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game programming but where to start?

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Hi I have done no programming at all and i know i will have to learn how but i really want to make games it sounds like lots of fun. I have been thinking about doing it for a career or maybe just a hobby but i have no real idea where to begin any advice will help alot.

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1. Get a free Compiler. A compiler is a program that you write your code into, which then can make it into a program. I personally use Visual C++, but unless you want to spend alot of money, I recommend something different. Try looking up on google "Free C++ Compilers".

2. Once you have the compiler all set up, goto a web site to teach you how to program the basics. I personally think "http://www.cprogramming.com/" does a good job, go there and go the section labeled "Getting Started with C++".

3. Learn how to do the basic programming. Once you can do those things with ease, then come back here. You have to learn these basics first, or you can never program games.

4. To make any good game like something you buy at a store, think around 3-5 years of programming, and the luck of getting on a good programming team, before you will ever be able to do anything like that. This is not something that will give you things to brag about in a couple days.

5. Good luck, and if you have any questions, just come on here and ask away, people will be happy to help you :)

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There are quite a few roles that you can play in the development of a game. You just have to find your place.

Now, that's easier said than done. You mentioned programming, so I'll follow that path. The first thing you have to do is to learn to program. I would choose from three common languages:

C++: Perhaps the most popular for game development. There is no lack of tutorials, and the C++ game development community is quite large. This is an important consideration, as while you are learning, this community will support you.

Java: Another popular programming language, and extremely popular outside of the game programming world. For games, it is not used quite as often simply because it is slower.

C#: The newbie to the group. However, many (including myself) consider this a powerful alternative to C++. On one hand, it is very clean and allows you to code at a higher level, allowing you to make games faster. On the other hand, the community is quite small, as it is new and many have doubts about its future. It also gives you a little less control of what happens.

Keep in mind that the three are still relatively similar. In many simple cases, code looks identical between the three. Therefore, once you have learned the theory, you can quickly and easily switch.

This first step is a critical one that takes quite a while to accomplish. So pick one, and either buy a book or google some tutorials.

I'm sure others will have more to say,

--Vic--

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I am assuming that you want to focus on the programming side of things here.
To start of you might want to learn about programming in general. So first of all, pick a language(does not matter which one). There are several options here: Java, C, C++, C#, some version of BASIC, Delphi. The next step is to learn all about variables, functions and etc, the learn some general algorithms and data structures. You should figure where to go next on your own.

Some books you might find useful (Google for them):
Thinking in Java.
Thinking in C++.
Introduction to Algorithms.

You also might find "For Beginners" section useful.

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Quote:
but i really want to make games it sounds like lots of fun. I have been thinking about doing it for a career or maybe just a hobby

"sounds like lots of fun" is true (I believe) but should be accompanied by is "hours, and hours of hard work"
Like the above poster, I would recommend learning C/C++ first, before you worry about doing any real game programming.

However, if you want to do some "game programming" just to get you interested in how making games can be "fun" I would suggest using a game development tool. Personally, I used to use DigiPen's ProjectFUN editor (click) but that it $30. You could also use BlitzBasic, or DarkBasic, but I liked the FUN Editor, as it uses C++ througout, so it eases the transition into actual game coding.

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If you're the slighest bit interested in a career in game dev, I highly recommend C++ as the language of choice. Although Java is certainly capable, it's still a relatively new language and doesn't have the kind of support/experienced user-base online as C++. C# even moreso; I don't know of any games developed in C# (not saying there aren't any, just that I know a handful in Java and all the rest are in C++).

If you feel like diving in the deep end and have a lot of patience, a good place to start would be learning OpenGL.

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