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# I want to learn to code games.... Where do I start?

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What should I learn first? Where do I learn how? I already know what the smart types of games are to make first, but, frankly, I don''t have the patience, so, once I learn how, I''d like to start with the near inpossible task (for a beginner) of a top down shooter (2d). So where do I start?

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Click the "view forum FAQ" link above the first post. In there will be info (and a link the the "Start Here" page).

- WarbleWare

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This was a good starting point for me:

http://www.gametutorials.com/Tutorials/tutorials.htm

LizardCPP

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I''ve been looking around on this site, and with google, and I keep seeing this book: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0672323699/ref=pd_sxp_elt_l1/102-7069298-0423358

Is it a good place to start?

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I''m curious: How did you find this site?

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quote:
Original post by Sup
What should I learn first? Where do I learn how?

I already know what the smart types of games are to make first, but, frankly, I don't have the patience, so, once I learn how, I'd like to start with the near inpossible task (for a beginner) of a top down shooter (2d). So where do I start?

dude,

there a reason people start out with the smaller games (like pong and tetris). its simply because you would have no clue on how to make anything bigger. you need to learn how to crawl before you can walk. its that simple. if you actually make a top down shooter as your FIRST get EVER, i would like to shake your hand. youd probably be one of the first people to ever accomplish such a task. (do you think all of us make pong clones because we just really like pong?)

oh, and dont bother picking up Tricks of the win game programming guru's. im not too familiary with it, but im sure it assumes at least a DECENT working knowledge of C++. Getting that book you might as well throw your money out the window.

learn c++. work with it for a little bit (at least a few months). make a text based game or some other sort of decently sized program. then try to learn an API. if you try to rush through things, i will promise you, you will just be wasting your time and getting yourself frustrated.

btw, im in-patient, also, so i know how it is. game programming (and programming in general) requires patiants.ive been working on that. try not to be like a doctor with no work.

good luck man!!!!

[edited by - graveyard filla on March 4, 2004 4:37:39 PM]

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As graveyard filla said "Tricks of the Windows Game Programming Gurus" will be too advanced for you.

Go through the beginners guide, you will find valuable information for beginners as well as some recommendations on good books to get you started.

[edited by - tiffany_smith on March 4, 2004 4:49:11 PM]

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Start easy, I think one of the most important thing is to finish the work you started. I started big which gave me a lot of experince over all but I wish that I had started a little more simple. Good luck :D

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1. learn a programming language
2. learn OOP concept
3. learn data structures and algorithms
4. pick APIs for your graphics/input/sound
5. learn software engineering
6. make a game.

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quote:
1. learn a programming language
2. learn OOP concept
3. learn data structures and algorithms
4. pick APIs for your graphics/input/sound
5. learn software engineering
6. make a game.

You forgot:

7. ???
8. Profit!

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quote:
Original post by graveyard filla
quote:
Original post by Sup
What should I learn first? Where do I learn how?

I already know what the smart types of games are to make first, but, frankly, I don''t have the patience, so, once I learn how, I''d like to start with the near inpossible task (for a beginner) of a top down shooter (2d). So where do I start?

dude,

there a reason people start out with the smaller games (like pong and tetris). its simply because you would have no clue on how to make anything bigger. you need to learn how to crawl before you can walk. its that simple. if you actually make a top down shooter as your FIRST get EVER, i would like to shake your hand. youd probably be one of the first people to ever accomplish such a task. (do you think all of us make pong clones because we just really like pong?)

oh, and dont bother picking up Tricks of the win game programming guru''s. im not too familiary with it, but im sure it assumes at least a DECENT working knowledge of C++. Getting that book you might as well throw your money out the window.

learn c++. work with it for a little bit (at least a few months). make a text based game or some other sort of decently sized program. then try to learn an API. if you try to rush through things, i will promise you, you will just be wasting your time and getting yourself frustrated.

btw, im in-patient, also, so i know how it is. game programming (and programming in general) requires patiants.ive been working on that. try not to be like a doctor with no work.

good luck man!!!!

You had a similar post just a little bit ago--and you giving him advice!?!? Just goes to show that you should be aware of whose advice you''re taking.

quote:

I''d like to start with the near impossible task (for a beginner) of a top down shooter (2d).

Good, I follow the same "philosophy". Start with this list. It gives you a good path to follow. And once you know C/C++ and DirectX, a top down shooter is not all that hard (the art creation is what will be hard). Why not go with 3D? But if you want to limit your self like the others, then get LaMothe''s Volume I book for it''s the definitive guide on doing 2D. Once you read that book, you should have no problem doing a top down shooter. As far as starting small, you''ll do that in the books anyway.

