This is a continuation of Pong tutorial with ggez and Pong tutorial with ggez part 2.

At the end of part 2, we had finished datastructures and a working draw loop. You can find the code from part 2 here.

In this part, we'll finish the update loop and make Pong playable. We're finally getting to some actual gamedev!

Right now, our update function looks like this:

 fn update(&mut self, ctx: &mut ggez::Context) -> ggez::GameResult {

To get Pong going, we need it to:

  1. Handle some input
  2. Move the ball
  3. Handle collisions

And that's pretty much it!

Input handling

Input handling in ggez is roughly split into two methods. We've made update() and draw() methods in our impl EventHandler block, but EventHandler also specifies a few other methods including key_down_event(), which runs whenever a user presses a key. key_down_event() is great when we want to know when a button is pressed once, like if someone jumps in a platformer. It's not good for Pong because we expect the keys to be held down. For Pong, we'll use ggez::input::keyboard::is_key_pressed. All it does is tell us if a specific key is pressed during the current frame.

From the function signature, we can see that this function takes a reference to Context and a ggez::input::keyboard::KeyCode. ggez::input::keyboard::KeyCode is kind of long to type, so you could add use ggez::input::keyboard::KeyCode and use ggez::input::keyboard::is_key_pressed somewhere at the top of your file. I prefer to have the keyboard namespace somewhere though so I usually just use ggez::input::keyboard so I can just write keyboard::is_key_pressed() and keyboard::KeyCode etc.

I want to make the left paddle use W and S to go up and down and make the right paddle use the Up and Down arrows to move. If we look at the ggez documentation for KeyCode, we can see the proper names of all the available keycodes.

To detect when W is pressed, we just use:

if keyboard::is_key_pressed(ctx, keyboard::KeyCode::W) {
   // handle W being pressed

Since we want to move the left paddle up, we can just use self.l_paddle.y -= 5.0. It's important to note that like most computer graphics stuff, ggez uses (0, 0) as the top left of the screen and y goes top to bottom while x goes left to right.

Replicating this for the rest of the inputs, we get:

  if keyboard::is_key_pressed(ctx, keyboard::KeyCode::W) {
    self.l_paddle.y -= 5.0;
  if keyboard::is_key_pressed(ctx, keyboard::KeyCode::S) {
    self.l_paddle.y += 5.0;

  if keyboard::is_key_pressed(ctx, keyboard::KeyCode::Up) {
    self.r_paddle.y -= 5.0;
  if keyboard::is_key_pressed(ctx, keyboard::KeyCode::Down) {
    self.r_paddle.y += 5.0;

I chose 5.0 arbitrarily, but we'll probably want to change the speed later, so it's best to set paddle speed as a const at the start of the file:

const PADDLE_SPEED: f32 = 5.0;

Remember to substitute 5.0 in your if statements with PADDLE_SPEED.

Now, if you run the game with cargo run, the paddles will move when you press buttons!

Making the ball move

Moving the ball is pretty similar to moving the paddles, except that its velocity is stored and it's in two dimensions. We could write:

self.ball.rect.x += self.ball.vel.x;
self.ball.rect.y += self.ball.vel.y;

However, ggez conveniently has a translate function for Rect, so we'll just use that:


If you run the game...

Nothing will change. The ball's velocity is <0, 0>.

We initially hardcoded the ball's velocity in our main() method when initializing our MainState. We could just tell it to use a random vector in main(), but we're going to be resetting the ball a lot later when someone scores, so it's best to just put it in a Ball::new() method.

To add a method to our Ball type, we use an impl block. I'd recommend putting it right after our declaration of the Ball struct.

impl Ball {

If we just copy over what we have in main(), we'd get:

impl Ball {
  fn new() -> Self {
    Ball {
      rect: Rect::new(
            SCREEN_WIDTH / 2.0 - BALL_RADIUS / 2.0,
            SCREEN_HEIGHT / 2.0 - BALL_RADIUS / 2.0,
          vel: Vector { x: 0.0, y: 0.0 },

Note: the signature fn new() -> Self indicates that this function returns a ball because in an impl block, Self is just an alias for whatever is being impl'd. We could also use fn new() -> Ball but in new() methods I think it's more standard to use Self.

