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Programming and best route to go


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#1 DarkRayne   Members   -  Reputation: 122

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Posted 02 November 2011 - 05:59 AM

Hi, I am an equivalent of a junior in Devry's Game and Simulation programming degree. My knowledge in C++ is average and need to take more time to learn more. My question to all is, I reached a point in my classes where I am getting into Unreal UDK. I am really enjoying it, it looks so good. I have a few game ideas that I'd like to explore and possibly put out on an app store when I eventually get more of a grasp on it. Should I be gearing myself more to towards learning to use an engine or start from scratch like C# XNA Framework. Simple games seem to get the most attention. I just see learning C# as something that will be more beneficial because you can release something for mobile devices and make a little money at the same time. I dont see the Apple store to be very good unless you have hell of marketing and there is way too many apps to even get noticed. Just an opinion, Any suggestions/ advice from people who have been there done that ? All is appreciated

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#2 robobrain   Members   -  Reputation: 106

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 10:23 PM

If you want to go mobile then I would say learn to make small games yourself first. Learn the platform. Then if you choose an engine later, you will have more knowledge of what its doing, how to customize it, etc.
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#3 Rodimus   Members   -  Reputation: 127

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 10:46 PM

Just a small notice. I wouldn't consider XNA, "from scratch". You say it yourself, it's a framework.

I agree with starting out without an engine. I started working with engines after studying programming so I wouldn't know what it's like the other way around, but to me it sounds harder that way. I would imagine it being easier to understand a language and mix in an engine's api rather than being used to an engine and having to work your way into understanding what was a part of the engine and what was a part of the language, so to speak.

EDIT: if you were to use UDK to make a , "simple game" I'd say it would over-complicate things. However, there are simpler engines which I'd say would benefit your project. It all depends on what engine you choose.
"Rodimus and Unity" - My developer journal

#4 Jesse7   Members   -  Reputation: 154

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Posted 04 November 2011 - 04:15 AM

Hi, I am an equivalent of a junior in Devry's Game and Simulation programming degree. My knowledge in C++ is average and need to take more time to learn more. My question to all is, I reached a point in my classes where I am getting into Unreal UDK. I am really enjoying it, it looks so good. I have a few game ideas that I'd like to explore and possibly put out on an app store when I eventually get more of a grasp on it. Should I be gearing myself more to towards learning to use an engine or start from scratch like C# XNA Framework. Simple games seem to get the most attention. I just see learning C# as something that will be more beneficial because you can release something for mobile devices and make a little money at the same time. I dont see the Apple store to be very good unless you have hell of marketing and there is way too many apps to even get noticed. Just an opinion, Any suggestions/ advice from people who have been there done that ? All is appreciated


I couldn't help but notice the title of your post. The truth is there isn't really a "best route to go." If you enjoy what you are doing (e.g. programming), why would you want someone else to tell you what you "should" be doing? If you enjoy working with UDK, then continue with it. I really don't understand when someone says "I really enjoy doing this" but then they go around asking others to confirm their choices or to suggest a different choice. If you need others to confirm what you are doing then perhaps you really don't enjoy that activity and should spend more time thinking about what it is you want. I get the impression that you want to use your work as a means to make money or gain fame. There's nothing wrong with those, but there are easier ways to get them than with programming. Programming should be an end in itself--something you'd do even if no one paid you a single dime to do it or if no one ever praised your work. It sounds harsh, but that's the attitude of those who succeed in this business.
Good judgment comes from experience; experience comes from bad judgment.

