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Member Since 02 Sep 2012
Offline Last Active Oct 07 2013 03:37 PM

#4988096 Absolute beginner question regarding APIs, frameworks, libraries...

Posted by Kreldin on 08 October 2012 - 02:11 PM

Hi, I've been learning C++ for some time now and I would like to make a basic game. But I have some questions about game programming in general - I really don't know the difference between (or the uses of) things like DirectX, OpenGL, etc.

From what I understand, DirectX and OpenGL are APIs... what exactly is an API, why/when would you use them for a game? What is something like XNA, then?

Further on, from what I understand, things like SDL and SFML are libraries - how are they separate from things like DirectX and OpenGL, are they used together/in conjunction? When would you use one over the other?

Finally, there's Unity, which from what I understand is an engine. So can you just use something like Unity to make a game and ignore the rest?