Simple way to make a random card drawing program for Windows 10?

Here is my situation: I’ve created a simple card game for some people with special needs that is very simple. I created activities, printed them (activity on one side, Game Level on the other) on good business card stock, laminated those and voila. Each level is more challenging than the previous, 4 levels, one set for girls and one for boys. So a card set that says, say, Level 1 Boys, one that is Level 1 Girls, etc for 4 different levels. We shuffle the cards and they draw one and try to do whatever challenge the card tells them to do. If they need a partner to, e.g., “build a 2 level tower from the block set” we use Selector on the iPhone or iPad which works very well. When a card is drawn, it goes into a discard pile.

Simple, works well, so of course I need to make it more complicated! I’d like to convert this to a simple something on a laptop (I’d love to do it on an iPad but I know that would be very challenging.) One reason is to be able to easily modify the cards as we see what works well, what doesn’t, new cards, etc. without having to print them out and laminate them.

So I just need a program that lets me enter the card sets as above, then lets each person draw a random card in that card set and marks it “read” so it isn’t drawn again that game.

That sounds really simple? But my searching has come up pretty dry. Any ideas? I’ve tried Flash Card programs but none seem to work the way I need.

If you are looking to make a card drawing program, I would suggest Java. The java JDK is free, and Eclipse (the Java IDE) is also free. There are a lot of examples and tutorials online. I think there is even some kind of UI layer for java now, but I am totally unfamiliar with it. I was just reading about it somewhere, a few months ago.

You could do what you suggest very easily (on iPad or Windows) with the Godot game engine. I’d be more than happy to help you get started. @JoshL could do it and has some spare time, I hear. ;)

Iterary has a web-based engine that permits creating custom card decks that you can draw from one at a time:

There’s also CardWarden for the iPad:

And nanDeck is a Windows utility:

Another question, how would you be adding or removing cards? Are they pure text based or are there images?

Thanks for all the things to try. Card decks will be created then edited on a fairly regular basis.

I’ll look at this, along with the other suggestions; it appeals to the tech tinkerer in me. I’m sure I’ll holler for help!

If you’re interested in learning Godot or trying it for your project, I recommend this Udemy class… it’s excellent:

So - how challenging will this be for someone whose last programming was Applesoft Basic a loooonnnnng time ago? (10 Hello 20 Goto 10 LOL)

I think that depends on your patience? Follow the course closely, understand what you’re doing, and you’ll be fine. If you want instant gratification, you might want to do something else.

Ya know, I think I’ll purchase that tutorial program and try it. Sounds interesting.

I’m more than happy to help, so ping me if you have a question.

Greatly appreciated. I THINK what I want to do will be very simple compared to the games they teach you in that tutorial (just purchased it, BTW.)

Step 1: Create the card decks (simple, can do it in Word with a template for the card size, 8 sets, one with Level 1 Boys on the back and action on the front, and similar decks for Level 1 through 4 Boys, Level 1 through 4 girls.

Step 2: Shuffle all the decks.

Step 3: Select the deck and draw and display a random card from that deck.

Step 4: Mark that card as “read” so it does not get drawn again this game session.

Step 5: Select the next deck (Play goes Level 1 Girls first draw, Level 1 Boys next draw, then Level 1 Girls draw again, Level 1 Boys, until everyone has drawn a Level 1 card - then on to the Level 2 decks.)

Step 5: Random draw and display, and so on.

So I THINK it should be easy if I can learn the tools and if they can do that easily.

You are correct – it probably will be more simple. However, I’d still encourage you to put your project idea to the side and follow those tutorials for a bit until you get a sense of how the whole ecosystem works. It shouldn’t take that long. Once you have an idea of how it all fits together, start a new project for your idea (and keep doing the more advanced tutorials).