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Is learning 3D modelling for programmer is TIme Waste?


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#1 kaktusas2598   Members   -  Reputation: 835

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Posted 02 March 2014 - 06:17 PM

Hello everyone, currently I am creating mario clonr game with SDL 2.0 and plan to create 2D RPG with SDL. After that I plan to learn some 3D game engine(Mayvbe Unity or C++ based, cause I use C++ mainly - u recommend me variant :) ) and then OpenGL.. And I am thinking if learning some 3d modelling soft like Blender for creating models for my future games is worth my time. Considering a fact, my dream is to be game programmer. Could 3D modelling skills is worth learning for my start as indie developer? Thanks, for any responses :)


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#2 minibutmany   Members   -  Reputation: 1531

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Posted 02 March 2014 - 06:50 PM


Could 3D modelling skills is worth learning for my start as indie developer?

Of course. There are going to be times when there wont be an artist around, or times when you are in a quick situation where you need to get something done fast. Also you might want some quickly made "placeholder" assets to use while the modeler is working on their more detailed version. Do you need to become and expert? Probably not, but some basic skills should serve you very well.


Edited by minibutmany, 02 March 2014 - 07:02 PM.

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#3 timothyjlaird   Members   -  Reputation: 404

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Posted 02 March 2014 - 08:49 PM

Even if you are doing indie games you will probably be on a (small) team. In a professional capacity you will be on the same team with artists developing a game...even if all you are doing is coding it always helps if you can better understand your co-workers jobs and needs. And obviously at some point you'll need to be able to get the art assets that 3d modellers make into the game itself...you'll have to code/support the tool chain that handles that. Making 3d models yourself and getting them into a working game engine is a good way to better understand that process. If nothing else you can make a few models and then write code to parse the files into vertex (position, normal, texture coords for example) and index buffers for OpenGL.


Edited by timothyjlaird, 02 March 2014 - 08:50 PM.


#4 Promit   Moderators   -  Reputation: 6341

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Posted 02 March 2014 - 08:57 PM

It's worth your time. It's helpful in creating test models. It's helpful to understand what your artists are actually doing. It's helpful to be able to test tweaks to artists' work. It's helpful to be able to work with prefab content. And eventually, it's helpful to be able to script these tools to output extra data needed for a graphics engine.



#5 Tutorial Doctor   Members   -  Reputation: 1523

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Posted 02 March 2014 - 09:01 PM

I come from a 3D modeling background, and I have used plenty of software. I am just now getting into programming (wish I had done this earlier). 

 

I can say that my knowing 3D modeling was the perfect prerequisite to me being able to actually create a nice looking game. In the past I have actually learned video editing in Adobe After Effects, as well as making music in Reason 4.0 and Garageband. I learned how to do art a long time ago. 

 

All of these abilities are perfect for being able to make a game by myself. However, to make a full polished game, it seems you just have to have other people. And if you are going to end up having other people eventually, you should go ahead and pick your specialization. I would suggest learning at least something about it though, so you can have a better understanding of what the people you perhaps might hire to do it really have to do. 

 

I have a tutorial on the basics of what 3D modeling is:

http://snapguide.com/guides/understand-3d-modeling/

 

Guerilla CG has some good introductory videos also:

Videos

 

I was looking through the videos, and it seems Andrew Price loves the videos. 


Edited by Tutorial Doctor, 02 March 2014 - 09:31 PM.

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#6 Serapth   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 5263

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Posted 02 March 2014 - 09:18 PM

It certainly is worth your time.  On the worst case, you create your own programmer "stand in" art.  In the best case, you are one of those rare individuals that can do both art and code.

 

I made a tutorial ( as a primarily programmer ), about creating game art in Blender, and I am certainly no artist, so hopefully it shows what can be done ( this is the end result of the series ).  The mastery part, thats the work of years, but you can become quite functional in a relatively short span of time.  When I saw tutorial, I suppose what I mean to say is, small novel...


