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StonieJ

OpenGL "Red Book" or "OpenGL Game Programming" - which first?

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I have taken a quick gander at both of these books. Both seem to be good for OpenGL beginners. I sat down in Barnes and Noble for about 30 minutes one day and I read the first few chapters of OpenGL Game Programming and I was quite impressed actually. I enjoyed it because it was based on Windows OpenGL programming, whereas the Red Book is not platform specific. Therefore when I studied the Red Book (which I have as an eBook) I was screwing things up from the very beginning because it doesn''t tell you how to create an OpenGL-capable window. I didn''t get too far in the Red Book for this reason. Maybe this was addressed later on, I dunno. I''d like to have a hardcopy of the Red Book sooner or later though, since it is so highly revered, but I think it''d be better to start off with a Windows specific guide. But anyway, what are your thoughts on the best place to start? By the way, I started with WGP for Dummies (based on DirectX), but DirectDraw wasn''t my cup of tea. I''m hoping OpenGL will suit me better. DirectDraw started off fine and I understood everything, but once it got to bitmaps and offscreen surfaces and blitting, I serisouly got physically ill.

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I have the Book: OpenGL Game Programming and I think it''s a very good book. Especially if you''re not concerned about platform independance i.e. you''ll only code for windows, then it''s a very good book as it teaches you what you need to know about the Windows API but doesn''t fill your head with useless stuff.
So I''d say get that one and once you''re comfortable with windows, you can easily port the RedBook examples to the Win API.

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The Red Book uses GLUT in the examples (mine is the second addition). This is a library that will hide all the window creation code for you. That way, you don't have to worry about the Windows API.

If you are new to OpenGL, I think that this is a very good helper towards learning OpenGL (read: not windows or game programming). I found it useful to experiment and try new things without the hassle of the Windows API.

Do a search on Google for GLUT and you are sure to find a download. Personally, it is what i used when learning OpenGL, and I though it was a good way...

[edited by - bgreen on March 6, 2003 5:23:49 AM]

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I found the red book frustrating in the sence that I already knew the windows API, and in every example they used glut. Apart from that it''s a pretty good book, and it gives you that level of depth that''s important. IE, they don''t just tell you what the command does, they tell you how to use it, show you how to use it, and explain any of the common pitfals that might exist with the command. I can''t really compare it to OpenGL Game Programming though as I''ve never read that one.

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I would say get OGL Game programming and use the red book as a resource for more clarification/specification. Ideally, get both, but if you have downloaded the redbook, I wouldn''t bother spending the money just yet.

I learned OGL using the redbook and GLut, but then put it off for a while. I am now relearning things, going through OGL Game Programming as we speak. Its nice having the redbook to add more info to some topics.

Glut is good for prototyping things quickly, but you are not going to want to use it for games. I plan on doing things windows specific at the moment, and then at some point abstracting any windows calls and using SDL to make it more portable.

I am very happy with OGLGP though, and would highly recommend it as a starting point.

The Tyr project is here.

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Thanks for the help guys. Over Spring Break (two days away!) I will probably buy OGLGP and start working my way through it and use my redbook ebook for help along the way. Also, I heard that OpenGL 2.0 is on it''s way. First, do you think it will get here anytime soon? And second, if so, should I hold off on OpenGL until 2.0 comes out, then start learning it?

Thanks again.

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Perhaps programming isn''t your deal at all if you can''t get started...


I mean it is not that hard to get started with the Red Book... if it doesn''t tell you directly what to do, what forbids you to look up information on your own? This doesn''t concern you since you managed to buy a book, but I''ve seen at least dozen posts like this.

I''m sick of seeing people bound to stupidity since they can''t even type www.google.com and then search for help.

Now excuse me if I''m retarded, but opening up google and searching for OpenGL and windows I found:
with words:
-opengl windows
nehe.gamedev.net/opengl1.asp - 22k

Now, I didn''t even try other searches, since that page would tell you exactly and even handle some code for you.

Sorry for opening up, but internet does really make you stupid, if you are not already that is.

Programming involves heuristics. If you don''t have any, perhaps the more creative side is for you.

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Captain, your brilliant post has made me rethink my life. You are right, I''m not made for programming. In fact, what''s the point of living in the first place. I mean, why learn about anything at all if in the end you''re only going to end up dead. By the way, go f*ck yourself.

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I''d recommend Nehe''s tutorials and gametutorials.com, if you haven''t already done them- they both use Windows. They have been great for me (and still are)- the tutorials give the very basics and give me ideas which I then I expand upon using the Red Book, MSDN''s Platform SDK and the posts here as reference. BTW, is your e-book version of the Red Book searchable? My favorite online site for that book is permanently down and all the others I''ve found aren''t seachable. Also, you may like posting on the NeHe forum- I don''t believe I''ve ever once seen a nasty post over there

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