And no luck needed, because luck has nothing to do with learning Game development. It takes time, money, patience, and the will to keep going.

"Do not flame people you don''t know in a public forum. Only amateurs do that. Professionals in the industry know they will run into each other over and over. The person you flame this year may the person you want to do business with next year. Don''t burn your bridges," (Diana Gruber, http://www.makegames.com/chapt6.html).

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quote:
Original post by alnite
1. learn a programming language
2. learn OOP concept
3. learn data structures and algorithms
4. pick APIs for your graphics/input/sound
5. learn software engineering
6. make a game.

#2 is highly optional. A good step to take nevertheless.

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quote:
Original post by DIRECTXMEN

You had a similar post just a little bit ago--and you giving him advice!?!? Just goes to show that you should be aware of whose advice you''re taking.

well... please point out where i was wrong in my post. i dont think i was, but if i was, then whoops. but honestly, i was just trying to be helpfull

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Hey... if u start with learning a basic language like HTML then goto JavaScript then to learning the basic of C++ and work your way up... in a few months at a pace... you will have it down pretty OK... once u have learn C++ and some other languages like mabye QBasic and really learning wut u are doing u WILL have it down.. i have ADHD and it took me forever to start learning.. im still workin at it since about a year ago(wen i got my comp). i have like NO attention span.. it took alot of focussing and frustration to start learning how to use a comp... so start small learn to breathe then move then crawl then walk then RUN!

Hope you will take some of the advice.

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quote:
Original post by DIRECTXMEN

a top down shooter is not all that hard (the art creation is what will be hard). Why not go with 3D?

Because I don't have the money for a 3dgraphics program. All the books i'll need'll be bad enough, I'd like to make sure I have talent before I get anything that expensive.

[edited by - Sup on March 5, 2004 9:57:02 AM]

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To all you guys that replied to this post, two thumbs up.

It''s cool to see people who still answer this kind of questions. It''s so tough to start programming games and there is so few ressources available others than "people" to really learn where to start.

You guys are great.

Simon

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quote:
Original post by Sup
quote:
Original post by DIRECTXMEN

a top down shooter is not all that hard (the art creation is what will be hard). Why not go with 3D?

Because I don''t have the money for a 3dgraphics program. All the books i''ll need''ll be bad enough, I''d like to make sure I have talent before I get anything that expensive.

Listen, check out 3DCafe.com. They have tons of FREE models, textures, and tutorials. And MilkShape is only $25 bucks. That''s almost 1/3 the cost of LaMothe''s 2D book. "Do not flame people you don''t know in a public forum. Only amateurs do that. Professionals in the industry know they will run into each other over and over. The person you flame this year may the person you want to do business with next year. Don''t burn your bridges," (Diana Gruber, http://www.makegames.com/chapt6.html). #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites As usual, you get the deluge of "learn C++ and DirectX" suggestions. They're great technologies and necessary to deliver cutting-edge products for Windows, but for beginners - and for a top-down shooter - there are other options. Here's one: 1. Learn Python (it's easy!) If you're a Windows user, consider ActiveState's ActivePython distribution. 2. Get PyGame. It comes with tutorials and examples, and it'll have you writing your first game in no time. The website also has links to additional tutorials once you've gotten your feet wet. Optional step: 1. Get Numpy for snazzy 2D effects and PyOpenGL for 3D (the latter depends on the former, so just get 'em both). That is, if you want to make games as opposed to creating technology for the next several months. [Edit: Numpy link.] [edited by - Oluseyi on March 5, 2004 10:19:45 AM] #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites quote: Original post by Oluseyi As usual, you get the deluge of "learn C++ and DirectX" suggestions. They''re great technologies and necessary to deliver cutting-edge products for Windows, but for beginners - and for a top-down shooter - there are other options. Here''s one: 1. Learn Python (it''s easy!) If you''re a Windows user, consider ActiveState''s ActivePython distribution. 2. Get PyGame. It comes with tutorials and examples, and it''ll have you writing your first game in no time. The website also has links to additional tutorials once you''ve gotten your feet wet. Optional step: 1. Get Numpy for snazzy 2D effects and PyOpenGL for 3D (the latter depends on the former, so just get ''em both). That is, if you want to make games as opposed to creating technology for the next several months. [Edit: Numpy link.] [edited by - Oluseyi on March 5, 2004 10:19:45 AM] dat true but if you really "serious" bout game programming you''ll still end up running into the brickwall called c++ no way you look at it. It''s true if your impatient python or java is better way to start if you want to making games right away and the pros use them too to prototype stuff if anything. But the more ambitious your games get you''ll have to look into opengl or sdl and that requires c++! If God played dice, He''d win. —Ian Stewart, Does God Play Dice? The Mathematics of Chaos #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites quote: Original post by DIRECTXMEN quote: Original post by Sup quote: Original post by DIRECTXMEN a top down shooter is not all that hard (the art creation is what will be hard). Why not go with 3D? Because I don''t have the money for a 3dgraphics program. All the books i''ll need''ll be bad enough, I''d like to make sure I have talent before I get anything that expensive. Listen, check out 3DCafe.com. They have tons of FREE models, textures, and tutorials. And MilkShape is only$25 bucks. That''s almost 1/3 the cost of LaMothe''s 2D book.