We need to change vel: Vector { x: 0.0, y: 0.0 } to use a random vector. Rust doesn't actually have random number generation in its standard library, but the rand crate/library is the standard way to do it. To add rand as a dependency, just add rand = "0.7.3" to the[dependencies]section of yourCargo.toml. The function I most use fromrandis [Rng::genrange()]( Here's the example usage from theranddocumentation: ```rust use rand::{thread_rng, Rng}; let mut rng = thread_rng(); let n: u32 = rng.gen_range(0, 10); println!("{}", n); let m: f64 = rng.gen_range(-40.0f64, 1.3e5f64); println!("{}", m); ``` We're not going to userandanywhere other than inBall::new(), so it's safe to scope theuse rand::{threadrng, Rng}to just this function. The possible starting values we want for the ball's velocity are kind of weird. It would be bad for the velocity to be 0, but it should be possible for it to be negative. Usually I implement this withrng.genrange(min_vel, max_vel)and then use a coin flip to determine whether or not to multiply it by negative one. For a coin flip, we can userng.gen::(). We also need to do everything twice. Since the x and y velocities need to be different, we can't reuse ourrng.gen_range(). Here's what myBall::new()ends up as. ```rust fn new() -> Self { use rand::{thread_rng, Rng}; let mut rng = thread_rng(); // initialize random number generator let mut x_vel = rng.gen_range(3.0, 5.0); // generate random float from 3 to 5 let mut y_vel = rng.gen_range(3.0, 5.0); // rng.gen:: generates either true or false with a 50% chance of each if rng.gen::() { x_vel *= -1.0; } if rng.gen::() { y_vel *= -1.0; } Ball { rect: Rect::new( SCREEN_WIDTH / 2.0 - BALL_RADIUS / 2.0, SCREEN_HEIGHT / 2.0 - BALL_RADIUS / 2.0, BALL_RADIUS, BALL_RADIUS, ), vel: Vector { x: x_vel, y: y_vel }, } } ``` I used 3.0 and 5.0 as the bounds ofgen_rangearbitrarily, so as usual replace them with consts. ```rust const MIN_VEL: f32 = 3.0; const MAX_VEL: f32 = 5.0; ``` We need to replace our hardcoded ball initialization inmain()with this, so instead of usingball: Ball { ... }, we can just useball: Ball::new()`. Now, if you run the game, the ball will move! If you keep rerunning you'll see that it always goes a different direction. ## Collisions As it turns out, collision detection and handling is pretty easy. ggez provides a .overlaps() method for Rect, and since our paddles and ball all have a Rect, we can use it. In proper Pong, you want the ball to behave differently depending on where on the paddle it collides. For simplicity though, we'll just reverse the x direction. rust if self.ball.rect.overlaps(&self.l_paddle) || self.ball.rect.overlaps(&self.r_paddle) { self.ball.vel.x *= -1.0; } It's good practice to also check that the ball is going towards the paddle it's collided with: rust if (self.ball.vel.x < 0.0 && self.ball.rect.overlaps(&self.l_paddle)) || (self.ball.vel.x > 0.0 && self.ball.rect.overlaps(&self.r_paddle)) { self.ball.vel.x *= -1.0; } As it turns out, it's really hard to catch the ball with a paddle before it goes flying off into nowhere. I've upped PADDLE_SPEED to 8. We also need to make the ball bounce off the top and bottom walls. This is pretty easy. ggez provides top() and bottom() methods for Rect which makes things even simpler. rust if (self.ball.vel.y < 0.0 && < 0.0) || (self.ball.vel.y > 0.0 && self.ball.rect.bottom() > SCREEN_HEIGHT) { self.ball.vel.y *= -1.0; } After adding these lines, the game is more or less playable. ## Scorekeeping Scorekeeping is pretty much the same as collision handling. If the ball goes off the left side of the screen, reset it and add one to the right paddle's score and vice versa. Usually I also add a small pause before the ball resets. Ideally the paddles can still move before the reset, but for simplicity we'll just pause the whole game for a second. In Rust, we pause a thread with std::thread::sleep. It takes a std::time::Duration which we can make using Duration::from_millis(). rust if self.ball.rect.left() < 0.0 { self.r_score += 1; std::thread::sleep(std::time::Duration::from_millis(1000)); self.ball = Ball::new(); } if self.ball.rect.right() > SCREEN_WIDTH { self.l_score += 1; std::thread::sleep(std::time::Duration::from_millis(1000)); self.ball = Ball::new(); } There's some duplicated code here, but it seems overkill to make a function just for this. ## Drawing the score I probably should've included this in the last part, but I forgot. We want text to be drawn over everything else, so we should put it at the very end of draw(). Text in ggez is represented by ggez::graphics::Text. For simplicity, I want to use only one piece of text for the scoreboard. We'll put it in the top center of the screen with the format "L: {score} [tab] R: {score}". To make our score string, we can use format!(). If you've used println!(), you already know how format() works. Our string can be written with format!("L: {} \t R: {}", self.l_score, self.r_score). We can make a ggez::graphics::Text instance out of it with graphics::Text::new(). rust let scoreboard_text = graphics::Text::new(format!("L: {} \t R: {}", self.l_score, self.r_score)); In general, you shouldn't call Text::new() in your draw loop. Text rendering is fairly expensive, so you should cache it and call Text::new() only when the text changes.`