#5 DarkRayne   Members   -  Reputation: 122

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Posted 06 November 2011 - 11:13 PM


Hi, I am an equivalent of a junior in Devry's Game and Simulation programming degree. My knowledge in C++ is average and need to take more time to learn more. My question to all is, I reached a point in my classes where I am getting into Unreal UDK. I am really enjoying it, it looks so good. I have a few game ideas that I'd like to explore and possibly put out on an app store when I eventually get more of a grasp on it. Should I be gearing myself more to towards learning to use an engine or start from scratch like C# XNA Framework. Simple games seem to get the most attention. I just see learning C# as something that will be more beneficial because you can release something for mobile devices and make a little money at the same time. I dont see the Apple store to be very good unless you have hell of marketing and there is way too many apps to even get noticed. Just an opinion, Any suggestions/ advice from people who have been there done that ? All is appreciated


I couldn't help but notice the title of your post. The truth is there isn't really a "best route to go." If you enjoy what you are doing (e.g. programming), why would you want someone else to tell you what you "should" be doing? If you enjoy working with UDK, then continue with it. I really don't understand when someone says "I really enjoy doing this" but then they go around asking others to confirm their choices or to suggest a different choice. If you need others to confirm what you are doing then perhaps you really don't enjoy that activity and should spend more time thinking about what it is you want. I get the impression that you want to use your work as a means to make money or gain fame. There's nothing wrong with those, but there are easier ways to get them than with programming. Programming should be an end in itself--something you'd do even if no one paid you a single dime to do it or if no one ever praised your work. It sounds harsh, but that's the attitude of those who succeed in this business.



The ultimate question I am asking is, what will set me up for success as a student and a steady progression, an engine vs using a framework/Library? The goal is a profession in the game industry, whether it is with a company or trying to do something independently. Yes I enjoy programming, but say I enjoyed programming in an older language not widely used now a days ,that wouldnt set me up to be successful in this day. Or like going into a field like philosophy, yes you may like it, but you may not see much money or opportunity come your way. I really dont need anyone to confirm that I enjoy programming, I am confirming what has been successful for both learning and sales for students/small projects.

#6 dpadam450   Members   -  Reputation: 934

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Posted 06 November 2011 - 11:53 PM

Best thing you can do is just make a game/demo that is playable.

#7 ApochPiQ   Moderators   -  Reputation: 16079

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Posted 07 November 2011 - 12:50 AM

Focus on doing good work, and building up experience. The more tools you are familiar with, the better. A programmer in the games industry must never stop learning, and you need to demonstrate that you have both a solid command of existing technologies and the flexibility to learn new ones.

One word of caution: do not assume that your degree program is preparing you adequately for the games industry, no matter what tools they offer you. You will need a very solid and rich portfolio of work to get into the business, outside of the kinds of things you will be doing for class assignments. If you aren't already making and polishing games on your own, start now. Learn - and keep up with - the tricks of the trade, outside of school hours. You will absolutely need to work hard to hone your capabilities both in programming and verbal communication/presentation to impress prospective employers.

#8 DarkRayne   Members   -  Reputation: 122

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Posted 07 November 2011 - 04:01 AM

Focus on doing good work, and building up experience. The more tools you are familiar with, the better. A programmer in the games industry must never stop learning, and you need to demonstrate that you have both a solid command of existing technologies and the flexibility to learn new ones.

One word of caution: do not assume that your degree program is preparing you adequately for the games industry, no matter what tools they offer you. You will need a very solid and rich portfolio of work to get into the business, outside of the kinds of things you will be doing for class assignments. If you aren't already making and polishing games on your own, start now. Learn - and keep up with - the tricks of the trade, outside of school hours. You will absolutely need to work hard to hone your capabilities both in programming and verbal communication/presentation to impress prospective employers.



Much Appreciated , thank you, you've opened my mind up alot. I definitely need to find more time to get something off the ground on my own. This is a second career for me so I have a few things going against me like age and experience. But I will not let that stop me.
One last question, is there a good site that I can post my creations and get honest opinions on them. The only one that I have seen is Kongregate, but i notice alot are made for flash and with Unity. Any recommendations for places to post games made in UDK or for Windows.

