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Begin your journey to mouse-free programming in Vim with this simple game in a text file.
Videos can also be accessed from our Games for Faster Learning Playlist.
Vimazing Race Maze Game - A free game to learn Vim hjkl navigation (5:04)
The most granular level of Vim navigation is accomplished with four keys used to move the cursor one character at a time.
So a common first step with online coding courses for beginning Vim editors is to move around in a text file using just those four keys.
Why Vim? Well, if you have yet to explore the website, our goal is to make it a coding school online for those motivated enough to learn coding on their own. It is best suited to supplement more formal computer coding courses to make learning faster. That said, the Vim text editor to us, represents the best text editor for aspiring programmers to invest their time in, for the long term.
Okay, so if you are ready, it is time to start training to become a fast computer programmer!
If you need an introduction to Vim navigation, we have a page dedicated to first steps in Vim navigation with hjkl keys.
Okay, here is what it looks like, the Vimazing Race - hjkl Edition maze game.
It is not an online program to be run in a browser, but instead a simple 29-line text file to use in your own installation of Vim.
To get the game, copy and paste from above or download straight from here: https://factorpad.com/tech/games/vimazing-race-hjkl.txt and save it to your preferred working directory. To inspect the file, click with your primary mouse button and it will open in a new browser window. FactorPad uses a secure https website.
Right-clickon the file link above and save to your preferred location.
Next, at the command prompt, open the file with:
Your cursur will be placed at the starting line (position 0,0) and you are ready to start the race. Go!
Rules and suggestions:
~. If you touch the water go back to the start using
hjklTo navigate one character at a time. Touching the letter 'e' in 'end' is considered finishing.
In our second challenge, using the same text file, try something different. Where you would hit a key multiple times, instead this time use the numeric multiplier in front.
For instructions on how this works in Vim, see our page dedicated to first steps when learning Vim navigation with hjkl keys.
For example, at one point in the race you need to move left 5 times,
hhhhh is 5 keystrokes where
you can save time with just 2 keystrokes
5h. Level 2 will be much slower
at first and will take some time to get used to; however, at some point
your brain will just take over and do this for you. That's how the
more advanced (and fast) Vim users do it.
Give it a try and see how many keystrokes this saves you.
Q: How can you compare your speed to others?
A: Post your results on the YouTube video associated with this page and challenge your friends.
Q: Can you edit and share the file?
A: Yes, in the spirit of open software this is free to download and you can edit the file and share it, but please do not call it your own, sell it or modify the references to FactorPad.
We also have hundreds of videos on YouTube, subscribe here and see what other free learning is available. For new releases follow @factorpad on Twitter.
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