SDL::Tutorial(3) introduction to Perl SDL




# to read this tutorial
$ perldoc SDL::Tutorial
# to run this tutorial
$ perl -MSDL::Tutorial -e 1

SDL Manual

"SDL::Tutorial" are incomplete and old. A new book has been started to provide a complete tutorial for SDL. See <>.


SDL, the Simple DirectMedia Layer, is a cross-platform multimedia library. These are the Perl 5 bindings. You can find out more about SDL at <>. You can find out more about SDL perl at <>.

Creating an SDL application with Perl is easy. You have to know a few basics, though. Here's how to get up and running as quickly as possible.


All graphics in SDL live on a surface. You'll need at least one. That's what SDLx::App provides.

Of course, before you can get a surface, you need to initialize your video mode. SDL gives you several options, including whether to run in a window or take over the full screen, the size of the window, the bit depth of your colors, and whether to use hardware acceleration. For now, we'll build something really simple.


SDLx::App makes it easy to initialize video and create a surface. Here's how to ask for a windowed surface with 640x480x16 resolution:

        use SDLx::App;
        my $app = SDLx::App->new(
                width  => 640,
                height => 480,
                depth  => 16,

You can get more creative, especially if you use the "title" and "icon" attributes in a windowed application. Here's how to set the window title of the application to "My SDL Program":

        use SDLx::App;
        my $app = SDLx::App->new(
                height => 640,
                width  => 480,
                depth  => 16,
                title  => 'My SDL Program',

Setting an icon is a little more involved --- you have to load an image onto a surface. That's a bit more complicated, but see the "name" parameter to "SDL::Surface-"new()> if you want to skip ahead.

Working With The App

Since $app from the code above is just an SDL surface with some extra sugar, it behaves much like SDL::Surface. In particular, the all-important "blit" and "update" methods work. You'll need to create SDL::Rect objects representing sources of graphics to draw onto the $app's surface, "blit" them there, then "update" the $app.

Note: ``blitting'' is copying a chunk of memory from one place to another.

That, however, is another tutorial.


chromatic, <[email protected]>.

Written for and maintained by the Perl SDL project, <>. See ``AUTHORS'' in SDL for details.


Copyright (c) 2003 - 2004, chromatic. 2009 - 2010, kthakore. All rights reserved. This module is distributed under the same terms as Perl itself, in the hope that it is useful but certainly under no guarantee.