Engineer Programmed His Christmas Tree Lights to Play a Giant Game of Snake

The programmer used a PS4 controller to complete the tree game.
Loukia Papadopoulos

For those who don't know the video game snake, it is a fun enticing game where a straight line chases around an apple (represented by a dot) and tries to grab it before it moves. It is named snake after the straight line that resembles a snake.


A simple game

It is a simple game that requires the simplest of graphics. One Dutch engineer, called Jordy Moos, took advantage of this fact and decided to turn his Christmas tree into a giant snake game.

He did so by programming his red and blue lights to play the game. The red lights serve as the snake and the blue lights serve as the apple that moves around. The game can be seen in action in the video.

The whole thing is controlled by a PS4 controller and Moos even installed some rules similar to the game. For instance, if you hit yourself, it is game over and the whole tree turns red.

According to an interview with Trusted ReviewsMoos has promised to release a tutorial on how he managed this complicated task. The information we have available for now is that the game is run by a raspberry pi, uses an OctoWS2811 adapter board and ws2811 strips for the lights.

Over 100 hours to complete

Moos also revealed that the pixels are being mapped by a camera. The programmer said the project took over 100 hours to complete.

However, that was partially due to his cats interfering and damaging some lights. In light of the sharing spirit of Christmas, Moos also said he created a two-player version of the game.

The engineer has in mind more Christmas tree games to create in the future such as Pong and Tetris. We know we will be watching closely to see more of these fun games come to life on a tree although these may be more complicated to create than snake.

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