R is a language that is mainly used for statistics, however, as shown today, its use cases can include game development.

What it does

RLife is an R language implementation of Conway's Game of Life.

Users can customize the game by uploading CSV files with coordinates (X,Y) where each coordinate represents a cell that is alive at the start of the game. Users can also edit the number of generations they wish to simulate. When users press Start, a gif of the simulation will be generated.

For a collection of fun, ready-to-use Set-Up CSV files go to: Github Set-Up File Collection

For a gallery of RLife Patterns go to: Github Pattern Gallery

How to try it:

  1. Go to: RLife
  2. Press Start (No need to change any of the settings) Note: Once you click Start, wait a few seconds (about 1.5s per generation) for the animation to load.

Custom Set-Up:

  1. Go to: Github Template.csv
  2. Download the template.csv file and edit as you wish
  3. Go to: RLife
  4. Upload your csv file
  5. Enter the number of generations you want to simulate (min=1, max=50)

How it was built


  • Creating a game with R given that it is not usually used for this purpose
  • The program worked well locally, but it was difficult to get it launched
  • Creating animations
  • Many bugs


  • Most of the identified bugs were fixed
  • Generating animated gifs
  • Launching it successfully

Built With

  • r
  • shiny
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