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Retro Game Design Lab

Try the most innovative STEM and tech camp in the Palo Alto and Silicon Valley area.  The all-inclusive, full day camp includes snacks, lunch, and before/after care.  Sparkiverse creates a healthy STEM environment where campers move between tech, science, art, and sports blocks throughout the day.  Sessions include:  Creativity & Circuits, Minecraft Imaginations: Design + Build Challenge, Minecraft Rally: Team Challenge, Retro Game Design Lab, Robot Coding Starter Lab, Internet of Things (IOT) Starter Lab, Internet of Things (IOT) Imagination Lab, Animal Adventures, and Bioforensics + DNA Explorations Lab.

Retro game design lab

About THis Camp

You don’t have to be a gamer or a coder to love this camp session - and it’s equally loved by girls and boys! 

Just bring your imaginations to build your own character sprites, background, and game mechanics - all on your own Retro Handheld Game Console.

Campers love to be challenged and see their accomplishments.  So we’ve bundled that excitement into an amazing new camp. Campers build their own game on PocketCHIP - sourced by Sparkiverse straight from KickStarter.  What’s PocketCHIP? It’s a handheld game console ($69 list price) powered by CHIP, the world’s first $9 computer chip. At the end of the camp, they can bring home their own amazing and tiny computer so they can take their accomplishment anywhere - literally! PocketCHIP is an all-time kid favorite so we're taking what they love about PocketCHIP and bringing in new games and concepts.

We start by having campers build the imaginative elements of their game - their characters and background. We then teach campers coding fundamentals like functions and loops - critical concepts for game building. Then we challenge them to use these skills to build their own games on their own PocketCHIP.  In this session, campers will build a minesweeper game using new coding techniques like for loops and arrays! It’s seeing their code in action that makes this a summer camp favorite.


Hear it straight from a Sparkiverse camper why the Retro Game Design Camp with PocketCHIP is so awesome!


Sneak Peek at the Week

  • Create your own characters, backgrounds, and game play

  • Learn about key programming such as conditional statements, functions, and loops

  • Apply this knowledge to use the Pico8 gaming console and the language Lua to get a start in the Indie Gaming world

  • Build their own retro-games by writing their own code

Who will Love This camp?

  • Campers who love to play and build games but aren’t necessarily interested in learning to code

  • Campers who love the process of designing characters and games - whether through storytelling or even Minecraft

  • Campers who are interested in coding, but need a creative way to get started

what do they bring home

  • Their own PocketCHIP computer (minus monitor, keyboard, and mouse)

  • Their games on their PocketCHIP computer

  • A big smile as they will probably be the first on your street to own a PocketCHIP