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How on earth do I start a game?!


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#1 Lilxtiger   Members   -  Reputation: 103

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Posted 19 June 2013 - 10:02 AM

So I was wondering. How and what do I do to start a game? Do I need anything specific other than a language and what do they do in relation to eachother? Also how do I import sounds and sprites? I don't know any of this and this is just a hobby for me because I have way too much spare time.



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#2 Waterlimon   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2562

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Posted 19 June 2013 - 10:15 AM

1. Pick a language and learn to use it

2. Start making a game

3. Make some general framework code to get some structure

4. Use google to find what tools (libraries, engines) there are to do input/output/processing you dont want/cant do yourself

5. Integrate them to your code, use them to implement the features you wanted

6. goto 3


o3o


#3 __SKYe   Members   -  Reputation: 1038

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Posted 19 June 2013 - 10:25 AM

And i really advise to spend a good amount of time on step 1, and getting a good grasp on the language (whichever you choose), before jumping to step 2.



#4 minibutmany   Members   -  Reputation: 1613

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Posted 19 June 2013 - 10:54 AM


And i really advise to spend a good amount of time on step 1, and getting a good grasp on the language (whichever you choose), before jumping to step 2.

This is important. Programming isn't really hard, but it isn't easy either. It takes a little time to grasp. Learning to code is much more than just memorizing commands(which actually isn't even so important anymore with IDEs and Google). 

 

Importing sounds and images is going to be different depending on your language. In java, you simply drag the files into a folder in your project and about 1 - 3 lines of code makes into a usable resource. 

 

Many people make their games without any other files than their code. Some of your first projects are just going to be a bunch of simple shapes moving around, so you wont need to import any resources.

 

On picking a language,

Some people are going to tell you that C++ is the best. Most big game projects are made in C++. C++ is a very good and powerful language, but it is going to take you a lot longer to learn the basics before you can make anything that resembles a game. If you are eager to get started with games right away you may have a better time learning Java, Python, C#, JavaScript, Processing, or Visual Basic. You could also try going code-free with GameMaker Studio.


Stay gold, Pony Boy.

#5 Waterlimon   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2562

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Posted 19 June 2013 - 11:08 AM

2. Can be a part of 1.

 

Just expect the first games to not be that great.

 

Start off with text based games because if you go for more complex things youll start needing external libraries and tools which can be difficult to set up and use correctly, greatly slowing down your progress.


o3o


#6 GameCreator   Members   -  Reputation: 755

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Posted 19 June 2013 - 11:46 AM

To be honest, you don't even need a language to start. There are good game makers out there like Construct 2 where you can start off with just changing settings and only later adding code whenever you feel it necessary.

 

That said, feel free to learn a language (I would suggest C++) if you really do have a lot of time on your hands.



#7 foxefde   Members   -  Reputation: 144

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Posted 19 June 2013 - 02:11 PM

1.Try C++ , just learn to create something like  tetris / ping-pong  etc.DON'T skip  pointers,dynamic memory and classes,because these are very important in creating game.

 

Then you choose;if you want to learn programming + to create a game:

 

1.Try SFML,then opengl        or      2.SDL/SFML,then directx

 

 

But remember,programming is not a joke,you will need a desire to create a game to be able to learn it !

 

If you want just to create a game,after C++ try Unity3D,it's a nice tool for creating games ;] ,HOWEVER,you will not be allowed to sell that game(if you are thinking about a serious game ),it's just for fun.Gl



#8 MarekKnows.com   Members   -  Reputation: 486

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 06:51 AM

I've got step-by-step instructions on how to create games on my website www.MarekKnows.com.  

 

You'll want to start simple by first figuring out how to render an image on the screen.  Then figure out how to move it, and then add some game logic.  Start simple with something like Pong and work your way up.


---
Free C++, OpenGL, and Game Development Video Tutorials @
www.MarekKnows.com
Play my free games: Ghost Toast, Zing, Jewel Thief


#9 Nausea   Members   -  Reputation: 257

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 07:42 AM

If you already know some basic c++ and feel somewhat comfortable in it you could go to sdltutorials.com for pretty in depth tutorials and it will get you started with SDL. 



