Swarm alpha release!

The Swarm development team is very proud to announce the very first alpha release of the game. There are still many missing features (for example, saving games is not yet possible) and known bugs, but at this point it’s quite playable (and, dare we say, fun!) and ready for some intrepid souls to try it out and give us some feedback.

What is it?

Swarm is a 2D, open-world programming and resource gathering game with a strongly-typed, functional programming language and a unique upgrade system. Unlocking language features is tied to collecting resources, making it an interesting challenge to bootstrap your way into the use of the full language.

Notable changes since the last progress update include:

  • An all-new in-game tutorial consisting of a sequence of guided challenges
  • Several new challenge scenarios (mazes! towers of hanoi!), and documentation on how to make your own
  • Lots more in-game help and info, including help on currently available commands + recipes, and a dialog showing all live robots
  • Many more entities, recipes, and language features to explore and collect
  • Better mouse support
  • Backwards incremental search and tab completion in the REPL
  • Many, many small bug fixes and improvements!

Give it a try!

To install, check out the installation instructions: you can download a binary release (for now, Linux only, but MacOS binaries should be on the horizon), or install from Hackage. Give it a try and send us your feedback, either via a github issue or via IRC!

Future plans & getting involved

We’re still hard at work on the game, and will next turn our attention to some big features, such as:

Of course, there are also tons of small things that need fixing and polishing too! If you’re interested in getting involved, check out our contribution guide, come join us on IRC (#swarm on Libera.Chat), or take a look at the list of issues marked “low-hanging fruit”.

Brought to you by the Swarm development team:

  • Brent Yorgey
  • Ondřej Šebek
  • Tristan de Cacqueray

With contributions from:

  • Alexander Block
  • Daniel Díaz Carrete
  • Huw Campbell
  • Ishan Bhanuka
  • Jacob
  • Jens Petersen
  • José Rafael Vieira
  • Joshua Price
  • lsmor
  • Noah Yorgey
  • Norbert Dzikowski
  • Paul Brauner
  • Ryan Yates
  • Sam Tay

…not to mention many others who gave valuable suggestions and feedback. Want to see your name listed here in the next release? See how you can contribute!


About Brent

Associate Professor of Computer Science at Hendrix College. Functional programmer, mathematician, teacher, pianist, follower of Jesus.
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