"Do not flame people you don''t know in a public forum. Only amateurs do that. Professionals in the industry know they will run into each other over and over. The person you flame this year may the person you want to do business with next year. Don''t burn your bridges," (Diana Gruber, http://www.makegames.com/chapt6.html) .

why would you tell him to JUMP RIGHT INTO 3D?!?!

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quote:
Original post by daveangel
dat true but if you really "serious" bout game programming you''ll still end up running into the brickwall called c++ no way you look at it.
quote:
Original post by Oluseyi
As usual, you get the deluge of "learn C++ and DirectX" suggestions. They''re great technologies and necessary to deliver cutting-edge products for Windows, but for beginners...
You''re repeating me, and using that in response to me. Stop it.

quote:
It''s true if your impatient python or java is better way to start if you want to making games right away and the pros use them too to prototype stuff if anything.
These languages will play an increasingly central role for the simple fact that the overhead and turnaround time in statically compiled languages is too high. If you have an SDK written in C++, why not write the (less performance-intensive) game logic in a higher-level language?

quote:
But the more ambitious your games get you''ll have to look into opengl or sdl and that requires c++!
PyGame is an SDL wrapper for Python (and it should be obvious what PyOpenGL is). Sorry, you''re wrong.

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Differentiation between game and engine is good.

For instance, Quake3 (the engine) is written in C(++?). Quake3 (the game) is written in QuakeC (which is a specialized (I think interpreted) scripting language).

Seems to be the way to go.

[edit: of course, if you're just beginning, you don't want to be tackling Quake 3 just yet. I'd say learn Java - it's a good primer for C++, and a great language in it's own right, imho].

[edited by - fractoid on March 5, 2004 11:58:24 AM]

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quote:
Original post by DerAnged
quote:
Original post by DIRECTXMEN
quote:
Original post by Sup
quote:
Original post by DIRECTXMEN

a top down shooter is not all that hard (the art creation is what will be hard). Why not go with 3D?

Because I don''t have the money for a 3dgraphics program. All the books i''ll need''ll be bad enough, I''d like to make sure I have talent before I get anything that expensive.

Listen, check out 3DCafe.com. They have tons of FREE models, textures, and tutorials. And MilkShape is only $25 bucks. That''s almost 1/3 the cost of LaMothe''s 2D book. "Do not flame people you don''t know in a public forum. Only amateurs do that. Professionals in the industry know they will run into each other over and over. The person you flame this year may the person you want to do business with next year. Don''t burn your bridges," (Diana Gruber, http://www.makegames.com/chapt6.html) . why would you tell him to JUMP RIGHT INTO 3D?!?! you realize that you can use 3D models to make 2D sprites... right? #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites quote: Original post by Alpha_ProgDes quote: Original post by DerAnged quote: Original post by DIRECTXMEN quote: Original post by Sup quote: Original post by DIRECTXMEN a top down shooter is not all that hard (the art creation is what will be hard). Why not go with 3D? Because I don''t have the money for a 3dgraphics program. All the books i''ll need''ll be bad enough, I''d like to make sure I have talent before I get anything that expensive. Listen, check out 3DCafe.com. They have tons of FREE models, textures, and tutorials. And MilkShape is only$25 bucks. That''s almost 1/3 the cost of LaMothe''s 2D book.

"Do not flame people you don''t know in a public forum. Only amateurs do that. Professionals in the industry know they will run into each other over and over. The person you flame this year may the person you want to do business with next year. Don''t burn your bridges," (Diana Gruber, http://www.makegames.com/chapt6.html) .

why would you tell him to JUMP RIGHT INTO 3D?!?!

you realize that you can use 3D models to make 2D sprites... right?

you realize that he should learn to program first right?

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he nevered indicated whether or not he could or couldn''t program.
and also even if he didn''t, that doesn''t mean he can''t use a graphics package and 3D models. he can have sprites without the game.