Playdate Developer Preview Rules

It’s a great question: what can you talk about publicly during the Dev Preview?

We know you’re excited and enthusiastic to get your hands on it early, and will be eager to share that with your friends.

But Playdate was designed to be a surprising device, and emotionally we feel that the more that is revealed about it prior to its release, the less magical and surprising it becomes. Additionally, the Playdate API and development kit is a work-in-progress, not at all final. Plus, we’re a little nervous about cloning or counterfeiting.

So, with all of that in mind, here’s the #1 rule!

During the Dev Preview, show off what you’re making, not what we’re making.

In other words: show people how you’re making a game and what that game is. Talk about interesting design decisions for the Playdate screen. Explain how you’ve handled the crank, or not handled the crank. Show off cool ways you’ve used the audio API to make wonderful music. Show the simulator being used to play your game. In short, show off the Playdate through the lens of your creativity.

Don’t create a tutorial on from-scratch Playdate game making — for now, that’s our job. Don’t walk through each of the API calls one by one — for now, that’s our job, and it’s also a work in progress. Don’t walk through every function of the simulator — that’s our job. And don’t post a public teardown — that’s both our job and can highly risk breaking your Playdate. You get the idea. Show your work, not our work.

Of course, once the Dev Preview is over, and we release the public SDK, anything goes!

Thanks so much for your understanding. This is uncharted territory for us and we’re all ears if you have any thoughts!

Some more answers to some of your questions:

  • Do make sure to mention you have a Dev Preview Playdate, not just a Playdate, or else people might think it’s been released to the public

  • Do show Nova if you happen to be developing in it, that’s fine.

  • Do not share the SDK, or docs, or Nova with anyone, for any reason. This one is extremely important.

  • Do not post your .pdx games publicly. Things are still in flux.

  • Do not post your Playdate code publicly to GitHub etc. Things are still in flux.

  • Do not review Playdate as a finished product, as it’s still a work in progress.