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#1 Luke11cnc   Members   -  Reputation: 100

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 07:18 AM

I would like to say hello



I am writing this post on behalf of my 10-year-old son.



As many young children my son as well spend 90%of there free time on a computer, DS,PSP or some kind of video game, it's only natural they want to be a games designer when they grow up.



My son is already spending his money on his chosen Job (A GAMES DESIGNER) "I'M GOING TO LIVE IN TOKYOAND BUY A BIG HOUSE WHERE YOU CAN VISIT ME " nowt his is not just a whim he’s been going on like this for years and years I did down load blender last year but after I did he said “I don’t want to be a visualdesigner” I do forget what he said ‘I’m a dad and NOT hearing what your kids want is built in to my DNA’



So with all his plans in place what does he need to do, to get on the ladder?



What qualifications should he be looking at
What programs for designing should he be looking at?

He did mention C code……. So what book/program should he be reading/working with?



I must say I thought it would all die down by now, but it he getting more and more determined to be a games designer



So this is a father’s plea for help, SOS



James (father)
I would like to thank you for reading this and your replies in advance



Thank you

Sponsor:

#2 UltimaX   Members   -  Reputation: 467

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 07:38 AM

He must first learn programming and I would suggest something along the lines of C# and not C. For a 10 year old it would burn him out quick and he would give up. C and C++ are complex languages and a 10 year old might see it as gibberish right now.

Also, I would not worry about game development right now. I would worry about learning the logic, system environment, coding habits, etc. While he is learning that he can be reading about the latest game technologies and techniques just to be familiar with it and to keep up to date on them. It is important that he first learns and get's comfortable with a language though.

Once he is comfortable he could start using XNA, which is an SDK released from Microsoft that allows someone to write games for Windows, XBOX 360, etc. That would be a good SDK to learn graphics and game development.

Way down the road I would suggest C / C++ and either DirectX or OpenGL as those are the libraries used in professional studios. The C# and XNA are great for learning, but you can't do low level console development with it; only indie games. To get to this point could take a while so tell him to be patient and not to get aggravated.

Finally, I would suggest he creates an account here and get's to know the community. There are many professional game developers here and I'm sure they would be more than happy to help him regardless of his age. Also, kudos to you for not tearing his dream down and trying to help him.

#3 Serapth   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 6227

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 08:01 AM

Lego Mindstorm

Granted, it will bankrupt you, but it is the absolute perfect introduction to programming for a 10 year old. Additionally as it gets more complex you can actually "extend" the programming language with much more complex programming.

Oh, and italics, ew. Your post was literally extremely difficult to read. Also, I almost completely dismissed it as spam because of the font/italics/pink.

#4 Arthur Souza   Members   -  Reputation: 1424

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 08:07 AM

Hello there!

When I was eleven, I started creating games by using good old RPG Maker 2000. This would help me understand programming logic, the use of variables, decision making, loop structures, and would be fast and fun way to see results, while still teaching me A LOT.

A.

Lotus - Action RPG In development http://www.gamedev.n...die-rpg-engine/ |
Personal blog In Portuguese: lotuzgames.wordpress.com |


#5 DarklyDreaming   Members   -  Reputation: 367

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 08:09 AM

By ten years old I'd already been programming for two years and while yes it was hard it was also one of the most fun learning periods I've ever had! Don't underestimate your kids - they can learn a hell of a lot more advanced topics then you'd think.

Now, if your son shows no interest in the technical nature of programming, try visual arts or level design as an alternative. There are plenty of beginner books around, as a low-cost alternative I recommend The Gamemaker's Apprentice - an excellent book for starters wanting to dive in quickly and get their first game made. Additionally, Game Maker is a fairly simple program to work with and the cost of buying the full version is very low ($20~ something last I checked). From there, he can learn the general process of working on a game while having lots of fun along the way - and if he's determined enough, he'll end up with something playable at the end! Posted Image

Good luck! :)
"I will personally burn everything I've made to the fucking ground if I think I can catch them in the flames."
~ Gabe

"I don't mean to rush you but you are keeping two civilizations waiting!"
~ Cavil, BSG.
"If it's really important to you that other people follow your True Brace Style, it just indicates you're inexperienced. Go find something productive to do."
~ Bregma

"Well, you're not alone.