Edited by Serapth, 02 March 2014 - 09:23 PM.


#7 TheChubu   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 3972

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Posted 02 March 2014 - 09:21 PM

It's worth your time. It's helpful in creating test models. It's helpful to understand what your artists are actually doing. It's helpful to be able to test tweaks to artists' work. It's helpful to be able to work with prefab content. And eventually, it's helpful to be able to script these tools to output extra data needed for a graphics engine.

Aaaand its helpful to understand the awful amount of talent and work that you need to put on a model for it to look good. Which is an insta +1 to your "Perspective of things" skill.


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#8 SeanMiddleditch   Members   -  Reputation: 4826

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Posted 02 March 2014 - 09:40 PM

Basic 3D modeling courses are required of all computer science students at the school I went to (DigiPen). At least one very large and quite well-known game company in the Seattle area (I don't feel it would appropriate to name which one publicly) have sent a large number of their engineers to modeling training courses put together by DigiPen just to make sure all the programmers knew how to use the tools (and the reverse for artists, so they have at least a high-level understanding of what engineering games is all about).

Our programmers have to use Max all the time. Some just to know how to make or modify test content without being blocked waiting for an artist. Some because their job requires them write Max plugins and integrate Max into the art pipeline tools. Some have to consume art-driven data into the gameplay mechanics, hook up physics information, or so on and have to know how it all works. Our programmers aren't building real content that is going to ship in the final product, but knowing the basics of how to use the same tools our artists use is invaluable.

#9 kaktusas2598   Members   -  Reputation: 835

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Posted 03 March 2014 - 02:20 AM

Thank you all for responses, I really aprreciate then. Now I think having free time after uni (studying Computer Engineering) I will pick some Blender tutorials at official Blender site (http://www.blender.org/support/tutorials/) and after that I will try to combine these skills with some engine or straight away with OpenGL. Can u guys recommend me some good C++ game engine? I was thinking about Unity 3D(I know it is not C++).


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#10 Buster2000   Members   -  Reputation: 1585

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Posted 03 March 2014 - 07:28 AM

Learning any new skill is NEVER a time waste.  3D modelling is always useful for making placeholder assets or tweeking values whilst your artist is working on other stuff. 



#11 Anri   Members   -  Reputation: 597

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Posted 04 March 2014 - 02:44 PM

Don't let it distract you from your goal to become a programmer, but modelling is a skill worth learning on the side. The tools for the modelling process are reasonably priced these days and the process is well documented.

 

Makes for a good hobby! ^_^



#12 kaktusas2598   Members   -  Reputation: 835

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Posted 04 March 2014 - 04:36 PM

Thanks, for responses :) That would u recommend me to learn after blender for creating full 3D game? I was thinking either jump to OpenGL and hard-code everything, or first try to use engine such as Ogre, learn engine principles and after that dive inti OpenGL... Which option would be better? I eventually plan to start learning OpenGL in max one year period.


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#13 Anri   Members   -  Reputation: 597

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Posted 04 March 2014 - 05:47 PM

You'll need to decide whether you want to program games or graphics.  With Unity you have an api specifically for developing games, whilst OpenGL is a long established graphics api standard.

 

Saying that, would it not be possible to use SDL with OpenGL?



#14 kaktusas2598   Members   -  Reputation: 835

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Posted 04 March 2014 - 05:54 PM

Yes, I could use SDl for Windowing and Input, OpenGL for Graphics and Blender for models :) I dont want unity because it's not C++ based.


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#15 Code_Grammer   Members   -  Reputation: 224

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Posted 04 March 2014 - 10:35 PM

Nope. The more expansive your toolset, the better. 



#16 Serapth   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 5263

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Posted 05 March 2014 - 10:58 AM


I dont want unity because it's not C++ based.

 

God I want to smash my head off a wall everytime I read something like this.



#17 kaktusas2598   Members   -  Reputation: 835

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Posted 05 March 2014 - 11:33 AM

 


I dont want unity because it's not C++ based.

