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MidnightRaven

Where do I start!? So Lost!

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Hello to all at GameDev.net... I have just started training as a 3d animator. My boyfriend and I were talking about his mr2 and I came up with the idea of attempting to make him a racing game of his car for his site. Gaming interests me alot, but is soooo new to me I dont know where to start! lol Where's the best place to start on this website, and is there software I can buy that is a fairly reasonable price to start me off on? I have had a look through the forum at various posts, but not knowing the tech side to gaming, i got a bit lost! Many Thanks Nina

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Well, your best place is to start here.

Also, there are various paths to follow. I assume you want to program games. You should start out simple, that's for sure.

My suggestion is to learn C# and go with Managed DirectX. For that, you might want to get the Microsoft Visual C# 2005 Express Beta 2.

Next is to learn C# yourself, which can be on one of the following websites:
http://www.softsteel.co.uk/tutorials/cSharp/cIndex.html
http://www.csharp-station.com/ -> Select Tutorials in the top menu

USe [google] to find more tutorials yourself :)

And after that, you might want to learn Managed DirectX, for which I used Tom Miller's Managed DirectX 9 Kickstart (ISBN: 0672325969)

Toolmaker

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First up, is the 'For Beginners' link in the menu at the top of the page. As you may gather from reading it, it is biased towards programmers (rather than animators, designers, etc) as a game cannot generally be made without some degree of programming. If you want to make a game (as opposed to helping someone else make a game) you will either need to learn how to program, or find some sort of package (usually still requiring a degree of programming, albeit much simplified) that can help you develop one. I can't comment on the latter approach as it is not generally the preferred option: professionals need to develop their own software from the ground up, while hobbyists prefer to do the same to improve their employment chances or for the pleasure of learning. This may seem unnecessarily difficult, but bear in mind that commercial games are generally developed by teams of 3 to 30 people and it's not generally expected that any but the most talented individuals will create a high quality game on their own these days. Don't be discouraged, but don't expect too much either.

If on the other hand you just want to work on animating models for an existing game or one developed by someone else, you won't necessarily need to go down the programming route. Consider looking at the Visual Arts forum and getting a feel for what goes on there.

Really it depends on what exactly you want to do.

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dont get me wrong I understand fully from animating that you cant build a whole animation with one person alone.

This is merely something I wanted to build bit by bit myself as a side project for my boyfriend and his car.

Now I appreciate ur replies but to be honest u lost me at C#! What I had in my mind was that I would produce to car and backdrops in 3d and then using the programming to turn it into a game...or am I being naive and very blonde! lol

Thank you for ur replies, apologies if I'm being a pain.

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Well, you're certainly on the right lines... but unfortunately the amount of programming you need to turn it into a game is generally massive. Unfortunately you have a bit of a dilemma ahead: you could learn a simple language like Python which would let you achieve what you want in relatively short time, but due to its lack of popularity you would have trouble finding people or documentation to assist you. On the other hand you could use C++, as most game programmers do, and have thousands of people available on these forums to offer help and advice, not to mention libraries full of books, but you also have to do something like five times as much work and a lot more study just to get it running in the first place, due to the raised level of complexity.

Or, to come at it another way, people take entire university degrees based around learning what you're wanting to do. At the very least you're probably going to need to buy a book to teach you the programming side, and which book you choose depends on what sort of route you want to take. Unfortunately I have no idea what good books are on the market these days, so it is worth browsing them in the local shop.

Now, there may be some 3D game maker programs out there that will allow you to make a game using your model with a lot less programming. Unfortunately I know next to nothing about these tools and that probably holds true for most people here on Gamedev, but perhaps someone will give some details. Blitz3D and DarkBasic are two names I hear thrown around, and you might get lucky if you look into them.

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Well, you said you're an animator... Correct me if I'm wrong, animators learn stuff like Photoshop and Flash, isn't it?

A fairly simple tool that you might be familiar with that you could use to make games is Flash... There is the whole Action Script thing in Flash that you can add programming and logic with.

It's not difficult, and you can even click and drag code. But it's not as... flexible... as a normal programming language and DirectX/OpenGL, but maybe that is what might suit your needs.

If you want to jump into the deep end with DirectX and C++ though, there are tons of resources waiting for you.

Good luck in your game!!

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As an animator, yes I do use photoshop but I am learning flash, as the software I mainly use is Lightwave.

The car the game is based on, isnt even fully re built yet, and wont be untill next year, or maybe 2007! So I'm in no rush to get the game completed.....

therefore if I'm going to do it, I'd like to do it properly...although it would be a side project, I can take my time as it's not urgent.

So the C++ coding I am willing to learn..

so im guessing it's down to the library! lol

many thanks for all ur help....

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