#10 Josh Petrie   Moderators   -  Reputation: 3116

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 10:03 AM

I've got step-by-step instructions on how to create games on my website www.MarekKnows.com.  

 

You'll want to start simple by first figuring out how to render an image on the screen.  Then figure out how to move it, and then add some game logic.  Start simple with something like Pong and work your way up.

Which seem to be behind some kind of complicated paywall / download credit system? This post reads too much like an advertisement for my taste.  Please refrain from such content-free posts in the future.


Josh Petrie | Core Tools Engineer, 343i | Microsoft C++ MVP


#11 minibutmany   Members   -  Reputation: 1613

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 01:24 PM


1.Try SFML,then opengl        or      2.SDL/SFML,then directx

I don't feel there is any reason to move on to openGL or directX after using SDL or SFML. There are quite a few successful projects made in SFML, such as Kill Fun Yeah. A move from one library to another shouldn't be done unless you feel that SDL or SFML arent serving you right.


If you want just to create a game,after C++ try Unity3D,it's a nice tool for creating games ;] ,HOWEVER,you will not be allowed to sell that game(if you are thinking about a serious game ),it's just for fun.Gl

This is not true. You can sell the games you make with the free version of Unity, as long your profits do not exceed about $100,000, in which case your will need to purchase Unity pro, which should be affordable for anyone making over 100,000.


Stay gold, Pony Boy.

#12 Lilxtiger   Members   -  Reputation: 103

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 02:44 PM

But the thing is I've checked out C++ languages. And I'm wondering. How do I use this to create a game? I know that I can use these commands to imput text and algorithms but the tutorial doesn't even tell me how to use this in an application. And how are game engines used in game making? And is C++ totally different from things like Python in types?



#13 Aldacron   GDNet+   -  Reputation: 3179

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 09:46 PM

But the thing is I've checked out C++ languages. And I'm wondering. How do I use this to create a game? I know that I can use these commands to imput text and algorithms but the tutorial doesn't even tell me how to use this in an application. And how are game engines used in game making? And is C++ totally different from things like Python in types?

 

You're trying to run before you can even crawl! Those are all great questions, but they require more than a few lines to adequately answer. What's more, you're going to need a basic set of knowledge to be able to properly understand them. I highly recommend you store these questions away somewhere (don't forget them!) and dive in to learning how to actually use a programming language, be it C++, Python or whatever. As you learn to write simple programs, you'll eventually start to understand how everything comes together to make an application. As you become more and more comfortable with the language, you'll be able to make more advanced programs. Eventually, you'll be ready for some simple games and that will lead you to understand how game engines are used to make games. At some point, you'll also find that you're able to learn other languages more easily than the first one you learned, then you can start to make comparisons between them (like C++ and Python).

In short, take it one step at a time. Start with the basics and one day you'll be able to answer many of your questions yourself. For those you can't, you'll be more equipped to understand the answers others give you.



#14 RobTheBloke   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2342

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 06:59 AM

I've got step-by-step instructions on how to create games on my website www.MarekKnows.com. 

 

You know, there are some of us here who have been working in the games industry for 15 years or more, and are more than happy to help people without asking for credit card details in return. What alarms me somewhat, is that from the tiny fragments of code you can view as thumbnails on your site, your programming ability would appear to be adequate for windows app development, but it is immediately apparent your experience of games development is severly lacking. To then have the bare faced cheek to come into these forums, attempt to drive traffic to your site, for what is essentially a set of beginner tutorials written by a beginner beggars belief.



#15 RobTheBloke   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2342

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 07:12 AM

So I was wondering. How and what do I do to start a game? Do I need anything specific other than a language and what do they do in relation to eachother? Also how do I import sounds and sprites? I don't know any of this and this is just a hobby for me because I have way too much spare time.

