The best thing about games programming for me has always been about creating something from nothing. Starting with an empty screen and writing:
10 LET a=10
public class... and having something colourful and playable appear on screen when you press Run.
I remember fondly when was seven years old, sat in the car for ages with some squared paper, designing a game character to later squash into the spectrum using the rubber keys, using PEEK and POKE and then figured out how to move the character using the joystick, so that the player could make the character avoid the newly drawn trees and traps, and thinking I MADE THAT.
Fast-forward somewhat to a particularly snowy January, when at the start of one of the many Global Game Jam events, students nearby are starting up Unity, and I'm seen just opening a text editor to get started. "What are you doing?" asks a student. "Well, I'm making a game of course!"
Yes, I still use squared paper. :)