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I'm trying to make a sticky-worthy post in the For Beginners forum...


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#1 Casey Hardman   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2229

Posted 04 February 2013 - 10:15 PM

As previously mentioned in another thread I made a while back, I'm interested in seeing some good documentation in the For Beginners section.  However, it seems like the moderators and staff are very busy making GameDev as awesome as it's shaping up to be in 2013, so I figured I'd take some initiative myself and try to get the ball rolling.

 

So, I'm trying to make an explanatory, newb-friendly post in the For Beginners section, with answers to frequently asked questions, like "How do I be an idea guy for a game studio?" and "Which programming language should I start with?" and "Which engine should I use?".

 

Also, another goal for the thread was to explain in minor, not-very-overwhelming detail, what the major fields in game development are, how they do what they do, etc.

 

I've written some about game programmers and artists and a bit about writers...but I'm pretty sure I'm going to need some help here.  I pretty much have no experience with sound effects or music, let alone music as it applies to games, and I'm not a master at anything game development related.

 

...but I do have a lot of time to devote, so I figured that makes me at least eligible to 'get the ball rolling' here so more experienced and knowledgeable people can contribute.

 

Also, I put red text in the post for things that aren't finished/I want help with.  I plan on removing it eventually, when the thread is ready.

 

Anyway, here's the post so far.  I'm going to try to put it in a spoiler box for convenience, because it's pretty big at the moment:

 

Spoiler

 

So obviously, I still have work to do, and I plan on editing that post a lot before I'll consider it extensive enough to call it finished.  As well as that, the formatting still feels a bit off, but...I've been at this post for like an hour, so I'll get to that later.

 

Hopefully, we can make this an awesome, extensive, and greatly helpful post that will be a friendly, easy to understand welcome to beginning game developers.

 

Thanks to anyone who can offer help!

 

EDIT #1: Improved formatting with rollup tags and horizontal rules



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#2 Michael Tanczos   Senior Staff   -  Reputation: 5437

Posted 05 February 2013 - 11:35 AM

Wow damn.   I think we need to get these types of things into an article as well though once we get the article system up and running again (soon if all goes well).

 

There is a lot of potential to help beginners and pretty much everyone else if we can break things down in a logical fashion.   The hardest part about big resources like this is getting people to the information they want to know.



#3 Casey Hardman   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2229

Posted 05 February 2013 - 04:59 PM

Wow damn.

I suppose that's a good reaction lol

 

There is a lot of potential to help beginners and pretty much everyone else if we can break things down in a logical fashion.   The hardest part about big resources like this is getting people to the information they want to know.

Alright, I gave it a shot with some new formatting, using the rollup tags to make a sort of overview where you can see all of the questions at once, and click 'Show' on whichever question you want.  That way, people don't have to scroll past all of the other questions, even if they aren't interested in the answer.

 

I also used the rollup tags in the Resources section, because I figured it'll end up being pretty big soon enough and this'll keep it clean (I hope).

 

Do you think this helps, or do you have any other suggestions?



#4 frob   Moderators   -  Reputation: 22263

Posted 05 February 2013 - 05:39 PM

My suggestion would be to go through the past 500 or even 1000+ posts, figure out the actual questions that are asked most often, and turn those into the sticky FAQ.

 

That way we make sure they really are the frequently asked questions.

 

Also several of the items you brought up are answered in different forum faqs.  Employment and breaking in questions have a great set of answers in the Breaking In forum FAQ.  You might want to point to those rather than re-answering them.


Check out my book, Game Development with Unity, aimed at beginners who want to build fun games fast.

Also check out my personal website at bryanwagstaff.com, where I write about assorted stuff.


#5 Casey Hardman   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2229

Posted 13 February 2013 - 09:16 PM

Sorry for the delay.  I'm still working on this post, it's just becoming more complex than I thought it would be.  I still plan on fixing it up more, and hopefully making it efficiently organized.

 

 

Thanks for the suggestions, frob.

 

My suggestion would be to go through the past 500 or even 1000+ posts, figure out the actual questions that are asked most often, and turn those into the sticky FAQ.
 
That way we make sure they really are the frequently asked questions.

That's kind of how I got the questions I'm already answering (or trying to answer): by looking at the For Beginner's forum for the past year, or however long it's been, and seeing the same questions cropping up over and over again.

It seems like a lot of For Beginner's questions are either "help me fix my programming issues" (which is too specific to include in a FAQ), or a "where do I start?" kind of thread.

Though now that I think about it, I'm starting to branch off into more of an expansive introduction to game development in general, as well as answering some of the common questions ("what programming language should I use", "which engine should I use", etc.)  But I think that's kind of necessary to give beginners and "idea guys" a solid grasp on game development.

 

Also several of the items you brought up are answered in different forum faqs.  Employment and breaking in questions have a great set of answers in the Breaking In forum FAQ.  You might want to point to those rather than re-answering them.

I know I've re-answered some questions that may already have answers somewhere in the depths of GameDev.net, but I felt certain questions had to be answered in a more 'introductory' way, to prevent confusion or explanations that were too technical.  That's why I gave it a shot myself, to try and explain things on a more fundamental, non-extensive level, and then link to resources that get closer to the core and more technical.

Just thought I'd mention that...

 

Anyway, I have looked through the Breaking In FAQs at your suggestion, and I found some resources that I plan on including later.  Thanks for the note!



#6 wintertime   Members   -  Reputation: 1800

Posted 15 February 2013 - 01:54 PM

It seems like a lot of For Beginner's questions are either "help me fix my programming issues" (which is too specific to include in a FAQ), or a "where do I start?" kind of thread.

I think you should include these when they get asked so often. Even if its just telling them to actually read all those error messages they get word by word, read the documentation of their compiler and linker to learn what they tell and how to fix them and tell them they need to learn how to debug their programs theirself and if they still dont know further should actually quote those error messages so others dont have to guess. For the second maybe just tell them to either start learning a programming language or try to use some gamemaking toolkit if that suits them more and then link to some longer guide?






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