Pygame: Eendering The Text Cheat Sheet

You can use text for a variety of purposes in a game. For example you can share information with players, and you can display a score.

Displaying a message

The following code defines a message, then a color for the text and the background color for the message. A font is defined using the default system font, with a font size of 48. The font.render() function is used to create an image of the message, and we get the rect object associated with the image. We then center the image on the screen and display it.

msg = "Play again?"
msg_color = (100, 100, 100)
bg_color = (230, 230, 230)
f = pg.font.SysFont(None, 48)
msg_image = f.render(msg, True, msg_color,bg_color)
msg_image_rect = msg_image.get_rect() =
screen.blit(msg_image, msg_image_rect)

Pygame: Detecting Collisions Cheat Sheet

You can detect when a single object collides with any member of a group. You can also detect when any member of one group collides with a member of another group.

Collisions between a single object and a group

The spritecollideany() function takes an object and a group, and returns True if the object overlaps with any member of the group

if pg.sprite.spritecollideany(ship, aliens):
    ships_left -= 1

Collisions between two groups

The sprite.groupcollide() function takes two groups, and two booleans. The function returns a dictionary containing information about the members that have collided. The booleans tell Pygame whether to delete the members of either group that have collided.

collisions = pg.sprite.groupcollide(bullets, aliens, True, True)
score += len(collisions) * alien_point_value

Pygame: Groups Cheat Sheet

Pygame has a Group class which makes working with a group of similar objects easier. A group is like a list, with some extra functionality that’s helpful when building games

Making and filling a group

An object that will be placed in a group must inherit from Sprite.

from pygame.sprite import Sprite, Group

def Bullet(Sprite):
    def draw_bullet(self):
    def update(self):
bullets = Group()
new_bullet = Bullet()

Looping through the items in a group

The sprites() method returns all the members of a group

for bullet in bullets.sprites():

Calling update() on a group

Calling update() on a group automatically calls update() on each member of the group


Removing an item from a group

It’s important to delete elements that will never appear again in the game, so you don’t waste memory and resources.


Pygame: Responding to the mouse event Cheat Sheet

Pygame’s event loop registers an event any time the mouse moves, or a mouse button is pressed or released.

Responding to the mouse button

for event in pg.event.get():
    if event.type == pg.MOUSEBUTTONDOWN:

Finding the mouse position

The mouse position is returned as a tuple

mouse_pos = pg.mouse.get_pos()

Clicking a button

You might want to know if the cursor is over an object such as a button. The rect.collidepoint() method returns true when a point is inside a rect object.

if button_rect.collidepoint(mouse_pos):

Hiding the mouse


Working with Images in Pygame

Loading an image

ship = pg.image.load('images/ship.bmp')

Getting the rect object from an image

ship_rect = ship.get_rect

Positioning an image

With rects, it’s easy to position an image wherever you want on the screen, or in relation to another object. The following code positions a ship object at the bottom center of the screen.

ship_rect.midbottom = screen_rect.midbottom

Drawing an image to the screen

Once an image is loaded and positioned, you can draw it to the screen with the blit() method. The blit() method acts on the screen object, and takes the image object and image rect as arguments.

# Draw ship to screen. 
screen.blit(ship, ship_rect)

The blitme() method

Game objects such as ships are often written as classes. Then a blitme() method is usually defined, which draws the object to the screen.

def blitme(self):
    """Draw ship at current location."""
    self.screen.blit(self.image, self.rect)

Oygame: React Objects Cheat Sheet

Many objects in a game can be treated as simple rectangles, rather than their actual shape. This simplifies code without noticeably affecting game play. Pygame has a rect object that makes it easy to work with game objects.

Getting the screen rect object

We already have a screen object; we can easily access the rect object associated with the screen.

screen_rect = screen.get_rect()

Finding the center of the screen

Rect objects have a center attribute which stores the center point.

screen_center =

Useful rect attributes

Once you have a rect object, there are a number of attributes that
are useful when positioning objects and detecting relative positions
of objects. (You can find more attributes in the Pygame

#Individual x and y values:
screen_rect.left, screen_rect.right, screen_rect.bottom
screen_rect.centerx, screen_rect.centery
screen_rect.width, screen_rect.height
# Tuples

Creating a rect object

You can create a rect object from scratch. For example a small rect object that’s filled in can represent a bullet in a game. The Rect() class takes the coordinates of the upper left corner, and the width and height of the rect. The draw.rect() function takes a screen object, a color, and a rect. This function fills the given rect with the given color.

bullet_rect = pg.Rect(100, 100, 3, 15)
color = (100, 100, 100)
pg.draw.rect(screen, color, bullet_rect)

Start a game with pygame

The following code sets up an empty game window, and starts an event loop and a loop that continually refreshes the screen.

An empty game window

import sys
import pygame as pg
def run_game():
    # Initialize and set up screen.
    screen = pg.display.set_mode((1200, 800))
    pg.display.set_caption("Alien Invasion")

    # Start main loop.
    while True:
        # Start event loop.
        for event in pg.event.get():
            if event.type == pg.QUIT:

        # Refresh screen.


Setting a custom window size

The display.set_mode() function accepts a tuple that defines the
screen size.

screen_dim = (1200, 800)
screen = pg.display.set_mode(screen_dim)

Setting a custom background-color

Colors are defined as a tuple of red, green, and blue values. Each value ranges from 0-255.

bg_color = (230, 230, 230)

Installing Pygame

Pygame runs on all systems, but setup is slightly different on each OS. The instructions here assume you’re using Python 3, and provide a minimal installation of Pygame. If these instructions don’t work for your system, see the more detailed notes at

Install Pygame on Linux

sudo apt-get install python3-dev mercurial libsdl-image1.2-dev libsdl2-dev libsdl-ttf2.0-dev
pip install --user hg+

Pygame on OS X

This assumes you’ve used Homebrew to install Python 3.

brew install hg sdl sdl_image sdl_ttf
pip install --user hg+

Pygame on Windows

Find an installer at or that matches your version of Python. Run the installer file if it’s a .exe or .msi file. If it’s a .whl file, use pip to install Pygame:

python –m pip install --user pygame-1.9.2a0-cp35-none-win32.whl

Testing your installation

To test your installation, open a terminal session and try to import
Pygame. If you don’t get any error messages, your installation was

$ python
import pygame

Pygame: Responding to keyboard input Cheat Sheet

Responding to key presses

Pygame’s main event loop registers a KEYDOWN event any time a key is pressed. When this happens, you can check for specific keys.

for event in pg.event.get():
    if event.type == pg.KEYDOWN:
         if event.key == pg.K_RIGHT:
               ship_rect.x += 1
         elif event.key == pg.K_LEFT:
               ship_rect.x -= 1
         elif event.key == pg.K_SPACE:
         elif event.key == pg.K_q:

Responding to released keys

When the user releases a key, a KEYUP event is triggered.

if event.type == pg.KEYUP:
    if event.key == pg.K_RIGHT:
        ship.moving_right = False