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What are the main componets of a game

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I have few general newbe questions, related to game design/how a game works. If anyone could suggest good articles that would be appreciated. What are the main componets of a game? Can a rendering engine for drawing a level, objects etc be considered a main componet in it's own right? And what are it's main sub components. Another question is how is a game stored? Does a data structure hold all the information about the map, whats in the map, where player currently is? When the player moves, is it really the object moving in the data structure, and then it being redrawn on screen? What other considerations are there? What else should be stored and manipulated. I know there could be an infinite number of things, but I'm just looking for a general idea.

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TQuite a bunch of questions you've got [smile].
I will try to answer a few.
The 'components' of a game can be divided into groups.
You have components in the game code as well as in its assets.

For assets you have for example

  • Visual art (images, fonts)

  • Music and sounds

  • Data files (maps, UI definitions, configuration files, ...)

  • Scripts (bot AI etc.)

  • ...

And then you also have the source code, which is divided into components, too. These are parts of code that are responsible for the diferent aspects of the game logic and its infrastructure. These are for instance the rendering system, sound and music modules, network components, AI system and so on.

The question about themap and player movement is very specific an linked to the kind of game you are creating. In general data structures are just as modular as the code that manipulates them.

You wouldn't have a super-structure that holds just about every information about the game. Instead you have a structure for the player's properties (e.g. location, health, abilities, ...) and all other objects that occur in the game and the map could hold only references to them (e.g. Object of type A at position [x,y]).

I hope this gives you an impression of a game's structure. If you are interested in some specific designs, look at the source code of some (small!!!) open-source game. Even if you are not familiar with the language it is written in, looking at the docs can give you an idea of how things are done.


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