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Member Since 04 Jan 2013
Offline Last Active Jan 27 2016 07:07 PM

Topics I've Started

Things you MUST learn before coding in games?

16 January 2016 - 03:16 PM

Hi!  Just looking for some tips...

I've been learning to program for about a year now, but I come from an audio focused background.  My experience includes making a simple game in Unity using C# and some audio specific programs in C++.  I'm trying to focus more on indie game development now, so I was hoping to broaden my knowledge of programming here.  This would cover all aspects of game development.  I do not need to write my own game engine as I am content with Unity and Unreal for my purposes. 

Specifically I'm looking for a list of key topics to read up on that anyone who intends to make their own games should know about.  For e.g. I know nothing about 3D math because I'm able to build visual geometry using the Unity or Unreal editors without code - I'm not sure whether I ought to learn about it?  Other topics I don't know much about might be general software development concepts or conventions.  An example of something I had trouble with coming from an audio background was understanding how to #include header files, and how linkers work.  I felt when learning about these subjects I was lacking more basic fundamental knowledge, and found it hard to grasp how all of my individual code files were working together.  I'm fine with programming logic, but I could really use tips on how to structure my code according to accepted conventions.  

Anything you can think of that I should know about is worth suggesting.  I'll be able to read up on the subjects in my own time if you could simply suggest keywords to read up on and why the topic is important.  Thanks!

How Important is an Honours Degree in Games/Audio Industries?

14 January 2016 - 09:46 AM

 I know there are a good few game audio legends on this forum - it's the pros that I'd really like to hear from today.  Also would love to hear from those of you who are self-employed in the game or audio industries.  

I completed my bachelors degree and am now half way through my honours year, but I feel like I want to drop out.  I've been absolutely killing myself over this decision for months. What I hope to gain from your responses is some idea of the difference between an unclassified bachelors degree and an honours degree in both the games and audio industries.  I'm more interested in being self-employed presently, but the decision to complete the degree would be based on the doors that it will open for me in terms of employment.

Just to give a little background on my thoughts, I think that I could achieve more in terms of knowledge, skills, and portfolio content through developing my own personal projects than I could through completing my honours degree (and honours project).  I feel highly motivated to get started on my own projects right away whereas my university work makes me feel quite demotivated in contrast.  My own projects would include building a website for my work, creating a music/sfx pack for game audio (to be sold through Unreal and Unity stores), at least one DAW plugin (to be developed for Reason but possibly in other formats), and indie games (longer term projects).  For the purposes of this conversation, please assume that my personal project work will be to a high standard!  My thoughts are that in undertaking these personal projects successfully that I would have a pretty good portfolio that would make up for my lack of honours classification.  99% of people I've asked advise me to finish the degree to be on the safe side, but I've never felt that any of these people really knew my industries or the demand for practical skills, showreels and creative passion.  Subsequently I doubt myself because 99% people are telling me something I don't agree with; it's hard to tell whether I'm being blind to a bigger picture or not...  Still, it seems the most popular argument I'm given in favour of finishing the degree is that "I'm nearly there - it's only another 4 months", but to that I say it's an entire thesis that will take up all my time and energy for the next 4 months; it won't benefit me to do the thesis anymore than being able to say "Hey employers, I have an honours degree!" will.  

So if you were an employer, would you want to see my name next to an honours degree, or next to real products, or both?  Am I going to mess up my life by dropping out?  

MIDI file experts needed!

24 September 2015 - 07:33 AM

Hey dudes.  I've sent this in an email to the MMA, but really didn't know where else to post it.  Pretty desperate for some insight...

 I have written some code in C++ that uses this open source parsing library:  http://midifile.sapp.org/

The code takes a MIDI file as an input and is able to return the number of tracks and the number of events in each track, as well as the timestamps for any of these events.  In some cases however, the input MIDI file causes an error, as the code interprets the MIDI file as having zero tracks and zero events.  The functions reporting this info are part of the external library.   Any MIDI files that have caused this error in my code are not corrupted, as they are still playable in other software.  

I've discovered that by importing a MIDI file that works correctly with my code into external software (such as power tab editor, muse score etc.), and then exporting from said software to a new MIDI file, that the new MIDI file will cause the error.  So in other words, I have two MIDI files; one works in my code, and one doesn't.  They are exactly the same except for whatever change occurred in the file during the import/export process of the external software.  I can send these files by email to anyone who'd know what to do with them.  

I've opened the two MIDI files side by side in notepad; the only difference I can spot straight away is the absence of square brackets used in the error prone file.  That said, it's all gibberish to me...

Any ideas what is going on?  


MIDI in games

03 July 2015 - 09:55 AM

Is MIDI used much in games anymore?  I have a game concept I intend to create that will involve using realtime processing of MIDI to create the music in game.  I'm just not sure what I'm going to do when it comes to the sound synthesis, because most default MIDI playback sounds awful.  I recall learning that older consoles used hardware chips for sound synthesis, but I don't know if consoles still use hardware that can play back MIDI. I fear this means coding a whole sound engine...


Just looking to start a general discussion with this one :)

2D Platform C++ Templates?

03 July 2015 - 07:25 AM

Hey!  Forgive me if this is a stupid question, as I'm quite new to some of this.   Is there such a thing as a C++ template for a 2D sidescroller style game that exists in the form of an open source Visual Studio project?  I've found something similar in Unreal 4 which integrates with Visual Studio, but I'm specifically after some code I can download, build in VS, and be running a basic sidescroller game inside the VS IDE with no other programs.  

A further note is that I'm stuck with a really crappy computer right now, which is partly why I'm not currently using Unreal.  My programming experience is eclectic, and I had trouble setting up SFML, so this is why a pre-made VS project would be perfect for me in this case.