There's a club for people like that. It's called Everybody and we meet at the bar."

~ Antheus


#6 Bibek Dahal   Members   -  Reputation: 110

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 08:19 AM

http://www.yoyogames.com/gamemaker/windows

I think Game Maker is best to start creating and learning to create games with. You can download the lite edition for free. I, myself started creating games with Game Maker when I was 11.

#7 UltimaX   Members   -  Reputation: 467

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 08:27 AM

Game Maker, RPG Make, XYZ Maker, etc are good, but it's also a double edged sword. You are learning a proprietary language / script that is of no use once you are done with it. What if he decides next year he is done with games and wants to move to application development? He would have to start all over now to learn another language. That's why I think it's best to learn a standard language. Teaches you the same logic and what not, but you are also learning a lot more about the system you are on (file system, Win32 API (for example), etc.

#8 Serapth   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 6227

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 08:30 AM

By ten years old I'd already been programming for two years and while yes it was hard it was also one of the most fun learning periods I've ever had! Don't underestimate your kids - they can learn a hell of a lot more advanced topics then you'd think.

Now, if your son shows no interest in the technical nature of programming, try visual arts or level design as an alternative. There are plenty of beginner books around, as a low-cost alternative I recommend The Gamemaker's Apprentice - an excellent book for starters wanting to dive in quickly and get their first game made. Additionally, Game Maker is a fairly simple program to work with and the cost of buying the full version is very low ($20~ something last I checked). From there, he can learn the general process of working on a game while having lots of fun along the way - and if he's determined enough, he'll end up with something playable at the end! Posted Image

Good luck! :)


Yeah, I was 8 when I started programming.

Then again, I didn't have much choice, my Dad bought me an Atari 800xl ( sweet!) then promptly deleted the OS ( doh! ) leaving me with a new computer and nothing but the ROMed basic to play with.

That experience set me on the path to becoming a professional developer AND put my Dad down the path of a pathological fear of computers.

#9 Arthur Souza   Members   -  Reputation: 1424

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 08:45 AM

Game Maker, RPG Make, XYZ Maker, etc are good, but it's also a double edged sword. You are learning a proprietary language / script that is of no use once you are done with it. What if he decides next year he is done with games and wants to move to application development? He would have to start all over now to learn another language. That's why I think it's best to learn a standard language. Teaches you the same logic and what not, but you are also learning a lot more about the system you are on (file system, Win32 API (for example), etc.



When you get into college, the first thing you learn is a pseudo language. It will not be of any use in the future, but will help you the general structure of an algorithm. Thats the reason I pointed in the RPG Maker direction. Sure you wont be able to use it in the future, but a lot of learning how to program is learning how to program, language independent, isnt it so?

A.

Lotus - Action RPG In development http://www.gamedev.n...die-rpg-engine/ |
Personal blog In Portuguese: lotuzgames.wordpress.com |


#10 kseh   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2614

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 09:09 AM

I'd also recommend C# or maybe whatever current version of Visual Basic is out there. There's a lot of stuff that an ambitious kid should be able to learn but I'm thinking there aren't too many lessons geared towards such a young audience. Learn stuff like getting input, displaying that on the screen, conditional statements, and loops. After a lot of practice with that stuff maybe look at trying to get some sort of image on the screen and moving it around.

#11 UltimaX   Members   -  Reputation: 467

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 09:33 AM


Game Maker, RPG Make, XYZ Maker, etc are good, but it's also a double edged sword. You are learning a proprietary language / script that is of no use once you are done with it. What if he decides next year he is done with games and wants to move to application development? He would have to start all over now to learn another language. That's why I think it's best to learn a standard language. Teaches you the same logic and what not, but you are also learning a lot more about the system you are on (file system, Win32 API (for example), etc.



When you get into college, the first thing you learn is a pseudo language. It will not be of any use in the future, but will help you the general structure of an algorithm. Thats the reason I pointed in the RPG Maker direction. Sure you wont be able to use it in the future, but a lot of learning how to program is learning how to program, language independent, isnt it so?


Yes that is true, but that's also college. I was thinking more along the lines of something that can be applied and have some value in the future. C# was just a suggestion because once you start learning DirectX or OpenGL you can still use C# for the tools creation. You have to learn from scratch either way you go as well. So there is still the value there in C# and more beneficial. Not saying RPG Maker is a wrong choice, but I just wanted to make James aware of the pros and cons.