#9 Jay_RIEStudios   Members   -  Reputation: 108

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Posted 08 November 2011 - 09:57 AM


Hi, I am an equivalent of a junior in Devry's Game and Simulation programming degree. My knowledge in C++ is average and need to take more time to learn more. My question to all is, I reached a point in my classes where I am getting into Unreal UDK. I am really enjoying it, it looks so good. I have a few game ideas that I'd like to explore and possibly put out on an app store when I eventually get more of a grasp on it. Should I be gearing myself more to towards learning to use an engine or start from scratch like C# XNA Framework. Simple games seem to get the most attention. I just see learning C# as something that will be more beneficial because you can release something for mobile devices and make a little money at the same time. I dont see the Apple store to be very good unless you have hell of marketing and there is way too many apps to even get noticed. Just an opinion, Any suggestions/ advice from people who have been there done that ? All is appreciated


I couldn't help but notice the title of your post. The truth is there isn't really a "best route to go." If you enjoy what you are doing (e.g. programming), why would you want someone else to tell you what you "should" be doing? If you enjoy working with UDK, then continue with it. I really don't understand when someone says "I really enjoy doing this" but then they go around asking others to confirm their choices or to suggest a different choice. If you need others to confirm what you are doing then perhaps you really don't enjoy that activity and should spend more time thinking about what it is you want. I get the impression that you want to use your work as a means to make money or gain fame. There's nothing wrong with those, but there are easier ways to get them than with programming. Programming should be an end in itself--something you'd do even if no one paid you a single dime to do it or if no one ever praised your work. It sounds harsh, but that's the attitude of those who succeed in this business.



Well said. I think people often are misled to think that Game Designer = Game Programmer. This is untrue, if you're more creative (like me) and you're not all that into coding as it's own art-form; then use an engine where the code is as minimal as possible. UDK has Kismet so you're not writing anything if you don't need to and Unity has a bunch of pre-made code. That means you can focus on graphics, music, story, cinema etc...

Go where your talent is and be true to yourself ;)




#10 Jesse7   Members   -  Reputation: 154

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Posted 12 November 2011 - 02:44 AM



Hi, I am an equivalent of a junior in Devry's Game and Simulation programming degree. My knowledge in C++ is average and need to take more time to learn more. My question to all is, I reached a point in my classes where I am getting into Unreal UDK. I am really enjoying it, it looks so good. I have a few game ideas that I'd like to explore and possibly put out on an app store when I eventually get more of a grasp on it. Should I be gearing myself more to towards learning to use an engine or start from scratch like C# XNA Framework. Simple games seem to get the most attention. I just see learning C# as something that will be more beneficial because you can release something for mobile devices and make a little money at the same time. I dont see the Apple store to be very good unless you have hell of marketing and there is way too many apps to even get noticed. Just an opinion, Any suggestions/ advice from people who have been there done that ? All is appreciated


I couldn't help but notice the title of your post. The truth is there isn't really a "best route to go." If you enjoy what you are doing (e.g. programming), why would you want someone else to tell you what you "should" be doing? If you enjoy working with UDK, then continue with it. I really don't understand when someone says "I really enjoy doing this" but then they go around asking others to confirm their choices or to suggest a different choice. If you need others to confirm what you are doing then perhaps you really don't enjoy that activity and should spend more time thinking about what it is you want. I get the impression that you want to use your work as a means to make money or gain fame. There's nothing wrong with those, but there are easier ways to get them than with programming. Programming should be an end in itself--something you'd do even if no one paid you a single dime to do it or if no one ever praised your work. It sounds harsh, but that's the attitude of those who succeed in this business.

Or like going into a field like philosophy, yes you may like it, but you may not see much money or opportunity come your way.

One of my friends studied philosophy and it's true what you say about the lack of opportunities. Of course, he knew that going into it and it's very likely that he'll never be rich nor will the majority of people ever understand his work. But he also knows that people who succeed don't get to choose their career but the career chooses you. What this means is that a person cannot help but do what they do because they would do it anyway whether they got paid to do it or not. That is why there is a notion of the "starving artist."
Good judgment comes from experience; experience comes from bad judgment.




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