To center our text, we need to use DrawParam. Previously, we just used DrawParam::default() but since graphics::Text doesn't have any position data it needs to use DrawParam to change location.

The documentation for DrawParam tells us that we can use DrawParam::dest() to change the location. The input to dest is a Point2, but Point2 implements From<[f32; 2]>, meaning that we can just use an array of two f32s.

graphics::Text has a width() method so we have everything we need to make our coordinates and our DrawParam:

let coords = [SCREEN_WIDTH / 2.0 - scoreboard_text.width(ctx) as f32 / 2.0, 10.0];
let params = graphics::DrawParam::default().dest(coords);

graphics::Text implements Drawable, so we can just draw it with graphics::draw() as usual:

graphics::draw(ctx, &scoreboard_text, params).expect("error drawing scoreboard text");

If you run it, you'll see the text at the top of the screen! It's kind of small though. graphics::Text has a set_font() method which also has font_scale as an argument. You can, of course, use this to use a custom font with Font::new(), but for simplicity we'll just use ggez's default font with Font::default(). The font_scale argument has to be a graphics::Scale object, so we'll use Scale::uniform() to make sure the aspect ratio of the font is maintained.

We have to set the font scale before we calculate the coordinates otherwise it will be off center. We also have to make scoreboard_text mutable. Here's the finished scoreboard drawing code:

  let mut scoreboard_text =
    graphics::Text::new(format!("L: {} \t R: {}", self.l_score, self.r_score));
  scoreboard_text.set_font(graphics::Font::default(), graphics::Scale::uniform(24.0));

  let coords = [
    SCREEN_WIDTH / 2.0 - scoreboard_text.width(ctx) as f32 / 2.0,

  let params = graphics::DrawParam::default().dest(coords);
  graphics::draw(ctx, &scoreboard_text, params).expect("error drawing scoreboard text");

And, with that, pong is done!

You can find the completed code on github here.

To learn more, you could expand on this by changing how paddle-ball collisions work. You could also write a simple AI and make it singleplayer.

This is the first long tutorial I've written, so if you have any feedback please email me at [email protected]