 

As others have said, learn the language first. Once you've got the basics of your language of choice down, it might be worth looking into SDL or XNA. Those should contain all of the basic hardware interfaces you'll need (for sound, joypads, graphics etc), but have a large enough community behind them that any questions you have should be easily answered by their respective communities. Start simple, take small iterative steps, have fun, and ask questions when you get stuck ;)



#16 Barzai   GDNet+   -  Reputation: 640

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 08:49 AM

Well, I'm not an expert or anything, but here's how I did my first project:

 

Figure out how to put a box on the screen

Figure out how to make that box move based on keyboard inputs

Figure out how to make that box know when it runs into another box (harder than it may seem at first glance)

Figure out how to make a box move on its own

Figure out how to make a box move based on the position of another box

Turn that into pong

 

It's nothing pretty, but it taught me some pretty good basic stuff that you see all the time in games.  Now I can use that stuff when I try to write nicer games.



#17 Lilxtiger   Members   -  Reputation: 103

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 10:55 AM

But the thing I'm wondering about is what do I need to make a game... APIs, game engines, libraries etc to make a very basic game. (And whether I even need them... it's 2D btw.)



#18 __SKYe   Members   -  Reputation: 1038

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 12:06 PM

After you learn a language, you could then begin learning SDL or SFML, since they have pretty much everything you need to make a game.

You could also start directly using OpenGL & Win32 API (if you're use Windows) or DirectX, but these are much difficult to learn (without any prior knowledge of game development) than those mentioned above.



#19 MikeDodgers   Members   -  Reputation: 141

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 07:24 PM

I agree with a lot of mentioned here.  But I think as mentioned the learning the language you want to program your game in is key.  Some say get to work on rendering and animating etc... but what about looking at the basics;

Variables and data types

Classes and Objects

Conditional Code, If, Case, While, For

and so on.

 

C++ is a good language but it is far from the easiest language to learn.  C, Java, C# are a little more forgiving than C++ (as in if you make mistakes, accessing memory not yours can get you into big trouble) and lead you nicely into C++ when the time comes to push things further.

 

But also one can learn about the way a game works, using GameMaker can simply enable you to see the game come together, wonderful tool for prototyping but even releasing the game itself.  Most of what I have read here should get you inspired to go further into games and I wish you all the luck.

 

Troubles, just ask there are many people here who are willing to help for nothing and


Thanks
Michael

#20 Khaiy   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 1342

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 08:50 PM

But the thing I'm wondering about is what do I need to make a game... APIs, game engines, libraries etc to make a very basic game. (And whether I even need them... it's 2D btw.)

 

What you need is what's already been said: a language that you know and a compiler/IDE in which to use it. And then, you'll need experience coding. You need nothing else. You can and in many cases should use various APIs, engines, libraries, etc., but you don't need any particular one. Which ones are even options depends on what specifically it is you'd like to make.

 

From the information you've provided so far, I'd say SFML is a great library to use. C++ is fine, though I think you'll get off the ground more quickly with C#.

 

Beyond this your question is pretty vague, which may be why the answers you are getting don't appear to be quite what you're looking for. If you want to code your own game (as opposed to using game-making software) you're going to be building just about everything I think you mean by "game" by yourself and out of nothing. Have you designed any specifics of what you want your game to be yet? If not, doing so will really help you break down the tasks that you still need to do.

 

A good first step might be to open a window. Does your game use a GUI-style menu? Sketch out some ideas on how you would do that using your language of choice and any libraries you plan to use. How you start a game is the same as how you make any other part of it: you identify a task that needs to be done, and you figure out a way to code it up. It's always overwhelming at the start, and getting to work is the only way through.

 

 


but the tutorial doesn't even tell me

 

This strongly suggests to me that a 2D game might be a bit advanced of a project for you right now. It's not that you can't do it, it's more that people tend to radically underestimate how much stuff there is to do to make the game they're imagining. You'll know your experience level better than any of us. Have you done much coding yet? If not, a simpler game might help you get a handle on the game-making process without seeming so daunting.


Edited by Khaiy, 22 June 2013 - 01:54 PM.





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