@Hordeon: I was the one who suggested XNA, and I stand by that recommendation. If others have recommended it to you as well then that should really vouch for it being a good option.
I find that using XNA (with C#) gives a good balance of ease-of-use and power/flexibility (more so than, say, Unity). You still need to write a lot of your own code, but as Vincent_M points out you don't need to spend half your time messing around with content loading, external libs, etc. It really lets you get to the point and start creating something.
Well, I dislike unity v. much. 5% coding, 95% else. Unity is more for designers rather than real programmers. Also other engines are more flexible than unity. Maybe u know something similar to XNA, but for C++? Yep, you recommended it, but also another friend from skype.
I already did something like that, but I want to jump into actual programming instead of using pre-created programs. I used to create mods for Warcraft III but I stopped, also learning how to build games from 0 not from 10% is more valuable, since you will know all the structure and it is more valuable in general!
I suppose it depends what you consider "value". If you want to get a job in the industry some day then you will likely be working with an existing engine, unless you get a job on a tools or engine team, in which case you wouldn't be working directly on "games" per se. (I'm generalizing, mind you)
If you want to do things at lower level then I would suggest learning Direct3D and/or OpenGL, as well as an audio library like DirectSound or FMod. Maybe a Physics library like Bullet, too, depending on what you're trying to do.
For simple 2D games it's not too hard to wire something together using a combination of low-level libraries, though it can get pretty complicated once you get into 3D stuff (read: I hope you like math )
To some extent I like math. Also who gets paid better? The man who knows everything or the one who rules only one section?
I wanna be Lead Designer! I wanna become Inventor and Creator. Similar to god, except in Virtual place.
Also I might want to try anyways. Which programs/libraries/engines would you recommend for a 2D game?