within the tutorial.

Specificially the tutorial features:

  • Loading/Placing Images
  • Animation
  • Touch Events
  • Text
  • Sound Effects
  • Background Music
  • Buttons
  • Resetting The Game

Pre-requisites For This Game Programming Tutorial

Now before we start there are a few pre-requisites. You should have a basic understanding of Objective-C and will need a Mac with the iPhone SDK installed. The game was created using iPhone SDK 4.0, and the Sparrow Framework. Also note that I created this to be as easy to follow as possible so I used a minimum number of classes/methods to make it as easy as possible for a beginner to follow – I’ve even exclusively used autorelease objects  so you don’t need to worry about memory management (one of the facets of Objective-C many beginners have trouble with).

Why Am I Using The Sparrow Framework In This Game Programming Tutorial?

In case you’re wondering why I chose to go the route of using the Sparrow Framework it’s because I believe it is the easiest iPhone game development framework available for free for a beginner to start with, and it has already been used in a number of games in the app store.

Please share this tutorial by tweeting it or sharing using one of the buttons at the bottom.

You can navigate through the tutorial by using the page numbers at the bottom of each page.

If you’d like to jump right in you can download a project with all the resources loaded in here.

Getting The Code

You can download the code using the download links at the end of each page, or you can use the Github project found here:

Otherwise if you’d like to go the route of installing Sparrow, and setting everything up you can visit the Sparrow Framework getting started page here which explains the process of setting up an Xcode project that utilizes the Sparrow Framework. You can get just the game assets (graphics/sound) here.

The tutorial is definitely not perfect, and there are probably some spelling/grammar mistakes, but it is the most extensive single tutorial I’ve seen around and might never be released if I tried to perfect it 🙂

The first thing we’re going to do is start the game scene by displaying in a background image, adding the score and level text, and playing some music.  To navigate through this game programming tutorial use the page numbers at bottom, now go to page 2 by clicking that number at the bottom of this article to go to that page.


Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6

Submit A Resource

Have you created a useful tutorial, library or tool for iOS development that you would like to get in front of our 300,000+ monthly page views from iOS developers?

You can submit the url here.

The resources we feel will appeal to our readers the most will be posted on the front page.