#12 yckx   Prime Members   -  Reputation: 1291

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 10:37 AM

Lego Mindstorm

Granted, it will bankrupt you, but it is the absolute perfect introduction to programming for a 10 year old. Additionally as it gets more complex you can actually "extend" the programming language with much more complex programming.

Oh, and italics, ew. Your post was literally extremely difficult to read. Also, I almost completely dismissed it as spam because of the font/italics/pink.

I never would have thought of it myself, but Lego Mindstorm is an inspired suggestion. My housemate mentored a team of kids with some kind of Mindstorm challenge that IBM held on their local campus a couple months ago, and had nothing but good things to say about the kits and the experience and fun the kids had. And he's a techie, but no programmer—he works in IBM's HR department. So I'd think you have a fair shot of being able to help your son out when he gets stuck.

If you do decide to start with something more standard, C# probably isn't a bad way to go. But I'd recommend you learning it alongside or slightly ahead of him. And you both can ask questions here.

And, please, nix the italics and pink text :)

#13 Arthur Souza   Members   -  Reputation: 1424

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 11:38 AM



Game Maker, RPG Make, XYZ Maker, etc are good, but it's also a double edged sword. You are learning a proprietary language / script that is of no use once you are done with it. What if he decides next year he is done with games and wants to move to application development? He would have to start all over now to learn another language. That's why I think it's best to learn a standard language. Teaches you the same logic and what not, but you are also learning a lot more about the system you are on (file system, Win32 API (for example), etc.



When you get into college, the first thing you learn is a pseudo language. It will not be of any use in the future, but will help you the general structure of an algorithm. Thats the reason I pointed in the RPG Maker direction. Sure you wont be able to use it in the future, but a lot of learning how to program is learning how to program, language independent, isnt it so?


Yes that is true, but that's also college. I was thinking more along the lines of something that can be applied and have some value in the future. C# was just a suggestion because once you start learning DirectX or OpenGL you can still use C# for the tools creation. You have to learn from scratch either way you go as well. So there is still the value there in C# and more beneficial. Not saying RPG Maker is a wrong choice, but I just wanted to make James aware of the pros and cons.


Of course mate, I completely understand your point. Lets just not forget that he's still 10 years old, and will have to do a lot of starting over during his life in this world. (Which arent actually starting ALL over again, just relearning a few things in a different way), but I do understand your point of starting already facing some real world things being beneficial, and it makes total sense.

A.

Lotus - Action RPG In development http://www.gamedev.n...die-rpg-engine/ |
Personal blog In Portuguese: lotuzgames.wordpress.com |


#14 Slavik81   Members   -  Reputation: 360

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 01:02 PM

When I was a kid, I enrolled in a number of summer computer camps between the ages of maybe 8 and 14. They taught me Visual Basic, HTML, C, C++ and Java. Of them, the only one that lent me any lasting knowledge was the course in HTML, and maybe the tiniest bit of C.

In university, I took an introduction to programming in C. For once, they actually taught me how things worked rather than just what to do. Suddenly, everything made sense. From that point onward, learning a new programming language was really just a matter of time.

The point of this story is... Well, I don't really have one, except perhaps that you should probably not worry too much about doing 'real' programming. If your son enrols in engineering or computer science, they'll get him a real teacher to explain things. They'll give him the tools to do things at a professional level. Until then, working with simplifying tools like Lego Mindstorms or GameMaker is not a bad idea.

Game Maker, RPG Make, XYZ Maker, etc are good, but it's also a double edged sword. You are learning a proprietary language / script that is of no use once you are done with it. What if he decides next year he is done with games and wants to move to application development? He would have to start all over now to learn another language. That's why I think it's best to learn a standard language. Teaches you the same logic and what not, but you are also learning a lot more about the system you are on (file system, Win32 API (for example), etc.

I wouldn't wish the Win32 API on my enemies, let alone some poor kid trying to learn to program. It's confusing, full of bad practices and stuffed with legacy cruft. Just setting up a window that you can close takes dozens of lines of boilerplate code. And it's unnecessary; you can spend years working professionally in application development on Windows without having to deal with it if you just use a 3rd-party toolkit.

Besides, it's good practice to learn a few new languages.




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