 

God I want to smash my head off a wall everytime I read something like this.

 

Why? :) I am comfortable with C++ and want to use tools what are oriented with it, is it bad?


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#18 Serapth   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 5263

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Posted 05 March 2014 - 01:28 PM

 

 


I dont want unity because it's not C++ based.

 

God I want to smash my head off a wall everytime I read something like this.

 

Why? smile.png I am comfortable with C++ and want to use tools what are oriented with it, is it bad?

 

 

In some cases, no.  In most, especially in beginner game forums, yes.

 

 

I dont honestly know your skill levels, or reasoning behind preferring C++, so in your case it might make perfect sense.

 

In the majority of cases I read something like that, its generally a person making decisions using knowledge they dont possess (group/hive think at it's best).  In many, possibly most cases, the programming language of choice should be among the least important factors on choosing an engine.  Now, requiring a C/C++ interface so you can expand the engine, that makes a lot of sense for a pro dev studio, but frankly Unity has that.


Edited by Serapth, 05 March 2014 - 01:29 PM.


#19 frob   Moderators   -  Reputation: 19820

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Posted 05 March 2014 - 03:11 PM

 

 


I dont want unity because it's not C++ based.

 

God I want to smash my head off a wall everytime I read something like this.

 

Why? smile.png I am comfortable with C++ and want to use tools what are oriented with it, is it bad?

 

 

I also dislike it.

 

C++ is just one tool. Some people are content with just one tool in their toolkit. These people typically do not excel.

 

Personally I recommend that beginners pick up five languages, the most critical being C++, Java, and C#, the less critical being Python and Perl. I also recommend you pick up a few other side langauges along the way, such as HTML, JavaScript, SQL, HLSL, or whatever interests you.

 

I have seen people who recommend developers continue to learn at least one new programming language every year, which seems a good pace to ensure you are constantly exposed to new ideas.

 

In some recent threads about what people dislike about their languages, I saw most of the dislikes gravitated toward features that were less-frequently used in games but frequently used in other industries. Though I routinely use around 10 languages, am fairly expert in three languages, and over my career have worked in probably around 50 different languages, I don't DISLIKE any of them. Each of them is a tool, each designed for some set of goals. The tools were designed to solve specific problems. If one tool is inappropriate I can trivially switch to another that is better. If no tool is better suited, I can easily build my own.

 

The industry has more than enough people already who feel their partial understanding of C++ is enough to see them them through the apocalypse, they need no more languages. These people are currently struggling to maintain relevancy, either that or struggling to learn additional languages.


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#20 Serapth   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 5263

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Posted 05 March 2014 - 04:44 PM


Personally I recommend that beginners pick up five languages, the most critical being C++, Java, and C#, the less critical being Python and Perl.

 

Perl? 

 

Is it just a matter of a character building exercise?  ;)

 

This would make an extremely interesting meta-thread.  What five language would (experienced) developers recommend (new) developers learn...

 

Off the top of my head I think I would go, in order...

 

Lua, C# or Java, JavaScript, a functional ( LISP, F#, Scala, others... ) language, C++.  I might swap C++ and the functional language in priority, but I honestly think the experience of learning functional programming would make for a better rounded programmer than C++, especially after having learned Java or C#.  However, as functional constructs are added to C# ( and to a lesser degree Java and C++ ) , the value of learning another language just to get your head around functional programming loses a great deal of value.

 

That said, I dont consider many domain specific languages in that list.  For example HTML, CSS, SQL, HLSL...  I suppose I should, but really, those are the kind of things you learn as you use/need them.  At the end of the day, if I had a time machine and could go back and alter the way I learned things I would have a) spent a lot longer in BASIC or PASCAL before moving on b) learned LISP earlier before my brain developed into a C formed mindset.  Also kinda wish I learned Smalltalk, but every time I tried, the tools and performance on consumer hardware was just appallingly shitty.


Edited by Serapth, 05 March 2014 - 04:49 PM.





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