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Anyone up for Tutoring?


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#1 Safixk   Members   -  Reputation: 106

Posted 04 November 2012 - 07:44 PM

Hello There!
Believe it or not I'm 13(as of two weeks ago) and I have had experience with your typical Web Development knowledge(HTML, CSS, PHP, MySQL, etc..)
And right now I'm looking for a bigger challenge: Game Development - Thus why I've come to the wonderful GameDev community to see if anyone would be willing to share their knowledge
I've tried everything from Books to Online Courses - Nothing worked because they didn't achieve what I was looking for, and some of them where awfully paced and I couldn't learn anything that they taught (leading me to drop out) - But mainly because when I had a question outside of the FAQ's, well, there was no one for me to use as a recourse.
I want to start developing in C++ because it seems like the perfect fit for making games, it's lightweight, fast, and not too hardware intensive.
But if you think I should start learning something prior to it, another flavor, or language even, just tell me where I can learn it.
I've got email, skype, and can acquire anything else.
So if you're up to it, just reply to the thread with some contact info, and maybe a project that you've made before, and I'll PM you according to my need.
Thanks for any and all help.

EDIT: Nevermind - I just found something that might just cut it for me

Sponsor:

#2 slayemin   Members   -  Reputation: 2043

Posted 05 November 2012 - 10:45 AM

Hi, welcome to gamedev.net :)

I'm 30 years old and I got my start in programming when I was 16 (using QBasic). I also wanted to make games, like Commander Keen. Way back then, I didn't have the internet, so I had to spend a lot of time doing trial and error. It was more boring than Commander Keen, so I didn't progress very quickly. Driven by my passion to program a game, I took an introductory programming class in highschool. They taught visual basic. I thought I was really good at it, but in truth, I struggled with anything more complicated than an if statement. The next class I took was C++. I *really* struggled with this class. I didn't have a very good attention to detail at the time, so I'd commonly forget a semi-colon or use an "=" in my if statements and get a hundred plus errors with confusing error messages. I did not even understand functions and how they worked for the whole semester, let alone pointers. But I did understand arrays. Man, I was dumb. C++ is very unfriendly for new programmers!

So, how did I get to where I am today? The next semester in high school, I decided to take the next programming course which was more advanced. I barely passed the previous class with a C-. There was one other kid who was as dumb as I was and he decided to retake the class instead of advancing. I knew that I'd really have to buckle down and focus extra hard on actually learning programming, starting with functions. I went home, sat down at my computer, and was determined to spend however long it took to figure out how functions worked. What were these mysterious things I was supposed to know? What is a "parameter"? What is an "output"? Why can a parameter also be an output? What's the difference between passing by reference and passing by value? I spent all day using trial and error on functions, and recorded the results and looked for patterns of consistency. I wasn't very good at it, but at the end of the day, I had actually learned functions!!! It was a major break through. I found that if I sat down and dedicated myself to figuring something out, I could do it. All of the things about programming which confused me at the time, suddenly just became a day of sitting down and figuring it out, no matter what it took. Soon enough, I was doing great in the more "advanced" programming class. It's not that I was smarter than anyone else (probably the opposite), I just had to spend more time behind the scenes figuring it out for myself. So, what's the lesson here? Learn how to study, especially when you don't *have* to do it. All of the tutorials and books you're rejecting are probably good sources of programming knowledge. You don't need a tutor, you just need to learn how to sit down and start studying. (and, what would an online tutor do? They'd just write more tutorials to guide your learning, but the problem is most likely in your ability to consume the material)

Here's another tip of advice: Video games are software. Software has to be created by programmers. Programming games is just a subset of programming software, so if you see articles on programming and decide not to read it because it has nothing to do with games, then you're wrong. If you get good at programming in general, you get good at programming games. So, read those articles on how to design your software architecture. Learn how to write code to interact with a database. Discover how those datastructures and algorithms work. These all become tools in your toolbelt which you can pull out and use on your game programming project!

Another tip: Choose C# instead of C++. It's very similar to C++ in sytax, but its a lot friendlier for first time programmers. You don't have to worry about memory management and pointers right away! Once you get good at C#, you can play around with C++ and you'll see how easy it is to shoot yourself in the foot.

Last tip: Choose super simple projects!!! start with a "Guess my number" game, and then try Tic Tac Toe, then maybe pong. Your focus is to learn how to program and to have fun at the same time by making games, but your focus shouldn't be on making games and treating programming as a necessary evil.

Final tip: practice, practice, practice. When you think you've had enough, write more code. Break new ground, learn things which are new to you. Try stuff which is challenging to you. Keep pushing the boundaries of your abilities. If you focus and work hard, you can become a legendary programmer like John Carmack, Tim Sweeny, Edsgar Dijkstra, John Von Neuman, Alan Turing, etc. To get really good at programming, its going to take years and years of time investment.

Eric Nevala

Currently a self-employed indie game dev


#3 game of thought   Members   -  Reputation: 212

Posted 05 November 2012 - 12:24 PM

I started almost exactly when you did in terms of age, and chose c++ and i had some web experience amd some as2. Do not choose c++, i found it irritating because of confusing errors i did not understamd(how ever i discovered later the tutorial missed out a lot of stuff that was important, namely functions and classes). I believe you should do python, followed by pygame. This is very easy, and i was never confused by it, but one thing you need to bear in mind is that it is quite slow when you reach true 3d(not like doom as much).

#4 Safixk   Members   -  Reputation: 106

Posted 07 November 2012 - 11:16 AM

Thanks for your answers guys - After lurking around a tiny bit more - I found another post, which linked me to a page... And I've decided not to work with C++ for quite a while.

#5 booomji   Members   -  Reputation: 247

Posted 08 November 2012 - 04:09 AM

safixk,
I see you already found what you are looking for but will recommend www.gameinstitute.com none the less.
The mentors know their work,are extremely helpful and it's set-up so that you dont have to invest any more than you can handle / afford.

So, what's the lesson here? Learn how to study, especially when you don't *have* to do it. All of the tutorials and books you're rejecting are probably good sources of programming knowledge. You don't need a tutor, you just need to learn how to sit down and start studying. (and, what would an online tutor do? They'd just write more tutorials to guide your learning, but the problem is most likely in your ability to consume the material)

Here's another tip of advice: Video games are software. Software has to be created by programmers. Programming games is just a subset of programming software, so if you see articles on programming and decide not to read it because it has nothing to do with games, then you're wrong. If you get good at programming in general, you get good at programming games. So, read those articles on how to design your software architecture. Learn how to write code to interact with a database. Discover how those datastructures and algorithms work. These all become tools in your toolbelt which you can pull out and use on your game programming project!


Golden. This has been my personal experience as well.

b




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