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Sinclair

Need Some Insight And Guidance

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Firstly i`m a newbie. About as newbie as one can be. I have a life dream of learning to program and develop games. The problem is i truly don`t know where to begin. I haven`t learnt any language yet and that is probably my first big decision (and it`s a hard one). Some people say learning VB is a good first step, but i`m told that is i`m serious i should go right into c++. is java an option. And what is this about directx? Is it a whole other language or what. Basically i would really appreciate any advice about where to start (books, sites,...) so that i`ll be on my way without buying 20 bad books and/or software packages. plz feel free to e-mail me. sinclair393@hotmail.com

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Hi.

C++ is the language that I would recommend for you. Direct X is what is called an API. Basically, it is an extention of c++ which allows you to use graphics.

The book I used to learn C++ is Learn C++ in 21 Days. It is a decent book. There probably are better ones out there. Hopefully someone else in this forum can suggest a book. There are tons of C++ tutorials online and you can find a lot at this site. I would recommend learning C++ well. Understand concepts regarding pointers and classes exceptionally well.

Once you learn C++, you should get in my opinion, Tricks of the Windows Programming Gurus. That will show you how to use directx to use graphics. (I believe there are 2 editions to that book so look to get the 2nd one). That book has a C++ primer in it but I really dont think it would be enough for you.

Be patient though, cause it may be some time b4 you are able to create 3d games. And go slowly too, even once u get into making directx games. Make a simple game like pong first.

Hope I have been helpful.

Dan.




Feel free to email me at NYYanks432@hotmail.com if you have any questions

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look at the top under "Resources" and click on "For Beginners"
I do not know much java or any VB but I say start
with C or C++.

books:
Sam's Teach yourself C++ in 21 days is a good beginner book.
Most likely u will grow a library of books.


here are some helpful links:
www.gametutorials.com
www.cprogramming.con
www.planet-sourceode.com
www.programmersheaven.com
www.cplusplus.com

Good Luck!


-----------------------------
"There are ones that say they can and there are those who actually do."

"...u can not learn programming in a class, you have to learn it on your own."



[edited by - cMADsc on July 30, 2002 8:01:54 PM]

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First, let me say that I too had a dream just like you. And I bought windows game programming for dummies. Don't get that one, get the "Tricks of the windows game programming gurus." There is a second edition, the cover is green with a little yellow on it (saw it yesterday). The first thing the book says is learn c++. Since most of the good beginning game books, as well as almost all turotials, are written in c++, learning VB is not a good starting point. I taught myself c++, and since then I've come across a book that I wish I had when I was teaching myself. The teach yourself c++ in 21 days is good, but you also need "Schaum's outlines series: Programming with c++ Second Edition, by John R. Hubbardm Ph.D." Because you want to teach yourself, this book has problems at the back of every chapter, along with solution example code examples.
If you use the 21 day book as a starter, then do the problems in the other book ( without cheating and looking at the answer until you give up or figure it out), you will be a better programmer than most of the people at my college.
Ciao glass_knife

I think, therfore I am.
I think?

[edited by - glass_knife on July 30, 2002 9:01:08 PM]

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Thanks for the tips. I do have a few other questions though. I hear that c++ is a "dangerous" language because it can deal so closely with harware. I hear it can cause crashes and lock ups and generally shorten the life of ones pc dramatically. Is this true?

secondly, once i learn c++ i`m not really home free am i. How does one learn to actually program a game? So i know how to use pointers classes variables and all that, but how do I actually learn to design code that will make a "game". is this in the guru or gems books or do i need a "game design book"?

thx in advance for any help

sinclair393@hotmail.com

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Is c++ dangerous...with all the newbies here and other places, it can't be that dangerous. When working with pointers, be prepared for mistakes. Just back your stuff up, and if all goes very bad, just wipe it clean and reload ( it's good practice anyway).
As for what to do after you learn to code...write a game.
Everyone codes differently, thinks differently, and solves problems differently. The link should answer most questions...
Where to start

I think, therfore I am.
I think?

[edited by - glass_knife on July 31, 2002 12:16:56 AM]

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personally, I'd say go for C++. I've got tons of experience with Visual Basic and think it's a very cool language, but its not very fast, which is really the only downfall it has from C++. Visual Basic is easier to program with and if you're wanting to write RPGS or other games that don't require fast frame rates, its a great choice.

If you're wanting speed and flexibility, and are willing to do a little bit more typing, then C++ is definately the way to go.

Don't worry about things like DirectX, OpenGL, or other APIs... just focus on a language.

[edited by - zer0wolf on August 1, 2002 2:09:18 AM]

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As a professional (somewhat) programmer who has earned my dues teaching myself a multitude of languages, I would recommend NOT starting with VB. It is a nice little language for somethings, but IMHO it is not a good place to start. Starting with pascal, c/c++, QBasic, or other ''old and outdated'' languages will help you learn how to code better than starting with VB will.

Thats my opinion on the matter. YMMV.

--Drakonite

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C++ dangerous? Well, I''ve managed to cause as many problems that could only be fixed with a reboto with VB as I have with c/c++
Shorten the life of your pc? I''ve never heard that. And as far as I can figure out it isn''t true.

Once again, mostly my opinion, YMMV

--Drakonite

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