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Game engine: gameplay

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Hai there, When thinking about programming a game engine I bashed my head again. I also started to think about how the user could control the game using my engine. I thought about creating a standard base class just like in MFC. For example CApplication. When I was working out this idea I got to think about which functions I needed to 'give' to the user. For example a GUI; how could the user control these controls, does the user control them at all?? Or does the engine work out this problem. Then the gameplay; how on earth does the use control the gameplay? And what about networking? First I wanted to create an 'all-genre' engine, but when I thought about this subject I disided to create a shooter engine. I know álot about the basic 'creating a game' but 'creating a game engine' is a whole new level. Can anyone point me to some resources on the net or books, or just give me advise? GBas

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As someone who's failed several times to create an 'engine', I'd recommend you start reading ;) There's some good articles around that detail the general processes of engine coding. The first one I'd recommend you take in is Code on the Cob by Chris Hargrove and Enginuity by Richard Fine. They will be good starting points about how to structure your code. The Code on the Cob series is especially valuable in learning how to design and write reusable systems and code. You'll have to be quite up to speed with object oriented approaches to writing modular code (I don't mean just C++ classes, I mean real OO thinking).

Generally though, I think you'll have a hard time trying to design and create an engine from the first iteration (from my experience). A discussion I started here is valuable if you want some professional input on the engine design process. The consenus is that your generic basecode should evolve over time and will be hard to create from the offset.

I'm creating a top-down shooter now, I'm not making an 'engine', but I'm writing my code in such a way that it will be reusable in other projects. I think this is the first step in creating the engine; evolution of common game code over total revolution. Afterall, you may hear about people with impressive engines around but a lot of the time, there's hardly any games written on them - making you wonder if all the effort was in vain?

I'm leaving engine design up to the pros, from now on I'm only creating games :)

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I think you are trying to do more than what you are capable of.

Instead, start out with what you know and build on that. Write a tetris and add highscore, sound, networking, GUI... It will surely keep you busy for a while.

When you are done with that I think you can answer the questions you asked in your post. Your questions are such that you will only understand the answers if you have alot of experience. There is no way you can fit years of experience in a simple answer.

And as evolutional basiclly said "you will end up with an engine if you write your code in a modular way".

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Thanks for the resources!!

@evolutional:
You are totally right about not focussing on an engine. I'm creating my engine with a game. My engine is not especially for my game, I'm trying to make it as portabel as possible but i'm for now only implenting things needed for my game!

@doho:
My years of experience are quite long. And I have allready made a tetris game.

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