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King of Men

Suggestions for newbies

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I've often seen newbies told to go make a Pong clone as their first project. Well, that has its points, sure. Still, it's not very creative. Could we maybe come up with something better? Surely there is an intermediate between Pong clones and the next massively successful MMORPG or, God forbid, hockey game. One possiblity is to clone a board game; with the recent spate of simple games in the German style, there's surely no lack of worthy projects here. And if you don't like some particular rule, or think that something could be given just a little more depth, well, you're the programmer, right? Another : Invent your own card game. It's not going to be the next Magic, but at least you can make some rules of your own devising, you don't have to worry about performance in the render loop (also an advantage in board games), and the learning curve for 2-D graphics is much nicer. Any other suggestions? Surely we can come up with something for the newbie who is bored with Breakout clones.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
Why?

If a newbie comes in with "Help! My pong clone is broken!" we'll all be able to help. If they come in with "Help! I'm making my own card game, and it's not working" we'll have a page worth of posts just trying to figure out what it's supposed to be.

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Quote:
Original post by Anonymous Poster
Why?

If a newbie comes in with "Help! My pong clone is broken!" we'll all be able to help. If they come in with "Help! I'm making my own card game, and it's not working" we'll have a page worth of posts just trying to figure out what it's supposed to be.


er. logged out.

Telastyn...

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Plus IMO the whole purpose of a simplistic Pong clone is for practice and experience, not necessarily originality.
Originality comes after said Pong clone is made and the (beginning)programmer gets a feel for making games as well as learning how to add more advanced features to his Pong clone.

EDIT: Ender pretty much gave a summed-up version of what I was trying to say.

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I personally tend to suggest a console version of Tic-Tac-Toe to newbies prior to writing a pong clone, and generally suggest following it up with a "breakout" style game.

The thing about a lot of card or board games is that they won't actually teach the same things as a good pong clone. A card or board game is generally turn-based, and therefore lends itself well to an event-driven programming approach, while pong makes use of a main game loop, time-based-movement and/or capped framerate, polling for input. These things are commonly used in larger games they're likely to want to create later.

I'm not saying card or board games are a bad idea, I'm just observing the reasoning behind the popular choice of pong. That being said, it's also always nice to see someone do something a little different with thier learning projects.

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