GarBots is a fun and exciting educational software game
for programming robots, written for the Palm PDA.
Supports both B&W and Color.
You don't have to be a professional programmer to enjoy
GarBots. Anyone can use the very simple BASIC subset to create logic for your
GarBots. It's a fun and educational software game too.
Here are just a small sample of the benefits GarBots
- Educational - Whether it's yourself, your student, or your school classroom,
GarBots is a fun and enthusiastic way to learn the academic concepts of any
instructional programming language - flow control, data structures, conditionals,
loops and more.
- Learn or practice trigonometry math in a fun instructional way that clearly
illustrates the association between mathematics real life uses.
- Included Example robots illustrate how simple the GarBots programming
commands are. New robots can be created with sample program, ready to go and
contest against drones or opponents. This lets you get playing and learning
the game right away, without ever writing a single line of robot instructions.
- Built in editor - You can program, test, and debug your robots and your
robot programming, all without ever leaving the GarBots program. Bookmarks,
undo, it's all there.
- Built in help system - Every aspect of the program is documented. You can
learn about each and every GarBots option and programming language command
without ever leaving the GarBots program.
- Debugger - Built in debugger lets you step through your robots programming
commands one line at a time. You can inspect variable, inspect program flow,
and easily discover why your robot programming is not behaving as you intended.
- Built in drone robots - You can specify any number of drone, or target
robots to test your robot programming language against. The drones can even
be told to 'wander' about the arena aimlessly in order to further intrigue
- View your progress - Contests are represented in real time animation of
the actual play that is taking place. Scanning for opponents, projectile firing,
program print-outs, everything pertaining to the contest is available.
- Customizable icons for each robot - You know who-is-who during a contest
because each robot has a unique icon that can be designed by the user.
- Contests can include or un-include any and all robots programmed - tournament
play in other words. Students or an educational instructor can collect robots
and hold a tournament for extra credit. A simple checkbox in the main GarBots
interface is all it takes to start setting up a tournament (or simple contest
for that matter too).
- Beaming and exporting - Speaking of tournaments, robots can be beamed to
other devices, or exported for Sync to allow sharing of robots. Students can
create and beam their robots with each other or with an instructor. Important!!!
Robots can be beamed with privacy enabled so that opponents cannot read your
valuable robot programming source code.
- Configurable contest parameters - The options and possibilities are boundless
when all parameters are configurable - Scanning, projectile size, power-up,
and many more - all are configurable to keep things interesting - "What
would happen if we tweek this way?" till the cows come home.
- Your parental prowess will be obvious and impress your students teacher
when he or she is ahead of the computer class peers.
- Recylce your old Palm handheld / pocket personal digital assistant (pda)
by handing it down to your student pre loaded with Garbots.
- Works with all Palm OS PDA including Sony Clie.
Here are some screen shots for you...
This is the main screen for GarBots. Here, you create
new GarBots (with or without example skeleton code). Set up the number of
drone robots, select battle participants, edit source code, and your robots
icons. From the menu, you can export or even Beam a GarBot (beaming a GarBot
renders its code non-viewable on the recipients device so your coding secrets
wont be revealed) for competition with your friends GarBots.
This is the edit screen where you write your robot
programming. Handy tool bar makes common. Standard functionality a snap.
Small font is included so you can see more of your code at a glance.
Here we see a battle going on between two GarBots
robots and several drone robots. Drones do nothing but just sit there and
wait for your robots to find and defeat them. The triangles show up when
a GarBot scans an area for opponents. You can see there have already been
a bunch of shots fired from the red and yellow explosions on the battle
field. At the bottom of this image, you can see the output of a GarBots
PRINT function used for debugging. You will also see messages from the GarBots
interpreter complaining about incorrect program syntax.
August 6 2003:
GarBots v1.6 released. Three new features included.
- Statistics - You can now gather statistics on battles
- Time limited battles - You can limit the amount of time a battle will run
without a 'last GarBot standing'
- Wandering drones, can wander aimlessly around the arena.
May 28 2003:
The big news with this latest release is the built in debugger. You can set
a breakpoint on a line of code in your GarBot code, and when that line executes,
the debugger screen will popup, giving you the opportunity to view the values
of constants and variables, step through source code lines, and even update
the values of variables.
Also, the interpreter has undergone some
visible optimizations. It should run noticeably faster for you.
April 24 2003:
New editor is vastly improved, including small font, book marks, and tab insert.
Additional math functions - ArcSine ArcCosine and AarcTangent have been implemented,
in addition to new conditional operators. Power up option allows GarBots to
increase their power as they decimate their opponents.
Also - Please discontinue usage of the
GarBots Export utility. It is no longer supported, and will mangle your GarBots
preferences. Instead, please find the same functionality an integral part of
the program, available through the menu system.
March 17 2003:
Game play has become much richer with this release. Battle constants are now
configurable including scanning radius, damage radius, Life power and others.
This leads to almost limitless variation in battle dynamics.
Feb 21 2003:
You can now export your GarBots for sharing with others, or posting on web
pages. I can post them here for you, you, or you can post them to the Yahoo
GarBots group. Please see the GarBot Extractor (left) for details.
Click to visit the Yahoo
- Palm OS 3.5 and higher.
Updates - Bug fixes and
minor improvements will be downloadable at no extra cost when available.
"this is the best program out! I'm 12 and program games, but this one
is the best i've seen and used! Pleaase continue to make programs like these!
Maybe a Garbots 2?
Great game, but would like to see HI RES options incorporated, mostly in the
fonts for the editor, but also updated arena graphics as well.
Really a nice piace of software.
I like the debugging function, which allows to make complex coding.
It would be nice, if the bots have a shield function to survive heavy fire
from 'simple but fast bots.
Unfortunatelly Garbots doesn't run in POSE, this would be great to bring the
battle on TV-Screen or Beamer,
to watch the battle with other Bot-programmers (Battle-Party)
This is terrific! Good brain working programs are few and far between. My son
and I are busy swapping bots via IR.
Like Core Wars but easier to learn. Good fun game. The developer is very responsive
to bug reports, and the new interface is great.
Great program with lots of potential. Author keeps improving and responding
Great game with simple yet effective programming language. the bugs named in
other reviews here are fixed and when you are using the shareware version of
the game you can try your bot agains drones in the area. Don't let a drone
victory fool you because playing against other peoples bots is something totally
different, i would highly recomend this game and would also like to suggest
not using the standard bot as a start but begin building one from scratch with
the purpose of beating the default bot.
It's really fun to program your bots in this game, and it gives you a lot of
power over doing so, but the graphics need a little work... Explosions stay
on the screen, and when a bot moves over an explosion, it half erases it. Also,
you can't tell which way a bot is facing. It would be better if it looked a
little nicer. Other than that though, it is great! It's fun to compete against
your friends' bots.
I rated this game 'good' based on concept and execution; it reminds me of the
'Omega' and 'Carnage Heart' and I'd been meaning to write it myself. The programming
language looks good; graphics could be better but that can be added later.
Only problem is, you can't try it out without buying it (demo only lets you
have 1 tank which therefore instantly wins, game over).
(Note from the author: The demo restriction mentioned here was lifted)