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Nebbish Monkey

I want to make a game....

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I want to make a game, something like Doom 1. I realize this would be a lot of work, I want to know what I should do to get there... I would like to know the easiest route and the best/most powerful route. Thank you. nebbish \NEB-ish\, noun: A weak-willed, timid, or ineffectual person.

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Well, I''d say you''ve started in the right place. The first thing you really should do is look around the reference section of this site. It''s an invaluable resource.

At the top of this page, click the link "For Beginners" under the "Resources" column.

The important first question: Can you program? If so, then you can find out what you need on these forums and in those resources.

If you can''t program yet, then you will need to learn. That''s the first step, and there''s really no way around it. The Resources section can probably help point you toward some good places to start learning.

Also, get some good books! I''m sure there are lots of people here who can tell you some good ones to look for!


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How much experience do you have, and with which languages? If you''ve never programmed anything before, you might want to forget about games for now and move on to them after you gain a moderately advanced understanding of a programming language or two. Enough to be able to hold your own and not get confused reading documentation.

Once that''s done, look into a graphic API. I''d suggest using the Windows GDI for your first game (I''m assuming you''re using Windows as a platform ) because it isn''t too complicated and doesn''t really require anything at all to get it up and running. You can get your hands dirty with it right away. Try to learn enough to load and copy bitmaps around in your program. Say, write a program that loads a bitmap in a window and then copies parts of it around the place. Y''know, something to get the hang of this.

Once that''s done, you should know enough to get started on your tetris clone. Take it step by step: set up the game environment, load your blocks, write code to animate falling blocks, throw in some player input so the blocks can be moved, make the blocks stack up, check when lines occure, start keeping track of score/lines, add a win/lose condition... don''t expect to get this thing working on your first day. Take it slow and easy, one step at a time. The important thing here is to understand what you''re doing and to get every step right.

When you have a working Tetris clone, start improving on it. Try learning an other API (DirectX, OpenGL, SDL...) and rewriting your game in it. Try adding special stuff (after-images when the blocks fall :D And particle engine-driven explosions when lines are made! And ray-traced reflective blocks! And and and... ok, anyways...), varying the gameplay (two-player mode?), so forth.

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